The Hunter Mustang
most famous of all Homebush Mustangs was the car which appeared in the 1967 Crawford spy series Hunter.
This was a 1966 Australian-delivered RHD car with the distinctive JOH-999 numberplates.
Typical of the Mustang’s starring role was its appearance in one episode called ‘The Benedict File’, in which Hunter, played by the late Tony Ward, had to jump from his car (which someone else was driving at the time) into a Kombi van which was rolling downhill without a driver. Ward was filmed clinging to the exteriors of both vehicles while a professional stuntman made the leap across. The result was so unconvincing that he insisted on doing his own stunt work from then on, including driving the Mustang at speed.
“We didn’t have any driving accidents and we didn’t clean up any cameras,” he said in the TV Eye fanzine in 1994. “It takes a lot of skill to pull up dead opposite a camera the way they want it. You don’t often do that in one or two takes, it’s quite tricky. I had a lot of fun driving that Mustang.”
So does the current owner of that ‘star car’, who wishes to remain anonymous. We’re told that it occasionally appears in public events and still sees action on the streets of Melbourne. It’s back in its original Tahoe Turquoise hue now, having been Ivy Green then white during its life. It’s good to know it lives on today.
It would be remiss of us not to mention the 50th anniversary of the passing of Australia’s first touring car endurance race – the shortlived Sandown International 6 Hour. The 6 Hour was held at the Melbourne track on two occasions, 1964 and ’65, with the same chassis winning both times. We’ve tracked down this vehicle today and will share its story next edition.