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1968 Mercury Cyclone GT 500 or not?

You can see our complete, uptodate coverage of the search for infomation on the 1968 Mercury Cyclone GT 500 at our Feature Car Factory Specials page.

I recently received a phone call from Tommy Hussey regarding his white 1968 Mercury Cyclone GT that he purchased from the original owner. The owner swears the car had never been modified since she owned it. Tommy has since repainted the car and added some NASCAR decals but states it has never been modified AND the car has both the Cyclone and GT 500 emblems including the flags. However, when he had a Marti Report completed for the car it came back without listing the GT 500 option. Does he have a GT 500 or not?

We need more evidence to figure this one out. This car was built on March 3, 1968. This is the same month as the NASCAR Atlanta Race on March 31, 1969 when the first dealer promotion was held. (Read the articles on our GT 500 page regarding that race and the Ford World report.) Most of those cars were white. Tommy’s car is a 302; rumor has it that the white cars were 302s and the orange cars were the 390 and 428 CJs.

It is also worth a note that the Ford World report refers to these Atlanta promotion cars as Mercury Montego Cyclone  500s and not as GT 500s as the later option was called. The cars I have found with the GT 500 option were all built in a small cluster of cars in early May of 1968.

So the question remains; is this a GT 500? Is it a dealer built car? Does anyone know how the 160 promotional cars for the 1968 Atlanta race were built? Were they something the factory did based on some a special order or were these cars simply Cyclones with emblems added by a dealer or the factory. The search for information goes on. If you have any additional insight please send us an email or leave a comment below.

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I grew up and lived in Iowa for a good portion of my life before moving to Southern California. After 20+ years we now live outside Nashville Tennessee. I have been into cars since I was old enough to remember. I don't have a brand loyalty although I do prefer American Muscle especially the 1969/1970 NASCAR Aero Cars. (Check out our other web site at site) As long as it has four wheels and an engine I get excited. Few men are lucky enough to be able to share their passion for cars with the woman they love. Fortunately, my wife, Katriana, is also a gear head and many of our activities revolve around the cars. We have a small collection that includes at least one car from each of the Big Three. It includes a Best of Show winner, a survivor, a driver with lots of patina and several others. Katrina prefers all original cars while I like to modify them so we have a few of each. When we aren't playing with cars we are out working with or showing our miniature donkeys. You can see more about that part of our lives at

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  1. Could it be as simple as the guy building the car just grabbed the wrong emblem, or maybe the GT was all they had at the time the car went by?

  2. Hey Richard I met him at the historic race festival in Darlington last year and also this year.The car is still wearing it’s original paint he just painted the bumpers and added decals.I looked at the emblems and they look original and they have never been removed.If it’s not a 500 then they must have been installed at the dealer.

  3. Have not seen the car in person but he told me the DSO was 21 which would be correct for an Atlanta car and is the same as I have seen on other GT 500. Now if it was a special build and not an option I do not know what it should be.

  4. Wayne, I don’t think so on the emblems. Might be the case on some cars but this one fits the typical GT 500 build pattern. The Cyclone emblem is the standard one for 68 but the 500 and flag emblems are from older cars and would not be in the regular 68 inventory. I am not sure that they weren’t shipped in the trunk and installed by the dealer. I am sure open to all possibilities.

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