Steve Turner
Former Editor, 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords
April 1, 2009
Contributers: Tom Wilson Photos By: Tom Wilson

Missing the booming throb of your 5.0 with Flowmaster mufflers? Here's your big chance to relive old glories thanks to Flowmaster's [(800) 544-4761; www.flowmastermufflers.com] issuing the same old 40 Series, square-cased muffler in an S197 fitment. Now built with 409S stainless steel, these boxes are direct replacements with a 10-year limited warranty.

Fluidampr [(716) 592-1000; www.fluidampr.com] now has a harmonic damper for '05-and-later 4.6 and 5.4 internally-balanced engines. Unlike earlier Fluidampr units that were anodized-aluminum, this late-model Mustang part is black steel.

Brian Wolfe did a fine job introducing the Mustang Cobra Jet, complete with an unveiling and some high-rpm free revving besides the speech. We're still marveling that Ford is building 25 of these 10-second sweeties. The real thing, the FR500CJ's sport a supercharged 5.4-liter engine, 9-inch rear axle, a choice of five-speed manual or three-speed (!) auto; the cars are NHRA-legal sportsman racers.

Last year Garrett (www.turbobygarrett.com) showed this same GT and Three-Valve turbo kit; this year it was back after winning in NMRA True Street competition. Typical times are 11.59/118 mph with 9 pounds of boost; to run consistent 12s only 5.9 pounds of boost was used. The news is a complete kit for S197 Mustangs for this dual GT28 60RS turbo layout should be ready when you read this. Garrett is developing the "full" bolt-on kit with George Lee at ATP Turbo [(510) 445-1682; www.atpturbo.com]; ATP Turbo already offers the less-complete Garrett "tuner" kit at $2,975.99.

We've always said someone needed to make some cool Fox Mustang models; now GMP [(800) 536-1637; www.gmpdiecast.com] is offering 16 of them. These are fabulous 1/18-scale metal display models. The steering works, everything opens, the seatbelts play in and out; the detail and workmanship is excellent wherever you look. There are various Fox models-GMP typically makes only 1,000 of any model, then moves on-so if you see a color or model you like, lay out $99 and take it home.

Adding to its robust lineup of S197 ignition and suspension gear, Granatelli Motorsports [(805) 486-6644; www.granatellimotorsports.com] flashed this new billet Watt's link for the latest Mustang. The rugged, bolt-on part offers the expected lateral axle control along with an adjustable roll center. If you already have the full GMS suspension on your S197, this is the next logical upgrade.

For all the flaming auto-craziness at SEMA there aren't that many we'd actually want to drive, but this black GT500 in the Griggs Racing [(707) 939-2244; www.griggsracing.com) booth is an exception. A customer's ride, it carried a full GR-40 A-arm and coil-over suspension, Kirkey seats, and a driver data acquisition system. It ought to have the chassis to match the prodigious GT500 power.

Given the economic climate around the time of the SEMA show, it was great to see an attractive, but affordable S197 body package from Grip Tuning [(800) 435-1197; www.griptuning.com]. This seven-piece body upgrade kit features a front splitter, rear valance, side skirts and rear spoiler for only $499. Grip also a retro strip package for the Mustang; it's available in red, blue, black, onyx, silver, yellow, green, and purple.