Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Thanks, Sid

Sid Ramnarace

One thing you can glean from watching too much Barrett-Jackson on TV is new factoids.  I learned that Sid Ramnarace led the team that designed the Gen 5 (S-197) Mustang.  Ford's then Senior VP of Design,
J. Mays, called the look "retro-futurism," which sounds like desperate marketing-speak to me.

The executives who approve taking a fashion risk (even a retro one) on a new model deserve all due credit.  But the people who conceive the look and refine it in engineering drawings and models scrubbed from all angles deserve the most credit.

It was the modern powertrain and bang-for-the-buck that sold me a Mustang.  But it was thinking "That's a good-looking car!" that got my attention in the first place.  Thankyou, Sid.

Best of the best: the '08-'09 Bullitt.  The lines of the early S-197 coupes would be hard to improve upon.  The Power Pak
and Ford Racing suspension were standard on the Bullitt.  Ford even checked the "spoiler delete" box for you, and the
only color available was Steve McQueen Green.  Henry would have approved: build a good one, on a take it or leave it
basis, and see if they vote with their wallets.

Without the visual mass and smoothness of the fastback roof, the lines of the convertible are less satisfying.  But this view
shows the fine front end of the early Gen 5's.  Which unfortunately packs air under the hood at very hight speeds, causing
it to flutter.  The aero is hardly state-of-the-art.  But I love the look.  Did I mention that the top goes down?

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