Muscle Mustangs & Fast FordsProject Vehicles
1988 Ford Mustang GT Project Hypersilver - Coilover Suspension Install
Jack Of All Trades - We're finally turning wrenches on Hypersilver with a full coilover suspension that will handle whatever we throw at it.
Project cars typically have a theme, and a purpose. Here at MM&FF, we've built all-out drag cars, a road race project or two, and countless street/strip warriors. And nothing defines the purpose of a project quite like the suspension components. Soft or firm, handling or straight line, adjustable or non-adjustable, and traditional or coilover are just a few of the choices you have to make when choosing your suspension package.
The combinations are seemingly endless, so where do you start? The first thing to do is pick your theme and stick with it. If you're staying on the street, then pick street-friendly components. And if you're building a track dawg or quarter-mile monster, then go that route, but don't expect it to be street friendly. But we want Hypersilver to do a little bit of everything, and do them really well. Can we get the best of both worlds? We think so.
From the beginning of this project, we wanted to build a show-quality, street-friendly super-Fox that could hold its own on the dragstrip and open track. Yes, we knew we wouldn't be setting any records in any of those events, but we still wanted it to be respectable. To accomplish this, we turned to Steeda, QA1, and Maximum Motorsports.
We had given Steeda and QA1 the nod early on, committing to an all-around performing coilover suspension setup that could be adjusted easily to perform according to our demands, be they street, strip, or handling. Problem was, Steeda doesn't offer a K-member suited for our Windsor's geometry, and the QA1 piece is a drag-race-only piece. So, with the entire Mustang aftermarket as our oyster, we turned to Maximum Motorsports to fill in the blank.
Maximum offers full suspension kits as well as K-member/A-arm kits specialized for drag racing, street/strip, street, street/track, and serious open track/autocross. And they're all based on one versatile K-member (PN MMKM-1; $649). And it's worth every penny. It is stiff enough for open tracking or street use, but light enough to make all the drag racers happy—some 36 percent lighter than stock. And instead of opting for the forward-offset A-arms, we chose Maximum's arms for stock location. We're well on our way to getting the best of both worlds. See, it's not so hard.
To suspend the front end, we turned to QA1 for its double- adjustable Pro Coil front strut system (PN HD601S-14175; $984.95) for '79-'04 Mustangs. The struts bolt into the stock location, are very adaptable, and are fully adjustable (ride height, compression, and rebound). The springs are 175-pound versions, which are on the soft (stock) side to ensure a good ride quality. In other words, we can set the shocks low and soft for the street and car shows, tighten them up for the open track, and loosen the fronts for the dragstrip. We also ordered Steeda's billet aluminum caster/camber plates, sway bars, and bumpsteer kit.
Out back, we purposely kept control arm mounts in the stock location, so that we could utilize off-the-shelf parts like Steeda's heavy-duty double-adjustable upper control arms (PN 555-4100; $209.95) and billet Weight-Jacker lower control arms (PN 555-4410; $419.95). We don't need the spring perches since we're utilizing QA1 coilovers in the rear as well, so we specified that when we placed our order.
And since we went with tubs in the rear, we were forced to use coilovers. So instead of being able to use QA1's direct bolt-in kit in the rear, we had to measure first with the rearend housing in place. We did this at Demon Motorsports a few months ago, if you remember. We ended up with the Pro-Rear double-adjustable system (PN DD501-12130; $779.95), which features linear-rate 130-pound (firm) coil springs and 11.63-inch double-adjustable shocks. If you still have stock shock mounts at your disposal, you can go with the rear coilover conversion kit (PN RCK52345; $850), and you'll save a lot of mounting hassle, since they bolt right in the stock locations.
In all, we have a very versatile suspension setup that will handle well, perform on the dragstrip, look cool, and ride nice. No, it wasn't the cheapest combination, but we're getting a lot of bang for our buck. Once we finish, we'll be getting on track to put these components to the test!