Rod Short
December 1, 2000

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P73170_large 1993_Ford_Mustang_LX Front_Driver_SideP73171_large 1993_Ford_Mustang_LX EngineP73172_large 1993_Ford_Mustang_LX Rear_Passenger_SideP73173_large 1993_Ford_Mustang_LX Driver_SideP73174_large 1993_Ford_Mustang_LX Interior

In Central America, exotic birds often use brilliant colors to attract others during mating season. Fish in the Caribbean also do much the same thing. Maybe that's what Ford had in mind when it produced this limited-edition '93 LX convertible that belongs to Al Hastings of Sunderland, Maryland. In any event, by looking over this pristine street machine, it's easy to recognize the call of the wild.

As a youngster, Al cut his teeth on musclecars, with a 427 Galaxie and a 396 Chevelle, but time and obligations forced him to put those playthings away. Still, pleasant memories die hard, and it wasn't long before he was looking for another car to mess with. "I started looking at Mustangs again and came across this one in the paper," Al says about how he got the car. "The guy had done some of the initial engine mods to it, but I'm the one that got the engine painted, chromed, and detailed. Since then, we've bought an '86 Mustang for my son that we're planning to finish and paint the same color."

ELD Performance of Crofton, Maryland, gets the nod for much of the work that went into this Mustang. With subframe connectors, a strut tower and G-load brace tying the chassis together, the suspension was modified with a Kenny Brown Trackit Plus package with a Panhard bar to help the car hook and corner better than most street machines. Weak braking, an inherent problem with Fox-bodied Mustangs, was remedied by switching to oversized Lincoln calipers in the front and an SVO rear disc brake conversion kit. Other undercar modifications include an aluminum driveshaft and 3.73 gears.

Jon Dega of Springfield Motorsports in Springfield, Virginia, reworked the stock engine combination with FRPP GT-40 heads, an E-303 cam, and Cobra 1.7 ratio bolt-on rockers. Topping the short-block assembly is a GT-40 upper/lower intake with 24 lb/hr injectors fed by a 255-lph in-tank pump. Packing the combustion chamber is a March ram air kit with a Powerdyne blower running 9 pounds of boost through a Pro-M 77mm mass air meter and an Accufab 70mm throttle body and EGR plate. Helping to light the fuel mixture is an MSD 6-BTM ignition system, while the exhaust ports are handled with shorty headers, a MAC high-flow H-pipe, and DynoMax mufflers. Chassis dyno figures showed 408 hp at the rear wheels (about 477 at the flywheel), which is plenty healthy for a street car, and should put it deep into the 11s.

While Al can definitely be happy with the performance of his yellow drop-top, looks are important as well. ELD Performance detailed the engine bay in spectacular fashion with a custom-painted intake and valve covers and a wide assortment of chrome and polished goodies. The driver's compartment got the treatment also with yellow piping on the seats, yellow-faced gauges in the dash, and a Pro 5.0 shifter for the T5 transmission. Capping off the outside of the car is a Saleen wing, front/rear light covers and 16-inch WRD rims wrapped in Dunlop ZR-rated rubber.

With all of the work done to this blinding-yellow 'Stang, navigating the traffic-choked beltway around Washington, D.C., might not be much easier, but it sure helps stress when you know you can answer the call of the wild!

Horse Sense: For 1993, Ford built 1,119 (667 automatic, 452 five-speed) yellow special-edition convertibles with black trim, like Al’s LX. Ford also built 384 (271 automatic, 113 five-speed) yellow special-edition models featuring white trim.