BaT Auction: No Reseve: 1968 Ford Torino GT Indy 500 Pace Car Edition
This 1968 Ford Torino GT is one of 709 built with the Pace Car Promotion package, commemorating the three cars used to pace the 1968 Indianapolis 500. The original owner purchased this 390ci V8-powered example from Phillipi Motor Company in Stayton, Oregon on October 31, 1968. He showed the car once in the early 1980s and then gave it to his daughter a few years later. The car has since been stored in the original owners’ garage and used sparingly. It had been off the road for several years prior to the selling dealer’s acquisition in 2018, though the seller was able to drive it home to his shop. The shocks, tires, master cylinder, and wheel cylinders have since been replaced, and the coolant, brake fluid, and differential fluid were also flushed. This Torino is now being offered at no reserve with a Marti report, the original warranty card, dealer documentation, brochures, and a clean Oregon title.
The original owner felt the Torino Pace Car graphics were too garish and had the lettering removed at the dealer. The blue perimeter stripes were retained, and per the seller the stripes and Wimbledon White paint are original. The seller applied a set of reproduction Pace Car graphics shortly after his acquisition, and photos of the installation are provided in the gallery below. The Oregon blue plate is included.
The blue convertible top was replaced about 10 years ago and is equipped with a glass rear window. The seller reports that the car has not been used in the rain since the top was replaced. The stock steel wheels and hubcaps carry Ford part numbers, as do three of the four trim rings. The seller fitted a new set of Hankook 215/75 tires to the 15″ wheels.
The original owner’s daughter stored the car in her mother’s garage ever since she inherited it from her father. Photos of the pair with the car are provided along with images of it emerging from the garage for the first time in many years. The seller reports that he was able to drive the car back to his shop directly out of storage. A display board made by the original owner is included and pictured in the gallery.
The interior features two-tone blue vinyl seats and dark blue carpets. The driver’s seat bottom was recovered in the mid 1980s, and the seller re-dyed the original carpets due to fading. Some cracking is apparent in the center console, which has been reinforced and refinished it in the original color. The kick panels have been replaced, and a set of rubber floor mats for a Mustang are fitted.
Cracks are visible on the steering wheel rim near the right spoke, as well as near the center top. Instrumentation is housed in four large gauge pods as shown above. The seller notes that the gauges and lights work correctly, and 76k miles are shown on the mechanical odometer.
Most Pace Car Promotion cars were reportedly delivered with 289 or 302 V8s rather than the 390ci engine in this car. Power is sent to the rear wheels via a C-6 automatic transmission and 2.75 rear end. The seller notes that the original radiator was restored a few years ago, the water pump has been replaced, and the heater core was disconnected prior to his acquisition. The seller has flushed the coolant and reconnected the heater core.
The seller has fitted a new brake master cylinder, wheel cylinders, and shocks at all four corners. He also flushed the differential oil and brake fluid and serviced the transmission with a new filter, shift shaft seal, and gasket. Photos of the underside are provided, showing the floors, suspension components, exhaust, and more.
The attached Marti report shows that the car is one of 709 ordered with the Indianapolis Pace Car Promotion package. Other noted options include the blue power top, power steering, center console, and deluxe seat belts. A collection of automobilia, period photos, and brochures are included. A detailed 45 minute walk-around and drive video is attached below.
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