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The adventure of Uncle Mike’s 1979 Ford Mustang | Articles


A lasting impression. That’s what Brian Drumm’s 1979 Ford Mustang seems to do so well. Whether it’s on twentysomethings, French soldiers, or perhaps even you, there’s something about this Fox-body Mustang that you got to love.

When Brian’s Uncle Mike first bought the Pace Car edition in 1979, it traveled with him while in the U.S. Air Force. He drove it across 13 states and then crossed the Atlantic, where it traveled through eight European countries. While stationed in Germany, Uncle Mike took the Mustang on the Autobahn, getting it up to about 124 mph, he says. With the car, Uncle Mike also gave his European counterparts a taste of the good ole U.S. of A.

I had a friend in the Armée de terre who was a Gazelle pilot,” Uncle Mike recalls. “He landed at my airfield in Heidelberg one day with a couple of French soldiers and I picked them up in the pace car. They enjoyed the V8 sound [and] then being pushed into their seats when I pushed hard on the loud pedal. Aunt Kathy fixed them hamburgers and, you guessed it, french fries. They enjoyed the little bit of Americana we shared that day.”

The Other Mustang

In his younger years, Brian spent time with his grandfather in Texas, where he would give Brian plane rides. However, it wasn’t the plane that caught Brian’s fancy–it was his grandfather’s 1971 Ford Mustang Mach 1.

“He’d put a booster seat in it, and he’d let my brother and I drive it around the airport–we were like 10,” remembers Brian. “I tried buying the Mach 1 off my grandfather, but he’d never let it go. He ended up trading it to his daughter for a set of cruise tickets. I started talking to her about buying it. Then, some guy who she refused to sell it to showed up in a work truck drunk one day and rammed the heck out of it. It was totaled. That really sucked–it would have been cool to have something like that, that’s been in the family.”

Disappointed, Brian moved on. Years passed and then he remembered another vehicle in that same hangar as his grandfather’s Mach 1.

“In the corner was this pace car,” Brian recalls. “I never paid much attention to it because it was covered in boxes and…

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