Miles Cook
July 1, 2007
These days, bright headlights are available for any car. The trouble with classic Mustangs is the wiring wasn't designed to handle the high-wattage lights. Another problem is the circuit breaker in the headlight switch can't handle the current. The cure is to install two relays, included in the Reenmachine wiring harness. The flat-faced Hella lights look trick, as installed here in Pete Waydo's '66 Mustang.

Headlight technology of the '60s is nothing compared to what's available today. Similar to other automotive components such as tires, suspension, engine pieces, and safety equipment, headlights have improved in leaps and bounds since the first Mustangs were built in 1964.

Speaking of safety equipment, headlights are among the most critical pieces of safety gear on a car. Upgrading them is not only cool in terms of appearance and driving enjoyment, but they need to be done correctly for nighttime driving. Lights on most older cars are almost always lacking when it comes to nighttime driving.

After chatting around the editorial water cooler, we thought it a good idea to examine the subject of better headlights for vintage Mustangs. There's more to it than just installing new headlights on an early car. The electrical wiring isn't designed to handle the power draw of modern halogen and xenon headlights. Here we focus on wiring since swapping a headlight is little more than changing a household light bulb.

At one point, we were won-dering what path to take on this subject until we came across a custom lighting kit designed specifically for vintage Mustangs. Offered by Reenmachine, the package consists of a pair of Hella high-performance halogen H4 headlights and a modern high-output, relay-driven wiring harness.

The key to the system is a harness that essentially bypasses the car's existing headlight wiring and employs the new wiring for a safe and effective upgrade. We couldn't wait to get to Reenmachine in Ventura, California, to cover the installation on shop owner Pete Waydo's '66 Mustang six-cylinder coupe, which is driven daily.