Donald Farr
Former Editor, Mustang Monthly
September 1, 2005

Jim Klok was quick with his one request: "Please don't use 'The Boss is Back' because we've been building Boss Shinoda Mustangs for the past 10 years."

While the much-used slogan from Ford's '82 GT advertising campaign would certainly be the easy way out for an article title, we'll admit Klok has a point. Ever since Larry Shinoda re-created the Boss concept with his graphics package for the '94 Mustang, Boss Shinoda Mustangs have dazzled the eyeballs with stripes, spoilers, and wheels. With the new '05 Mustang's retro styling, the Boss package is more stunning than ever, especially in red with white graphics as the prototype shown here proves.

Shinoda, who created the Boss name and image for the Mustang Boss 302s, 351s, and 429s while working as a Ford designer in 1968-1970, would be proud, especially since Klok is making an all-out effort this year to inject more performance into the Boss Shinoda package. As the program manager for Shinoda Performance Vehicles, Klok's goal is to make the Boss Shinoda as bad as it looks to help erase the "sticker car" stigma, which the Boss Shinoda Mustangs earned early on when only decals were offered. The base '05 Legacy model comes standard with visuals only, but everything on the SPV option list is available at extra cost. The front chin spoiler was designed by SPV, but the rear spoiler is actually a reproduction '71 spoiler from National Parts Depot. According to Klok, the shorter pedestals on the '71 version worked better on the '05 decklid. We have to admit, it looks pretty good on the retro-styled '05 Mustang.

The Level 1 Boss Shinoda packs more punch with cold-air induction, performance tuning and exhausts, and handling modifications like Boss Control System springs and struts/shocks. Level 2 packages take performance up another big notch with supercharging (for an estimated 450 hp), a performance clutch, and additional handling enhancements.

The Level 3 Boss Shinoda is more like Level 10 with its standard twin-turbocharger setup. Although still under development when we visited Shinoda Performance in May, Klok is predicting 600 hp at the rear wheels. Now that's Boss.

The top-of-the-line Boss Shinoda package is the "Stroker Edition" with a 310ci version of the '05 Mustang's 4.6 three-valve engine. Although its naturally aspirated 400 rear-wheel horsepower can't match the twin-turbo, the Stroker Edition will feature a number of unique components, like a special "retro" stripe package (which may include hood stripes like the ones on the yellow convertible shown above, a Shaker hoodscoop, and a Magnum 500 wheel package with 17x9s up front and 17x11s at the rear.

Optional upgrades like a Baer performance brake package and a T56 six-speed manual transmission are available for all five Boss Shinoda models.

As in the past, anyone can order and install the Boss stripes and spoilers, as well as any of the offered equipment. However, starting with the '05 models, only Mustangs built at the Shinoda Performance Vehicles facility will be certified as true Boss Shinoda models with a numbered dash emblem. Drop-ship orders from Ford can be placed at Orville Beckford Ford/Mercury in Milton, Florida, by calling Bryan Ceasar at 850/623-2234. The cars are then delivered to Shinoda Performance Vehicles for the Boss Shinoda conversion and can be shipped to local dealers for final delivery.

Boss Shinoda HistoryWhen General Motors' Executive Vice President Semon "Bunkie" Knudsen was hired by Henry Ford II to run Ford Motor Company in February 1968, he brought with him designer Larry Shinoda, who was best known for creating the original Corvette Sting Ray concept at GM. Put in charge of Ford's Special Project Design Office, Shinoda quickly came up with an image package for the street version of the '69 Trans-Am Mustang fastback, calling it "Boss" in homage to his nickname for Knudsen while also realizing that the word was popular with young people. The resulting '69-'70 Boss 302s, with their Shinoda-designed stripes, spoilers, and rear-window louvers, established a new standard for musclecar visuals.

Three years later, Henry Ford II fired Knudsen, and Shinoda was out the door with him. Shinoda followed Knudsen to White Motor Corporation before starting his own company, Shinoda Design Associates.

In 1994 when then-Mustang Chief Engineer John Coletti put together a Boss 429-powered '94 Mustang concept car as a show piece, he added to the Boss-retro theme by asking Shinoda to design a stripe package. At one point, there was even talk of offering a production Boss as a special model from Ford SVO; but when the idea was eventually scrapped, Shinoda asked for and received permission to use the Boss name for a Boss Shinoda appearance package, including the stripe package, a Shinoda-designed rear spoiler, and "Shinoda by Budnik" wheels.

Jim Klok entered the picture when he was laid off from his job at Roush after his 5.0 intake manifold design was shelved in favor of a Roush ram-air induction package. Someone at Roush suggested that Klok offer the intake to Shinoda, who was looking for ways to add performance to the Boss Shinoda package. Eventually, Shinoda would recruit Klok as his performance manager.

When Shinoda passed away in November 1997, his daughter, Karen, and her husband, Brian Flahive, created Team Shinoda to continue the legacy of Larry Shinoda and his Boss Mustangs. Karen and Brian, who are both designers, are responsible for the current Boss Shinoda graphics and approve all aspects of the Boss Shinoda program. To eliminate confusion about Team Mustang being a "club," the name was recently changed to Shinoda Performance Vehicles.

Boss Shinoda Packages & OptionsS = Standard EquipmentO = Optional Equipment

  {{{Legacy}}} Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Stroker
EXTERIOR
Boss Shinoda graphics S S S S S
Boss Shinoda chin spoiler S S S S S
Boss Shinoda rear spoiler S S S S S
Boss Shinoda retro graphics N/A N/A N/A N/A S
INTERIOR
Boss Shinoda floor mats S S S S S
Aluminum pedals S S S S S
T-handle or white shift knob S S S S S
WHEELS
17x8 Shinoda 5-spoke,
245/40 tires O S S S N/A
18x9 Shinoda 5-spoke,
245/40 tires O O O O N/A
18x9 Shinoda 5-spoke,
265/35 tires O O O O N/A
{{{Magnum}}} 500
wheel/tire package O O O O S
PERFORMANCE
Performance Tune chip O S S S S
21¼2-inch exhaust O S S S S
Shinoda cold-air kit O S N/A N/A N/A
4.10 gears O O N/A N/A O
Hurst shifter O S S S S
Supercharger O O S N/A N/A
Twin turbo kit O N/A N/A S N/A
T56 six-speed O O O O O
Gauges O O S S O
Performance clutch O O S S S
310 stroker engine O O O O S
Performance camshafts O O O O O
Ported heads O O O S O
Forged engine assembly O O O S O
Shaker ram-air system O O O O S
SUSPENSION
BCS* springs O S S S S
BCS caster plates O S S S S
BCS front & rear sway bars O O S S S
BCS lower control arms O O S S S
Performance struts & shocks O S S S S
Adjustable struts & shocks O O S S O
Tubular K-member O O S S O
Aluminum driveshaft O O O O S
Shinoda performance brake kit O O O O O
*Boss Control System