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Wheels in the Grass

'69 Mercury Cougar, Niagara Falls, N.Y.

A day late (and a dollar short!) this week’s godforsaken wheels car is a rare find indeed — a 1969 Mercury Cougar convertible. Only 5,796 were produced (along with another 4,024 XR7s). This one definitely needs a new lid, and I’m sure the interior has suffered somewhat for it. It was raining in Niagara Falls when I took this pic yesterday, and from the looks of things I imagine it’s been there awhile — who knows how much snow has been in the back seat. The Cougar was the Mustang’s cousin, but sales-wise they weren’t even close: 100,069 Cougars for 1969, compared to 299,824 Mustangs. This convertible had a starting price of $3,382 while the Mustang was about 500 bucks cheaper. The ’69 model was the first restyle for the Cougar, which debuted in 1967. It would get a complete makeover (not necessarily for the better) two years later.

from the brochure

and, the hardtop

— Jim Corbran, You Auto Know