While Prodrive’s Ford Mustang Supercars project is officially on hold, its sister company Tickford has unveiled a limited edition road car sure to please race fans.
Tickford will build 77 Mustang GTs to mark 40 years since Allan Moffat led Colin Bond to the Moffat Ford Dealer Team’s famous one-two finish in the Bathurst 1000.
Launched by Prodrive last year, the Tickford company sells performance, interior and exterior enhancements for Ford’s Mustang and Ranger models.
Prodrive had hoped to combine the push into the Mustang parts business with a Supercars program, but will continue with its Falcon in 2018 after failing to gain Ford support.
Tickford is yet to release full specifications for its Mustang GT but has confirmed it will include a striking decal kit replicating the look of the 1977 race cars.
It is the second 1977 Bathurst tribute from the Melbourne-based business, which ran throwback liveries on its two Supercars at Bathurst in 2012.
“This year is a significant anniversary in Australian and Ford motorsport history and while it will be celebrated in many ways, we are privileged to be working with Allan Moffat to create a modern V8 hardtop that pays tribute to his famous winning machine,” said Tickford and Prodrive CEO Tim Edwards.
“Our mantra is Performance driven by passion and with the very special enhancements we are making to all the main areas of each Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special, this project has given us the chance to turn that into reality.
“We wanted to give fans that either witnessed the famous one-two live, or have come to appreciate the supreme effort after the fact, the chance to own a unique vehicle that has been developed in conjunction with the man that made it happen.
“The fact Allan endorses the program and has worked with our project team from initial concept stage to provide input into the Mustang’s development only adds to its status.”
Moffat also expressed his delight at seeing his famous Moffat Ford Dealers colours reborn on the Mustang.
“It is hard to believe it has been 40 years since Colin and I finished one-two at Bathurst but while I recall the race as if it were yesterday, it is nice to know it holds such a special place with so many people all these years on,” he said.
“The team at Tickford have done a very thorough job coming up with a modern interpretation of my 1977 XC Hardtop.
“While the Falcon has sadly been consigned to the history books, the Mustang was always one of my favourite cars to race and I had considerable success in them. Ford have done a great job with the latest one.
“The Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special looks amazing, produces an unbelievable amount of power and the finish across all areas of the vehicle highlights why the return of Tickford is so important for the Australian automotive industry.
“These guys know what they are doing and it shows in this special edition.”
Edwards meanwhile told Supercars.com that, after exploring the feasibility of a Mustang Supercar, his team is fully focussed on improving its Falcons.
Having been the front-running Ford squad in the category for several seasons, it has been outshone by Shell V-Power Racing in 2017 and is attempting to claw back lost ground.
“From a certain perspective it’s actually a positive because you can get yourself pretty distracted when you’re trying to develop a new model,” Edwards said of sticking with the Falcon.
“The amount of effort that went into the FG X, it takes a lot of attention and we need to focus on getting back to the top step.
“We would have had half our engineers focussing on a new body shape if we’d gone down that road.
“Now we’ve got 100 percent of them focussed on getting back to the top.”