By the time you read this, Jerome would've owned this coupe for roughly 9 years. It was a
Horse Sense: Besides the engine and transmission, Jerome's coupe boasts the '03 Cobra parts car's radiator, hydraboost brake system, front spindles and brakes, ABS block, all heater and A/C components and controls, steering column, pedal assembly, gauge cluster, wiring harness and PCM, driveshaft, and fuel tank.
Mustang ownership is a funny thing: We buy a Mustang to make it faster. We might buy a stocker, but we have visions of turbochargers, superchargers, and nitrous bottles dancing in our heads way before we sign on the dotted line. Once we do all the bolt-ons, the unnatural aspiration follows. With the newfound power, we keep going until the car has a C4, a spool, and an eight-point 'cage. All of a sudden the car is no fun to drive on the street, and something breaks every time we take it to the track. Then all we want is a nice, quick street car.
Jerome Shumate, of Union Grove, Alabama, found himself in that position roughly 9 years ago. He had a car (a Camaro, at that) that turned into a full drag car, and he was ready for something he could drive on the street.
Unlike many 5.0&SF readers, however, he wasn't set on purchasing a Mustang. "I was trying to decide between a Buick Grand National/T-Type, a Syclone, or a Mustang," he says. Obviously, since you're reading about Jerome's '92 Mustang LX coupe, you know he made the right choice.
"One of my friends, Michael Carter, found this car for me. He looked it over-it had never been wrecked and it was stock with the exception of a pair of Flowmaster mufflers and no air silencer," Jerome says. More on Michael later, but suffice it to say he knows how to check a car for damage and rust. Over the next several years, the coupe became home to a Bennett Racing-built 306, a TTC-Tremec TKO-II transmission, and a built 8.8 rear. As is the case with most Mustang owners, Jerome was embroiled in a competition with all his Mustang pals (such as those mentioned in this story, and Pat Stratton, Byron Wes Brooks, Chris Seagrove, and Mark Kennemer) for ET supremacy, and in Jerome's mind a 427 Dart-fortified Windsor was the answer. Oh yeah-just in case the 427 wasn't enough, he purchased a Nitrous Express nitrous kit to make sure his Mustang could walk the walk.
But two things made Jerome rethink his Mustang's mechanical direction. First, the driveability of a big-cube Windsor would most likely put him back where he was before with a race-type setup in a street car, which he didn't want. Then he purchased an '03 Cobra, and after spending relatively little money in mods the supercharged Four-Valve laid down 460 hp at the tires. "I fell in love with the modular engine," Jerome says. At that point he decided a modular engine was in the coupe's future, but which one proved to be a whole new story.
Jerome lists Ford SVT as the builder of his engine, but that's because an '03 Cobra engine
Jerome already had a Lightning 5.4 engine, but after seeing one too many Eaton superchargers sticking out of Fox hoods, he decided that wasn't the best route for him. Then he heard of a wrecked '03 Cobra-he'd tried to purchase the same Cobra before its rearranged sheetmetal-and he called the owner the same day. He told Jerome he was going to keep it and install the drivetrain into another car. Evidently, Jerome didn't give up too easily because he bought the whole car for $8,000. Yeah-we want to beat him up too.
Jerome and his friend, Wade Burrows, tore down the coupe to a shell to start its total transformation, which would include new paint to go along with a new drivetrain. Jerome did a lot of research to make the mechanical swap easier, but there wasn't a lot of information available at that time, so he started out by ordering everything he knew he needed.
"I then came to the point where I had to figure out the plan for the gauges. I had seen there were a few people who had swapped the Fox dash for an SN-95 dash." He decided swapping in an SN-95 dash would be something different and would be the easiest route. But the wrecked '03 Cobra's dash was too mangled, so he went to Carter's Body Shop (remember Michael Carter?) to relieve a '97 Mustang of its dash. Jerome and his friend, David Hornsby, spent 10 hours cutting and trimming the dash to get it to work, and that was even using a spare Fox body with no windshield. With the '97 dash, Jerome used the wrecked Cobra's gauge cluster, heater and A/C controls, steering column, pedal assembly, and full wiring harness and PCM. "Would I do it again? Yes, it was worth every minute," he says. "The dash in the car has gotten more attention than the 32-Valve swap."
If Jerome received a nickel every time someone asked how much trouble it was to install th
Oh, yeah-about that. Jerome used an Anthony Jones Engineering tubular K-member specifically designed for a modular-into-Fox swap. With that in the coupe, he dropped in the '03 Cobra engine, transmission, driveshaft, radiator, and hydraboost brake system. When the car was "finished," Jerome took the car with the '03 Cobra Eaton supercharger, fuel system, and a 6-pound lower pulley. "The car made 431 hp and 421 lb-ft of torque," he says. But that was before his wife, Pamela, bought him a Kenne Bell 2.4 Twin-Screw supercharger. He says there's no getting rid of Pamela now-and she doesn't have a sister. With the Kenne Bell, twin SVT Focus fuel pumps and 60-lb/hr injectors, the coupe hammered out 579 hp and 545 lb-ft to the rear wheels at just 13.5 pounds of boost. Performance Fuel Systems' Alan Kennedy tuned the car using SCT software.
After seven months of working on the coupe and "finishing" it at 3 a.m. on September 30, 2005, Jerome started it at 8 a.m. and headed for Bowling Green, Kentucky, for the NMRA World Finals. We didn't see the car the Saturday of the event, but NMRA Car Show Director Sweaty Eddie Svoboda did and, being the good guy he is, told us he would call when Jerome arrived with the car. As you can see, he has arrived. Quick street car, accomplished.
|5.0 Tech Specs|
|ENGINE AND DRIVETRAIN||ELECTRONICS|
|'03 Cobra||Alan Kennedy-tuned SCT chip,|
|Bore||Stock '03 Cobra computer|
|Stock 90.2 mm||Ignition|
|Stroke||Stock '03 Cobra|
|Stock 90 mm||Gauges|
|Displacement||Auto Meter, Innovate|
|281 CI||Motorsports air/fuel|
|Rotating Assembly|| |
|Stock '03 Cobra||SUSPENSION AND CHASSIS|
|Stock '03 Cobra||K-member|
|Heads||Anthony Jones Engineering Fox|
|Stock '03 Cobra||Modular swap tubular K-member|
|Kenne Bell||AJE tubular for modular swap with|
|Throttle Body||SN-95 ball joints|
|Kenne Bell Big Oval||Springs|
|Mass Air||AJE coilover|
|SCT 90 mm||Struts|
|Power Adders||Lakewood 90/10|
|Kenne-Bell 2.4 Twin Screw, 3.5-in||Caster/Camber|
|upper pulley, Metco 6-lb lower||UPR|
|pulley, Lightning Force||Brakes|
|Performance heat exchanger||Stock '03 Cobra|
|Twin SVT Focus fuel pumps,||FRPP FR500 chrome 18x9-in|
|Earl's Performance Products||Tires|
|Prolite fuel lines, CPR fuel rails,||BFGoodrich g-Force T/A KDW|
|Siemens-Deka 60-lb/hr fuel||265/35|
|injectors, Stock '03 Cobra fuel-||Rear Suspension|
|Kooks long-tube headers and||Shocks|
|X-pipe, Flowmaster 3-in after-cat||Stock|
|exhaust with two-chamber||Control Arms|
|mufflers||Bennett Racing adjustable uppers,|
|Transmission||Steeda lower control arms|
|T56, McLeod Street Twin clutch,||Brakes|
|Steeda Tri-Ax shifter, Stock '03||Wilwood four-piston system|
|Rearend||FRPP FR500 chrome 18x9-in|
|Stock 8.8, Kenne Bell girdle,||Tires|
|Powertrax Locker differential,||BFGoodrich drag radial|
|Ford Racing Performance Parts||Chassis Stiffening|
|4.10 gears, Moser axles||BBK subframe connectors|