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April 15, 1964 – Gail Wise is first to buy a Ford Mustang

On this day in 1964, two days before the official Ford Mustang on-sale date, one mistakenly left the dealership. The lucky new owner, the first person to buy a Mustang, was Gail Wise, a 22 year old school teacher from Chicago. Her parents lent her the money after she landed her new job but had no way to get to and from the school she was to teach at. Cash in hand, she headed to a local dealership in search of a convertible. When she expressed her desires, she was disheartened to learn no drop tops were in stock. Perhaps seeing her dismay, the salesman told her he had a special surprise and led her to a backroom. Not sketchy at all…

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Much to her relief she found a baby blue Ford Mustang convertible. The car had yet to be released to the public, and the salesman knew the sale shouldn’t occur… yet. But what’s a couple days? Gail offered to pay full price for the car, $3,447.50, without even taking it for a test drive. No salesman can say no to that.

PHOTO: Gail Wise's 1965 Ford Mustang Convertible in summer 1964.
Above: Gail’s 1965 Ford Mustang in July 1964 (Wise/Ford). Top: Gail Wise with family and the Mustang in the 1970s. (Wise/Ford)

She left to many stares and smiles, as many had never seen the car in concept form or otherwise. It should be mentioned, this was not the first Mustang built, just the first one publicly sold. After the ‘Stang sat for more than 20 years, the car received a full restoration in the early 2000s. Gail, now 79 years old, owns the car to this day.

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