Don Roy
November 1, 2006
Photos By: Tracy Stocker

No Pimpin' Here
Were he to take the time, he could have seen what happened to his car. His car arrived, at the Multimatic facility in Canada, as a bare steel shell. The car body had already made a trip through Watson Engineering to have its Multimatic-designed roll cage installed. Every open seam in the body structure of the car was welded to increase the structural rigidity of the car and improve its durability under the extreme conditions of road racing.

Preparation and paint came next, then it was time for assembly to begin in earnest. Initial fitting begins with chassis items needed to create a rolling shell. Suspension build-up includes special 3-way adjustable struts and shocks, along with coil-over springs all around. Multimatic was quite involved with suspension development on the 2005 Mustang, including providing their proprietary design for the front lower control arm. The dampers used on the FR500C provide for adjustment of both high and low speed compression, as well as rebound characteristics. Upgraded urethane bushings are used throughout the build of the front and rear suspensions.

Brembo 4-piston brake calipers are installed at the front end of the car, with production level brake components providing the needed services elsewhere. When the car is ready for final delivery, those brakes will be hooked up to Fiske 18 x 10-inch forged modular wheels at both front and rear, along with Hoosier 275/35R18 Grand Am Cup specification race tires.

When it comes time to fit the drivetrain, Ford's 5-liter Cammer crate engine is the star of the show. This engine features a Ford Racing 356-alloy aluminum block, that was specifically designed for the 5.0L engine program. Fitted with high-flow cylinder heads, 12mm lift camshafts with unique valves, springs and rocker arms, the top end of the 4-cam is as about racy as you can get. The bottom end is just as well kitted out, with high-strength connecting rods, forged pistons delivering an 11:1 compression ratio and a variable geometry long/short runner magnesium intake manifold.

All Business
Working along the driveline, you'll also find a Ford Racing Performance Parts clutch, Tremec 6-speed gear banger, single piece aluminum driveshaft and a Trac Tech C Locker differential in an 8.8-inch axle. The Trac Tech product is a positive action, ratchet-type locking differential, which many consider to be the best for road racing use. Early FR500C's were built with 4.10 rear gears, but Grand Am later required a change to Ford's 3.55 cogs. Since Bobby doesn't run in the spec series, he's stayed with the numerically higher set for maximum grunt out of the corners and even tried a set of 4.30s for a time.

If the interior of this high speed Pony looks sparse, that's just because it's all business. After the wiring harnesses are installed, a center mounted switch panel provides most control functions. Perched atop the steering column is an EFI digital dash system, that provides instrumentation and data logging capabilities. Mind you, you might not rush out to pick up one of these for your own Mustang unless you're very serious about your data - a fully configured EFI Level II System comes with a five-figure price tag. At the gripping end of the column, you'll find a Personal 320mm quick-release steering wheel. Elsewhere inside, you'll find a cable-operated fire suppression system and a Sparco racing seat. Willans Harness' 6-point safety straps from Stockbridge Racing in the UK add restraint where it's needed most.

All of this work has been proven to provide one of the winningest road race packages available. Widely available to both professional and amateur racers, the FR500C Mustang builds on both Ford's and Multimatic's intimate knowledge of the S197 Mustang. So when it comes down to it , $125,000 isn't a heck of a lot for a thoroughbred - of any kind, come to think of it.