Bobby Mazur sprays Sikkens Autoclear III over the newly painted Steeda body panels.
Even though the S197 Mustangs come well-equipped with a powerful appearance, the people who own and love them take advantage of the numerous aftermarket options to make them unique. We've certainly seen the power potential of the Three-Valve 4.6L, and the S197 is arguably the best handling Mustang to ever roll off the assembly line. But what happens when you want to step up the looks and really make your Stang one of a kind? MM&FF is about to show you.
We wanted to take our '07 Mustang GT and build on the already attractive appearance, but we didn't want an over-the-top race look. The Competition Front Fascia and Street Cowl Hood from Steeda Autosports offer a subtle, yet aggressive, look that was perfect for what we wanted.
Steeda Autosport sent out its Street Cowl Hood and Competition Front Fascia. The parts hav
For more than 20 years, Steeda Auto-sports has been producing some of the finest aftermarket parts in the Mustang world. Its race-inspired parts are designed to bolt on and perform, improving on the OEM standard. "Every part Steeda makes has to serve a function," explains Dario Orlando of Steeda Autosports. "We design all or our parts to perform and be stylish at the same time. A lot of research went into choosing our hood and front fascia, and the results were aerodynamically clean pieces that not only perform great, but look great."
With our GT ready to go, we loaded the truck and headed to Bodymotion in Ocean, New Jersey, where Mike Bavaro and Dave Reinhardt would take care of the paintwork. Bodymotion is a full collision repair and paint facility that uses the Sikkens paint system, which is a high-end paint line used on many exotic and high-end European luxury cars. With our parts unboxed and cleaned, the team at Bodymotion went to work getting our new front fascia and hood ready to go on the car.
Kenny Ganz tapes the fenders to prevent scratching prior to test-fitting the new Steeda pa
As our S197 rolled into the shop for its facelift, the first order of business was removing the stock front fascia and hood. Kenny Ganz carefully disassembled the nose from our GT and installed the Steeda replacements to ensure fit. "We test-fit everything prior to paint," Ganz tells us. "It enables us to find any problems there may be, and we can address them and make modifications as needed." Once the test-fit process was complete, the panels moved to the other side of the shop where they were cleaned, sanded, and prepped for sealer and primer.
In preparation for sealer and primer, Bobby Mazur and Charles Pierce went to work, first washing both pieces with an antistatic degreaser. This not only cleans the parts, but also removes any mold residue left from the manufacturing process. The hood was then sanded in two stages. Mazur started with 180-grit sandpaper on a dry sanding block and finished with 320-grit sandpaper using a dual action (DA) sander. Pierce sanded the front fascia with 400-grit sandpaper, and then went over his work with a red Scotch-Brite pad to finish it off.
After the stock fascia is removed, Ganz swaps the fender-mounting bracket, grille...
After both pieces were prepped, they were loaded into the Welbilt FB downdraft spray booth at Bodymotion for a treatment of sealer and high-build primer. The front fascia was first coated with Sikkens Colorbuild sealer containing an adhesion promoter designed for plastic. This helps the primer and paint stick to the urethane bumper. The fascia and hood were then layered with a few coats of Sikkens Colorbuild high-build primer. After the primer was laid on the panels, Mazur dusted a very light coat of black paint over both panels called a guidecoat. "The guidecoat makes it easier to find the imperfections," Mazur tells us. "When you block-sand the surface, the darker color of the guidecoat stays in any pinholes or low spots that need to be fixed."
...and marker light to the new fascia to ensure the proper fit.
Ganz installs the new hood and front fascia, then adjusts the fenders and hood hinges...
...making sure all of the gaps are even and straight.
Once the test-fit was complete, Bobby Mazur and Charles Pierce went to work prepping the p
Sanding the guidecoat leaves dark paint in any pinholes or low spots. These imperfections
Mazur lays on the Sikkens Colorbuild sealer and Colorbuild surfacer (high-build primer) al