Over nearly 50 years in production, the Ford Mustang has undergone numerous changes to its body — with each year, and each redesign, a new crop of boosters and detractors start arguing the merits of these changes. At CJ Pony Parts, we've been Mustang experts for over 28 years. We've seen the car re-invent itself several times, but throughout it all, the passions and opinions of Mustang fans have remained strong. If you're new to Mustangs, here's a quick guide to the various body styles the car has incorporated over the years.
When the first generation of Mustangs rolled off the assembly line in 1964, both hardtop and convertible options were available. Taking its styling cues from European road cars, the Mustang was an immediate hit, selling over 100,000 units in the first three months. The following year, the Mustang fastback was introduced, featuring a dramatic sloped roof that lowered the vehicle's drag coefficient.
Second Generation Mustang Body Styles
In 1974, the Mustang was redesigned in response to consumer demand for smaller, more efficient cars spurred on by the gas crisis. Renamed the Mustang II, the fastback model was switched out for a hatchback, and the convertible was dropped entirely.
Third Generation Mustang Body Styles
A third generation redesign in 1979 continued the Mustang II's emphasis on economy over performance, maintaining its predecessor's hatchback and coupe body styles, while adding more interior space and cutting 200 lbs. off the base vehicle's curb weight. The convertible returned as an option in 1983.
Fourth Generation Mustang Body Styles
Many hailed the Mustang's 30th anniversary makeover as a return to form. Dropping the little-loved hatchback, the new Mustangs were sportier and more focused on delivering the power the original Mustangs were famous for.
Fifth Generation Mustang Body Styles
Building on the positive reaction to the fourth generation, the new Mustangs, which rolled out in 2005, featured a "retro-futuristic" design that harkened back to original pony cars. With a new generation set to debut in 2014, Mustang enthusiasts are excited to see what the future will bring!