Evan J. Smith
June 19, 2014

Ford Pulls Off Empire State Building Stunt—Again!

On April 16, Ford replicated a stunt the automaker performed in 1965. It disassembled a '15 Ford Mustang convertible, carted it to the 86th floor Observation Deck of the Empire State Building, and reassembled the GT for all to enjoy.

"This week, the band is getting back together as Ford and DST Industries bring the all-new Mustang to the Empire State Building to honor 50 years on sale," said Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. "We've taken the new Mustang to new heights of technology and refinement, so we decided to take it to new heights literally for this celebration."

"When our engineers sat down with the DST team to start plotting this out in mid-February, everyone quickly realized that some old-school craftsmanship would be needed to successfully place this car more than 1,000 feet above the crowded streets of Manhattan," said George Samulski, manager, Ford North America design fabrication. "The deck is too high to reach with a portable crane from the street, and the spire that towers more than 400 feet above that narrow deck makes helicopter delivery impossible."

The only other car display on the Empire State Building observation deck happened in October 1965, when a crew from DST, including retired technician Claude Cochran, sectioned a Mustang convertible so that it could be fit into the elevators of the building.

Following a site inspection in New York to meticulously measure all of the elevators and doors, the engineering team in Dearborn sat down with a scale model of the new Mustang and started drawing lines on it with a marker to represent where it should be cut. The Empire State Building is a historic landmark, with original art deco wood and brass trim in the elevators, so it was crucial to ensure everything have plenty of clearance.

The car that would ultimately make the trip to New York was completely stripped down and the surface cleaned up to make sure everything looked perfect before it was sectioned and painted. The fabricators built custom rolling carts and wooden crates for each section.

Getting from the loading dock to the observation deck requires riding a freight elevator and two separate passenger elevators. A wood mockup of the smallest elevator was built in the DST shop in Romulus to verify everything would fit. Each of the loaded carts was then weighed to ensure everything stayed within the weight limits of the elevator and the observation deck.

"The observation deck is open to the public from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m., leaving our crew of six with only a six-hour window to get everything out onto the deck and get the car assembled," said Pericak. "Before we shipped the crates to New York, the crew spent several days practicing the entire assembly process—timing everything down to the minute."

MMD To Give Away the May '14 MM&FF Cover Car

Modern Muscle Design is giving everyone the chance to own its 589-rwhp '14 Mustang GT—Project MMD—which appeared on the cover of the May '14 issue of MM&FFmagazine.

Featuring over $30,000 in aftermarket parts and the sleek, modern MMD design, this is a one-of-a-kind Mustang can serve as the perfect show car or daily driver. One person will drive home from the annual AmericanMuscle.com Car Show this August in their newly acquired magazine cover car. The GT was also featured in Forgestar's booth for the 2013 SEMA Auto Show.

The winner will be selected August 4, 2014, and will be handed the keys at the American Muscle.com car show on August 16.

'15 Stang To Have Factory Line-Lock

Ford engineers are leveraging state-of-the-art controls software technology to give some of the most avid Mustang customers an industry-first feature—electronic line-lock.

"Competition has been an integral part of the Ford Mustang lifestyle since its earliest days 50 years ago," said Steve Ling, Ford car marketing manager. "We know our customers, and we wanted to provide a unique feature for those wishing to take full advantage of the increased capability offered at the dragstrip by this new Mustang GT."

Mustang has run everything from rally to stock car racing, but with drag racing a particularly popular venue for grassroots competitors, electronic line-lock on every '15 Ford Mustang GT should be a real benefit for customers who like to compete one quarter-mile at a time.

"We're using advanced controls technology for the all-new Mustang to provide some of our most dedicated fans with an industry-first feature they can use when they go to the track," said Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. "With electronic line-lock, customers who drive their Mustangs to work all week and then compete on the weekends will appreciate not having to modify their brake systems."

Electronic line-lock and launch control—also standard on Mustang GTs with manual transmission—can help drivers achieve more consistent performance run to run.

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