There’s something intriguing about rare Mustangs. Sometimes lightning strikes and Ford builds just one. This one-of-a-kind Bright Gold Metallic ‘70 Boss 302 belongs to another one-of-a-kind, long-time Los Angeles news anchor Paul Moyer. A respected Southland institution, Moyer hung up his microphone last year when he retired from KNBC’s evening newscast—the Channel 4 News.
Raised in suburban Torrance, Moyer cultivated his interest in automobiles in the most car crazy of car cultures—Southern California during the 1950s, when leather jackets, rock n’ roll music, and cruising in a cool ride were American pop culture. Paul graduated from the University of Arizona in 1964, the same year the Mustang arrived in Ford showrooms. Then it was on to Pittsburgh and New York City where he gained notoriety as a broadcasting professional. He returned to Los Angeles in 1972 as a reporter and weekend news anchor. Paul eventually found himself in the coveted spot of evening news anchor at KNBC.
Although Paul’s history in broadcasting is well known, few fans are aware of his passion for high-performance automobiles. Because Paul understood the significance of the Boss 302 and its history in SCCA Trans-Am, he knew he wanted one, feeling that a Boss would make a nice garage companion for his collection of Ferraris, a Corvette, a Ford GT, and a Shelby GT350.
Getting his hands on a pristine, concours-restored Boss 302 would not be an easy task. For Paul, the best part of buying a collector car is the thrill of the chase. He found this Boss 302 at an auction in Chicago where he connected with the seller, Don Swanson.
Because Don and his brother, Dave, are very interested in Boss Mustangs, they are known as the “Boss Brothers” around Chicagoland. When we asked Don how many Boss 302 Mustangs he and his brother have owned, he couldn’t remember. He’s guesses at least 50 since 1970.
When Don found this Boss 302 on eBay many years ago, it was still in the hands of its original owner, a Vietnam veteran who bought it new from a Rockford, Illinois, Ford dealer when he returned home from the war. “It was sitting in a body shop about 55 miles from my home,” Don says. “It took me about three minutes to write that check.”
The 4.30:1 axle with oil cooler wasn’t a “gotta have” for Don, but it was certainly interesting considering the Bright Gold Metallic and Ginger interior, a rarely ordered combination. When Don received his Marti Report, he learned this was the only Boss 302 like it—a one-of-a-kind assembled October 17, 1969, at Ford’s Metuchen, New Jersey, assembly plant.
Of the 191,522 Mustangs produced in 1970, only 203 were Bright Gold Metallic. Even fewer, 27, were fitted with Ginger Cloth Décor interiors. Only one was a Boss 302 with the 4.30 Traction-Lok differential with oil cooler. Mustang Monthly editor and Boss 302 historian Donald Farr adds that, according to Kevin Marti, Ford produced just 737 ’70 Boss 302s with 4.30 gears—507 with Traction-Lok and 230 with the Detroit Locker differential.
Don reflects on this car, “I really didn’t want to sell it, but I had to. I was running into health problems and was consumed with medical bills.” He adds that his car collection is something of a 401K retirement program to both enjoy and to sell as needed. “It’s funny, the last car I wanted to sell was the first car to go when Paul approached me about it. The restoration had just been completed by Dennis Sweetwood. There wasn’t even ten miles on it.”
When Paul met Don at the auction, there was a certain level of skepticism because these two gentlemen didn’t know each. Paul flew to Chicago for the auction and to get a good look at the Boss 302 with trusted Shelby aficionado, Craig Conley.
“How do I know this car is everything you say it is,” Paul asked Don.
Don responded, “If it’s not, I will pay your roundtrip airfare from Los Angeles.”
As you might expect from a fresh restoration, there were minor issues. When Don fired the engine, there was smoke and coolant leakage, which were very unsettling for Moyer. Don promptly pulled his Boss 302 from the auction because of the mechanical issues. Paul returned to Los Angeles disappointed, but compensated for his airfare as promised. “In the business of buying and selling cars, you’ve got to have integrity,” Don comments’ “All you’ve got is your good name. so I compensated Paul for his airfare.”
When Paul stepped off the plane in Los Angeles, his cell phone rang. It was Craig Conley with good news about the Boss 302. Not only had Don accepted his offer, Dennis Sweetwood had performed all necessary repairs and got the Boss in nice working order. That’s when Paul bought the car—and wrote Don an additional check for that round-trip first class airline ticket to Chicago for being a man of his word.
Don was also quick to mention another element that makes collectible Ford, Lincoln and Mercury vehicles a good investment—the Marti Report. “When you invest in a collectible Ford, you know what you’re getting thanks to the Marti Report,” Don comments. “There’s no better documentation in the world than a Marti Report.” What makes this Boss 302 extraordinary aside from a concours restoration, color combination, and the rare axle/oil cooler option is factory documentation, which sealed the deal for Paul Moyer.
One more thing that adds to this car’s unique demeanor is the abundance of new-old-stock Ford parts. Roughly 95-percent of this restoration is N.O.S. Sweetwood made sure the car got as many original Ford parts as possible for an authentic restoration. And for Paul, it makes his investment solid gold and something he can enjoy for years to come.