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I’ve been a petrolhead almost from birth. It’s something I got from my father, and that my eight-year-old son has inherited – he’s a huge AC Cobra fan.
My passion for American muscle cars was probably inspired by growing up watching The Dukes of Hazzard and Smokey and the Bandit.
From a young age I fell in love with the sound of a V8 – something that hasn’t diminished with age – and I now appreciate the different V8 noises from the quiet burble of a Rolls, to the throaty roar of something like my ’71 Mustang.
It was in good, usable condition and my wife and I drove it to shows at the weekends; luckily, I married a petrolhead.
But as much as the P6 was a great car, it was far from the classic of my dreams. I sold it on and went without classics for a few years due to most of my spare time being taken up by a young family.
Then, in my early 40s, I was in a position to buy another and this time the search was on for something from across the pond.
At the time, with a £10k budget, I thought a decent muscle car was out of reach so I was looking for an American saloon or estate.
I viewed a late-’40s Buick straight-eight – we had one as our wedding car – but it needed a lot of money spending on it.
Then my Mustang 302 coupe came up on eBay. After viewing the car with my mechanic brother-in-law I bought it, and it has now been with me for four and a half years.
To be honest, it’s just nice to be able to share the car with others. The attention it gets still surprises me: people absolutely love it!
The best comment yet was, “Is that your Ferrari?” I think they just saw the red paint and the horse and put two and two together to make five…
My favourite event is the annual Ipswich to Felixstowe Run, starting at a car show in Christchurch Park and finishing on the promenade at Felixstowe. The event has been a family highlight for years, ending up with fish and chips on the beach.
In terms of dream classics, it’s always difficult to pick just one. I’d love a Jay Leno-style garage, but realise that’s never going to happen.
Sticking to my roots, my dream car would be a 1970 Boss 429 Mustang: very rare, very valuable and the ultimate muscle car in my view.
That’s out of my price range for now, but I feel immensely fortunate to be able to own something from the same era with the same DNA.
- Owned by Shaun Knights
- First classic 1966 Rover P6 2000SC
- Dream classic 1970 Boss Mustang 429