Mike Johnson
July 6, 2007
Contributers: Patrick Hill, Mike Johnson Photos By: Patrick Hill

Web Editor's Note: Besides being the 5.0Web Editor, I was also the lucky artist who got to photograph thegorgeous Nicole as our 2004 Babe of the Year. As a fan of the Lex &Terry show out of Jacksonville, Fl, I got to hear Nicole's voice overthe airwaves before I came to work at 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords. Neverin a million years did I think I would ever enjoy the priviledge ofphotographing her. I hope 5.0 Nation enjoys looking at the bonus photogalleries as much as I enjoyed shooting them!

A student's budget doesn't allow much spending money for modifications,but Nicole did spring for a set of 18x9 Saleen Speedline replica wheelswith Sumitomo 245/40 treads. She bought them used off the Internet.

The majority of 5.0&SF readers were pimpin' a mullet (business up front,party in back) and kickin' an acid-washed jean jacket when Warrantrecorded the song "Cherry Pie" back in 1990. Don't deny it: You were.0listening to the tape in your cassette player on the way to school everymorning. The "Cherry Pie" tape was right next to your Motley Crue,Poison, Salty Dog, Slaughter, Ratt, and Metallica offerings of the day.There's just something about the pretty girl with the red car thatbrought us back to a simpler time.

Though she's just as pretty as Bobby Brown was in that old music video,'04 Babe of the Year Nicole Martin doesn't really get the full gist ofwhat we've described--but that's because she was 5 years old when thatsong hit the charts. Like many of us, however, she didn't quite fit themold society laid out for her. Growing up, Nicole was every bit atomboy. "Converse, basketball, long shirts, and Florida Gator shirts"constituted her personality back in the day. "People don't usuallybelieve all of this," Nicole says, "until I start talking about myMustang." Obviously, she's outgrown the tomboy lifestyle somewhat, butshe hasn't outgrown her love of speed.

Cherry Pie's performance mods were made shortly after Nicole purchasedthe car. They include a UPR cold-air intake, a Steeda Tri-Ax shifter, aMagnaFlow high-flow H-pipe, and Flowmaster mufflers.

Nicole picked up that love from her parents' interest in NASCAR, familygo-carting, and later a Yamaha Warrior four-wheeler. "Speed was my newfavorite thing in middle school," Nicole says. Her interest in manualtransmissions came from the four-wheeler. Because of her dad's trainedprofessional mechanical knowledge, specifically of four-wheel drive,Nicole was screaming for a Ford truck--with four-wheel drive, of course."My dad finally told me, after months of begging, 'No trucks,' " shesays.

So it was then Nicole decided on a Mustang. With her dad driving a FordF-350 truck and her mom kickin' a "lifted" Chevy Suburban with a 383stroker, deciding on a Mustang wasn't easy. Nonetheless, a '98 MustangV-6 five-speed became Nicole's high-school whip. The V-6's five-speedgave the feeling of speed, but deep down Nicole knew the car wouldn'tsatisfy her need, as she was craving more. A month before graduatinghigh school, Nicole convinced her dad to co-sign a loan to get the GT.But, because of her excellent credit, only her name was on the title. "Iwas really proud, being only 18," she says.

Click the links to below to get a behind the scenes look at Nicole's BOTY photo shoot.
Windows MediaHigh | Quicktime High

Horse Sense: Beginning with the'02 model year, the Mustang's red paint known as Torch Red joined pastnames such as Performance Red, Vermillion Red, Rio Red, Canyon Red,Vibrant Red, Cabernet Red, and the ultra-descriptive Bright Red.Coincidentally, Torch Red has been a Corvette color starting in 1993.

You Be The Judge!

When an issue of 5.0 is designed and produced, we always do more than one cover. Unfortunately for us (and the 5.0 faithful) the two covers expertly designed by 5.0's resident art guru Shipman Mallard with Nicole on them were shot down like Kamikazes coming in for an attack.

So check out what might have been, then vote in the poll below. Should we have put our drop dead gorgeous Babe of the Year on the cover?

Nicole says Cherry Pie's interior is filthy most of the time (did we saythat out loud?!), but she cleaned it up just in time for our photos. Heroccupation of the driver seat is an admirable attempt to hide thecollege text books littering the GT's interior.

Thus began Nicole's new obsession with her Cherry Pie--an '03 Mustang GT. The new Mustang put a smile 10 miles wide on her face. "The first thingI did was tint the windows." Next up was a Muffler City-installed UPRcold-air kit and a Steeda Tri-Ax shifter that her boyfriend, SteveRamos, gave her for her 19th birthday. Those mods were followed by apair of Flowmaster mufflers that made it nearly impossible to talk onher cell phone and drive at the same time (we feel your pain, Nicole).

"Everything I've come to love about cars has been a direct result of mywonderful daddy, Bill Foley Jr.," Nicole says. We don't know if Billstands 6 foot 4, but he did teach Nicole to change her oil and at leastadd wheels before she started going to car shows. "I love speed,Mustangs, and I especially love getting dirty under my car," she says."More girls should learn to love this hobby because they really aremissing out."

We couldn't have said it better. 5.0

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