ARI Mustang Pace & Promotion Cars

An attempt to register all of them
© and website maintained by Wolfgang Kohrn

The car before the resto

During Bens ownership the first real resto took place, here the car gets new paint

Stickers were applied

Hood stickers as well...using the article about Bill Jesters ARI promo car as a reference.

ARI Texas Int. Speedway Mustang Fastback Promotion car
Owner Michael Delleree (since 2005)
Previous owner Ben E. Kozlovsky/Texas/USA

Details from PO Ben about his car
"Hi, my name is Ben E. Kozlovsky Sr. and I live in Austin TX. 
I own(ed) this 1970 Mustang Mach 1 0F05M131235 that was a special order car for delivery directly to the "Texas International Speedway" for the opening day ceremonies for the first NASCAR race Dec. 7th, 1969. This car is one of a limited number of cars that were special ordered for the event and delivered to Texas. Mine was ordered by Jack Burden Ford of Tomball, Texas and delivered direct from Dearborn."

These promotion cars were all painted Calypso Coral. These cars also had the special graphic stripe on the side of the car with the ARI Logo.

My car was all original when I bought it except that it was repainted years ago after minor collision repair. The ARI logo no longer existed on the car.

The car as bought by Ben before the resto went on

As a note, my VIN Number is higher than the sequentially numbered Twisters. There were 12,307 Ford cars built from the end of the 96 cars till mine was built. 
Please bear in mind, Ford serialized their cars on an as scheduled basis across the whole Ford/Mercury spectrum. These 12307 cars included every make and model produced by Ford Motor Company. The time frame between the original 96 Twister cars and the last 4 cars is indeed less than a month.

I have the original window sticker for the car, where I found the information I do have plus the information I received verbally from the former (second) owner. He told me that his father worked for Ford Motor Company (probably Jack Burden Ford Inc., in Tomball, Tx. Ford employee L.M. Carter purchased the car for himself after the car was returned to the Dealership by ARI. The story goes (as told by Lawrence M. Carter Jr.) that there were 4 cars delivered to the Texas International Speedway (owned and operated by ARI) and my invoice (window sticker) confirms that this one of the cars. Ford would only sell the cars to ARI (CASH IN ADVANCE) only so this is why Jack Burden Ford bought one of the cars and loaned it to ARI.

This is a (very rare) Special Order Mach I Mustang that has a probability of being a real car used at the track site. Otherwise it has been at least a promo car. This Mustang has an Impeccable Provenance because I still have the 1977 Texas Certificate of Title when ownership transferred from father to son." 

My story of the ARI Mustangs as I know it of today... by Ben Kozlovsky
"There was a special order placed by American Raceways Inc., (ARI) in 1969 for 100 High performance Mustangs, all to be equipped with 428 SCJ Engines to be used as Pace Cars and Official Vehicles at ARI's tracks around the country (5 with one being not finished completely).

Ford Motor Company accepted the order and designed a Special Edition Mustang specifically for the ARI order. At the time the order was placed, Ford did not have enough 428 SCJ engines, so about 50% received the new 351C engine that was new for 1970. Unfortunately by the time the cars were nearing completion, ARI was having serious cash flow problems and could not pay for the Special Order Mustangs, so Ford was stuck with the unwanted cars.

Luckily, Ford was able to sell the cars to a group of auto brokers in Kansas City that was sponsoring a "Performance Day" celebration. Ford was able to sell 96 'Original ARI Mustangs' and 90 High Performance Torino's to the group that held their celebration at the local speedway on Nov., 11th, 1969. The 96 Mustangs, mostly Mach I's and 5 convertibles, were sent to a local Kansas City Detail Shop where the ARI Logo's were removed and replaced with an Oval Ford Logo on the front quarter and on the rear quarter a Twister Logo was applied. This is where the now sought after and rare TWISTER SPECIAL was born.

So what happened to the remaining 4 cars? Most people have guessed that Ford stopped production at 96 cars, when it was learned that ARI would not be able to pay for the cars. I believe this also. ARI was having serious cash flow problems in late 1969, but the Grand Opening of the Texas International Speedway in College Station and the NASCAR Season Finale for 1969 was still a go, so Larry LoPatin (President of ARI) was able to get money from investors to raise the prize money to $100,000.00 to keep NASCAR (Bill France) from canceling the event. Larry LoPatin (ARI) apparently was able to convince a Texas dealer to Special Order the remaining (4) cars so he would have a Pace Car and Official Vehicles for the December 7th, 1969 NASCAR FINALE.

Editors Note and Update: 
This opinion does not basically coincide with the VINs found on the promo cars listed here and the stripe kit installation sheet, that we have got thanks to David Chandler recently (Oct.2001). On the other hand an AC and Power Steering car would have been used in 69/70 as a real pace car, so this might point rather to a promo car in this case.

"The info on the door should read something like this. 
The tag was misplaced by the bodyman"

0F05M131235    63C    1  3A   0   M   62

Additional information:
1970 ARI Mach I Special Order Number 62B710 (item number 62L8907),
Shipped Nov. 23, 1969 from Dearborn, MI. and delivered to the Texas International Speedway, College Station TX., before Dec. 7th, 1969 for the NASCAR Inaugural Race at the Newest and Fastest Speedway in Texas.

What options are there on my 351 ARI Fastback...:

  1. Paint, exterior - Calypso Coral
  2. Interior - Black, Mach I Knitted Vinyl
  3. Transmission - FMX Automatic (Cruise -O-Matic)
  4. Competition Suspension
  5. Engine 351 CID 4V 8 Cylinder
  6. Rear Axle 3.00:1 Locking Differential
  7. Tires (5) F70 X 14 Wide Oval Bltd WSW
  8. Shaker Hood Scoop
  9. Power Steering
  10. Power Front Disc Brakes
  11. Air Conditioning, Select-Air
  12. AM Radio
  13. Tinted Glass all Complete
  14. Electric Clock
  15. Wheels 14 X 7 Deep Dish Steel Wheels
  16. Hub Caps - Deep Dish Sport Wheel Covers
  17. Color Keyed Racing Mirrors
  18. Trim - Custom Graphics Exterior
  19. Dual Exhaust
  20. Rear Seat - Fold-Down Seat >
I have located and purchased the original Michigan International Speedway Inaugural Track Newspapers for the 1968 thru 1971 seasons and also the 1969-1970 Texas International Speedway Track Newspapers with articles on the inaugural races at each speedway. Unfortunately, there were no pictures of the ARI Mustangs. These newspaper were called "The Inside Track" and were published by American Raceways Inc., and did have the ARI logos printed on some of them."

The car was sold around 2003/2004 to a gentleman in Kansas City, then sold again, currently owned by Michael Delleree in Michigan. Michael will keep us updated on the restoration planned for 2010.

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