Ford Mustang timeline

1962: The first Mustang -- the 1962 Mustang I concept is a two-seat, midengine sports car and establishes the classic pony car proportion: a long, sweeping hood, short rear deck and sharply sculpted flanks. It is displayed in October at the U.S. Grand Prix at Watkins Glen, N.Y.

1964: Ford introduces the Mustang on April 17 at the New York World's Fair in Queens' Flushing Meadows. It is named after the legendary P51 Mustang fighter plane from World War II. The car went from concept study to prototype in record time and borrowed heavily from Ford's Fairlane and Falcon parts bins. Ford begins building the Mustang in March in Dearborn, Mich., and in July in San Jose, Calif. The price at launch: $2,368. U.S. sales total 263,434 in 1964.

1965: Mustang output begins at a Ford plant in Metuchen, N.J.

1966: U.S. Mustang sales surpass 1 million in March. Annual U.S. sales of Mustang peak at 549,436 units and annual output of the pony car peaks at 607,568 units. The Chevrolet Camaro goes on sale in September and becomes Mustang's main rival.

1967: The Pontiac Firebird, another Mustang challenger, goes on sale.

1970: Mustang output ends in San Jose, and U.S. sales fall below 200,000 for the first time.

1971: Mustang output ends in Metuchen.

1973: Ford drops the convertible Mustang at the end of the 1973 model year.

1983: After a 10-year hiatus, a Mustang convertible returns for the 1983 model year, with a power top and glass back window.

1987: In April, AutoWeek reports that Ford plans a front-wheel-drive "Mazstang" based on the Mazda 626, which would mean the end of the rear-wheel-drive Mustang, and V-8 power, beginning with the 1989 model.

1989: For Mustang's 25th anniversary, all cars produced between April 17, 1989, and April 17, 1990, are festooned with the thundering horse on the dashboard with "25 Years" inscribed underneath. Alex Trotman, executive vice president in charge of Ford's North American auto operations, issues an internal challenge to save the Mustang.

1990: Ford's corporate design committee approves "Schwarzenegger" styling on the redesigned 1994 Mustang -- code-named SN-95 for "sporty North American market, version 95."

1991: Ford formally approves and budgets $700 million for SN-95 in October. U.S. sales of Mustang drop below 100,000 for the first time -- at 80,247 -- and stay below 100,000 through 1993.

1993: The redesigned 1994 Mustang -- marking the car's 30th anniversary -- is introduced on Oct. 9. Ford says 1,330 of the car's 1,850 parts are changed.

2002: The Chevrolet Camaro and Pontiac Firebird are discontinued, leaving the Mustang alone in the pony car marketplace.

2004: Ford produces its 300 millionth car -- a red 2004 Mustang GT convertible 40th anniversary edition -- in Dearborn, Mich. The 2004 Mustangs are the last cars built at Ford's Dearborn assembly plant, which had produced Mustangs in every model year since the car's inception. Production of the 2005 Mustang begins in the fall of 2004 in Flat Rock, Mich.

2008: The 9 millionth Mustang -- a GT convertible -- is sold to an Iowa farmer.

2009: Ford marks the Mustang's 45th anniversary on April 17 in Birmingham, Ala. U.S. sales hit an annual low of 66,623 units amid an industry slump and the recent reintroduction of the Chevrolet Camaro.

2011: Ford hints at the next-generation Mustang with the Evos concept introduced in September at the Frankfurt auto show.

2013: Ford introduces the redesigned 2015 Mustang in December in six cities worldwide.

2014: The 2015 Ford Mustang -- shorter, lower and wider than the outgoing model -- is scheduled to go on sale in the fourth quarter with more standard equipment.

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