Mark Houlahan
Brand Manager, Mustang Monthly
April 4, 2013

From day one, the Mustang was designed to be personalized at any level; from drivetrain and interior options to all sorts of dealer-installed goodies. The first generation Mustang could easily go from six-cylinder commuter to V-8 fire breather with plenty of luxury and convenience amenities inside and out. The same can be said today for classic Mustangs and their owners, be it a restoration or a custom build. It's rare you'll ever find two classic Mustangs with identical build specs due to the customization from their owners. Paint colors, wheels, suspension, interior, and more have so many options that we've seen owners agonize over these decisions. Let's face it, though, rarely is an owner's decision the wrong one. If you like purple paint and big chrome wheels then go for it. It's your Mustang and the only person you have to make happy is you.

One Mustang owner that we know has been slowly modifying his '68 fastback to his personal taste. First were the performance upgrades with aluminum heads, a cam, full exhaust, and so forth. Then he added 17-inch wheels and an AOD transmission for more driving enjoyment and better handling. He's currently been working on the interior for the last year, adding a molded headliner with '67-style console, a Fox Mustang seat swap, new door panels, and more. However, he's been agonizing over what to do with his dash. He has a first generation JME dash cluster full of Auto Meter Phantoms, but otherwise the dash is completely stock right now. He's looking to give it some pizzazz without losing the classic Mustang feel. Our suggestion? Add a dash inlay to give the all-black dash something to catch people's eyes.

The folks at National Parts Depot (NPD) have a great assortment of dash inlay options for most any year classic Mustang

The folks at National Parts Depot (NPD) have a great assortment of dash inlay options for most any year classic Mustang, from the traditional woodgrain and brushed aluminum for deluxe style interiors to the more modern and performance oriented look of real carbon fiber. The woodgrain and brushed aluminum kits are even available at different price points to fit most any budget and quality level. Our friend's '68 fastback, which normally would be dressed in a full woodgrain motif for a deluxe interior, currently has '67 style TMI door panels with silver carbon-fiber vinyl upper inserts (where the brushed aluminum would be on a '67 deluxe interior door panel). The aforementioned overhead console has a brushed aluminum insert as well, so we suggested '67 brushed aluminum dash pieces to upgrade his interior's looks. This means having to pull the complete dash cluster and swapping the '68 bezel for the '67 bezel, but it's a small price to pay for the look. We're using Scott Drake inlays, which come preassembled to brand new dash trim panels. They are the perfect answer if your trim has worn chrome or broken retaining studs. From NPD, we used the Scott Drake '67 gauge bezel, PN 10838-4C ($149.95) and the company's matching three-piece dash kit, PN 044A10-4C ($159.95). See how easy it is to improve your Mustang's dash with these simple inlay kits from NPD.

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22. The finished brushed-aluminum dash really brightens up the interior of this fastback and ties in beautifully with the brushed aluminum insert in the overhead console, the TMI door panels, and the silver “Mach 1” stripe insert in the seats. In the future, the owner plans a Shelby-style console with a brushed-aluminum insert as well.