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Michael Johnson
Technical Editor
April 3, 2019

This 1984 Thunderbird was originally a V-6 car, but Tim Salandro had different plans for it. He stripped the car down and began rebuilding it. After everything was removed, Salandro started the bodywork and painted the car his fiancé Kalyn Stutzman’s favorite shade of purple. The hard work carried over into the Thunderbird’s interior with an updated audio system and new gauges to help keep track of the car’s newfound horsepower. Salandro needed the gauges to monitor the fresh 5.0L roller engine, which features a rebuilt bottom-end, ported heads, a dual-plane intake, and a Holley carburetor. “I gave the rear differential some attention with a 3.73 swap,” Salandro says. The new engine breathes through a pair of shorty headers and a Flowmaster 2 1/2-inch exhaust system. For new shoes, Salandro added a set of 10-hole Fox Mustang wheels wrapped in new treads. Once the car was done, it was time to surprise his fiancé with it as a college graduation gift!

Photography by Tim Salandro