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Cost of a Ford Mustang: Then and Now

October 02, 2023

Cost of a Ford Mustang: Then and Now

The Ford Mustang is a symbol of American history — past and present. This iconic muscle car has evolved dramatically since its debut in 1964. Ford built the original Mustangs to be accessible to the American population. Though the classic Mustang was an exceptional piece of machinery, it wasn’t the most expensive car on the market at the time.

Ford Mustangs remain as rugged and stylish as they were at their inception, but Ford has changed many design and functional elements, which has affected the cost. You won’t get the same value for your money on a Mustang today as you did in 1964.

How Much Did the Original Mustang Cost?

Ford designed the classic Mustang with the average American in mind. A brand-new model cost $2,500. The affordable price of the Ford Mustang was one of the many reasons these cars were so immensely popular from the outset. Ford went on to sell almost 420,000 Mustangs in the first year.

Throughout the 1960s, the Ford Mustang hardtops and convertibles grew in popularity. The addition of the $2,427 2+2 Fastback and 1968’s Mustang GT, which cost between $2,854 and $3,067, further cemented the Mustang as a staple American car.

In today’s terms, a classic Mustang would cost about $21,000, much less than its modern counterparts. For their time, original Mustangs were at the height of technology. By comparison, the current Mustang is miles ahead in handling, thanks to the addition of ABS braking systems and other contemporary safety features. Still, the classic Mustang has become a much sought-after collector’s item — a symbol of American ingenuity that has stood the test of time and remains an icon to this day.

Mustang Prices Over the Years

It’s been almost 60 years since the classic Mustang made its first appearance in New York, and each generation since has yielded a new model with an updated price tag to match. Each model is more exclusive than the last, yet they still pay noticeable homage to the original 1964 version.

Comparing Mustang prices through the years is a nostalgic journey. It’s also interesting to see how technological changes and production costs affect the purchase price. Compare prices of different generations of Mustang below.

Classic Generation (1964-1973)

The Mustang hardtop remained the most cost-effective option, with a starting price of $2,368 or $19,252, accounting for inflation. By the end of the first generation, the hardtop was coming in at $2,847 or $16,161, accounting for inflation. The most expensive Mustang released during the classic era was the Mustang Mach 1 Fastback, which came in at $3,088, or $17,529, adjusted for inflation.

Mustang 2 Generation (1973-1978)

These smaller-engine vehicles were born during rising fuel prices and increasingly strict emissions laws. The Mustang 2 was smaller overall and strayed away from the classic look and feel associated with a Mustang. The three-door Fastback was available starting at $3,557 in 1974, or $18,184 in today’s dollars. By the end of the Mustang 2 generation, these cars were selling for $4,523, or $17,484.

Fox Body Generation (1979-1993)

In 1979, Ford released its Fox Body sedan. The car was available in two- and three-door models. The top-of-the-line Mustang Ghia three-door sedan would have cost you $5,216 in 1979, or $16,327 today.

By 1993, the Mustang LX two-door sedan sold for $13,926, or $24,289 — a considerable leap in less than two decades. Mustangs had already evolved several times by the end of their third generation, and there was still a ways to go.

SN95/New Edge Generation (1994-2004) and the S197 Generation (2004-2014)

In 1995, Mustang released its updated Cobra. Buyers could choose between the $24,070 convertible, which cost $39,806 when adjusted for inflation, or the $21,300 coupe, which cost $35,225 in today’s dollars.

The Mustang GT was also a popular and less expensive option at $16,910, or $27,965. Over the next decade, Mustang upgraded its models and increased its range. By the end of 2004, the Mustang SVT Cobra Coupe would be the priciest option at $34,860 or $46,511.

As 2014 came to a close, the reimagined Mustang Shelby GT500 convertible was topping the Mustang prices at a considerable $60,110, or $63,995.

Over the generations, Mustang has created many new, reimagined versions of their classic car. As production, fuel and emissions costs rise, so too does the price of these fantastic machines. Through all of its transformations, the Ford Mustang has remained uniquely American, and collectors still covet classics around the globe.

Mustang Prices Today

The evolution of the Ford Mustang over the 58 years since Ford first released it to the public is simultaneously fascinating and informative. This superb motor vehicle has transformed from everyone’s car into an exclusive, top-of-the-range muscle car. The inflation rate aside, today’s Mustangs are as costly as they are exceptional.

The ever-faithful Mustang Shelby, reinvented many times since 1967, tops the current Mustang range with a starting price of $79,420. The lower-range Mustang Ecoboost Fastback is the least pricey of the 2022 Mustang range, starting at $27,470. Owning a Mustang is a lifelong dream for many, yet current Mustang prices remain out of reach for many Americans today.

There have been many memorable Mustangs since 1964, some of which are perennially on collectors’ wish lists. There is no shortage of Mustangs on the market, and many people can make their lifelong dream a reality by purchasing a classic model. Those who already own a Mustang can count themselves lucky. Many models are easy to sell, as they are also sought-after by private buyers.

Cost of a Ford Mustang: Then and Now

Maintain Your Mustang’s Value With Top Flight Automotive

Mustang’s unique aesthetic and innovation make it a potential investment for years to come. Take all the necessary steps to maintain your Mustang’s value, as you never know when you may want to sell it or upgrade it down the line.

Restoring or updating your Mustang ensures you can retain at least a portion of its original asking price. Top Flight Automotive is here to guide you through every step of the restoration process.

With Top Brands like CA, Scott Drake, or TMI Products, you can keep your Mustangs resale value with everything from a full restoration or just slight customization of your prized ride!

Whether you’re looking to upgrade parts, performance, the interior, exterior, wheels and tires, you will find what you need in our massive warehouse. You can use our 175+ years of sales experience whenever you want. Make the most of your Mustang and contact us or feel free to shop online for the next upgrade to your Mustang today.

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