428 Cobra Jet Fastback: 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1

With the 1960s winding down (along with Mustang sales), Ford decided to inject more of a muscle car image into its pony car. They came up with the Mach 1 which looked tough and could be had with a 428 cubic inch V8. Ford first used the name on a concept car called the Levacar Mach I. It used a cushion of air as propulsion on a circular dais in the display. This R-Code fastback has seen better days and was recently pulled out of a barn. It once had the big Cobra Jet engine, but that’s gone now. Instead, a 351 is available for installation. Located in Red Lion, Pennsylvania, this Mustang is offered here on Facebook Marketplace for $25,000 OBO. We appreciate Chuck Foster for turning us on to this car.

Mach 1 was always a performance-oriented option, a combination of looks and varying degrees of muscle. It first appeared in 1969 and was available through 1978 on the Mustang II (from 1974). Ford resurrected it briefly for 2003-04 and then again in 2021. The standard engine in 1969 was the 351 with a minimum of 250 hp, or a 390, and all the way up to the Cobra Jet 428 at 335 hp, with or without Ram Air. The latter is what the seller says came with this car and has the R-Code associated with the VIN to back up his claim. The seller’s asking price is predicated on the code and what came with it, but since the engine is missing, does the value still hold?

We’re told this Ford is not complete and “most” of the parts are there to put it back together. Now that also means that some of the parts are not there, and could they be expensive or hard items to find? The car came with a 4-speed manual and power steering, but factory air conditioning was not an option with the 428. The Mach 1 is said to be a two-owner car, which may not include the seller. It was driven some 76,000 miles before eventually coming to rest in a barn.

The once red paint is faded and now supplemented by a grey primer in several places, including the driver’s side rear quarter. That suggests body damage or rust repair was done in that area. The same is true of the entire right side of the car and some of the body pieces aren’t present. We’re also told there are a few small holes in the frame. There are no interior photos, so we don’t know the condition of things there although we do see a couple of bucket seats sitting with other parts and components.

It’s likely that someone began restoring this car and – after pulling off several pieces – decided to abandon the effort. Assuming the 351 Windsor provided is a workable engine, does it help make this a viable project at the asking price? The shaker hood is still present, but what about the hardware to hook it up to a different engine? The seller would consider a trade as part of the deal, but we don’t know what would interest him.


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  1. Steve R

    A $250 351W core engine doesn’t help the value of this car at all. The amount of rust repair the VIN and the corresponding Marti report are really what will matter.

    Steve R

    Like 15
  2. Sam Shive

    Once again, Someone trying to make BIG Money off of something that once was. The Heart Of This Beast Is Gone, And SO IN THE HIGH DOLLAR PRICE.

    Like 24
    • Steve R

      These cars aren’t “what once was” the VIN doesn’t change. Many performance cars lost their original engines over time, they can be replaced, serious buyers factor that in and discount them accordingly. To suggest once the original engine is no longer with the car that is valued the same as it’s generic brethren is ridiculous. Especially since you obviously aren’t in the pool of interested buyers. The market determined years ago, whether you like it, or not, that your position on this matter isn’t relevant.

      Steve R

      Like 18
      • Todd

        Just because “Steve R” doesn’t agree with the other guy doesn’t mean the other guy’s opinion is ‘irrelevant’. What a stupid remark. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, even if you don’t agree with it.

        Like 19
      • Steve R

        The market says it’s irrelevant. He’s entitled to it, but he’s staring it as a fact not an opinion, just like you, when you added the stupid to your response.

        Steve R

        Like 11
      • CCFisher

        Play nice, boys!

        That being said, I agree with Steve. It’s worth less than a Mach 1 with its original 428, but more than a Mach 1 with the standard 351. It’s not hard to understand why: if the next owner sources a period-correct 428, nobody will know it’s not the original engine unless he/she is competing in some show class that demands matching numbers. At a typical cruise night, people will see it and appreciate it as a genuine R-code Mustang.

        Like 8
      • Tom

        It is not Sam’s “opinion” that the engine, one of the most important components that makes these cars so valuable is missing, it’s a fact. Sure, you could source a “correct” engine for it but it still won’t be numbers matching which undoubtedly negatively affects the value in the current market. I hope someone takes the time to restore this car to the best of their ability, but it’s likely they’ll be seriously upside down in it when it’s done.
        And none of us is an authority on all things automotive, including me, regardless of what we might think…

        Like 2
    • JCA

      $25k was a good price for this actually. This is a well over $100k car

      Like 4
  3. Sam Shive

    Listing is already gone.

    Like 4
  4. CycloneJeff Cyclonejeff Member

    428 CJ in 69 did offer A/C in the mach1 or any other vehicle including Mercury line! It was on the Q code CJ’s.

    Like 4
  5. Mark Z

    Factory air was a option with the 428CJ, bought a new one in 69 and two friends also did and all three had factory air. Hard to live in Texas without it.

    Like 2
  6. Piros1

    Interesting how sheet metal can demand a good price. I’m not in the argument regarding the value of this car or any other. I would of loved to have one in my younger days. Mustang’s and Chevelle’s were my car of choice even though I never had one. I did have a 68 El Comino though.
    I have two 428 engines maybe I should put them up for sale, I’m sure they would bring more than I have in them.

    Like 6
  7. Mountainwoodie

    Leaving aside the high handed manner in which some commenters consistently treat others opinions, which like certain body parts we all have, what strikes me is the pix of the hulk lying in the shed/garage at the top of the thread. And it is a hulk. Fact, not opinion.

    It reminds me of the scene in the original Planet of the Apes where Charlton Hestion comes across the wreck of the Statue of Liberty stuck in the sand and he realizes where he has landed.

    If someone paid 25 large for this…..um.really valuable relic……….water finds its own level.so to speak.

    Like 4
  8. Scoot

    Ignorance leads the way in this comment section!! Comments on things they know nothing about and don’t have the money to play. Steve R is the only one that has a clue. But it does have entertainment value. The car sold quick should speak for itself.

    Like 3
  9. John Arnold

    I owned a 1969 Mustang Mach ! R code with ram air, It came with factory air conditioning.

    Like 3
  10. Louis

    Many 428 cars had motor failure. The bottom ends were weak and get drunk over rev/miss a gear and crankshaft hits the pavement. Did one myself not drunk but staying in front of a 70 model Chevelle 454 in 3rd gear tack screaming shift and I did not listen LOL won $254 cash money killed two grand in 1974 dollars.

    Like 1
  11. Jonny

    This would of been a fun build. Dang. I’d of bought it for that money

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