Frank H. Cicerale
September 1, 2008
Photos By: Peter S. Linney
Dave Comparan's '89 Mustang GT started out as a stock-appearing Fox-body. After seven years of hard work, he turned it into a faux-Cobra that holds no comparison to its brethren.

When it comes right down to it, every person who modifies a car throws his or her own spin on it, whether it's a different type of engine combination, a choice of paint color, or a stellar wheel and tire selection. Dave and Brenda Comparan are no different, and the time and effort the pair from Fontana, California, put into this '89 Mustang GT is proof positive. Take one clean Fox-body, throw some power at it, a host of interior and exterior upgrades, and you have a Mustang that has no comparison to any on the road.

Dave did all of the work himself, and it took seven years to get the Pony to his version of perfection. "The first time I saw my car, I had to have it," he says. "I was only 16 at the time, so I couldn't buy it myself. I told my dad about it, and he agreed that it was a great car, so he decided to help me buy it."

Dave kept the Fox-body mostly stock, save for an exhaust system. "After I met Brenda, we started racing the car at the track," he says. "It was at that time she convinced me to start modifying the car."

Thanks To the Cobra body kit and stunning Subaru STi blue hue, Dave's Stang not only looks the part, but also acts it out in stellar fashion.

As most do, Dave began under the hood, where the venerable 302 small-block Ford resided. Not wanting to tear into the engine too much, he left the short-block as Ford designed it, keeping the bore and stroke dimensions intact, and the stock crank, rods, and pistons in place. The only changes made were the addition of Sealed Power main bearings and piston ring package, as well as the installation of a Ford high-volume oil pump, as longevity and higher power figures were on the horizon. The stock pan was graced with a Canton windage tray. A custom ground cam showcasing 0.600 inch on both the intake and exhaust sides was stuffed into the powerplant. The Ford Racing Performance Parts timing chain keeps things in order. Dave then lowered a pair of AFR 165 aluminum heads atop the short-block. The heads were outfitted with Cobra 1.7 ratio roller rockers and FRPP valve covers, while FRPP lifters made their way into the lifter galley before the Holley SysteMAX manifold finished things off.

The stage was now set for the introduction of forced induction, which at the time of our photo shoot revolved around a Vortech A-Trim centrifugal supercharger. Since then, the A-Trim has made way for an S-Trim that blows in 15 pounds of boost through an Anderson Ford Motorsport Power Pipe, an Accufab throttle body with EGR spacer, and a Lightning mass air meter. A BBK pump and regulator feed the 42-pound injectors, and a full-on MSD ignition system sparks things in the combustion chamber each time the Autologics-tuned ECM says so. The exhaust mess slips out via MAC 1-5/8-inch long-tube headers linked to a 2-1/2-inch system quieted down by a set of Flowmaster cases. All told, the blown pushrod powerplant is good for 475 rwhp and 490 rwtq.

The Stock-displacement 5.0L powerplant was fortified with a set of AFR 165 heads, a Holley SysteMAX intake, and a Vortech S-Trim blower stuffing in 15 pounds of boost. All told, the combination is good for 475 rwhp.

An engine is only as good as the package it's in, so transferring all of the supercharged power to the pavement is a host of driveline and suspensions upgrades. A McLeod clutch gets the ball rolling, and things keep on going thanks to the beefed-up T-5 five-speed stick. Dave makes the gear changes with a Pro-5.0 shifter, and an FRPP aluminum driveshaft moves the power to the 8.8-inch rear filled with 28-spline axles, an Auburn differential, 3.73 gears, and an FRPP differential cover. As for the suspension, the mods are subtle, yet perfect for the car's purpose. Maximum Motorsports subframe connectors were installed, and the stock springs were ditched in favor of a pair of four-cylinder coils. Out back, upper and lower BBK tubular control arms and a rear airbag keep the Pony's hind end in check under hard acceleration. The stock braking system remains, though the front rotors were deep-sixed in favor of a pair of Power Slot dishes. As for rolling stock, who can argue with classic Weld Draglites? The 15x3.5 front rims are wrapped in skinnies, while the 15x8 rear wheels are dressed with Nitto 555R sneakers.

Whether It's on the street with Dave, his wife, and son in tow, or at the track ripping off 11.20-second elapsed times with speeds approaching 124 mph, this Pony is one stout piece of machinery.

"Once the motor was built and I ripped off a couple of 11-second laps at the local dragstrip, we decided it was time to fix up the body," Dave says. A '93 Cobra body kit made its way onto the Stang's front and rear bumpers, rear wing, and side skirts. Next, a 4-inch cowl hood replaced the factory lid, and smoked headlights (with HID bulbs) and taillights were installed. Since his son loves blue, it was only natural that Dave shot the sheetmetal of the car in the appropriate DuPont shade. The Subaru STi blue looks awesome when combined with the stance and attitude of this muscle Mustang.

Dave made his way to the car's interior next. He began by replacing the factory chairs with a pair of charcoal-colored leather buckets from an '01 Mustang GT. Auto Meter gauges fill the A-pillar pod that was installed, and adding some tone to the drone from the tailpipes is a full-on audio system that consists of an Eclipse in-dash TV head unit, Infinity components, and three 8-inch Rockford Fosgate subwoofers. An Auto Meter tach and shift light signal to Dave the right time to yank each of the gears.

Save For the '01 Mustang GT bucket seats, killer sound system, and requisite Auto Meter gauges, Dave left the interior pretty much alone.

With the car finally complete, Dave loaded up his wife and son, made his way to the track, and ripped off a stout 11.20 at a thundering 124 mph. He then loaded the family back up and went to a local cruise night.

"The color of the car is by far my favorite part," Dave says. "It's such a bright color that everywhere I go, people give me the thumbs-up. I have a '97 Cobra, but this car is my favorite. I bought it first, and since I like speed, this car went in the direction I wanted it to go."

For Dave, there's just no comparison between his '89 Mustang and any other car on the road-even his own.

Model: Destiny Monique