5.0 Mustang & Super Fords
Paxton Automotive's 1999 GT: Animal Anniversary
Paxton's '99 convertible is a West Coast cruiser with an East Coast attitude underhood
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When Ford unveiled the '99 Mustangs, word of the new-found power underhood spread through the Mustang-buying community like a Southern California brush fire. Not only do the '99 GTs make more power than their predecessors (260 vs. 225), but according to many GT and '99 Cobra owners, they are also beating the '99 Cobras on the street and at the track.
Most of you know, and we're sure by the time this article hits the newsstand the rest of you will have heard, that the '99 Cobras are well below their intended 320hp range. Chassis dynos have recorded a measly 255 hp at the rear wheels, and that's a few horses less than the '98s produced. Ford SVT will surely have all the wrinkles out of this shirt in a few months, but the good news is that the GTs are finally making decent power figures. With a little help from our aftermarket friends like Paxton Automotive [(805) 987-8660], those numbers can climb even higher, making the '99 GTs a threat to just about anything on four wheels, as exemplified by Paxton's project Mustang.
Project vehicles are recipes for fun and excitement. They give manufacturers an opportunity to slap a bunch of aftermarket goodies on the car that will make it handle like a train on rails, stop on a dime, look as good as it sounds, and go like a bat out of hell. This is exactly what the guys at Paxton Automotive did. New owners David Adams Sr. and his son David Jr. came up with a list of items which inclu-ded the suspension, exhaust, wheels, tires, and their Novi 2000RR supercharger. One look (or listen) at this beast and you'll know this is no whipping-boy stocker.
Additionally, this '99 GT is also a special 35th Anniversary Mustang convertible which sets it apart even more from the rest of the '99s. Only a select handful of these babies were sold throug-hout the year and the boys at Paxton happened to get hold of one of them. The car is stocked with leather seating, 35th Anniversary floor mats, a Mach 460 sound system, and a specially designed aluminum shifter that feels as good as it looks.
As a special favor (wink, wink) to Paxton and David Jr., we told them we'd graciously take the Mustang off their hands for a few days and let them know what we thought of the car. We liked it so much we snapped off a few photos of the Mustang while it was in its favorite environment, the sun-drenched beaches of Southern California. With the top down, this car really gets a chance to stretch its legs and take in some sun in style. Paxton gave the Mustang a much-needed shot of style in the form of a lower stance, compliments of Eibach springs. A set of Hotchkis Performance upper and lower control arms, caster/camber plates, Boyd's Timeless Five wheels measuring 18x9.5 front and 18x10 rear, and a set of 255/40 front and 295/35 rear BFGoodrich G-force tires were major influences in the car';s new appearance and handling.
Although the engine remains stock, you wouldn't know it by the noise which is bolstered by Borla's attractive, 21/2-inch Cat-Back system. But the icing on the cake is the reverse-rotation Novi 2000RR blower which churns out, according to our visual accounts on the boost gauge, about 10 pounds of pure driving enjoyment.
It's one thing to see it on the gauge, and quite another to experience it on the pavement. It's a great feeling to know that under your right foot is a driveable, dependable, part-throttle stocker-all the while knowing that under full-throttle this Dr. Jeckyl turns into Mr. Hyde, and not even the Incredible Hulk can stop it.
To harness this power, Paxton enlisted the help of Steeda Autosports to fine tune the fuel delivery and computer variables. Steeda installed 30 lb/hr injectors, a Lincoln LS fuel pump, and a custom chip to make sure the engine would never starve for fuel. The net result is a smoking best e.t. of 12.85 at 112mph on the G-force tires.
Not bad for a stock motor and street tires, huh? Wanna run 'em down the Pacific Coast Highway? David will even put the top down.