November 1, 2007

Let 'Er Rip
Although the '95 still retains quite a few stock engine parts, including the bottom end, to achieve his aggressive idle objective, a custom ground cam was deemed necessary and Holman had a Comp Cams stick built to order. Further breathing improvements include the adoption of Edelbrock Performer RPM II aluminum cylinder heads, Edelbrock upper and lower intake manifold assembly, BBK 70mm throttle-body and Ford Racing 24 lb injectors. MAC equal length (and ceramic coated exhaust headers), plus MSD ignition upgrades - a distributor and Blaster coil also went in, so with better fuel and spark delivery, at least our Phil was now on the right track to make more power. Together with Peterson, Holman installed the new parts on his stock shortblock and dropped the completed engine back in. "We finally got it finished one night at about 3am, but the thing was, when we hooked up the battery and turned the key, it started first time." Talk about luck. But there was still work to be done on the engine front. "We needed to tune it. The car was taken down to Dynotech and they strapped it onto the rollers. It took a couple of tries to get things right, but we recorded 305 horsepower to the tires, I was happy, considering that the bottom end was stock and we didn't have a whole lot of mods, but again, Bob at D&D was such a help in making it happen." Although the 302 has been fortified, this GT still retains its factory T-5 five-speed manual gearbox, though Holman opted to replace the stock clutch with a Ford Racing King Cobra in view of the torque the motor now churns out. There's also a Hurst short throw shifter and a set of 3.73 gears in the 8.8 but that really is the extent of the driveline mods so far. In stock form, the SN95 GT handled quite well and was a huge improvement over the Fox, thanks to a wider track, added chassis bracing, steering and front and rear suspension alterations. As we went to press, the rolling stock (save the wheels and tires), remains just that on this car, but don't be surprised if something happens down under in the near future. Speaking of down under, Holman elected to perform some interior upgrades, as the stock fabric just wasn't cutting it. "Terri and I decided on Australian Soft leather for the seats - two tone. I contacted Dave's Upholstery in Orange, VA and they did a great job. It really gives the cabin a richer feel and the seats are really comfortable." While he was at it, Phil also sprung for some sound upgrades, including a Kenwood X969, some MB quarter speakers, Phoenix Gold Amp and a pair of Phoenix gold 12-inch subwoofers. Other plans include a repaint down the road - "Terri gave it the nickname Blue Thunder and although I want to get the car painted, right now it's going to have to wait. We had scheduled to have it done right after the photoshoot, but it's looking like it'll have to wait a little longer." The reason? Work commitments. Being self-employed, Phil has to put a lot of hours in, but even though the Mustang hasn't been painted, he makes the most of every opportunity he can to enjoy driving it. "With the power, sound and handling it's just great. Terri and I go up on the mountain roads and with the top down it's a feeling like no other." That last statement right there is proof, if any that Holman's long hours on the job are worth every cent when he gets behind the wheel of this Pony. Yee-haw!

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