When the Ford Mustang came onto the scene in the spring of 1964, it quickly became a cultural icon among the youths of the day. Ever since then, marketing executives have studied what it is that made the Mustang so popular right from the get go. Was it a case of “Right car, right time,” or did Ford have some sort of magic trick when it came to amping up the public.
It was probably a little bit of both, but to be sure we went back and dug up the very first Mustang commercial Ford ever produced. What we learned is something that many marketing execs take for granted now; with the right buzzwords, and just enough teasing, you can drive customers crazy for a product they don’t even know they want yet.
Introduced as a production vehicle at the New York World Fair in 1964, the Mustang immediately attracted the attention of young people all over the nation. This initial commercial was a big part of that success no doubt, as it showed off just enough of the Mustang without giving it all away. Remember, this is before DVRs and YouTube; that one glimpse of the Mustang was all most people had to go off of.
It seemed to drive the kids wild. And who can blame them? The close up shots reveal a vehicle that Ford thought it would be lucky to sell 100,000 of. Yet within the first 3 months Ford had sold over a million Mustangs, a record that to this day is unmatched by any sports car.
We think this commercial, along with other Ford marketing gimmicks, helped capture the national attention in a way that has never been replicated. Nowadays, this video is another cool piece of car history, and a very important one at that.