Fellow Real Street Racer Bruce Hemminger (left) is the new car sales manager at Van Drunen
A little history lesson. The '88 LX coupe that I have raced in the NMRA is getting long in the tooth. 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords Editor Steve Turner has asked several times when I was going to build a new car. I was quite attached to my little red '88 coupe. It has a history. It participated in every NMRA Race from 2000 to 2004. It was the third car in the Factory Stock 11-second club. For 2003, I made the switch to the 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords magazine Real Street class. It was July of that year the red coupe became the first car in the nines. Still Mr. Turner persisted in prodding me to consider a new ride. More on that later.
Have you ever wanted to do something but just couldn't justify it? Well, I had listened to Jim Schenk from Car Shop in Moline, Illinois, talk about how cool it was on the Hot Rod Power Tour. With a full schedule of NMRA races, it wasn't really possible. I talked to Steve Turner and asked, "What would you think if I took my Real Street car on the Hot Rod Power Tour?" Steve said, "Cool, and you can write about your exploits in 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords." Hmm, this ought to be fun. It was looking like I needed a plan.
With all the talk of the new Mustang, one thing was clear-it was heavy. We wanted to see j
So, a month before the SEMA show in Las Vegas, I notice a post on the FFW message board about Ford Racing's Body-In-White program. I must admit that I didn't look at the new Mustang when Ford had some at Columbus and then Martin, Michigan. The pictures I had seen in the magazines really didn't do the car justice. It wasn't until Dr. Jamie Meyer made the lap down the track at Martin, that I really took notice. As I stood at the fence watching Jamie's blistering 14.70, I was taken with the retro styling of the '05 Mustang. Hmm, those new Mustangs are hot. Well, at least the looks were. After filling out the application, I thought I would not hear anything. Well, about three weeks later, I got an e-mail notification that we had been approved for a Ford Racing BIW.
As required, we sent the $3,500 to secure our car. Once at the SEMA show, a problem arose. I knew that we could never take the '05 Mustang BIW on the Power Tour as it is a non-VIN car. They are sold for the purpose of racing and are never to be licensed or titled. Once the sponsors learned that I had an '05 Mustang in planning for the NMRA Series for 2005, they were not going to settle for my old '88 coupe on the Power Tour.
To solve the VIN problem, I elected to buy a low-option V-6 Mustang to build our '05 Mustang Real Street car. While it seems costly, it also solved many other problems. First, it gave us the ability to drive the car on the Hot Rod Power Tour. Second, it seems that some parts needed to complete the car would have availability problems since Ford is building the new Mustangs as fast as they can.
OK, we really didn't tear into the car immediately. We needed to do a little promotion pri
Once the hood was removed (aluminum, 25 pounds), it was easy to disconnect the engine and
The front bumper cover is easily removed from the '05-so easy, we will probably have it of
Once the engine and transmission are removed, you notice all the room. It's huge. The fram
Another concern was the transmission tunnel. It appears to be higher yet narrower. We are
Once most of the driveline had been removed, we moved to the interior. The Mustang is diff