On the heels of the 1977 hit film Smokey and the Bandit, Pontiac Trans Am sales went through the T-tops. Ford wanted a piece of the action. The Fox-body Mustang was still a year away, so Dearborn worked with what it had, the Mustang II hatch.
The seven available King Cobra color schemes included a Bandit-like black-and-gold model, and the graphics were clearly Trans Am-esque. Tiny 13-inch lace wheels, a front spoiler, a fake hood scoop with Ford’s first 5.0 graphic, and a four-speed stick were also included.
With so few survivors, they are head-turners today.
[Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared as part of the 25 Greatest Mustangs cover story in the July/August issue of Hagerty Drivers Club magazine. You can find the other entries here.]