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Late Model-Corral, ’79-’13 Questions - November 2013
SSP Wheel Search
Where would I be able to purchase the black steel wheel and dog dish hubcap combo for the ’82-’84 SSP Mustang police cars? Do you have a suggestion on part number, what tire sizes work, the wheel specs, and so forth?
It must be safe to assume you’re restoring an SSP car, or building a replica/tribute, as we don’t know of anyone who would put 14-inch steel wheels on a Fox Mustang these days. That said, we fired a note to noted SSP parts guru Jim Dingell at Performance Parts Inc. (www.performancepartsinc.com; 703/742-6207). Jim explains that the ’82-’84 SSP steel wheel was a 14x5.5-inch offering originally used on the LTD, Fairmont, and Mustang with a 4x4.25-inch (4x108mm) wheel lug spacing. The original tire size for SSP use was a P205/70R14. Early cars often had a different tire brand, but the majority came with Goodyear Eagle GT rubber. As for center caps, they were a traditional “dog dish” style made from stainless steel and had flutes, or ridges, around the circumference. The caps could be plain or had black accent paint in the ridges depending upon DSO and availability of the caps, according Jim.
Today, the wheels are hard to find (plenty of 14x5 can be found, we’ve been told) and the center caps are often just as difficult. That being said, Jim’s stash of NOS SSP parts does include several full sets of these center caps. So if you can find four wheels for your SSP project, you can certainly find the right center caps through Performance Parts Inc.
Finally, if you strike out on the elusive 5.5-inch wide steel wheels, you can safely install the P205/70R14 radial on 5-inch steel rim to get the look you’re after.
Build Sheet Blunder?
In response to the information provided in your August 2013column, I ordered the Deluxe build sheet from Shop Ford Gear for my ’97 SVT Cobra convertible. Surprisingly, it arrived in only two weeks. My joy soon turned to dismay upon examining the document. Although a handsome letter and signed on a nice letterhead, it contained no more information that I had already garnered from free online sites. It does not supply you with “this car is one of 38” as cited in your column. All you get is basically the same information any online VIN decoder can give you, the total number of ’97 Mustangs built, the total number of coupes and convertibles, and nothing more. It doesn’t even indicate anything about my car being a Cobra, much less production numbers for Cobras.
The SVT Cobra Club website supplied me with the total number of Cobra convertibles built (3,088), my Cobra’s production number (2,431 of 3,088), and how many like mine were built (1 of 15). Although a nice document to have in my folder for this car, the Ford document comes nowhere close to the information provided in a Marti Report. According to the nice lady I spoke with at Marti, it will be early next year before Marti can offer a Deluxe Report for SN95s.
Rio Rancho, NM
The only thing we can surmise after reading your letter is that it is possible the older the model vehicle, the less information Ford’s Shop Ford Gear website has available for them. We say that because the sample deluxe build letter (for an ’11 Shelby GT 500), sent to us by Ford Performance Group’s John Clor, stated “1 of 43 produced with this vehicle configuration” under “Production Figures.” So the sample we had does indeed state “one of” type information. However, it might only be for ’05 and up Mustang models. That was not stated to us and is speculation on our part.
As you noted, it is a nice document to have with your vehicle’s records for display and we surmise some reports will be more detailed than others. As Ford releases the build data to Kevin Marti, we can all look forward to his vehicle history reports for just about any year Mustang soon (minus the ’65/’66 model years, of course).
Let us hear from you.
Send your late-model Mustang questions or comments to: Late-Model Corral, c/o Mustang Monthly, 9036 Brittany Way, Tampa, FL 33619, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.