Special edition Mustang celebrates Ford’s famous one-two finish at the Bathurst 1000

Those of you who are familiar with the Mount Panorama race track in Bathurst, Australia will attest to the circuit’s status as one of the world’s greatest race tracks. The 79-year old circuit is home to the Bathurst 1000, one of the most famous endurance races in the world, and was also the site of Ford’s famous one-two finish back in 1977. Forty years after that memorable triumph, Australian Ford tuner Pickford is rolling out a limited run of Ford Mustang GTs called the Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special.

The limited-run set of Mustangs will feature plenty of cosmetic upgrades, but none are more important than its livery to match the race-winning 1977 Falcon XC Hardtops that racers Allan Moffat and Colin Bond drove to victory 40 years ago. If anything, the special edition Mustang pays tribute to the storied ties between Australian motorsports and the Blue Oval. “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,” Tickford CEO and Prodrive Racing Australia team boss Tim Edwards said.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special.

What makes the Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst ’77 so special?

2017 Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst '77 Special Edition High Resolution Exterior
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2017 Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst '77 Special Edition High Resolution Exterior
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2017 Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst '77 Special Edition High Resolution Exterior
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The Ford tuner is presenting the muscle car in the full livery worn by the race winning 1977 Falcon XC Hardtop 40 years ago.

Ford’s Bathurst triumph in 1977 isn’t as famous as its iconic one-two-three finish at the 24 Hours of Le Mans 11 years earlier, but those who appreciate their motorsports history will love this special edition Mustang. Tickford has yet to reveal the full scope of details surrounding the special edition Mustang, but we do know that the Ford tuner is presenting the muscle car in the full livery worn by the race winning 1977 Falcon XC Hardtop 40 years ago.

That essentially means that the Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special will feature a prominently white body finish with a black hood and red and blue stripes running the length of the body. The number “1” livery will also be displayed in the car, including one on the hood with a black typeface inside a white circle and another on the doors with a white typeface inside a black square. Further cosmetic tributes to the race-winning Falcon include special nameplates just ahead of the front doors indicating the car as one of 77 units of the Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special.

2017 Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst '77 Special Edition High Resolution Exterior
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2017 Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst '77 Special Edition High Resolution Exterior
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The Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special will have a slightly larger front spoiler lip, a Tickford nameplate located on the left side of the front mesh grille, and a new set of 20-inch alloy wheels.

From an aerodynamic standpoint, glam shots of the special edition ‘Stang don’t appear to show any differences from the standard Mustang GT. We do know that the cars are likely to be based on the 2017 Mustang as opposed to the new 2018 model. The front bumper is the give-away, as it carries the design of the 2017 model. While we’re there, it does appear that the Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special will have a slightly larger front spoiler lip, a Tickford nameplate located on the left side of the front mesh grille, and a new set of 20-inch alloy wheels. There’s also what looks to be a bigger rear spoiler at the back, although it is a little hard to make out if its different from the one the standard Mustang has. Tickford did say that more details about the special edition, Australia-exclusive Mustang are on the way as the car’s launch date approaches. Hopefully, we’ll get to learn more about the car, including possible power upgrades to the Mustang’s 5.0-liter Coyote V-8 engine, in order to grab a better appreciation of its significance to Australia and Ford’s rich motorsports history.

At this point, the lack of details make it a little bit more difficult to paint a clear picture of the special edition Mustang’s appeal. Cosmetically though, it’s a legitimate home run. The treatment also plays well with the Mustang’s physical looks, especially the red and blue stripes that run along the shoulders of the muscle car. They make the Mustang look meaner and, somewhat appropriately, ready to throw down in an actual race. It reminds me a little bit of the Ford Mustang “Red Tails” Special Edition that Ford introduced in 2012 as part of its annual involvement in the EAA’s Young Eagles Program.

2013 Ford Mustang "Red Tails" Special Edition High Resolution Exterior
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2013 Ford Mustang "Red Tails" Special Edition High Resolution Exterior
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note: photo of the 2013 Ford Mustang “Red Tails” Special Edition.

A more appropriate comparison though has to be a similar special edition Mustang that also paid tribute to one of Ford’s most enduring motor racing triumph. As luck would have it, the Blue Oval celebrated the 50th anniversary of its Le Mans triumph last year with the release of the Mustang Le Mans 50th Anniversary Edition.

2016 Ford Mustang Le Mans 50th Anniversary Edition High Resolution Exterior
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note: photo of the 2016 Ford Mustang Le Mans 50th Anniversary Edition.

On the surface, the two special edition ‘Stangs looks about as different from each other the same way that white and black fall on opposite ends of the color spectrum. The Le Mans 50th Anniversary received a Shadow Black Mica with gray racing stripes on the hood, roof, and trunk lid. It may not be as flashy as the Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special, but it does share one important characteristic with the new Mustang LE in that the colors used in the Le Mans 50th Anniversary Edition were the same colors used by the Ford GT40 that won the 24 Hours of Le Mans race in 1966 with Bruce McLaren and Chris Amon behind the wheel. How’s that for a poignant similarity?

Beyond the smart use of colors to indicate the shared history between the special edition Mustangs and the cars they’re celebrating, the two ’Stangs also share the distinction of having enough badges and nameplates to properly identify their special edition status. In the case of the Le Mans 50th anniversary, there’s a "50th anniversary" badge on the rear fascia and a bespoke plaque on the center console that reads “1966 - 2016” and “Limited Edition 50 units.”

2017 Ford Mustang Tickford Bathurst '77 Special Edition High Resolution Interior
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Speaking of its limited edition status, the Le Mans 50th Anniversary is a little bit more limited than its Tickford Bathurst ’77 Special since only 50 units of the Le Mans LE were developed as opposed to Tickford’s plans to sell 77 units of the Bathurst ’77 Special.

No price has been announced regarding the LE Mustang, but expect it to fall into the neighborhood of around $50,000 or so in U.S. dollars.

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