North Carolina Ford Museum Has Wicked Mustangs on Display
Ford Performance got an inside look at 50 years of restoration excellence in 300,000 square-feet of manufacturing space.
Enthusiasts flock to Charlotte, North Carolina, for many reasons. From the Charlotte Motor Speedway to Mustang club shows, the Charlotte Auto Fairs and the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The area is also home to the Ford Performance Technical Center, Holman & Moody’s Headquarters, and now the Mustang Owner’s Museum in Concord, North Carolina. But Ford insiders also know about Concord for what’s long been on the same property of the museum – the Dennis Carpenter Ford Restoration Parts company, located just down the road from the speedway. As a family owned and operated business, Dennis Carpenter has been making quality Ford restoration parts for nearly 50 years, many of them from original Ford tooling.
The Ford Performance team has been out that way before to attend Mustang shows and to tour Lee Holman’s shop, And when Ford Performance visited the Charlotte Spring Auto Fair a while back, Mark Young of the Carolina Regional Mustang Club, arranged for them to tour the sprawling Dennis Carpenter Complex, with son Daniel Carpenter as our personal tour guide. They got to see Daniel’s impressive Fox Body collection and then were given a first-hand look at his father’s own impressive Ford car collection and transportation museum, which completely fills one of the big buildings near the back of the complex that houses some 300,000 square-feet of manufacturing space.
Most visitors only get to see the main building out front which houses the walk-in customer showroom, but enthusiast groups have often arranged tours of the Carpenters’ twin auto collections – so when Young enlisted Daniel to show us around the complex, we jumped at the chance. Walking through Dennis’ Ford museum was like walking through time – both because of all the great cars on display as well as the incredible memorabilia, collectibles and primitives he has amassed over the years. What’s more, the museum has a second floor dedicated to the history of Cushman scooters from 1937 to 1965, which the Carpenters not only collect but also make parts for.
Photos by John M. Clor