My Car Quest

April 19, 2014

De Tomaso Mangusta – An Untouched Survivor

by Mike -

This 1969 Mangusta was recently acquired by Bud Millard who is a friend that seems to attend as many local car events as I do.

De Tomaso Mangusta

Bud tells me that this car is completely original and has never had any restoration work. It sat unused in the last owners garage for the past 18 years and has lived all of its life in the San Francisco Bay Area.

De Tomaso Mangusta and Owner Bud Millard

De Tomaso Mangusta and Owner Bud Millard

The odometer displayed 36,813 miles on the day that I had a ride last week, only 850 miles per year! The condition of the car supports the unrestored survivor label. The interior is in excellent condition and the trunk looks like it has never held anything.

De Tomaso Mangusta

The body has some small paint chips but no evidence of anything more than the 36,813 miles of normal driving. The paint is in excellent condition and still has that beautiful red shine as you can see from the pictures.

De Tomaso Mangusta

Approximately 400 Mangustas were produced between 1967 and 1971; 150 were the European version using the Ford V8 289 cid engine with 305 hp, and 250 were the US version, with the Ford 302 cid engine with 230 hp.

This example, VIN 870 and build number 185, has the 302 cid engine as would be expected on a US delivery car.

There are thought to be fewer than 150 Mangustas left in existence.

De Tomaso Mangusta

Top speed is 130 mph and zero to 60 mph arrives in 6.3 seconds for the US version. The transmission is a manual ZF 5 speed.

De Tomaso Mangusta

The Mangusta is a Giorgetto Giugiaro masterpiece designed when he was with Ghia.

Below is the ride video – turn up the sound and use full screen.


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  1. Hey MIke, great write-up on Bud Milard’s car. Couple things, as far as can be absolutely proven. Only the first few Mangustas had 289′s. Ford converted all production of 289 to 302 in July of 68 (IIRC). So all cars produced after that date had 302′s, Now Calif (maybe others too) cars had smog pumps but not the Euro cars.

    Current registries and my current count is 220 + a few owners who are not sharing VINs and a couple mystery cars in the bunch. So we can assume that at least 250 are still around.

    Interesting tidbit is that only 39 cars are currently identified as 2 headlamp cars, So that would make them rarer (yet they are less sought after ) :)

    • Denis,

      I thought the European cars had the 289 with more power than the American 302.

      By two headlamp you mean with the pop up headlight?

      • ncgrifo says:

        I had one on the last Mangusta’s built, a US version with pop-up headlights (you pulled a lever to lift the lights). It was a truly beautiful car. I bought mine from the original owner back in 1990, and it was a very low mileage car. It was originally gray, and the owner painted it orange to match the Polistil model of the car! That ZF tranny was difficult to master, it was rather warm in the car and the windows didn’t go down very far, you drove it lying down, and it would lift at speed. But you couldn’t beat it in the looks department!


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