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Pre-Mustang: This 1963 Mercury Comet S-22 Is A Fun Little Freak Of A Car!

Pre-Mustang: This 1963 Mercury Comet S-22 Is A Fun Little Freak Of A Car!

When the Edsel brand was binned in 1959, a project for a smaller vehicle that was originally supposed to be an Edsel branded car got thrown into limbo. Called Comet, the model initially was an orphan of sorts, a car without a make (similar to how Valiant worked for Chrysler Corporation early on.) The first-generation Comet shares quite a bit of family DNA with the overall appearance of the 1960 Edsel lineup, which had been cleaned up and worked over as the first emergency deal to address the lack of sales for the new brand, but with Mercury-like detailing that was added on after the good ship Edsel foundered and sank. Based on the Falcon platform that spawned everything from the Mustang to the Granada of the 1970s, the Comet is one of those machines that just doesn’t come to the forefront of thought when dreaming of a street machine. With styling that blends late 1950s tips and tricks with early 1960s compact car looks, it isn’t the most striking thing visually, but there is room for a small Ford V8 and the suspension can be built up to do more than wallow.

Someone gave this 1963 S-22 model Comet more than just a passing thought. The neon green Plasti-Dip isn’t doing the car any favors, but the 302 raided from a Ford Maverick backed up to a manual trans is a good start. There is work that needs to be done (heater motor, wipers, brake lines and some other odds and ends) but there’s still plenty to like about this little screamer. Finished off right, it will be a light little Mercury that will hustle around nicely. For $2,800, it’s not too bad price-wise, either. We’d strip the Plasti-Dip off, shoot it in a more subdued color (dark blue would look good with the trim) and would start looking for the parts for a five-lug swap. What do you think?

Craigslist Link: 1963 Mercury Comet S-22

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6 thoughts on “Pre-Mustang: This 1963 Mercury Comet S-22 Is A Fun Little Freak Of A Car!

  1. PJ

    Comet is a great start for a Hot Rod or cruiser. Not only does the underpinnings share most of its stuff with the super popular mustangs the not so common body design stands out in a crowd.

    Taking this car I would definitely get rid of the plasti dip and lean towards Race red the modern red from the ford lineup. After dealing with the paint and body. Some new wheels and sticky tires thinking towards the corner side of things. Some new door panels, carpet and procar seats. The falcon center console is a nice touch already.

    Underneath updating the front end to 65 mustang spindles, control arms etc I would add some baer brakes and some nice coil overs. Outback a 9″ or narrowed 8.8 would work well with a TCI 4 link and coilovers.

    The stick is good, adding some good heads and an intake a good cam and some long tube headers will give a bit more power and noise.

    The overall package would be a fun car that can turn a corner, turn some heads and be driveable anywhere.

    A bit of love and a limited budget would put this car over the top and due to the low cost to get into a running driving car there is even potential to get most of your money back if you decided to sell it.

  2. Chevy Hatin' Mad Geordie

    This beauty is fine as it is and any donations towards its purchase and shipping to Whickham, Newcastle Upon Tyne in The Uk would be welcome..

  3. RK - no relation

    Edsel? I had no idea these started that way. It couldn’t have taken long for some genius to say “Let’s make it a Mercury”

  4. Scott Liggett

    Comets and Falcons are wonderful less expensive alternatives to Mustangs. the Comets seemed to hang onto the finned look longer than the Falcon did. A different color and wheel choice would go a long way on this one.

  5. Tom P

    I like it, but admit i’m somewhat of a Cometphile I have a 66 and a 64 now but had a 62 S22, two more 66’s and a 67. Lots of potential there.
    I’m also surprised McTag knows about the Edsel lineage. That was most noticeable in the 60 and 61, by the time that 63 rolled out Merc was taking full credit.

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