Verify Out This 1969 Mercury Cyclone Spoiler II Earlier than it Returns to Bonneville

Verify Out This 1969 Mercury Cyclone Spoiler II Earlier than it Returns to Bonneville



As we walked via rows of exotics, imports, and classics at a current Automobiles & Espresso occasion, we observed a moderately subdued Mercury Cyclone parked quietly within the nook.

Drawing nearer, we noticed that it wasn’t simply any Cyclone, it was a Cyclone Spoiler. And it wasn’t till we had been a number of toes away that we realized the automotive was a Cyclone Spoiler II.

That “II” makes an enormous distinction right here, because it denotes Mercury’s entrant into the NASCAR Aero Wars. Along with its cousin, the Ford Torino Talladega, these vehicles had been designed to battle Mopar’s legendary Charger Daytona and Superbird twins on the NASCAR Tremendous Speedways.

Suffice it to say, the Cyclone Spoiler II is already a particular automotive. And once we noticed that this explicit one had Bonneville on its resume, we needed to be taught extra.

(Picture/OnAllCylinders – Mike Callahan)

The proprietor’s Mike Callahan and he’s had the Merc for about seven years. “I needed one thing I may take to Bonneville,” he says. “So I purchased it on-line, flew to California, and drove it 2,200 miles dwelling.”

Throughout that return journey, he had loads of time to make plans for his excessive velocity aspirations. “By the point I acquired dwelling, I had an enormous ‘ole listing of stuff I wanted to do to it,” Callahan chuckles.

Since he needed to maintain the automotive on public roads, Callahan tells us he confronted some distinctive challenges. “The trick is to get via Bonneville Tech with a avenue authorized automotive,” he explains. “No one does that. And there’s a cause—it’s a variety of work, a variety of compromises.”

Easy black and white Stewart Warner gauges complement the Merc’s classic look. (Picture/OnAllCylinders)

He describes a number of important modifications, together with issues like a parachute mount on the again, a hearth suppression system, and a roll cage. “It needed to meet every kind of various security guidelines, however it nonetheless needed to be streetable.”

So Callahan devised some intelligent options, and recollects one specifically. “I needed to run polycarbonate home windows, however I put ’em in so they may nonetheless roll up and down. And I can put a body round there, in order that they don’t blow in or out.”

As a result of the Cyclone Spoiler II was basically a homologation particular designed to assault NASCAR Tremendous Speedways, Callahan’s Merc already had some important aerodynamic modifications, like an elongated nostril and flush grille.

And it appears that evidently the Ford engineers did the job proper again in 1969. As Callahan fortunately studies, the Spoiler II’s intensive NASCAR aero testing signifies that its slippery profile is completely at dwelling on the Bonneville salt too.


By way of drivetrain, the Mercury was operating an upgraded Ford 351 Cleveland when Mike acquired it, and the engine preformed admirably for a number of years. In truth, Mike tells us that he’s pushed (sure, pushed) the Spoiler II to Bonneville a number of instances to this point.

“First time I drove it out, it went 154 [mph]. Second time I drove it out, it went 165,” he continues. “Final 12 months, it went 170.”

It was after the 2021 marketing campaign although, that Callahan resolved to make a change. “That was as quick as this automotive would go along with the outdated Cleveland,” he admits. “On the lengthy drive dwelling, I made a decision to improve the motor.”


However he didn’t stray too removed from that confirmed Ford recipe. The brand new engine continues to be a Cleveland block, although it’s operating a stroker equipment that bumps displacement to a wholesome 408 cubic inches. Topped with an Edelbrock consumption and a set of Trick Stream cylinder heads, Callahan is a lot optimistic in regards to the Mercury’s potential.

“My purpose is to run 200 mph in a avenue authorized automotive.”

And when he says “avenue authorized,” he means it—Callahan drives this automotive in all places, as he rattles off some excessive profile automotive occasions just like the Scorching Rod Energy Tour and Woodward Dream Cruise. “It’s been everywhere in the United States,” he says with a smile.


For pretty much as good because the Mercury is on the salt although, we had been compelled to ask Mike about its highway manners.

“It’s fairly streetable. I run a 2.75 rear finish so it’s form of a canine off the road,” he replies. Then, Callahan pauses for a second and continues:

“…However get it rolling and don’t mess with me on the large finish.”

After a very good snicker, we wished Callahan luck on his upcoming Bonneville marketing campaign and we are able to’t wait to listen to the way it goes.


Paul is the editor of OnAllCylinders. When he is not writing, you may most likely discover him fixing oil leaks in a Jeep CJ-5 or watching a 1972 Corvette overheat. An avid motorcyclist, he spends the remainder of his time synchronizing carburetors and cleansing chain lube off his left pant leg.


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September 2022