KJ Jones Senior Technical Editor
December 1, 2007
Photos By: Steve Turner

Horse Sense: "Music is my life. Cars are my passion." With worldwide airplay - thanks to radio, the Internet, and TV - and a personal fleet of more than 15 bad-to-the-bone whips Of all flavors, it isn't hard to tell that DJ Funkmaster Flex means every word of that sentiment. 'Ya heard?!

Believe it or not, there's a tiny bit of celebrity in every Mustang owner. Of course we're all not movie stars or pro athletes, but based on the turned heads, thumbs-up props, nods of approval, and verbal acknowledgements that come our way when we're cruising the boulevard, there's no challenging the notion that our 'Stangs make all of us somebody in the eyes of the have-nots.

Our history with Funkmaster Flex-for those who don't know, he's a world-famous hip-hop DJ and custom-car builder and a true celebrity by all definitions of the word-dates back to the '05 SEMA show in Las Vegas. Flex was displaying his "FMF" line of heavily tricked-out Ford Fusions and Expeditions as part of the Blue Oval's effort to draw youthful car buyers to the brand.

Hip-hop-radio and custom-car czar Funkmaster Flex, "chillin'" with his show-and-go duo of '06 Mustangs. Both GTs sport blowers, aftermarket exhaust, performance tunes, and custom body and paintwork by Lou and the crew at Valanca Auto Concepts in Bronx, New York.

While the Flex-designed sedans and sport-utes were certainly off the hook at SEMA, it was a remark he made during a brief conversation with your tech editor that earned Funkmaster his props from the crew at 5.0&SF: "The new Mustangs are definitely hot. As a matter of fact, I bought one." He was referring to the '06 Mustang GT that serves as his daily driver.

After hearing a statement like that, we had to regroup. Here's a guy who we're fairly sure can go out and purchase any car he wants, and he tells us he pushes a new 'Stang every day? (For the record, he bought the new Mustang before his association with Ford came to be, so it wasn't a freebie.) That's major!

Flex's enthusiasm prompted us to consider a global "'Stangs of the Stars" feature; a piece that spotlights those celebrities who own, drive, and love '79-to-present Mustangs as much as we do. Even though the idea never made it to the pages of our magazine, a recent follow-up with Flex brings us this look at two serious, celebrity-owned Mustangs. That's right-they both belong to Flex.

When given an opportunity to speak with Flex, it's clear he has a lot of knowledge about, and a true affinity for, classic and modern vehicles with great performance and stunning good looks. While the Funkmaster says he has always liked cars, he didn't really catch the fever to begin collecting bad rides until the mid-'90s-thanks to having nearly five years in the radio game at that point and hip-hop's mix-tape/ album explosion that shot him to the forefront as one of the country's most preeminent DJs of the period.

Because of this exposure and its obvious lucrative rewards, Flex got serious about creating personalized whips and begain investing the fruits of his musical talent into resto-modding musclecars. The customs were originally produced by various New York/New Jersey metro-area shops. But "after being jerked [ripped off by] too many times by unscrupulous customizers, I decided to do my own thing," Flex says. "It's been on-and-poppin' ever since."

"On-and-poppin'" is an understatement. Flex definitely has things crackin' on the automotive side. His nationwide car-show tour, "Car Wars with Funkmaster Flex" is a nationally televised, custom-car-building contest shown on ESPN2. He has strong cooperative partnerships with Ford, Cooper Tires, Castrol, Turtle Wax, Hot Wheels, and other companies. These are just a couple of the business dealings that keep him and his Team Baurtwell associates on the go all the time.

Flex's dynamic 'Stang duo is made up of two '06 GTs-one is Colorado Red with white stripes, the other is black with red pearl stripes. Both are boost-induced with screw-type superchargers.

As mentioned earlier, the red 'Stang was purchased first and it remained in stock trim for two months before makeover duties were handled by Valanca Auto Customs in the Bronx. The car's exterior upgrades include a complete body kit from 3dCarbon and Davin's 20-inch Original Revolution brightness on all four corners, through which the bright red calipers of SSBC's big brakes are in clear view.

"I dug the new Mustang's muscular, old-school look from the moment I saw it," Flex says about his first S197. "The simple wheel, body, and window-tint touches that Valanca's applied really make the red car look strong."

Backing up the red Mustang's strong appearance is a polished Ford Racing Performance Parts supercharger. The blower is capable of huffing 11 psi of boost into the 'Stang's stock Three-Valve engine. It certainly livens things up whenever Flex feels the need for rapid acceleration.

Customizing the black GT was all about retaliation. According to Flex, not long after he acquired the 'Stang, the owner of a similar black Mustang was going through the process of hooking up his ride, and he would drive by or park the car in front of Team Baurtwell's headquarters to show off his most recent upgrades.

"He would come by all the time...flossing and showing off his stuff while my stock black Mustang just sat there," Flex says. "My wife was driving that car. I didn't have any intentions of doing all we've done. I finally just got tired of the dude's act, so I went bananas."

"Going bananas" included installing Cervini's complete C-Series body kit and applying red-pearl stripes from stem to stern. Flex also went with BFGoodrich rubber on Davin's LS-Series dubs, giving the 'Stang a lowered look while its suspension remains 100 percent bone stock.

Supercharging for this otherwise stock-engined 'Stang comes by way of Magnacharger's Radix intercooled '05-'07 Mustang GT system (polished, of course). The whine of the blower combined with Magnaflow's side-exit exhaust is high-performance music to the Funkmaster's ears. "When I'm driving in the left lane of the expressway and I get on it, the car sounds absolutely crazy and it flat-out flies," Flex says.

Flex has the fever for fast 'Stangs now, and his next acquisition is already on order-a Shelby GT 500 with the limited-edition Red Stripe package. We can't wait to see what he does with that one.

The black 'Stang's upgrades were inspired by a local enthusiast who unofficially waged a customizing war against Funkmaster by showing off a similar Mustang as it went through various stages of modification. "That guy made me mad with all the showing off he was doing. Once I added the kit, the stripes, and the supercharger, it was a wrap," Flex says. "That dude doesn't even come on my block anymore."

TECH SPECS
Black '06 Mustang GT

ENGINE AND DRIVETRAIN
Block
Ford 4.6
Displacement
281ci
Bore
Stock
Stroke
Stock
Cylinder Heads
Stock
Crankshaft
Stock
Compression Ratio
Stock
Camshafts
Stock
Intake Manifold
Stock
Throttle Body
Stock
Air Filter
Conical
Power Adder
Magnacharger Radix intercooled supercharger
Output
15 psi
Intercooler
Air-to-water
Exhaust
Magnaflow
Fuel System
Stock
Transmission
Stock 5R55S
Clutch
N/A
Rearend
Stock 8.8 w/3.55 gears
Driveshaft
Stock

ELECTRONICS
Engine Management
SCT
Ignition
Stock
Gauges
Stock

SUSPENSION AND CHASSIS
FRONT SUSPENSION
K-Member
Stock
A-Arms
Stock
Caster/Camber Plates
Stock
Struts
Stock
Wheels
Davin LS-Series 20x811/42-in
Tires
BFGoodrich
Brakes
Stainless Steel Brake Corp

REAR SUSPENSION
Springs
Stock
Shocks
Stock
Control Arms
Stock
Wheels
Davin LS-Series 20x911/42-in
Tires
BFGoodrich
Brakes
Stainless Steel Brake Corp

The mellow note of a Flowmaster exhaust system blares from two chrome tips at the back end of the red car. A healthy dose of dark tint allows Flex to easily make undercover moves through the streets of New York.

TECH SPECS
Red '06 Mustang GT

ENGINE AND DRIVETRAIN
Block
Ford 4.6
Displacement
281ci
Bore
Stock
Stroke
Stock
Cylinder Heads
Stock
Crankshaft
Stock
Compression Ratio
Stock
Camshafts
Stock
Intake Manifold
Stock
Throttle Body
Stock
Power Adder
FRPP supercharger
Output
11 psi
Exhaust
Flowmaster
Fuel System
Stock
Transmission
Stock 5R55S
Clutch
N/A
Rearend
Stock 8.8 w/3.55 gears
Driveshaft
Stock

ELECTRONICS
Engine Management
FRPP
Ignition
Stock
Gauges
Stock

SUSPENSION AND CHASSIS
FRONT SUSPENSION
K-Member
Stock
A-Arms
Stock
Caster/Camber Plates
Stock
Struts
Stock
Wheels
Davin Original Revolution 20x9-in
Tires
BFGoodrich
Brakes
Stock

REAR SUSPENSION
Springs
Stock
Shocks
Stock
Control Arms
Stock
Wheels
Davin Original Revolution 20x9-in
Tires
BFGoodrich
Brakes
Stock