The Boss 429 Mustang is one of the rarest Mustang’s every built. Can you imagine finding a whole bunch of them in a little Texas town 40 minutes west of Fort Worth?
Well, about 35 minutes West of our shop is the little town of Mineral Wells, Texas. Known for its natural mineral springs and self-described “Crazy Water”, Mineral Wells is a town that flourished in the 30’s and 40’s, became a ghost-town decades later and is now coming back as a special getaway town complete with high-end motels and hotels and trendy shops and boutiques. What you might not expect to see there is the “Blue Oval Car Barn”, an impressive car dealership showroom full of some of the rarest Ford Mustangs you will ever see.
Run by Finley and Jodi Ledbetter, the showroom is an American Muscle car lover’s dream. If you are a Chevy Corvette person you might be offended but if you love all things Ford, this museum quality collection will not disappoint. The husband-and-wife team have amassed an impressive collection of some super-rare (and expensive) Ford Muscle Cars with special emphasis on the Boss 429 Mustang. Just 1,359 of these special Mustangs were ever built and there are probably far less than 1,000 left on the planet. No wonder then, that an original condition Boss 429 Mustang can fetch over $400,000 on the market today. That’s as much money as you could expect to get from a Ferrari 365 GTB4 (Daytona) which is saying a lot.
Although I might argue the Ferrari is the prettier car, it might have trouble staying with the Boss 429 Mustang in a quarter mile run. Technically the Boss 429 was rated very conservatively as having 375 brake horsepower, but automotive historians suggest the actual horsepower rating was well over 500. The cars had to be insured of course and Ford did owners a favor by fibbing just a bit on the power (Ferrari was known for fibbing about power too but in the opposite direction). The Ledbetters have more than 30 restored classics, mostly Mustangs but also some other rare and unique Fords. Their team of experts refines and restore these vehicles onsite in the back catacombs of their impressive showroom building.
With special attention to keeping the cars as original as possible, don’t be surprised to see a super-rare Mustang with less-than-perfect, but original paint. Gone are the days of restoring cars to ridiculous unheard standards. Concourse events prefer originality even over perfection. Certainly, some vehicles have been completely resprayed but it’s nice to see many of their showroom cars wearing the paint they came out of the factory with.
They were kind enough to give me a full tour and details on all the vehicles in their collection and even showed me recent acquisitions that they were just beginning restoration efforts on. It’s a wonderful facility in a very quiet and quaint town. I’m not a Ford guy or even an American Muscle car guy but I do appreciate well-crafted and well-maintained vehicles from any classification. Their showroom literally looks like a section of a Concourse events dedicated to vintage Fords. I remembered some of the vehicles they had from my childhood. My father had some of them in his own collection but did not live long enough to see them appreciate so much in value.
My 9-year-old son had a great time taking pictures of all of these amazing vintage cars. His patented slice-of-life photos grace the header of this article. One of the representatives there who gave us the tour said they might be having a Pantera or two coming into the showroom at some point. Good excuse to drop by again in a few months.
The Blue Oval Car Barn is an oasis of sorts for lover’s of vintage Ford classics. If you are ever out in Mineral Wells, drop by and check out their amazing machines. Their address is: 201 W. Hubbard, Mineral Wells, TX 76067
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