You may or may not know that the iconic Ford Mustang is celebrating a remarkable anniversary this year, as the model turns 50 years old.
It has seen Ford involved in a number of special celebrations to mark the astounding milestone, while the company also prepares for the first ever UK launch of the model. It’s safe to say we’re pretty excited about it.
The latest stunt from the American brand has seen it try to replicate a feat it achieved when the model was still just a baby in 1965.
Ford will be placing a brand new 2015 Ford Mustang Convertible on the roof of the Empire State Building – the second tallest tower in New York.
The Mustang’s relationship with the Big Apple goes way back, as it was first debuted as part of the 1964 World’s Fair in New York. Ford is therefore delighted to be recreating the 1965 stunt in the “one of the greatest cities in the world” – as noted by Ford chief operating officer Mark Fields.
“We’re thrilled to be visiting the architectural landmark that has been the heart of the Manhattan skyline for 83 years with the newest generation of the car that is the soul of Ford Motor Company,” he said.
Despite the latest efforts coming half a century after the first attempts, the Mustang’s trip to the roof will have to be taken in the same way it was all those years ago – by elevator.
In 1965, the prototype was cut into three separate pieces and taken up to the 86th floor observatory one by one.
No portable crane capable of entering the busy streets of Manhattan can stretch as high as the top floor and due to the notable spire on the top, it simply cannot be taken up by helicopter. Therefore, a repeat of 1965’s painstaking task is once again the only way to do it.
Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer, said: “Like all good craftsmen, our team is measuring twice and cutting once to make sure we can get this Mustang up in the elevators.
“Like the team that did this in 1965, the current crew visited the Empire State Building before starting and took careful measurements of its new elevators and doors before cutting up the car.”
The challenge for the engineers and craftsmen will be a little bit tougher this time around though, as the latest Mustang is 180mm longer and 100mm wider than the 1965 version. This means an even more difficult task to get the car into the elevator in the minimal amount of pieces.
However, modern technology has helped to solve this problem. Using computer engineering data, the exact places to cut have been identified so all the pieces can be loaded onto custom-made racks and placed safely and securely in the elevator.
It might be a tight squeeze though!
Once all the pieces are up on the top floor, the technicians will attempt to reassemble the car in its entirety, where it will then remain on display from April 16th to 17th.
April 16th is a notable day for Mustang, with the model beginning its international celebrations as 16 countries gather in the US to welcome 50 years of Mustang.
Visitors from Europe, Australia and South America will head to the Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina and the Las Vegas Motor Speedway to begin the party.
Despite the model not traditionally being available in all of these areas, executive director of Mustang’s 50th year celebrations Ronald D. Bramlett recognises the passion for the car is “truly international”.
“Enthusiasts from across the globe are planning to attend and share their personal Mustang stories. Some are even shipping their Mustang to the United States to drive their car as part of the milestone event,” he said.
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