Hinchliff’s 1973 Ford Mustang Trans Am Coupe is Ready for a Comeback

The golden age of Trans-Am racing ran from 1968 to 1972. During that time Penske’s Camaros, Mark Donhue’s AMC Javelin, and Parnelli Jones’ Boss 302 Mustang duked it out on tracks that ranged from street and airport circuits to temporary road courses and permanent race tracks. Things changed in 1973, and the cars became more modified. In 1980, another change hit, and the cars became what has become known as “silhouette series”—nothing more than tube-frame cars that somewhat resembled the originals.

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When Kar Kraft was shut down, Ford ended its support for factory racing. Anything remaining was sold off. At that same time, two “body-in-white” cars were delivered to Ford. Warren Tope of Tope racing quickly assembled one and put it out on the track. The other took a bit more time, but Ed Hinchliff of Hinchliff Racing put the car together using factory parts and Kar Kraft blueprints. Chassis engineers Lee Dykstra and Mitch Marchi helped Hinchliff in the car’s construction.

The team outfitted the car with Girling four-piston aluminium brakes with large rotors, a factory Kar Kraft full floater rear axle with locker, a Ram Air intake system with a Holly intake manifold, and a Jones tachometer. The car was registered with the SCCA throughout the ‘70s and ‘80s.

back view ford mustang

With a little TLC, this Trans Am Mustang could make use of its wide track, stiff chassis, and upgraded powertrain to compete in vintage racing today.

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