2012 Ford Mustang
Ken Miele
June 25, 2014

Six or Eight

How can I modify my '12 Mustang V-6 to increase horsepower enough to run mid-13s? I was told any re-flashing is not really worth the cash. Would it be wise to just trade up, or can I save some money by upgrading what I have?

Via the Internet

Ron, the '12 Mustang 3.7 V-6 is great platform for performance upgrades. A tune will increase power noticeably and is worth every penny. Other upgrades, such as exhaust, cold-air intake, throttle body, and gears, will all increase power and performance. Get yourself a tune, along with these upgrades, and you will have an economical performance car that can run mid-13s all day long—and you'll save yourself some money for trading up later.

Endless Chatter

The Ford dealership recently replaced the clutch assembly at 55,000 miles. Since the replacement, the clutch chatters in First and Reverse if the rpm is below 1,500. Also, the vehicle drivetrain makes a noticeable oscillating humming noise in Third gear at about 50 mph.

The car has been back to the dealer twice, and the crew continues to tell me these problems are normal for the updated clutch that was installed in the car. Is this actually the case, or is the dealer making up stories so they don't have to fix the problem?

Also, the vehicle is in need of new shocks and struts. The car is mostly stock, and I'm wondering what new parts I should get to replace the old.

Via the Internet

Stu, if they replaced it with the stock clutch assembly, then it should have no chatter or noise. If you went with an aftermarket or upgraded clutch assembly, then it could be an issue with the disc and/or pressure plate. I would ask the dealer to fix this issue in either case.

For shocks and struts, I like the Bilstein HD Series, a quality damper that greatly improves handling and ride. If you're looking for adjustable shocks and struts, you can't go wrong with Koni.

Fox Tails

I'm 19 years old and restoring my first car ground up, a '79 Mustang hatchback. I'm running into a problem with the taillights. I despise the look of the stock ones, but I found an aftermarket set for an '89 that I like. I'm wondering, will they bolt right up, or will I have to do some fabrication to the car? I'm also looking into other late-model Fox-body trim items.

Via the Internet

Alex, the '89 Mustang taillights are a simple bolt-in with no modifications necessary. It's a great upgrade to give your '79 a fresh look. All Fox-body vehicles can share all trim and mechanical parts.

There is a lot of after-market support for the Fox-body Mustangs. American Muscle.com and Latemodel Restoration.com are just two of the companies that offer everything you could possible need.

Living Legal

I have an '02 GT with 110,000 miles. I already have a few mods, including a cold-air intake, 70mm throttle body, aftermarket plugs, and Borla Stinger after-cat exhaust.

I want to increase the horsepower without ruining my fuel efficiency, so I've been looking into headers and a catted X-style midpipe. I live in California, so I want it to appear legal at a glance. Will the headers work on a daily driver? Will they last? Will the catted X-style midpipe be worth it? I plan to get a flash tuner once all this is installed.

Via the Internet

Mpks92, headers will work as a daily driver. Many Mustangs came from the factory with headers.

Headers and an X-style midpipe will give you the best performance gains, and will actually increase your engine's efficiency, which should give you better fuel mileage. Long-tube headers are the most efficient, with the most durable and long-lasting being stainless steel. You can add these with no worries.

Stock as a Rock

I have a '01 Mustang GT with a K&N air filter as the only mod. I have had it for over a month now, and I'm contemplating ways to add horsepower without supercharging it. I have looked at throttle bodies and gears, and I'm just not sure what to get specifically. I'm open to suggestions.

Braxton Patterson
Via the Internet

The first thing I suggest is a tune—it will give biggest bang for your buck. Throttle bodies, cold-air intakes, and long-tube headers will all increase power, and when combined, they add up to a significant power increase. What's good about these mods is you can add them as your budget allows and have your tune adjusted as you upgrade.

Gears will also give an increase in performance that you can really feel. I suggest 3.73s for a stick and 4.10s for an auto.