Marc Christ
Brand Manager, Modified Mustangs & Fords
January 12, 2011
Photos By: Steve Baur

Jim Broome of Charlotte, North Carolina, spent the first 50 years of his life uninterested in cars.

Then, in 2005, he and his daughter began building a '93 5.0L coupe show car. Since its completion, it has been very successful. "It inspired me to build another project," Jim tells us.

"After finishing my first project '93 coupe, I became interested in the 2.3L SVO Mustangs, and was impressed by the power and block strength of the 2.3L engine. I was also interested in building an autocross/track car and trying my hand at racing."

Jim's car club, Carolina Regional Mustang Club, puts on a driver's training track event annually at Carolina Motorsports Park in Kershaw, North Carolina. Jim saw this as an opportunity to do something other than going to car shows every weekend. So he began looking for another Fox-body. After searching patiently, Jim found this four-cylinder coupe sitting at a small used-car lot in Charlotte, less than 10 miles from his home.

"I saw the car from the road while passing by. I turned around, thinking it was a 5.0L coupe. It was a five-speed, four-cylinder car in great and unmolested condition with only 78,000 miles." The one-owner coupe had been traded in and sold to the used-car dealer at auction.

"I bought the car for $3,500, and my goal was to have a four-cylinder car making 300-350 hp." So Jim took the car to a local speed shop, where it was transformed into a race car, while maintaining its stock look and original paint. Jim had the unnecessary things removed, like the rear seat, radio, trim panels, carpet, and headliner. The shop then added a six-point rollbar, Corbeau seats and harnesses, and a pile of handling and chassis-stiffening components from Maximum Motorsports, including A-arms and coilovers in the front, and control arms, coilovers, a Panhard bar, and torque arm for the rear.

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Under the hood, Jim had the stock block bored, decked, and modified for a 2.5L stroker kit. Built by Kenneth Troutman, owner of KT Engine Development in Concord, North Carolina, the stroker features a K1 Technologies billet crankshaft, Oliver I-beam rods, and JE pistons. Troutman also ported and prepped the stock cylinder head before fastening it to the short-block using ARP hardware and a Cometic head gasket.

Once back in place, Jim had a custom turbo kit installed, complete with a Borg-Warner T4 turbocharger. Once some serious tuning issues were ironed out with the help of friends Paul McGravis and Dan Desio of Pro-Dyno (Charlotte, North Carolina), the coupe made 327 rwhp and 411 lb-ft of torque, while maintaining its two-plug-per-cylinder ignition design.

Now that the coupe was track-ready, Jim began a two-weekend driver training class, but quickly realized that racing wasn't for him. So with his stripped-down, purpose-built road race car in hand, Jim was at a crossroad. What he did next would take this coupe from really cool to extraordinary.

Jim had the entire car stripped down and painted by Paul Felzer and Jason Tweed at Finish Pro custom paint and body shop in Indian Trail, North Carolina. Felzer and Tweed laid a total of 23 coats of primer, basecoat, candy, and clearcoat. "A unique part of the paint job is the ghost stripes," Jim tells us. "Jason and Paul did a fantastic job."

Since the paintwork and subsequent rebuild, Jim has been enjoying taking his notch to car shows. Awards this year include two Best of Show, two Best Paint, and four First Place wins. But there's more to it than that for Jim. "I've seen the joy in people's eyes that have seen my cars, and I've heard the stories of the cars that they have owned and wish they still had. That's the real enjoyment I've received."

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