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Ford Mustang and the creation of an iconic logo

Launched in April 1964 with the Ford Mustang, the legendary galloping horse insignia that crowns the grille of these cars was also born, but before that other most curious options were considered.

On April 17, the Ford Mustang celebrates sixty years since its launch, one of the most important cars in automotive history, especially for the United States, and which was the fruit of the ingenuity of Ford executive, lee iacocca, by mounting the body of an attractive affordable coupe on the base of a Falcon, creating a new category of cars; The Pony Car that would be so popular during the sixties.

But the car had a long development that, beyond the mechanical components, also considered several names that the future car could have received. Each of these proposals had its own logo until Ford managers ended up opting for the iconic galloping horse. known throughout the world, in one of the least talked about stories about the birth of the Mustang.ford mustang badge


In 1962 Ford presented a prototype called Mustang I Roadster, a two-seater convertible with a futuristic design. The name came from the “mustango”, a nomenclature that the Spanish assigned to the wild horses of North America. For this reason Lee Iacocca wanted a logo for the car that represented that Ford's equine car was not domesticated.

Until then, only some very special American models had their own logos such as the Ford Thunderbird or Chevrolet Corvette, as well as the Mustang He would have his own. The difficult task of creating a badge was taken care of Phillip Clark, and from the beginning he opted for the image of a galloping horse to evoke a feeling of speed and freedom.

The Mustang I already defined what the insignia would be like in the future with the animal facing left and with three bars with the colors of the American flag.. There are several theories about the westward orientation of the horse; One of them was that Clark was right-handed, so it was easier for him to draw him this way; another was that he was running in the opposite direction to the rest of the horses because of his rebellion; and another, much simpler one, they say that it was a mistake when transferring the original drawing.

Be that as it may, the idea was liked and Ford decided to develop a wooden sculpture that would perfect Clark's lines. Here the logo became much more stylized, with the head and tail of the equine now represented almost horizontally, conveying a greater sensation of speed.. This logo would be the one that would present the second prototype of the Mustang, called Mustang II and presented in 1963, which would serve as a prelude to the grille that the model that was manufactured in series would end up wearing.


Although it may seem that at this point Ford was already clear about what the name and image of the car that predicted tremendous success would be, they continued working with different ideas. Among them, several names were proposed such as Cougar, Avanti, Torino or Allegro among others.. It is striking that the name Avanti had previously been used by Studebaker, while others like Torino or Cougar ended up being used by other Ford Motor Company products in the following years.

As previously mentioned, the Mustang was based on the successful Ford Falcon, and for this reason It was proposed to name this car the Ford Special Falcon, with a logo that represented a gliding bird with its claws extended., resembling more like an eagle than a falcon. Fortunately, Allegro's name was barely taken into account since she would have had a musical note as a badge.

Continuing in the animal kingdom, the car was about to receive the name Cougar, which in Spanish means puma or mountain lion., nomenclature that he ended up using a Mercury model based on the Mustang. More than twelve different logo designs were presented, but the one by designer Gale Halderman was the one selected and the one that went the furthest in its development, managing to be reflected on the grill of the still unnamed car and with variants that had the animal looking in both directions. . Curiously, from these proposals dating back to 1962 came the grille frame in which the horse that would carry the Mustang ended up being housed.

Already in 1964, and shortly before the presentation of the car, the model officially had a name: Ford Mustang. However, yesThey continued testing with other horse logos, which included the animal's head as on a chess piece, or the insignia created by Clark, but facing to the right., the direction in which spectators watch horses run on racetracks.

Finally the Mustang made its commercial debut on April 17, 1964, and Although Ford's expectations for this model were modest, the 22.000 orders they received on the same day of launch They made it clear that they were looking at something more than a car. They had created a true automotive icon of which the chrome horse was largely responsible for its success.

Images: Ford

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Written by Javillac

This thing about cars comes to one since childhood. When other kids preferred the bicycle or the ball, I kept the toy cars.
I still remember as if it were yesterday a day when a black 1500 overtook us on the A2, or the first time I saw a Citroën DS parked on the street, I have always liked chrome bumpers.

In general, I like things from before the time I was born (some say I'm reincarnated), and at the top of that list are cars, which, together with music, make the ideal combination for a perfect time: driving and a soundtrack according to the corresponding car.

As for cars, I like classics of any nationality and era, but my weakness is American cars from the 50s, with their exaggerated shapes and dimensions, which is why many people know me as "Javillac".

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