Eddie Maloney
January 27, 2017

Chad Winfield has always been mechanically inclined, and he prides himself on everything he has built. His passion for Mustangs came almost 20 years ago with a 1985 Mustang GT that he saw near the woods while he was on a hunting trip with friends. After hauling the car home he turned that Four-Eye into a drag car and campaigned it for nearly seven years.

Then in 2004, Winfield’s dream car found him while he was surfing the web: an original 1993 Vibrant Red Cobra with a tick over 34,000 original miles. He immediately traveled to Texas, and another seven long years later his vision came to reality.

The outside features two basecoats of DuPont Premier Vibrant Red complemented with four coats of clear. All original body panels remain with the addition of a carbon fiber hood and an aluminum wing out back.

To this day the car remains registered and insured with all functioning street equipment and is often seen on the streets around Fort Wayne. Street legal and homebuilt is the only way Winfield will build his hot rods. Although the Cobra still has that factory appearance, a look under the hood shows something a little different. Out went the pushrod 5.0L in exchange for a Four-Valve 4.6L modular motor with a Pro Mod–style 88mm Precision Turbo and intercooler.

Winfield chose to go with an aluminum Teksid block supplied by Accufab Racing in Ontario, California. Internally, no expenses were spared. JE Pistons were installed along with Manley billet connecting rods, a Kellogg forged crankshaft, a GT500 windage tray, and custom Accufab turbo bumpsticks by Comp cams. Fox Lake Power Products prepared and massaged a set of aluminum heads off a 2004 Cobra and fitted them with Ferrea inconel valves, Pac Springs, and Accufab billet timing chains and tensioners. Winfield installed a Sullivan lower intake complete with a Wilson 105mm throttle-body. Supplying the fuel are an Aeromotive mechanical fuel pump and regulator along with a set of Mike Moran 160-lb/hr injectors. A Big Stuff 3 engine management system was installed and tuned by Mike Moran. On the dyno the car made 1,278 hp with 908 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels.

Wilwood front brakes are tucked behind the 17-inch Weld V series wheels up front with a set and Strange Engineering rear brakes out back.
Chad Winfield dropped in a modular 4.6L Four-valve with a turbo to meet his street/strip needs.

Harnessing the power to ground is a Pro Torque Generation X 5,800-stall, bolt-together converter and a fully built ATI Powerglide transmission. A stock but slightly narrowed 8.8 rearend remains in the car with Strange Engineering 35-spline axles and spool. All the suspension components remain in the stock location with mini-tubs being the only underbody modification. Wolfe Racecraft provided the upper/lower control arms and camber/caster plates, as well the front K-member, including AFCO double-adjustable shocks on all four.

Most of the interior looks like it did off the showroom floor with the addition of a 25.5 cage, a Precision Performance Products shifter, and a Halon fire system. The stock dash is still intact and equipped with a Racepak IQ3 data logger, an AMS 2000 boost controller, and stock headliner and door panels, as well as functioning power windows.

The original two-tone dashboard and door panels from 1993 remain in near-mint condition. Two Kirkey aluminum race seats have replaced the factory buckets.

This snake appeals to everyone who comes across it. It is a real crowd pleaser from every angle. Maybe it’s the Schoneck Composites’ carbon fiber hood or the Racecraft 15-inch wing, or the way the Weld V-Series wheels wrapped in Mickey Thompson ET Street Radial Pros look against the Vibrant Red paint completed by Sean Harner of M&B body shop.

Now for the good stuff! We originally met Winfield and his 1993 Cobra at the Inaugural Mod Nationals at Memphis International Raceway. He had been battling tuning issues all weekend, but thanks to Chris Groves from The Dyno Edge, Winfield managed a personal best, running 8.07 at 180 mph with a mild 1.49 short-time. His drag racing plans are to continue to run at the Mod Nationals and hit up the local grudge events, as well as try his hand in X275. His ultimate goal is to run the Cobra in X275 at the Lights Out and No Mercy events at South Georgia Motorsports Park.

Of course, none of this could have happened without the right people backing him. Winfield says that his family is his number-one support system. He thanks his wife April and kids Kara, Rayne, and Landon. To show his appreciation, he is also building a coyote-powered 1950 F-100 for his wife. Given his attention to detail, we are willing to bet it will be a head turner.

Photo Gallery

View Photo Gallery