Frank H. Cicerale
April 1, 2008
Photos By: Peter S. Linney

A little more than 230 years ago, the British Empire was considered to be the world's superpower. Its highly trained and mightily gunned navy controlled the seas, and its red-coated soldiers were regarded as the most powerful ground force of its time. So, naturally, the Brits were surprised when America's 13 Colonies staged the revolt that became known as the American Revolution.

Fast forward to 2008, and the United States has stepped to the forefront of world affairs, with the world's most powerful navy and army. In a way, the venerable Ford Mustang took a similar course. In a time when all of the Detroit manufacturers were pumping out cars packing extraordinarily large cubic-inch engines pushing loads of horsepower, the Mustang was one small offering in a world flooded with horsepower. Today, the Mustang has not only stood the test of time, but it has also been cultivated into many different versions.

Seeing as how Doyle bought his '04 Mach 1 based on his love for a '69 Mach 1 he saw back in the day, it was only natural for him to want to keep alive the factory flavor of his New-Edge Mach. The stock rear spoiler was replaced with a Steeda rear wing, and the front bumper was swapped with a piece from an '01 Cobra. He also carried the cool, matte-black stripe to the roof and the decklid.

Much like the Revolutionary War began in the small, sleepy towns of Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts, Doyle Riley's '04 Mach 1 Mustang started off small but ended up ruling the streets of Brea, California.

"I've always liked the Mach 1," Doyle says. "It's truly a classic musclecar. I remember as a kid seeing a '69 Mach 1 on the streets, and I immediately fell in love with it. When Ford decided to resurrect the Mach 1, I rushed down to my local dealership and came home with one."

The car was a Torch Red example. You can liken that short jaunt back home to the ride of Paul Revere. Instead of shouting that the British were coming, Doyle broadcasted to everyone about the power that would soon be coming from his Mach 1.

He teamed up with Modular Mustang Racing and Pro Street Terrorists (a local speed shop), pulled out the naturally aspirated Four-Valve, and stroked it to perfection thanks to Modular Mustang. The bore was kept at the standard 3.55-inch specification, but the stock crank was replaced with a 3.75-inch 4340 forged stroker crank from Ford Racing Performance Parts. With forced induction to come, all of the rotating assembly was upgraded to forged components in addition to the crank. The stock piston/rod combo was swapped over to a set of forged 4340 Manley H-beam connecting rods that have Manley 18cc dished pistons sitting on top of them. Keeping the mod motor lubricated with motor oil is an FRPP oil pump, while adding a bit more fluid capacity to the engine is a Canton 8-quart road-race pan.

After the rotating assembly was balanced and placed in the stock block, the Four-Valve heads were removed for extensive work, including a Stage 3 port and polish job, as well as a five-angle valve job. After being placed back on the short-block, a set of FRPP FR500 camshafts were installed. The bumpsticks showcase 0.472-inch lift on both the intake and exhaust sides, with the only difference between the two's characteristics being the duration, as the intake checks in at 258 degrees duration and the exhaust 245. The whole shebang is milled on a 109-degree centerline.

After reinstalling the stock cam covers, the engine went back down between the shock towers. Once in, the induction that the Mach 1 was originally equipped with ended up on the shelf in Doyle's garage, as a Kenne Bell 2.1 blower was lowered on top of the thundering cammer. Creating 15 pounds of boost, the blower-coinciding with the extra cubic inches and an exhaust system complemented with a pair of Bassani headers and a catted x pipe system-conspires to produce 570 rwhp.

Wanting to keep the interior mostly stock, Doyle made a few upgrades to the cabin of the Mach 1. Along with the gauges, a Hurst shifter and a new set of chairs keep him in place and shifting gears with ease in the TKO 600.

With all of that power on tap, an upgraded drivetrain became necessary. The stock five-speed trans was set aside for a TKO 600 gearbox sporting a set of road-race-friendly gears and an 0.82 ratio overdrive. A Hurst billet shifter makes gear changes fluid and easy, and connecting the trans to the rear is an FRPP aluminum driveshaft. Speaking of the 8.8-inch rear, the stock innards were discarded and replaced with a set of 3.55 gears and a Traction-Lok, both from FRPP, and a pair of Superior 31-spline axles.

With an eye more towards corner-carving rather than straight-line domination, Doyle knew that tying up the suspension would be the key to getting the car to handle. A set of subframe connectors were procured from Maximum Motorsports, along with a tubular K-member to get the Four-Valve hunkered down in the engine bay while shedding some weight off of the nose. A set of Tokico coilovers made their way onto all four corners. Maximum Motorsports' Panhard bar, torque arm, and lower control arms were also installed on the Stang. Steeda sway bars keep the body roll to a minimum, and hauling this cannonball down after each shot are a set of Brembo four-piston calipers and 13-inch rotors up front and the stock braking system out back. Doyle added a set of 18x9 front and 18x10 rear chrome Bullitt wheels wrapped up in Kumho Ecsta MX shoes sized 265/35/18 fore and 295/35/18 aft.

The naturally aspirated induction setup normally found on a stock Mach 1 was replaced with a Kenne Bell blower of the 2.1 variety. The positive-displacement huffer blows in 15 pounds of boosted California sunshine.

Since Doyle was in love with the Mach 1, it was no surprise that not much changed in the car's visual appointments. The Shaker hood and scoop remain, though the Mach 1 rear wing was swapped out for a spoiler from Steeda, and the stock front bumper was set aside in favor of one normally found on an '01 Cobra. Doyle added a set of smoked headlight covers, a billet fuel door, and the Mach 1 chin spoiler for a bit more flavor. The final touch comes in the form of the factory matte-black hood stripe being extended onto the roof and decklid.

Inside, a leather-wrapped steering wheel from FRPP and a set of Recaro leather covered seats add comfort and functionality. Doyle keeps tabs on the blown mod mill thanks to a host of Auto Meter Lunar gauges located not only on the A-pillar and in the dash itself, but in the glovebox as well.

"Building the Mach 1 has been a four-year project," Doyle says. "It has taken a bit of money and an understanding wife, but I'm happy with the result. The car is a street monster on steroids, and a pretty good corner carver as well."

While this car may have a red coat, there's no mistaking its American origins. Guess you could say this '04 Mach 1 Mustang is yet another one of those shots heard 'round the world.