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On Thursday, Ford unveils the sixth-generation Mustang via simultaneous events in six locations worldwide. The new Mustang goes next fall, a few months after the 50th anniversary of the original 1965 Ford Mustang, which was unveiled at New York World's Fair on April 17, 1964.

Since that original "pony car" More than nine million Mustangs have been sold, and rivals such as the Chevrolet Camaro, Pontiac Firebird, Plymouth Barracuda and Dodge Challenger came and went -- and some have risen again.

REDESIGNED 2015 MUSTANG: Radically new and retro, too

Here is a timeline from Ford of milestones in the 50 years of Mustangs:

FROM CONCEPT TO REALITY, 1960-1963

• Ford Motor Company decides to develop a fun-to-drive "personal car" that will appeal to post-World War II Baby Boomers. The still-unnamed car -- sometimes referred to in Ford documents as the "1964 1/2 car" -- is to be derived from the Ford Falcon compact. Gale Halderman's sketches and clay model win an in-house design competition establish the classic pony car proportion – a long, sweeping hood, short rear deck and sharply sculpted flanks.

• A two-seat, mid-engine sports car concept is the first car to wear the Mustang name – initially suggested by designer John Najjar as an homage to the legendary P51 Mustang fighter plane from World War II and further inspired by the wild horse of the American West. The concept debuts in October 1962 at the United States Grand Prix at Watkins Glen, N.Y., where race driver Dan Gurney drives it around the circuit.

• In October 1963, a second concept known as Mustang II is shown at Watkins Glen and is the first public preview of the design direction for the production Mustang.

GENERATION I, 1965-1973

1964

• The 1965-model Ford Mustang is officially unveiled at the New York World's Fair and goes on sale Friday, April 17, 1964 as a hardtop and convertible. Standard equipment includes a 170-cubic-inch, inline six-cylinder engine, three-speed floor-shift transmission, wheel covers, padded dash, bucket seats and carpeting. It weighs just 2,572 pounds. Price at launch is $2,368. The company expects annual sales of about 100,000, but 22,000 orders are taken that first day and sales pass 400,000 in the first 12 months.

• First known retail customer to buy a Mustang, Gail Brown purchases her blue convertible from a Chicago dealer two days early on April 15. Nearly 50 years later, she still owns the car.

• Earliest pre-production Mustang, serial No. 1, is a Wimbledon White convertible with a 260-cu.in. V-8 built in February 1964. While on a promotional tour of Canada, a Ford dealer in St. John's, Newfoundland "mistakenly" sells the car to Capt. Stanley Tucker, a pilot with Eastern Provincial Airlines. Ford reacquires the car from Capt. Tucker in March 1966 in exchange for Mustang No. 1,000,001. The original car is now on display at The Henry Ford museum in Dearborn, Mich.

• The fastback joins the lineup in June.

• Mustang's movie career begins almost immediately, with an appearance in the James Bond film "Goldfinger."

• One of the earliest known references to the Mustang in song is written and recorded by Mack Rice in 1965. "Mustang Sally" comes to fame a year later when Wilson Pickett releases his version of the song.

1965

• By April 17, 1965, 418,812 Mustangs had been sold, the best first year ever for an all-new model.

• Shelby GT350 is introduced, with its 306-hp. 289-cu.in. V-8.

• In October 1965, Ford engineers dismantle a 1966 Mustang convertible into four sections that can fit into the elevators of the Empire State Building in New York, then reassemble it on the 86th-floor observation deck for promotional photos.

1966

• Ford partners with Shelby American to build a limited run of GT350H "rent-a-racers" for Hertz that are based on the stock GT350 fastback but have automatic transmissions.

1967

• 1967 is considered by many to be best Mustang design in the 1960s. The 1967 2+2 model goes from a semi-notchback to a sweeping full-fastback roofline. Separate triple taillamps, a longer nose and a bigger grille are added.

• Shelby adds a GT500 model powered by the big-block 428-cu.in. V-8 producing 355 hp.

1968

• Slightly larger 302-cu.in. V-8 replaces the "289" midyear, and a medium-riser version of Ford's premier race engine – the 427-cubic-inch V-8 (rated at 390 hp.) – is offered as a $622 option.

• On April 1, the 428 Cobra Jet engine is introduced as part of an option package aimed at enthusiasts.

• On Oct. 17, the movie "Bullitt" premiers with a 10-minute live action car chase sequence featuring a Highland Green Mustang GT 390 fastback on the hills of San Francisco.

1969

• "Steed for every need" mindset yields 11 different powertrain combinations. New models to the lineup include the 290-hp Boss 302, 375-hp Boss 429, Mach 1 and Grande luxury model. Also offered for the first time is the 351-cubic-inch "Windsor" V-8 engine producing 250 hp with a two-barrel carburetor, or 290 hp with a four-barrel.

1970

• Ram-air "Shaker" hood scoop can be ordered on any Mustang equipped with a 351-cubic-inch or larger V-8.

1971

• 1971 cars are the biggest Mustangs ever – nearly a foot longer and almost 700 pounds heavier than the originals. Gone from the lineup are the Boss 302, Boss 429, Shelby GT350 and GT500. The Boss 351, with its 351 "Cleveland" V-8 and Cobra Jet heads, debuts. Mach 1 is available with a variety of powertrains, topped by the 370-hp 429 Super Cobra Jet.

1973

• The impact of gasoline shortages, rising insurance premiums and emissions controls brings the muscle-car era to a close. 1973 is the last model year for the original Falcon-platform Mustang. The convertible is discontinued.

GENERATION II, 1974-1978

1974

• The completely redesigned Mustang II is introduced. Compared with the 1973 model, Mustang II is 19 inches shorter and 490 pounds lighter. It is available as a notchback and a 2+2 fastback. There are only two engine choices – an 88-hp. 2.3-liter inline-four or a 109-hp. 2.8-liter V-6. For the first time, there is no V-8 or convertible.

1975

• V-8 returns, but the 302-cu.in. engine produces only 133 hp. and comes only with an automatic.

1976

• Cobra II package joins the lineup, replete with nonfunctional hood scoop, racing stripes and front and rear spoilers. Available in white with blue stripes, blue with white stripes, and black with gold stripes, it is recalls the famed Shelby Mustangs.

1977

• Fastback models now are available with T-top removable glass roof panels. A new Sports Performance Package finally adds a four-speed manual transmission to the 302-cu.in. V-8.

1978

• New King Cobra model is the first Mustang to wear a "5.0" badge – the metric equivalent of 302 cu.in.

GENERATION III, 1979-1993

1979

• New "Fox" platform Mustang makes its debut. The new model is longer and taller than Mustang II yet 200 pounds lighter and has European-influenced design. Engine choices are a 2.3-liter four (including a 140-hp. turbo version), a 2.8-liter V-6, a 3.3-liter inline six and a 140-hp. 5.0-liter V-8

1980

• 302-cu.in. V-8 is dropped for an economy-minded 119-hp., 255-cu.in. V-8

1981

• Performance heads to the back burner, as the turbo four is dropped and new emissions controls cut the 255. V-8's power to 115 hp.

1982

• As gas prices subside and new competition arrives, Mustang GT returns after a 12-year absence. Also back: the 5.0-liter V-8, rated at 157 hp. with a two-barrel carburetor. Optional T-tops return.

1983

• After 10 years, a convertible returns, with a power top and glass back window. A Holley four-barrel carburetor boosts Mustang GT's 5.0-liter V-8 to 175 hp.

1984

• New Special Vehicle Operations group that also runs Ford race programs creates the Mustang SVO. It features a front fascia with integral fog lamps, an off-center functional scoop and a polycarbonate dual-wing rear spoiler. Power is from a turbocharged and air-to-air intercooled 2.3-liter four-cylinder producing 175 hp. and 210 lb.-ft. of torque.

1985

• Mustang gets a revised 5.0-liter high-output V-8 producing 210 hp. mated to a manual transmission. New Quadra-Shock rear suspension with two extra horizontally mounted dampers reduce wheel hop under hard acceleration.

1986

• Mustang's V-8 trades its carburetor for sequential multiport fuel injection. Output drops to 200 hp.

1987

• Mustang is heavily restyled, with a new "aero-look" body including faired-in headlamps.

1991

• Entry-level Mustangs receive an improved 105-hp. 2.3-liter four-cylinder. All V-8 models get five-spoke, 16-inch aluminum wheels – the first factory 16-inchers.

1992

• Wire-style wheel covers and whitewall tires disappear from the options list.

1993

• Ford's new Special Vehicle Team introduces limited-production SVT Mustang Cobra with distinctive styling cues and performance upgrades. The low-volume, track-oriented Cobra R sells out prior to production.

GENERATION IV, 1994-2004

1994

• For its 30th anniversary, Mustang is dramatically restyled with 1,330 of the 1,850 parts are changed. The new Fox-4 platform is structurally stiffer. The hatchback is discontinued, leaving the semi-fastback coupe and the convertible. The GT's 5.0-liter V-8 engine produces 215 hp. A new SVT Mustang Cobra launches midyear with a 240 hp., 5.0-liter V-8.

1995

• Final model year for the 5.0-liter V-8 that began life in 1962 as the 260-cu.in. V-8 in Falcon and grew to 289-, 302- and 351-cu.in. variants.

• The second SVT Mustang Cobra R is introduced, with only 250 units to be built. It's street-legal, but meant for racing in "showroom stock" classes with a 300-hp., 5.8-liter V-8 and five-speed manual.

1996

• The Mustang GT and SVT Mustang Cobra get Ford's new 4.6-liter modular V-8, Ford's first production V-8 to use overhead camshafts. Mustang GT uses a single-overhead-cam layout with two valves per cylinder for 215 hp. Cobra has dual-overhead cams and four valves per cylinder for 305 hp. from the aluminum V-8.

1999

• Redesign gives Mustang sharp creases and pronounced wheel arch flares, plus a new hood, grille, fascias and lamps. Base 3.8-liter V-6 gets a 27% boost to 190 hp.

• SVT Mustang Cobra becomes the first Mustang with a fully independent rear suspension.

2000

• The third SVT Mustang Cobra R is produced. This lightweight, street-legal racer has a 385-hp. 5.4-liter DOHC V-8, and Mustang's first six-speed manual. Production limited to 300 units.

2001

• Inspired by the 1968 GT390 driven by Steve McQueen in the movie "Bullitt.," the Mustang Bullitt GT debuts with the same Highland dark green paint, plus side scoops; 17-inch, "Bullitt"-style aluminum wheels; and lowered, specially tuned suspension.

2002

• Mustang stands alone as production ends for its two closest remaining competitors – Chevrolet Camaro and Pontiac Firebird.

2003

• Mustang Mach 1 returns with a 305-hp. V-8 engine, "Shaker" hood scoop, 17-in. heritage wheels inspired by 1969-73 Mustang Mach 1 wheels, and 1960s-style "comfort weave" seats.

• SVT Mustang Cobra gets an Eaton supercharger for its 4.6-liter V-8, which ups output to 390 hp and 390 lb.-ft. of torque for the best-performing regular-production Mustang to date.

2004

• 2004 models are the last at the Dearborn Assembly Plant, which produced Mustangs every year since its inception.

GENERATION V , 2005 -2014

2005

• All-new fifth-generation Mustang debuts as a 2005 model with an all-new platform and six-inch-longer wheelbase. It's the first Mustang on a unique platform. Retro styling includes a forward-leaning grille, side hockey stick contours and tri-bar taillamps. Power is a 210-hp., 4.0-liter V6 or a 300-hp. 4.6-liter V-8. Production begins in fall 2004 in Flat Rock, Mich.

• Ford introduces the first of a series of turnkey Mustang-based race cars, the FR500C.

2006

• Forty years after the GT350H, Ford, Shelby American and Hertz partner again for a run of 500 automatic transmission-equipped Shelby GT-H coupes.

2007

• SVT collaborates with Carroll Shelby on the most powerful production Mustang to that time, the 2007 Shelby GT500 Mustang. It's available as convertible or coupe and powered by a 500-hp., supercharged 5.4-liter V-8.

2008

• Ford returns to building turnkey factory drag racing cars with the 2008 Cobra Jet. It has a supercharged 5.4-liter V-8. Customers can order ready-to-race cars directly from Ford dealers

• Mustang Bullitt is revived for a two-year limited run.

2009

• Introduced in early 2009, the 2010 Mustang is refreshed with more sculpted haunches, chamfered rear corners and trapezoidal grille.

2010

• Entire Mustang lineup receives updated powertrains for 2011 model year. Standard engine is a DOHC 3.7-liter V-6 generating 305 hp and EPA-rated at 31 mpg on the highway. New DOHC 5.0-liter "Coyote" V-8 generates 412 hp. Upgraded supercharged 5.4-liter V-8 for the Shelby GT500 now features a lighter aluminum block with plasma-coated cylinder bores and its 550 hp. is the most ever in a production Mustang. All engines now have six-speed automatic or manual transmissions.

2011

• Mustang Boss 302 is revived as a track-oriented model for a two-year limited-edition run. 5.0-liter V-8 is upgraded to produce 444 hp and features Ford's first launch-control system.

2012

• 2013 Shelby GT500 is upgraded with the world's most powerful production V-8 – a supercharged 5.8-liter generating 662 hp. and 631 lb.-ft. of torque.

2013

• Flat Rock builds its one-millionth Mustang, a red GT convertible on Mustang's 49th birthday, April 17, 2013.

GENERATION VI

2013

• On Dec. 5, the new sixth-generation 2015-model Mustang is simultaneously revealed in six locations around the world.

2014

• On April 16-20, 2014, Mustang fans from around the world will gather for massive celebration of 50 years of Mustang at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Charlotte Motor Speedway.

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