Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords
2002 Ford Mustang GT - Hot Rods On Hiatus
After A Long, Dry Spell Of The No-Horsepower Blues, Jim And Nancy Conners Finally Found High-Octane Fun Behind The Wheel Of Their '02 Mustang GT.
Jim was still looking for more power from the Two-Valve mill, however, so the S-Trim was swapped out for a Vortech T-Trim supercharger. Jim's not exactly light on the gas pedal as you might have guessed, and unfortunately the stock short-block couldn't keep up with its owner's demands. To solve that problem, Boss 330 Racing in Vero Beach, Florida, put together a hot 4.6 powerplant using the stock block as a foundation. The cast-iron hunk was decked and line-honed, and stuffed with a Cobra steel crankshaft, Eagle forged connecting rods, and CP forged-aluminum pistons.
Fox Lake Two-Valve cylinder heads were chosen and further modified by Kris Starnes. Boss 330 Racing's Al Papitto installed a pair of Comp Cams camshafts atop the 9:1 compression engine. With the air now more than capable of moving through the engine in a timely fashion, Jim had the HP staff upgrade the fuel system, starting with an Aeromotive A1000 fuel pump and regulator. The 60-lb/hr fuel injectors and SCT 2800 mass airflow sensor tells them exactly how much fuel to flow.
Though the Vortech Aftercooler is a great piece, HP Performance made it better by installing one of its Quarter-Mile Coolers in the spare tirewell of Jim's Mustang. The reservoir holds nearly eight gallons of coolant-or ice water, depending on what you want to use-and keeps the inlet air temperature of the 19 psi of atmosphere in a very safe range.
After some custom tuning of the EEC V engine-management unit, the Mineral Gray Mustang turned the Dynojet rollers to the tune of 583 rwhp and 469 lb-ft or torque. That's been more than enough to handle its share of Vipers and Hemi trucks, and get it thrown off the dragstrip. While Jim limits his full-throttle blasts to the street, HP's Gonyon has handled track driving and piloted the Pony to a best elapsed time of 11.1 seconds at 124 mph. After getting the boot a few times, Tony and Jim decided it was time to install a rollbar, especially if they intend to continue having fun with the car at the track. The Maximum Motorsports piece was quickly handled, and a set of lightweight slicks and skinny drag tires wait for the track call. Currently the goal is to get it into the 10s, but the Mustang still serves as frequent transportation and attends car shows regularly.
"When you drive a Mustang, you feel like you're a teenager again," Jim says. "Nancy and I go on dates in the car, and it has won many trophies at shows." No longer on hiatus, Jim's thrills behind the wheel have seen this Mustang go from meek to maniacal. It will always be one of his favorites, but his new project-a supercharged 5.0 hatchback Fox-body-is sure to scratch that itch for him as well.