My Classic Car: David’s 1970 Mercury ‘Hound’s-tooth’ Cougar

My Classic Car: David’s 1970 Mercury ‘Hound’s-tooth’ Cougar

I am the second owner of this car purchased in 1976 from a retired Air Force colonel who had been stationed at Tinker Air Force Base in Midwest City, Oklahoma.

A two-owner 'Hound's tooth' 1970 Mercury Cougar | David Branham photos

A two-owner ‘Hound’s tooth’ 1970 Mercury Cougar | David Branham photos

I am the second owner of this car purchased in 1976 from a retired Air Force colonel who had been stationed at Tinker Air Force Base in Midwest City, Oklahoma.  He swore the car had never been wet… During military training he had been struck by lightning, so he said that, “every time if I’m out and I see storm clouds brewing, I rush home and the car goes back in the garage.”

Hound's-tooth pattern on the seats

Hound’s-tooth pattern on the seats

The car is a special edition program car called the “Hound’s-tooth Edition” and was the brainchild of famed designer Pauline Trigère. In its original form, the car included a hound’s-tooth vinyl top to match the interior.

As a 15-year-old muscle car enthusiast at the time, “that top had to go.”  The original exterior color was a light gold which wasn’t the most appealing either.

After a fresh coat of metallic paint, the purchase of custom wheels and tires, the Cougar was set and hasn’t changed much since the initial modification.  This car is stock and original except for the addition of a four-barrel Holley carburetor, Edelbrock manifold and fresh Autumn Copper paint.  (We still have the original 2-barrel carb and manifold.)

On crosstown travel in high school at a baseball tournament I had to replace the starter on the car in the parking lot at the field to get it back home.  Aside from that, the rear decking material behind the back seat and one panel of fabric in the driver’s seat, the car is all original as I drove it in high school.DSC01966

Under the hood is the original 351 Cleveland that still runs as well as ever with 88,000 original miles. The car’s been garage parked in my family since my second car was bought in 1981.

I want to thank and credit my father for his vision in not letting the car leave our family, for all of his hard work, research, effort and elbow grease that makes this car such a sense of pride to own.

— David Branham, Clear Lake TX

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