Mustang Bullitt – the last hurrah

By Nick Hodgson

I’m just going to come out and say it. Bullitt is not a good movie. Maybe movie buffs see something in it that I don’t, but wow is it boring, seemingly nonsensical and “that car chase” scene in my opinion has severely dated. Nevertheless, “that chase scene” has inspired petrol heads over the years, brought people into the muscle car fold and led people to San Francisco. One can’t blame Ford for capitalising on that nostalgia with this special edition Bullitt Mustang.

But is this Bullitt Mustang the real deal, or should you treat it as a quick cash in from Ford?

Well it kicks things off in serious fashion, only being offered in V8 Coupe with a manual gearbox. Fantastic news and I’m immediately paying attention. Now I know the previous version of the Mustang came with a manual and I also know that only 5% of Mustangs sold in South Africa were in manual form, but that fact won’t dissuade me in the slightest. Sit behind the wheel and the Bullitt just feels complete with a manual box. The cream gear knob fitting perfectly in hand, V8 quietly rumbling underneath and that long bonnet stretching out into the horizon. Why wouldn’t you want to go for a drive?

Especially in this green, which you’ve just got to have. Five examples may be coming in black but the green is just so much more special, a better occasion and a colour that will get you standing out. The engine has been tweaked slightly too, mostly through exhaust trickery so while it sounds louder, it doesn’t feel faster. No matter though as the last thing I thought the Mustang needed was more power. It’s just got the balance right to start with, so why mess with that?

At a shade under R1m it’s quite a premium over the standard car to get yourself behind the wheel. For collectors who are always on the hunt for that elusive future classic, this is surely one of them. Only 50 in the country, available with a manual gearbox and a naturally aspirated V8. That combination just doesn’t exist anymore and who would have pegged Ford as being the last to do so? Not me and I can only doff my cap to Ford for giving us one last hurrah.

So, my top tip. Buy a Bullitt Mustang. You won’t regret it, you won’t lose money and you’ll get to drive off into the sunset, green paint shimmering and that amazing V8 as your backing soundtrack.