Donald Farr
Former Editor, Mustang Monthly
October 1, 2004
Photos By: Mustang Monthly Archives

Window Louvers

One of the more stylish options-and available over the counter-for '69-'70 Mustang fastbacks was the rear-window louver. In addition to the good-looking European styling, the louvers also covered the fastback's huge rear window to keep direct sunlight from baking the interior. Now available as a top-quality reproduction from National Parts Depot, the louvers install with Rivnut fasteners after drilling holes in the roof and below the rear window. Hinges, latches, and Rivnuts are included. Contact: National Parts Depot, Dept. MM, 900 SW 38th Ave., Ocala, FL 34474; 352/874-7595-9000; www.npdlink.com; California store, 800/235-3445; Michigan store, 800/521-6104; North Carolina store, 800/368-6451.

Export Brace

Carroll Shelby figured out this trick for his GT350s when he discovered these beefier shock-tower-to-cowl braces on Mustangs destined for export out of the United States. In most cases, they simply replace the flimsy braces on '65-'70 Mustangs to stabilize the front end for better handling. On some cars, however, it may be necessary to spread the shock towers so the brace will fit. Export braces, either black or chrome, are available from most Mustang parts vendors.

Rear Disc Brakes

If you already have front disc brakes or you want to convert to disc brakes all around, Stainless Steel Brakes has the kit for that too. SSBC's rear disc brake kit for early Mustangs comes with rotors, four-piston calipers, brackets, brake pads, and splash shields-everything you need to convert to rear-wheel disc brakes, which will bring your Mustang's stopping power up to modern standards.

Side Mirrors

There are many choices for upgrading your side mirrors. Since most Mustangs came with a single driver-side mirror, you can always add another mirror on the passenger side for improved rear visibility. Other upgrades include the switch to a deluxe mirror with remote control, Shelby "bullet" mirrors, or dual racing mirrors, like those found on Mach 1s and Bosses, for '69-'73 Mustangs. Check with your favorite Mustang parts vendor.

Heads Above The Rest

For a real performance jolt, bolt on a set of performance heads in combination with a free-breathing intake and carburetor. Thanks to the late-model 5.0 craze, we now have plenty of choices for Windsor small-blocks, from the factory cast-iron offerings to the latest aluminum versions from Edelbrock, Ford Racing, Holley, World Products, and others. FE engines also benefit from aluminum heads, which are offered by Edelbrock and Shelby Automotive.

Radiator/Electric Fan

With Hot Rod Air's '65-'66 Mustang radiator and electric fan assembly, you get two bolt-ons in one. The package comes with everything you need to upgrade to a three-row radiator and electric fan, which comes with its own shroud and adjustable thermostat. The radiator provides additional coolant capacity, while the electric fan cools only when needed while conserving engine power at the same time. Contact: Hot Rod Air, Dept. MM, 9330 Corporate Dr., Suite 303, Selma, TX 78154; 877/693-3200; www.hotrodair.com.

Six-Banger Headers

An affordable and easy-to-install option for six-cylinder Mustangs is the dual-exhaust header from Jack Clifford Performance. The dual outlets help simplify the installation of dual exhausts. Ceramic-coated, the Clifford header features heavy-duty flanges and thick exhaust gaskets to ensure quiet operation. Contact: Jack Clifford Performance, Dept. MM, 32840-B Wolf Store Rd., Temecula, CA 92592; 909/303-2333; www.cliffordperformance.com.

Eleanor Wheels

Ever since Eleanor arrived on the scene in the remake of the Gone In 60 Seconds, the movie car's Cobra-style wheels have become a popular item for vintage Mustangs, especially '67-'68 fastbacks. The 17x8-inch wheels from PS Engineering add a meaty, racy look to early Mustang styling. Contact: PS Engineering, Dept. MM, 2665 Skypark Dr. No. 102, Torrance, CA 90505; 310/534-4477.

Sequential Taillights

Thanks to Mustang Project's new LED sequential kit, it's easy to convert the '65-'69 Mustang's tri-panel taillights to sequential operation. Mustang Project's kit includes only three parts: a pair of LED modules and a flasher unit. The modules simply replace the OEM-style bulbs, and the flasher plugs into the original flasher wires in the main wiring harness behind the instrument panel. Attach the black wire to a convenient ground location, and you're on the road with flashy sequential taillights. About 10 minutes and a screwdriver is all you need. Contact: Mustang Project, Dept. MM, 912 Cashew Lane, Cedar Park, TX 78613; e-mail to mustang@safecode.net; www.mustangproject.com.