When the then-new S197 Mustang debuted for the '05 model year, the automotive world was in an uproar. With retro-styling that was a throwback to the late '60s and early '70s Mustangs, the new steed was ready to do battle on the streets and strips of America thanks to the 300hp Three-Valve modular powerplant. In the February '06 issue of MM&FF, we threw together a shootout featuring the baddest '05 Stangs. Now that it's 2007, we really can't call it an '05 Mustang shootout anymore, per se.
With three years progressing since our last go-around, we decided to ring up some of the baddest S197 cars in the land for a no-holds-barred speed fest at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, New Jersey. Seven cars showed up and we laid down the ground rules in regards to form and function of both the cars and drivers. Basically, the Mustangs had to maintain most of the factory components, including the Three-Valve engine, two front seats, a finished interior, working accessories, and so on. What we didn't want were gutted race cars. Once we opened the track, the participants proceeded to tear up the Raceway Park quarter-mile. We saw the good, the bad, and the frustrating, but by the end of the day, the scoreboards were scorched with quick elapsed times, some well into the 10-second zone.
'05 Mustang GT
Steven Spaulding, Girard, PA
Mike Bowen handled the driving chores of Steven Spaulding's '05 GT (which participated in our '05 shootout), and ripped off three passes in the 10-second zone to finish the day in the number-one spot. Bowen, who uses Spaulding's car as the testbed for his shop, Powerhouse Automotive, hooked up one of the company's single turbo systems with an air-to-air intercooler to make the grunt needed to win the show. The turbo pushes 17 pounds of boost into the Three-Valve, which is completed with an SCT tune. The word "stock" applies to the car, though. The factory five-speed transmission and clutch back the otherwise-stock 4.6-liter engine, so all of the power comes from the turbo, the tune, and the accompanying suspension changes Powerhouse made to get the muscle to the asphalt.
Bowen opened the day with an aborted 13.93, but then came back and ripped off three 10-second passes in succession, culminating in a 10.29 best. Terminal velocity topped 136 mph on one pass, with a best 60-foot time of 1.56 seconds on another. The Stang isn't all go and no show, however, as the factory black paint is accented with orange pearl, and the interior is show quality. Looking good and going fast was the name of the game for Bowen, Spaulding, and the boys from Powerhouse.
Mike Bowen, Driver
|Weight w/Driver:||3,540 lbs|
|Built/Tuned By:||Powerhouse Automotive|
|Power Adder:||Powerhouse turbocharger kit|