Date:13 May 2014
It seemed the obvious thing to do. The Ford Mustang was turning 50, so why not sling one under a helium balloon and send it up into the sky? Okay, it wasn’t a real Mustang, just a model, but you have to give the planners credit for initiative.
San Francisco Ford dealership employees and some friends hatched the idea. “We wanted to celebrate 50 years of Mustang and the impending arrival of the all-new 2015 Mustang by doing something really special,” said sales manager Mike Sego. “Mustang has always been about getting behind the wheel and hitting the open road, but we decided to take to the open sky.” According to Ford, Sego and Kubitz acquired a high-altitude weather balloon, and added a rod to the side instrumentation box suspended below it. Mounted to this was one of the Revell Mustang model kits handed out at car shows. Naturally, a pair of small action cams were also in position. It took about an hour and a quarter for the balloon to reached its maximum height of 33,53 km. Apparently, though, the car’s stately upward progress was nothing like its wild descent. The payload went through a period of uncontrolled spinning, says Ford, before getting low enough in the atmosphere to deploy the parachute. Thanks to a GPS transmitter it was retrieved in a field about six hours later.
* South African Mustang fans will see the car on local roads in 2015.