Martin Dolan
April 24, 2017
Photos By: Courtesy Of Goodguys

A longtime lover of Mustangs, 24-year old Alicia Zerbe of Spokane, Washington, bought her first Mustang, a dark-red 2005 GT coupe, last summer and has since fitted it with a cold-air intake. Then her Stang stable doubled in December when she won a modified 2016 GT designed by Eric Brockmeyer, one that beats the factory version on looks, growls, cornering, and stopping.

Alicia’s windfall came courtesy of Goodguys Rod & Custom Association, which has given away 92 cars and trucks since 1984. She and her boyfriend, another Mustang fanatic, are regulars at the Goodguys Great Northwest Nationals in Spokane, which is where she entered to win the GT last summer.

But it almost didn’t happen, said Alicia, who is a waitress for DoubleTree by Hilton. She and her boyfriend, who had owned (and wrecked) a 2005 Mustang just like hers, were registering for the contest at several kiosks set up next to the red, white and blue GT, but her touchscreen kept balking.

Brown’s Classic Auto didn’t punch up the 32-valve Coyote V-8, which already pumps out a healthy 435 hp and 400 lb-ft of twist, but it did add a beefy strut tower brace to stiffen things up front.

“I got really frustrated, only to walk away and another person started to fill in their information. It was my boyfriend who went back to the machine he was on originally and filled in my information for me. If I had gone back to the one I was using, I probably wouldn’t have won.”

For the GT, Goodguys teamed up with Eric Brockmeyer and two Arizona car builders; Drew Brothers Customs in Chandler and Brown’s Classic Auto in Scottsdale.

Ford Performance provided all the goodies, including a heavy-duty sway bar, shocks and springs, valve covers, hood struts, a strut tower brace, cat-back exhaust, a short-throw shifter, and a scoop that directs air around the six-speed transmission. Fifteen-inch drilled and slotted Baer rotors with six-piston Brembo brakes bring the Mustang quickly to a halt.

In addition to Ford Performance shocks, struts, and springs at all four corners, Brown’s Classic Auto installed 15-inch drilled and slotted rotors from Baer for the six-piston Brembo calipers to squeeze down on.

“Drew Brothers did a lot of custom paint and detail work to the Mustang and gave us a good platform to put the aftermarket parts on,” said lead builder Tony Arme. “We got it and put on the wheels and tires, a lot of handling stuff—bigger brakes, short-throw shifter—and we made carbon fiber front and rear splitters for it.”

Drew Brothers added fender flares and painted the Mustang PPG white with PPG gloss black on the roof, wing windows, and rear diffuser. The bright-red side mirrors really pop, and a vinyl stripe in Shelby Blue finishes the look. The 20-inch smoked-titanium Rohana RC9 series wheels are shod with Michelin Pilot tires with custom white lettering from TireStickers.com that says “Goodguys.”

“Our original concept was to be super-aggressive and track ready,” Brockmeyer told us in an email. “We figured why not? It’s a giveaway car. It made for a cool illustration, and I still think the way the car came out keeps the flavor of the design but is a little more refined and probably a more driveable car.”

The GT’s fender flares where installed by Drew Brothers Customs, which also painted the pony using PPG white, gloss black, and red and applied the Shelby-blue vinyl stripe. Michelin Pilot tires with custom white lettering roll on 20-inch smoked-titanium Rohana RC9 Series wheels.

Ed Capen, vice president of sales and sponsorships for Goodguys, said the GT was chosen to appeal to a younger demographic, which is important because the age of the average Goodguys hot-rodder continues to tick upward. After it was finished in June, the GT was shown at association events around the country. “We wanted people to see this car because we’ve done quite a bit to it,” said Capen. “There was a lot of effort into making this a pretty cool car for somebody to win. It turns heads everywhere it goes.”

The GT was the official chase car for photographers shooting the 81 hot rods, street machines, and muscle cars participating in the Goodguys Hall of Fame Road Tour 2016, which kicked off September 24 in Chicago and concluded at the Lone Star Nationals in Fort Worth on October 1.

With two Mustangs at her disposal, Alicia probably will roll in the GT just on the weekends. So if you’re in Spokane some warm, sunny weekend, keep an eye out for this Mustang because the only way she might see you would be in her rearview mirror.

Brown’s Classic Auto created carbon-fiber air splitters front and back to aerodynamically improve the GT’s stability at higher speeds.
To boost horsepower and give the GT a throatier growl, Brown’s Classic Auto installed a Borla cat-back exhaust system from Ford Performance. Brown’s also replaced the factory sway bar with an even bigger one from Ford Performance.