Muscle Mustangs & Fast FordsFeatured Vehicles
2001 Ford Mustang GT - A Real Man's Car
With a name like Peter Studwell, you know he's not driving a Hyundai.
Anyone who's seen the film Boogie Nights starring Burt Reynolds has chuckled at the names of the '70s-era porn stars and characters: Dirk Diggler, Amber Waves, Chest Rockwell, and Brock Landers.
"Those are great names!" exclaims Reynolds upon hearing the latter two for the first time.
Now, the owner of our cover/feature car-to the best of our knowledge-has never starred in a XXX movie. But with a name like Peter Studwell, well, you just know he isn't going to own a Hyundai or a Kia Sephia.
Even without a film credit, we'd have to say Pete is pretty hardcore anyway. It takes a real man to take a near-new '01 Mustang GT, his daily driver, and turn it into an eight-second strip-only piece, while there were still about 40 or so coupons left in the payment book.
He explains: "May 11, 2001-my birthday. I decided to go out and buy a new car, a nice daily driver. By November 2001, the car already had an SQ-Trim supercharger, a Steeda Tri-Ax shifter, 26x10 Mickey Thompson ET drag slicks, 15x8 Center Line Warrior rear wheels, front spare tire wheels, and Mickey Thompson ET front skinnies."
Funny thing is, he swore to himself this wouldn't happen. He'd done the same thing with two previous Mustangs. This time, things would be different.
Pete picks up the story, "The car turned a best of 11.87 at 115.42 mph. That wasn't fast enough. I decided to drop the compression and step up the boost a notch to a Vortech T-Trim supercharger, Extrude Hone the heads, and use a Bullitt intake manifold.
"I installed a piggyback Electromotive Wintec 3 system and netted a best time of 11.122 at 118.35 mph with 13 pounds of boost. Still not fast enough."
Oh, boy. At the time, the 4.6 modular performance aftermarket was pretty grim, with few hard-core parts available. Not that it's much better now, but a lot more is known about this architecture, and it's much easier to build an all-out 4.6.
"I then called Ron Robart at Fox Lake Power Products and told him I wanted a big-inch, small-block that would make my car go fast-real fast. And here I am today," Pete says.
"Here" is a 3,050-mile, strip-only Stallion that's clicked off a best of 8.97 at 148.71, despite having a rear so bent that it was causing the slicks to rub on the fenderwells. "Here" is a 12:1 compression, 439-inch Windsor by Fox Lake with that company's CNC-ported Trick Flow R aluminum heads, a custom-ground Fox Lake camshaft, and a Scat forged crank and rods.
A Carb Shop Dominator fuel mixer sends the race fuel into an Edelbrock Super Victor intake, where it is mixed with a 300-horse shot of N2O courtesy of a Nitrous Express Shark system (wet). An MSD distributor, 7AL2 ignition box, and coil spark everything off, while Kooks 2-inch tube headers, with 3-inch collectors and 4-inch DynoMax Bullet mufflers carry away the exhaust. The combination is tuned by the owner and John Viola, Pete's partner in a mobile Mustang chassis dyno business. John is also the owner of The Fab Shop (White Plains, New York), and he did the welding and chassis fabrication.
Transmission chores are handled by a Dynamic Mighty Mite C4 (with a transbrake) and a JW 4500 rpm converter. A B&M Hammer executes the gear changes in the manual valvebody tranny, and a B&M cooler helps keep the C4 alive.
Helping the Stang to 1.315 60-foot times is a Chris Alston ladder-bar setup assisted by QA1 rear shocks and springs. Up front, a QA1 tubular K-member and coilovers with Lakewood 70/30 struts aid in weight transfer. Bogart rims (15x9.75 rear, 15x4.5 front) and Mickey Thompson tires (28x11.5 rear) keep the car from resting on the ground.
Obviously, this Mustang not only goes fast, but it looks great, too. A Saleen body kit and Ed Quay aluminum wing up the ante, but to us it's the 6-inch HO Fibertrends cowl hood and flame paint that sets the car apart. Kudos go to Mike Masi of Island Part Auto Body (Port Chester, New York), who executed the James Scinto Designs flame paint scheme.
The interior has a minimalist approach. Gone are the radio and HVAC controls, the rear seat, and the stock front chairs. A couple of Jaz racing seats, Simpson restraints, and window net were added, as were a plethora of Auto Meter gauges and a Painless Wiring switch box.
Now that Pete and John have the rear straightened out, the owner is confident it's a mid-eight-second machine. His only gripe is that because of his job as the service manager of an Acura dealership, the portable dyno service, and the tanning salon he owns, there is no way he can race it in an established series. There just isn't enough time. For now, he's limited to local events and time shots.
When that's not enough, he can always open the bottle in his Crown Vic daily driver, which runs 13.8s on the spray.
Like we said, Peter Studwell is hardcore.