From the News Bureau FORD DIVISION of Ford Motor Company Rotunda Drive at

Southfield Road P. O. Box 608 Dearborn, Michigan Telephone: 33-77900

FOR ,RELEASE AT 6: 30 P.M. ~, EST, FRIDAY, MAY 15 J 1964

Following is the text of remarks by Lee A. Iacocca, Ford Motor Company vice

president and Ford Division general manager, at a press conference at Indianapolis,

Indiana, May 15, 1964.


It's great to be back at Indianapolis. We don't feel quite like the strangers we did last year,but by the same token we aren't

under any illusions about the kind of competition we face in the 1964 "500." In my mind, the machinery parked in Gasoline

Alley right now represents the greatest one-year technical improvement in the history of this event. A

lot of men, car owners, mechanics and accessory people, have spent a lot of money and burned a lot of midnight oil to pull

this off in the last 12 months. The result is some magnificent hardware. I take my hat off to these men. They are real pros!

The man responsible for our Indy engines, Gus Scussely is another pro. So is everyone of his Indy project engineers. They've

done a wonderful job of bringing our new engine along in a hurry.We are proud of them. Since coming here two weeks ago,

these fellows have discovered a symptom of FDIF that's short for Ford Division Indy Fever, telephonitis. These poor

men are so busy giving the latest developments to all of us back in Dearborn, that I don't see how they have time for anything

else. I know, I call them too and the line is always busy! Not all their reports have been good ones. So far, we have had our

share of problems, but that's the name of the game. That's what we are here for. Really, though, I wish all of you could see

and feel the excitement and spirit that the challenge of open competition has brought to Ford Division. Right now the "500" is

the most important race for us, just as it is for you. Yet, at the same time, we still have to divide our thoughts a little

because we are covering the whole spectrum of open competition. For example, at the same time our engines are roaring

around out here on Memorial Day, we'll have others roaring through the mountains in Germany. This race, the 1000

kilometer run at Nurburgring, will mark the competition debut of our new GT car, which will share the track with Carroll

Shelby's Cobras. The Ford GT car is an exciting machine. It's capable of speeds exceeding 200 miles an hour, and before

long it too will use our latest OHC Indy power plant. It's running at Nurburgring with last year's push rod engine. This car is

pointed toward giving Ferrari some stiff competition on its home ground and that's an ambitious target in any league. And

how about next weekend? We'll be running in the longest race of them all, the 600-miler at Charlotte. At the same time,in the

quiet little town of Westport, Connecticut,the car classification committee of the Sports Car Club of America will be meeting

to decide on the Mustang's eligibility for sports car racing. If we get the green light, Mustangs should be as numerous as

hay bales on U. S. road courses this summer, judging by the letters we're getting from enthusiasts allover the country. You

might say the Mustang is getting its first good look at what real competition is all about right here at the Speedway. We're

really proud to have had it chosen to lead all this fine machinery around to the green flag on Memorial Day.

At Ford we talk a lot about total performance. Our performance is so total it isn't even limited to land. For instance, did you

know that a boat outfitted with two of our 427 engines converted by Holman and Moody won the famous Miami-to-Nassau

race last month? That's first class competition, tool What does all this add up to? In our minds, it adds up to so strong

a belief in the value of open competition as a testing ground for automotive components, that we are determined to cover the

entire motor sports spectrum. In doing so, however, we keep one thought constantly in mind: If everything we learn from

competition is not analyzed in light of its application to our bread and butter cars, there!s no point in competing. The minute

we stop gaining from competitive events, the knowledge that leads to better production vehicles, it is time to get out! The role

of competition in engine development, for example, is very simple. Because racing regulations limit engine displacement,

engineers must improve engine output by better design rather than by simply increasing engine size. The long term result of all

this is better engines for production cars. We end up with eQual power from smaller, lighter engines; greater power from

engines of the same displacement; or more economical engines of equal power, any combination of which benefits our

customers. Now, before I sit down I want to tell you again how proud all of us in Ford Division are to be here again this

year. Tony Hulman and his people and Tom Binford and his crew, have been wonderful to us and so have all of you from

the press, radio and television. Win, lose or draw, we plan to be back next year and as long as any of the car owners who

have our engines now want to use them at Trenton and Milwaukee, we'll be there, too. Questions? Thanks very much for

being with us tonight. Now, let's answer some

5/14/64

 


From the News FDRD DIVISION Rotunda Drive P. O. Box 608 Dearborn,

Michigan Telephone: 33-77900

Bureau of Ford Motor Company at Southfield Road

FOR RELEASE AT 6 :30 P.M.. EST. FRIDAY. MAY 15, 1964

Following is the text of remarks by Benson Ford, Ford Motor Company vice

president and Chairman of the Dealer Policy Board, at a press conference at

Indianapolis, Indiana, May 15, 1964.

 

 

After putting up the good fight that wasn't quite good enough in last year's Indianapolis 500, we promised to be back in 1964

and here we are. Frankly, we didn't realize we'd be back in quite such force but we are delighted to have nine Ford-

powered entries getting ready for the qualifying runs this year. With so many top drivers and backers showing confidence in

our new "Indy" engine, we ought to be feeling pretty good about the chances of a winner among them. We do have high

hopes, but what the competition has been showing in their tests around the track isn't calculated to bolster anybody's

confidence. The improvements in the Offenhausers, the forward strides in chassis development, the dozens of other

engineering advances, the variety of cars and the speeds that have been clocked in test runs all point to the conclusion that a

lot of new racing history is going to be written on Memorial Day. Despite the improvements in our own engines, it's hard to

say whether our chances for a Ford-powered victory are any better than they were a year ago. Whoever wins can take

exceptional pride in knowing he beat the best field that has ever been assembled for this greatest and most spectacular of all

automobile racing events. Through the strong showing on our maiden effort, we have been given a certain amount of credit

for the new look in the entry lineup. To keep the record straight, let me say we accept responsibility only for providing a

spark. The explosion of engineering development that followed has been the work of all the dedicated, imaginative and

daring men who make up the racing fraternity. Our contribution this year is a new "Indy" engine that puts out 50 more

horsepower than the 1963 version with a weight increase of only 40 pounds. This means we now offer a power plant that

weighs about 400 pounds and generates 425 horsepower with the same 255 cubic inch displacement. To do it, our

engineers designed a double-overhead cam engine which retains a number of basic parts from last year!s unit but employs

a four-valve, pent-roof combustion chamber. Like its predecessor, the 1964 engine is designed to run on gasoline, although

we have gone to a Ford-modified Hilborn fuel injection system. Make no mistake about it, we want to see a Ford engine in

the winning car this year and our people have worked hard to see if it can be done. But just the same, as automobile

manufacturers and enthusiasts, we get a genuine thrill at the outburst of new developments we see around here on all the

racing cars, even if some of these developments may frustrate us on Memorial Day. The tough fight we see in the making for

this years 500 is good for the breed and good for the sport, and we are proud to have a hand in it. It proves again

that there is no substitute for all-out competition to stimulate engineering progress. As we have said before, this is the

philosophy that propelled us into our competition program a couple of years ago when we decided to

acknowledge openly that the industry resolution against direct participation was not working out, We've had our share of

success and we have taken our lumps a time or two, but our experiences have convinced us we made the right decision. We

have learned a lot and we are still learning. When I was here last year, I described a number of the production improvements

we already had incorporated or were in the process of incorporating into our passenger cars as a result of what we had

found out on the track or in the post-race teardowns. The list is still growing. There is hardly a major component on any of

our cars that hasn't been benefited, to some extent, great or small, by our competitive trials. In trying to keep up with our

competitors on the track our engineers have been pushed into advanced design concepts that might not have been

undertaken for many years to corner under ordinary market competition. The new Indy engine may well be a prime example.

Our engineers felt the 1963 Indy carne pretty close to the performance limits of the push rod design, and they knew that in

order to have a look-in at this years race we would need substantial improvement. Win or lose, we now know a lot more

about double overhead earn design than we did a year ago, and this may be a significant step for the passenger car of

tomorrow. The requirements of our competition program even make themselves felt in our manufacturing processes. For

example, the pent-roof combustion chamber on the new engine posed a difficult problem in maintaining tolerances. Our

Manufacturing Development Group came up with the answer in a new application of electrical discharge machinery, which

uses high energy sparks to vaporize and remove metal. With the tooling they developed, volume variations from chamber to

chamber can be held to within one-tenth of a cubic centimeter.It would be less than candid and perhaps less than believable

to say that we are interested in nothing but the educational aspects of competition events. If that were the case, it probably

shouldn't make much difference whether we win or lose, and frankly, it does. In the first place, you can't get involved in

anything as exciting as the Indianapolis 500 and remain impersonal. Once you're in it, you want to win it. In the second place,

there is always business to be considered and it seems reasonable to assume that losing races doesn't help to sell cars.

But the fact remains that these things are byproducts of our competition program. From a business standpoint, we couldn't

justify our continued participation in the absence of conclusively clear research, development and testing benefits for our

products and our customers. By the same token, as long as we can continue to point to better, safer, more satisfactory cars

as a result of our competition activities, we couldn't conscientiously turn back. And we will tell you right now, we expect to

be seeing you again next year.

 

 

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