Mustangs over here


Beloved Classic American contributor Steve Miles spent his youth photographing American cars he saw on the streets of England. Here we unearth some of his Mustang photos.

Photography: Steve Miles

Words: Steve Miles and Ben Klemenzson

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Steve Miles was a much loved and valued contributor to Classic American for many years before he passed away a few years back. As a youth he cycled around his hometown of Oxford and the neighbouring areas searching for American cars to photograph and occasionally he travelled to London for the same purpose. The result was a cache of extraordinary photographs showing contemporary American cars in British locations, predominantly in the Sixties. It was a very different time and the photographs capture things like people’s dress, shop fronts, street signage – in a way it looks a different country from the Britain of today. Here we unearth some of his Mustang photos – even here in the UK the arrival of the Mustang was heralded with much excitement!

Above: 1965 Mustang Convertible. Another quite early shot, taken in late 1964 outside the old Rewley Road Station, Oxford – a nearly new 6-cylinder convertible in dark green with a tan interior and white top, looking suitably clean and smart. Mustang sales here were slow to begin with as domestic sales in the USA took off, leaving few cars available for export.

1965 Mustang.  ’64 ½ and ’65 Mustangs were indistinguishable – this hardtop could be either. Vinyl roof coverings were an option that somehow sat awkwardly on the sporty lines – the lack of V8 badge suggests this was a six-cylinder car. The 170 was quickly supplanted by the 200cu in as the base engine.
1965 Ford Mustang. The Mustang revolution really began in April 1964, with the announcement of the first hardtop and convertible models – The fastback followed a few months later. Based on the simple Falcon platform, Mustang offered comfort and style, with performance to match if required – base engine was the 170 cu in six, but options ranged up to the 271bhp hi-po 289. Mustangs quickly became a common sight in the UK – This early fastback was spotted in a West End residential mews.
1966 Mustang Convertible  Fresh off the boat, this Mustang ragtop hasn’t even been issued with a licence plate yet. On display in a Showroom, this could very well have been Simpsons of Wembley or Lincoln cars.
1967 Mustang. By contrast, this ’67 fastback looks to be a very basic version! The standard grille had the plain crossbar, returned after an absence for ’66 except on the GT option; the new fastback body had a roofline which extended to the end of the trunk lid. Coincidence raises its head – this car and the previous one both wear New Jersey licence plates.
1967 Ford Mustang GT A ’67 fastback this time, with GT option, parked outside the US embassy in Grosvenor Square.
1968 Ford Mustang. Visually the Mustang wasn’t much different for ’68, just a new grille with the ‘floating’ horse effect and detail trim changes. We’re looking down St Aldates here, Christchurch College over there with the inevitable tour coach outside as a blue Mustang cruises by.

This article first appeared in the 2022 issue of our annual Mustang supplement, which is included for free in the July issue of Classic American. If you would like to read more about Mustangs, you can purchase the July issue here or subscribe here to be sure you don’t miss the next one!

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