The "lost" Boss 302 (1F02H100053) - observations + "The blue Boss 302"

cudak888

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In the process of doing the Diamonds Are Forever research, I was sidetracked into the story of the Lost Boss 302 (1F02H100053, ex-1F02R100053, nee-1F02G100053), owned by fellow forum member 71BossPrototype. See the below thread if you're not familiar with the car and its story:

http://www.7173mustangs.com/thread-the-lost-1971-302-boss

I read up about it, remembered it, and docketed the knowledge for future use.

My interest was once again drawn to this car when Bo Durban (www.ISOMustangs.com) and myself were researching the trim part numbers for honeycomb taillight panel trim vs. standard trim:

169i4qr.png


The consensus was that the trim is identical for both panels, but I noted that the catalog is incorrect, as Boss 351's don't have honeycomb panels or trim.

Or were they supposed to? This brought me back to the Lost Boss; the earliest known '71 Boss experiment by Ford.

Hello, hello:

1971Boss351_1000.jpg


If you can't make it out, here's a blowup, adjusted for contrast:

1060cib.jpg


And there is our explanation as to why the Boss is listed as having that trim in the parts catalog. The car still wears a honeycomb panel today. I doubt if its the same upper and lower molding, given the partial teardown and rebuild that Ford put to this car - not to mention that the trim is no longer black (though it could have been airbrushed for the photo):

attachment.php


Another thing came to mind with that Ford stock image - I'd always wanted to see a high-resolution copy of it to prove that the "51" in "351" was simply airbrushed over the "02" in "302." Thanks to Google's image matching search, a German Mustang site brought up a 4000x3200 copy of the same photo:

1971_Boss351_029_HR.jpg


Also of note: The flip-down gas cap has a black ring on it, which appears to be recessed. Additionally, the release catch is different and does not have the larger thumb release present on production caps.

The contrast and gamma settings of this particular copy of the image have been fooled about with, unfortunately, so you can't even make out the honeycomb panel in this picture - but you CAN see the airbrushed "51" as clear as day.

This photo also answered one other question - the Lost Boss has lower body moldings. The Ford photos show a car with neither the molding or pinstripe, but that is not the case when you give the photo careful scrutiny. The lower body moldings are there, but have been airbrushed black:

2lo3zh3.jpg


As you can see, the moldings exist on the car today:

128_13_09_10_3_24_57.jpeg


Surprisingly enough, besides the obvious fact that this is the only 1971 Boss 302 to survive into production - and the only standard-hood car to receive the Boss blackout hood treatment - the molding and side stripes also render it the only '71 Mustang "factory produced" (I'm using this phrase liberally here, because it was probably pulled off the line and finished as a Boss 302 separately of regular production) with both the lower body moldings and side stripes.

I figured these discoveries were too important not to share for the greater knowledge of all.

Enjoy.

-Kurt

P.S.: Mustang Monthly's article for 1F02H100053 (the yellow Lost Boss) shows an archive photo of a Boss 302 engine with Ram Air and twist lock provisions. This is not 1F02H100053, which shows no evidence of ever wearing a NACA hood. I am convinced it is an underhood shot of the never-VIN'ed blue Boss 302 prototype.

 
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Kit Sullivan

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Very good!

I have one question though: what evidence is there that the car in the photo is in fact the same car as the lost Boss?

 
K

Kit Sullivan

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No, what I am asking is what is what evidence is there that the car pictured in the Ford publicity photo is in fact the same car as the lost Boss?

There are many differences, as you have pointed out already.

The wheels are mag-stars, and the suspension seems to be a little lower than stock. The car also appears to have either power windows, or an early proposed manual roll-down 1/4 windows. And what about the porno-red interior?

I know about the lost Boss becoming a Mach 1 before delivery...I am just not convinced that the Ford publicity photo is in fact that very same car. I always assumed it was an early non-production test mule.

 
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No, what I am asking is what is what evidence is there that the car pictured in the Ford publicity photo is in fact the same car as the lost Boss?

There are many differences, as you have pointed out already.

The wheels are mag-stars, and the suspension seems to be a little lower than stock. The car also appears to have either power windows, or an early proposed manual roll-down 1/4 windows. And what about the porno-red interior?

I know about the lost Boss becoming a Mach 1 before delivery...I am just not convinced that the Ford publicity photo is in fact that very same car. I always assumed it was an early non-production test mule.
+1

I'm a little skeptical too- just as Kit. But interested in learning more. Thanks again Kurt for all the research and sharing.

Ray

 

hyena429

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Interesting story...I know we talked about the lost boss a few times..."Even i posted about it"...You never know what ford used in some photos...And they loved to airbursh back then.

 
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Kit Sullivan

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I worked for Ford for several years, and in Ford dealerships for several years also. One of my time-wasters back then was to inspect the brochures with a forensic-level of scrutiny for anomolies.

I don't think I have ever seen a single image in any brochure that wasn't airbrushed at the very least in some small way.

Notably, I don't believe there has ever been a single publicity photo of any Ford vehicle that did not have the antenna airbrushed out. This is true at lesst back to '71.

I always spotted wheels/ tires airbrushed for new models, images "mirrored" with airbrushed emblems to create new angles, colors changed on existing photos, trim added/deleted/ changed to update or create different models, grills changed, etc...

I even remember that they airbrushed in some retractable PRS shoulder belts in the "closed" position in an Escort brochure in '89, actually a modified photo from the '88 brochure that had manual seatbelts.

The initial order of brochures were "recalled" from the dealerships, and substituted for new ones featuring the shoulder belt in the open unretracted position.

After closing the door, the shoulder belt remains in the open position until the engine is started. The only way to have the belt retracted with the door closed is to have the engine running.

The original photo had no one sitting in the car, so the insinuation was the engine was running with no one in the car, something that could be considered unsafe to safety nazis.

So...Ford recalled the brochures and replaced them with "corrected" versions.

Seems like a lot of trouble for a very minor issue.

 

cudak888

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No, what I am asking is what is what evidence is there that the car pictured in the Ford publicity photo is in fact the same car as the lost Boss?

There are many differences, as you have pointed out already.
Kit, I'm glad you mentioned that.

I'd taken everyone's word for it up to now that the car got a makeover to factory spec., and now I'm beginning to be quite convinced that the Lost Boss and the press car are two different vehicles.

Supposedly, the Lost Boss - despite having its Boss decals removed - is said to be wearing its original Grabber Yellow (hence the ghosting of the Boss 302 lettering). If that's so, what's up with the completely different stripe placement?

mump-1302-02+mustang-monthly-history+1971-boss-302.jpg


1971_Boss351_029_HR.jpg


The forward quarter stripe should have a wave in it, it doesn't. The door stripe should be slightly higher than the fender. It isn't, and its position is not something it could have got from sagging either.

Now - on the other hand, we have the what-came-first issue:

  1. The Lost Boss has the flat hood/no twist lock/molding + stripe/honeycomb/spoiler treatment, which was built to the tolerances of a full production car, rather than a test mule. Seeing as it received a experimental VIN and made it to sale, it is reasonable to assume that it is a later experimental car.
  2. The publicity photo car has the flat hood/no twist lock/molding + stripe/honeycomb/spoiler treatment, along with the lower ride stance and Shelby wheels. It is a close cousin in styling language to the Lost Boss (if not the same car), and does not reflect the final Boss 351 styling.
  3. There is the blue Boss 302 car which was supposedly crushed - yet, it features all the hallmarks of a final-production Boss 351, and therefore should be the LATEST of the three and therefore the survivor. What gives?


-Kurt

 
K

Kit Sullivan

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There is a series of black/ white publicity photos I remember seeing many times of the supposedly upcoming '71 BOSS 302 used in several magazines in late '70. They show an engine view, but I dont recall iff it was ram-air or not. I think it was not. There was also a much-used shot of the rear from an elevated position, slightly showing the driver side. This vehicle had argent lowers, no side-stripes ( I think), a pop-open cap, 2-piece hub caps and BOSS 302 trunk nomenclature. I always assumed it was a dark green car, but I dont know why I assumed that since it is a B/W photo.

Is there any info about this vehicle?

Also, Ford part manuals up until at least 1980 listed a set of BOSS 302 decals for '71 and a part number. Next to the part number it said "NOT AVAILABLE-OBTAIN LOCALLY".

 
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cudak888

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There is a series of black/ white publicity photos I remember seeing many times of the supposedly upcoming '71 BOSS 302 used in several magazines in late '70. They show an engine view, but I dont recall iff it was ram-air or not. I think it was not.
The blurry Mustang Monthly picture is the only one I'm familiar with, which I suspect as being the blue car.

mump_0802_12_z+boss+motor_2.jpg


There was also a much-used shot of the rear from an elevated position, slightly showing the driver side. This vehicle had argent lowers, no side-stripes ( I think), a pop-open cap, 2-piece hub caps and BOSS 302 trunk nomenclature. I always assumed it was a dark green car, but I dont know why I assumed that since it is a B/W photo.Is there any info about this vehicle?
If you mean this one, its a Mach 1 (knowing your attention to detail, I'd take it this is NOT the image - in which case, I'm not familiar with the car):

1971-1972-1973-ford-mustang-1.jpg


However, while we're on the subject of the above photographed car, I'll bet you that the Marti Report for ether 1F05J100098 or 1F05J100099 will match it. They are the only Dark Green Metallic examples in Lois Eminger's list of the first ~100 cars produced:

emingerchart2.jpg


Also, Ford part manuals up until at least 1980 listed a set of BOSS 302 decals for '71 and a part number. Next to the part number it said "NOT AVAILABLE-OBTAIN LOCALLY".
That set is reproduced today, if I recall right. No need to call in anyone to custom-cut a Boss 302 set.

-Kurt

 
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Kit Sullivan

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That is not the shot I remember. It was more rear-biased, had no model in the pic, and was definitely a "BOSS 302".

 

cudak888

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That is not the shot I remember. It was more rear-biased, had no model in the pic, and was definitely a "BOSS 302".
Wasn't this, was it?

mump_0802_boss_21.jpg


Get a load of the antenna. Hasn't been airbrushed out here.

-Kurt

 
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Kit Sullivan

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Kit, I'm glad you mentioned that.

Supposedly, the Lost Boss - despite having its Boss decals removed - is said to be wearing its original Grabber Yellow (hence the ghosting of the Boss 302 lettering). If that's so, what's up with the completely different stripe placement?

The forward quarter stripe should have a wave in it, it doesn't. The door stripe should be slightly higher than the fender. It isn't, and its position is not something it could have got from sagging either...

-Kurt
Now that is awesome! Forensic-level scrutiny at its best!

 

cudak888

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Now that is awesome! Forensic-level scrutiny at its best!
You ain't seen nothing yet. Remember I said the blue Boss 302 showed all the hallmarks of a Boss 351?

Well, here's the blue Boss 302:

a93b55b9.jpg


...and here is a B&W shot from Car and Driver's Boss 351 test. I believe this is a Ford stock image provided, and NOT the car they tested:

1971-ford-mustang-boss-351-photo-561313-s-1280x782.jpg


Never mind the identical "1971" plates (though it helps). Look at the rear valance. Same plated-over treatment. Same poor trunk lid fit. Now look at the argent lower body pinstripe. The stripe is high at the front of the fender, and low as it meets the door. The rear quarter is level with the door, and dips down again. The blue Boss 302 is identical to it.

It's the same car, wearing Boss 351 decals. I see no airbrushing to suggest that the photos were altered - rather than the car.

We also get the following bonus image. "Ram Air" with no engine model and - here's the kicker - Mach hood paint:

1971-ford-mustang-boss-351-photo-561312-s-1280x782.jpg


Could be a chance that this car may still exist as a Boss 351 with weird hood paint, or a Mach 1 with Boss taillight trim.

An interior picture is provided as well, though it is of a white interior car. Note the a strange-looking, pre-production radio bezel.

1971-ford-mustang-boss-351-inline3-photo-561317-s-original.jpg


-Kurt

 
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Kit Sullivan

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All great photos and research!

Some rebuttal:

Yes. The picture of the rear of the BOSS 302 is of the car I was thinking if, but a slightly diffetent angle...just a diffetdnt lhoto from the same shoot, obviously. Obviously it has side stripes..I misremembered that.

2) all of those pbotos further support my contention that Ford never made "argent" front spoilers. On these argent-lower cars, they are fitted with black spoilers. I claim the "reproduction" argent spoilers are a creation of the aftermarket suppliers, and a little popular revisionist history has created the belief that argent spoilers came on argent-lower cars.

3) my radio antenna claim is in reference to brochure photos, not prototype or other press photos.

4) the "Ram Air" hood decals with no engine size is correct as the engine size is displayed on the fender. It should'nt show more than once from any single viewing angle.

5) notwithstanding the incorrect hood paint design, that photo very clearly shows all the details about the paint-scheme details that I have always claimed to be "correct", and that Jeff Ford got wrong in his article about the design: the front edge of the design is much closer to the leading edge of the hood than J.Ford claimed, and is pretty clear that the straight edges are straight back...not tapering outward as he also claimed.

6) Look at the hubcaps on the BOSS 351 in the Ford press photo...they seem very polished! Much more mirror-like than i remember ever seeing a set of those 2-piecers

It is awesome to uncover new, never-before or little-known facts about cars that are nearing 50 years old...as well as dispelling long-believed myths.

 
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