Pete Epple Technical Editor
November 1, 2009
Photos By: Frank H. Cicerale

Bringing a new product to market is a big deal for any of the companies in the Mustang aftermarket. The right debut is an effective way to highlight what's different and special-it also defines how your products separate you from the competition. Hence, when ATI/ProCharger launched its new HO Intercooled supercharger system for the Three-Valve Mustang in 2008, its introduction to the public needed to be something special, and what better place than Sin City.

The Specialty Equipment Market Association, or SEMA, puts on its annual trade show every year in Las Vegas. The SEMA show is quite the spectacle, and it gives aftermarket manufacturers a chance to showcase new products to the media and other industry figures. Over the years, the SEMA show has become one of the largest automotive events in the world. As a long-time exhibitor, ProCharger decided the 2007 SEMA show would be the perfect place to unveil its new supercharger system. Although a side-by-side comparison would show the differences between the company's existing offerings and its new system, it alone might not have the flair needed to stand out at SEMA. But installing one of the shiny new blowers on a tricked-out Stang would certainly draw attention.

With this in mind, ProCharger purchased this '08 Mustang GT with the sole intention of building a marketing tool for its new line of supercharger systems. A committee of ProCharger employees, headed by Lance Johansen and Jason Medlin, took the responsibility of building the company's newest vehicle. A team of seven mechanics from the ProCharger service department worked feverishly after hours and on the weekends to design and assemble the car before it would be delivered to Las Vegas for the SEMA show. Once the committee approved all of the modifications, the team set out to build something special.

The first order of business was adding horsepower. The engine bay of the '08 GT was enhanced with the all-new ProCharger HO Intercooled supercharger system. The P-1SC-1 head unit breathes 10 psi of boost through a front mounted air-to-air intercooler before it is funneled into the stock intake manifold. Twin ProCharger fuel pumps fill the 39-pound fuel injectors that feed the hungry Three-Valve, and the tune is set with Diablo-Sport software. The added exhaust gasses exit through Pypes shorty headers, stock mid-pipe, then out through a set of Pypes Violator mufflers, which add an aggressive sound. The S197 now produces 452 proud ponies at the wheels.

The Street Scene body kit and rear spoiler add an aggressive look to the already powerful appearance of the S197.

When it came time to change the suspension, the crew at ProCharger wanted something functional yet outrageous. A full air bag system from Air Ride Technologies now cushions the S197, and with the touch of a button the unibody can sit on the ground. Twenty-inch Privat Kontakt wheels wrapped in Nitto Invo rubber sit in all four corners and hide the Baer GT Plus brakes, which add some extra stopping power to complement the added horsepower.

With the power and suspension under control, the team shifted its attention to the S197's exterior. SEMA brings out some of the wildest rides in the world, so the guys at ProCharger needed something special. The first thing that's different about this GT is the Street Scene body kit. The front fascia, side skirts, and rear fascia, along with a new grille and rear spoiler, add a subtle yet aggressive look. Agent 47 Vintage-Style side mirrors and flush quarter louvers tie the side profile in with the rest of the exterior upgrades.

A full air ride suspension system from Air Ride Technologies cushions ProCharger's '08 Mustang. Whether the suspension is set up to tear up the race track or slammed for a car show, the air ride systems gives this Pony the versatility ProCharger needs from a promotional tool.

With all the new additions to the body, the build team was ready to send the Stang out for a few fresh coats of paint. Even though the Grabber Orange grabs your attention, it wasn't enough. The car was sent to Shiney Car Care in Leavenworth, Kansas, where the new body parts were coated in the matching orange hue before the car was masked off and prepped for some two-tone treatment. When the ride broke out of the joint, it was returned to ProCharger and readied for the show.

The finishing touches came in the interior. UPR billet accent pieces fill the interior and enhance the already beautiful stock interior. Auto Meter gauges help keep tabs on the happenings under the hood, and the air ride controller was installed in the center console to keep the ride height in check.

Although ProCharger built its Mustang as a display item for the 2007 SEMA show, it has served as a great promotional tool since then. "The car is a great driveable showcase for ProCharger," explains Jeff Lacina, Marketing Director for ProCharger. "It also allows us (ProCharger) to showcase the great products from all of the other companies with parts on the car.

"The car was built and delivered to SEMA in less than four weeks, and really became a labor of love for everyone involved."