Every day, Marc Wills is responsible for making sure people know what brown can do for them. As a UPS driver, he has delivered everything from Christmas presents to speed parts. Unfortunately, each day, Marc is saddled with driving an overweight package car (the correct term for a UPS truck) that couldn't hit 100 mph without the aid of a solid rocket booster. Thankfully, his weekend toy isn't the same.
Wanting something that not only delivers the mail, but does it rapidly, Marc ditches that brown truck for something more suitable to his likes and dislikes-his Vortech-blown '92 Mustang LX. This tidy Pony now reaches into the mid-nine-second zone, although it didn't start out that way.
"At first, [my goal was] to get into the 11-second range," Marc says. "Like many drag racers, though, I just wanted to keep going faster." After finding his latest Fox-body online, Marc embarked on a mail run that would result in the packages being delivered quicker than UPS' overnight service.
Marc WillS' nimble '92 notchback Mustang is powered by a thundering poked and stroked 427c
To get his Pony moving, a powerplant offering some serious motivation would need to be built. After dialing up Muscle Motors in Lansing, Michigan, a combination was conceived and the plan put into action. The crew at Muscle Motors sourced a Dart aluminum block that was cleaned up and prepared to field the 4.00-inch stroke RPM 4340 forged crank. With the machine work done, Marc assembled the supersized pushrod powerplant himself, starting with the bottom end. Once the crank was settled in the main web of the block, a set of Diamond pistons (pinned to a set of RPM H-beam rods) were slid down each of the eight cylinders. With an accompanying bore measurement of 4.125 inches, the cubic-inch figure of this monstrous Ford small-block measured out to be an in-charge 427. Keeping the rotating parts lubricated is a Melling pump, while containing the lifeblood of the engine is a Moroso 7-quart oil pan.
Moving to the topside of the engine yields an impressive array of go-fast goodies. A Comp Cams solid roller bumpstick showcasing 244/248 intake/exhaust duration and 0.656/0.662 inch of lift on the respective inlet and outlet sides of the profile was stuffed in on a 114-degree centerline. Topping the bores are Trick Flow High-Port aluminum heads featuring Ferrea stainless 2.08-inch intake and 1.60-inch exhaust valves actuated by a set of Comp Cams 1.6-ratio roller rockers. The combination of the Diamond pistons and Trick Flow heads bring the squeeze number to a blower-friendly 8.37:1.
A slick two-tone paint job and the subtle addition of a Cobra R hood add visual appeal to
With the inclusion of a centrifugal blower imminent, the induction system needed to be restriction-free to take advantage of the incoming air. With that in mind, Marc slapped on an Edelbrock Super Victor EFI intake and an Accufab 90mm throttle body. A ProCharger F1-R supercharger blows in 14 pounds of boosted oxygen. Matching the incoming atmosphere with the proper amount of fuel is an Aeromotive pump and accompanying regulator. The go-juice is sprayed into the intake tract via a set of 96-pound injectors. An MSD 6A box, coil, and distributor send the spark signal initiated from a Lidio Iacobelli-tuned FAST system through a set of Taylor wires and NGK plugs.
For maximum power, an easy route of evacuation for the spent exhaust fumes is a necessity. To handle that chore, Marc installed a set of custom-built headers that dump into a 3½-inch exhaust system. The exhaust pulses are quieted down somewhat by a pair of SpinTech mufflers. As for the rest of the drivetrain components, Marc wanted things to be smooth and easy to operate, so a Dynamic-built C4 three-speed automatic was slung under the trans tunnel of the Fox-body. A TCI flywheel mates to a 3,800-stall converter, while keeping the trans fluid cool under fire is a B&M trans cooler. Marc makes each gear change with a B&M shifter, and a custom aluminum driveshaft moves the power from the C4's output shaft to an 8.8-inch rear stuffed with a set of 3.55 cogs, a spool, a C-clip eliminator kit, and Strange axles.
With all that power on tap, a revised suspension was next. A pair of UPR 125-pound springs and tubular upper control arms conspire with a set of Lakewood 90/10 shocks, a Wolfe sway bar, and UPR caster/camber plates to throw the weight on the front end rearward when Marc plants the loud pedal on the starting line. Absorbing the shock of the subsequent launch while allowing the car to sit hard on the rear tires, is a host of suspension parts engineered to work in conjunction with each other. Lakewood 50/50 shocks team up with stock springs, Baseline Suspension upper control arms, TRZ Motorsports lower control arms, and a Wolfe sway bar. Keeping the middle of the car from tweaking out of proportion is a pair of BBK subframe connectors. Speaking of the rear meats, a glance toward the rear-wheel openings yields a pair of Bogart 15x8.5 inch Drag On rims wrapped in a pair of gummy 28x11.5-15 Hoosier QuickTime Pros. A pair of similar Bogart 15x3.5s surrounded in 165/15 rubbers are swallowed up by the front fenderwells. Hiding behind the wheels on all four corners is the stock braking system.
Marc marches down track to the tune of 9.60-second elapsed times with a top speed upwards
Knowing that his lightweight notchback would probably rip off elapsed times quick enough to get him in trouble with the local track's tech staff, Marc upgraded the interior of the car to make it NHRA legal. A 10-point rollcage made its way into the gray and black interior, while a set of Auto Meter gauges clue him in to what the poked, stroked, and blown engine is doing. A window net went in next, followed by a pair of five-point harnesses and an accompanying deuce set of Kirkey seats.
Marc didn't want to see one boring color on his Mustang. Seeing as how he has to deal with that UPS brown all day long, we can't help but agree. To that end, a two-tone paint scheme was applied. With the addition of a Cobra R hood and a simple orange stripe breaking up the two contrasting colors, the car makes a statement-not to mention its 9.60-second-zone e.t.'s and trap speeds in the 143-mph range.
"What I love most about the car is that when I light the wick, I forget about everything in life except going down track," Marc says. So what's in store for this cool coupe? "I always liked the Fox-bodies and have owned four different ones," he says, "but this one will likely be my last. My wife says she's going to bury me in this car, but it will be something my newborn son will have someday."
Aside from the addition of a 10-point rollcage, Kirkey seats, a pair of five-point racing