The '67-'68 Mustang fastback is the basis for the original GT-500E Eleanor clone. But what do you get when you apply an evolution body kit to a '65-'66 vintage hardtop? Jay Jacquemoud of the The Mustang Depot in Las Vegas, Nevada, did just that and explained, "We ended up calling this thing the Sinister 'Stang. The nickname stuck because the car does look sinister in black. Plus, Las Vegas is known as Sin City." Jay laughed, "We have that little attachment to it." Maybe the hardtop is such a sleeper compared to the fastback that it needs a little more attitude. "Basically, we stole the Eleanor flavor and applied it to the first-generation Mustang," he said. However, Jay and the people at Mustang Depot are not advertising the kit with the name Eleanor. E2 is as close as they get, with E2 referring to the "second version of Eleanor."
With five different hood choices, the E2 body kit can take on five different looks. In contrast, the long hood of the GT-500E is limited to one hood option. The E2 kit consists of headlight doors, upper nose (three pieces molded together to become a one-piece upper fascia), lower nose, front fender flares, side exhaust skirts, rear fender flares, lower side scoops, a spoiler trunk lid with end caps, and your choice of one of the five different hoods.
The E2 kit also fits '65-'66 fastbacks; you get upper side scoops to round out the package. Jay was really enthused about a fastback one of his customers just completed. "It's a '65. I swear looking at the side of this car, it looks like a cool Eleanor. You don't realize you're looking at a '65 hardtop body." the E2 hardtop is big news because this body style is much more plentiful than the fastback, and as a result much cheaper. Jay did the math for us, "You can find a hardtop for $3,000 on average. you can get an E2 body kit for under $3,000, and you're in at $6,000. You couldn't buy a '67-'68 fastback at that price."
The E2 kit was merely a starting point for the Sinister 'Stang. Jacquemoud literally went wild from there, building a hardtop he says is "a cross in styling and in design between a drag car and a cornering car." Straight line digging and roundy-round racing are contradictory goals. It's challenging to have both in one automobile. He says, "We've managed to set this thing up to where it's on rails, but it has the stance of a drag car with a slight rake in profile. We can go to the point of bolting on some traction bars to run it down the drag strip and do pretty darn good. I also like to take a car in corners. So, we have all the tubular racing suspension under it, the Total Control stuff, and power rack-and-pinion. The chassis is strengthened in every way. We put the 9-inch nodular-iron Detroit Locker back there from Currie, forged axles, and a torque arm."
The Sinister 'Stang has a blown 5.0L High Output small-block with carburetion, with an estimated 550 hp on tap. The Tremec TKO five-speed was a must to take the big time torque. Jay chose the cowl hood, which features a billet grille near the base of the windshield. He likes to say the '65-'66 hardtop has sharper lines than the '67-'68, which is smoother. We like to say Eleanor's older sister sure looks good.