Wes Ryan's three older brothers loved fast cars, and they took little Wesley wherever they went. His brother Randy's '86 T-top GT was the one that pushed Wes over the edge. "I soon followed suit, and my passion for Mustangs began," Wes says. This passion started out with an '83 GT Wes purchased at the age of 15.
Wes says the rest is kind of hazy, but roughly a dozen Mustangs later, he found himself married with children. His supercharged '91 notch seemed broken or in need of more supporting mods at every turn, so he turned his attention to finding a stock Mustang that he could once again enjoy on a daily basis. That's usually what happens in a Mustang owner's life. We modify a car so much that it's no longer fun to drive on the street, and when it's taken to the track, something always breaks. That's the point Wes had reached with the coupe.
In 2005, Wes stumbled upon an eBay ad for a stock '01 Bullitt. "I was in love instantly," Wes says. The listing featured the ideal descriptionù"one-owner, female-driven." That's a stretch the majority of the time, but in the Bullitt's case, it was actually true. There was only one problemùthe car was in Maryland, and of course, Wes was in Cortlandt Manor, New York.
"It made for a less-than-simple task of kicking the tires around," Wes adds. However, with his wife Michelle's blessing, off to Maryland he went. "I met two of the nicest people you could ask for when purchasing a used car," he says. The tag read "Yes Maam," and after one test drive, Wes realized the car was a perfect fit. "Here was my chance to get back into a stock Mustang and just enjoy it," Wes says. Tuck that little statement away for a second...
Since you're reading about Wes' Bullitt, you know he bought the car, but the previous owners actually encouraged him to drive the car home to New York using their plates and insurance. That drive home revealed the Bullitt's refined feel compared to a Fox Mustang. Of course, since Wes is used to fast Mustangs, the ride home also revealed the need for more power. And so it began...
Remember Wes planned to enjoy his new stock Mustang? Sure enough, he was at it again. He started with a Vortech S-Trim tuner kit. Next up was a Vortech T-Trim, a built engine, a full return-style fuel system, and ultimately, its current power adderùa Vortech YSi-Trim supercharger. At least Wes stuck with the Vortech theme. "So much for keeping her stock," Wes says, "but to my surprise, the Two-Valve engines seemed much more mod-friendly than the old pushrods. The car is just flat-out a thrill to drive."
With sufficient power underhood, Wes set his sights on the exterior. "Although I liked the sleek and simple design of the Bullitt and truly subscribe to the less-is-more theory," Wes says, "I felt it needed to be a little different." Wes kept it in the family by going with an '03-'04 Cobra front bumper cover, but then he stepped outside the department by adding a Cervini's Auto Designs heat-extractor hood and 18-inch Saleen replica wheels. "I opted to retain the GT fender badges and rear bumper to be clear that this car is still just a lil' Two-Valve," Wes says. However, once someone peers at the Glenn's Performance sumped fuel tank and MagnaFuel pump, his cover is blown.
It's not all about the car, though. "I was fortunate to encounter some good people along the build and made some lasting friendships that make the car that much more important to me," Wes says. Tim Barth, formerly of Modular Powerhouse, helped Wes set up the ideal engine combo needed for boost-friendly horsepower, while Kevin Hand worked his tuning magic to make the car feel and drive like a stock grocery getter. Our boy Jeff Harris of Mo's Speed Shop has been Wes' right-hand man with his countless suggestions and support. "All of these gentlemen are what makes this hobby worthwhile and have given me a wealth of knowledge," Wes adds.
The build also inspired Wes and a few buddies to start the website www.hp mustangs.com. "We felt the need to share some hard-learned lessons and to enhance this great hobby," Wes says. The site allows fellow Mustang enthusiasts to share ideas, plan future events, but most of all keep people motivated to enjoy "what this hobby is about," Wes explained.
Engine and Drivetrain
Pistons Manley Performance
Camshafts Modular Powerhouse blower grinds
Cylinder Heads Stock w/Modular Powerhouse Stage 2.5 port
Intake Manifold Stock Bullitt
Throttle Body Stock Bullitt
Mass Air PMAS blow-through
Power Adder Vortech YSi supercharger w/3-in pulley, X02 intercooler, ProCharger Red Race bypass valve, 4-in intake pipe, eight-rib accessory drive, and Innovators West overdrive dampener
Fuel System Glenn's Performance sumped fuel tank w/ MagnaFuel Pro Tuner 750 fuel pump, Aeroquip -10 supply, -8 return lines, Fore Precision Works fuel rails, FRPP 80-lb/hr injectors, and MagnaFuel 1:1 boost-referenced fuel-pressure regulator
Exhaust Hooker Super Comp long-tube headers w/matching H-pipe, and Bassani Xhaust after-cat exhaust
Transmission Rockland Standard Gear Tranzilla T-56 six-speed w/SPEC Stage 3+ clutch and steel flywheel, Steeda Autosports Tri-Ax shifter, and '04 Cobra aluminum driveshaft
Rearend Factory 8.8 w/Eaton differential, 3.73 gears, and Strange Engineering 31-spline axles
Stock computer w/SCT X-Cal2-tuned
Gauges Stock, w/Auto Meter Phantom series water, boost, and fuel pressure; Innovate Motorsports air/fuel monitor; and Raptor shift light
Chassis and Suspension
K-member UPR Products tubular
Springs Eibach coilover 250 in-lb
Caster/Camber Maximum Motorsports
Brakes Stock w/Hawk HPS pads
Wheels 18x9-in chrome Saleen replicas
Tires BFG g-Force TA KDW 265/35-18
Shocks QA1 12-way adjustable
Springs Eibach 175 in-lb coilovers
Control Arms Wolfe Racecraft double-adjustable uppers and lowers
Brakes Stock, Hawk HPS pads
Wheels 18x10-in chrome Saleen replicas
Tires BFG g-Force TA drag radial 295/35-18
Chassis Stiffening Maximum Motorsports full-length subframe connectors
As we all know, the Bullitt...
As we all know, the Bullitt interior was a design all its own. It featured unique upholstery and gauges, and Wes has left well enough alone. However, he has added support gauges from Auto Meter, and a Raptor shift light. When the stock Tremec 3650 was still in the tunnel, Wes rowed the Bullitt to a 10.99 at 128 mph. Not wanting to scatter the five-speed in the process, he put it back on the trailer, content with the 10.99… and a fully operational transmission.
ProLine Racing Engines put...
ProLine Racing Engines put together the Two-Valve, which is topped by Modular Powerhouse Stage 2.5 ported heads, featuring MPH’s own blower cams and assorted valvetrain components. The stock Bullitt intake remains, inhaling 18 pounds of boost from a Vortech YSi-Trim supercharger. Since replacing the stock 3650 with a Rockland Standard Gear Tranzilla T56, Wes has rowed the car to a 10.72 at 132 mph with a lazy 1.60-second 60-foot time. Wes tells us the intercooler was the restriction at that time, but he’s working on a less-restrictive replacement for a run at 10.30s.