Joseph complemented these OEM engine hop-ups with the appropriate factory high-performance upgrades to the C4 transmission, including a higher line-pressure valvebody assembly, a revised secondary valve governor, and revised intermediate servo assembly. The end result was crisp wide-open shifts at 5,800 rpm. To direct this newfound power earthward, he also swapped out the factory 3.00:1 ring-and-pinion for a livelier 3.50:1 gearset and added Traction Master traction bars. All this work was accomplished in 1966 in his home garage, and the GT has remained in that state ever since, driven-with gusto-when weather permitted during the brief Michigan summers.
Joe Errante spent 42 of his 76 years (to date) working for the company whose products he loves, and retired in 1987. Because he so carefully maintained and detailed his '65 GT, Ford's 100th anniversary celebration wasn't the first time it was recognized and used for official company business. It participated in the following:
1977: Honored as one of the Milestones of Ford's History at Detroit's Renaissance Center during the introduction of the Fairmont.
1986: Displayed by Ford at the 75th Anniversary of the S.A.E. at Detroit's Cobo Hall.
1989: Presented in Dearborn's Ritz-Carlton hotel during the Mustang's 25th anniversary celebration.
1990: Honored in Ford's Design Center alongside two prototypes for the '94 Mustang, as part of a process to determine which version would eventually go into production.
1994: Displayed at Ford's Dearborn Proving Grounds during the press introduction of the '95 Mustang.
And it wasn't just Ford that appreciated it, as the hardtop was presented with a Gold Award in the unrestored class at the MCA Nationals in Dearborn in 1998.
It's not hard to see, then, that this striking GT hardtop has been a valued member of the Ford family. Far more important, however, is the role it's played for the last 38 years as a cherished member of the Errante family.