There was no doubt that the focus of Ford's SEMA Show booth was the all-new 2010 Mustang, with a total of nine modified Stangs, plus the all-new Cobra Jet model. Ford originally scheduled eight cars, but it looks like Galpin Auto Sports snuck in a second entry. The cars were built by tuner shops, race shops and even in-house, with most of the cars featuring parts available to the public – rather than one-off custom items made just for the SEMA Show. After all, the Mustang continues to be the most popular car to modify in the world.
First up is the 3dCarbon Mustang, which recreates the "Boy Racer" Mustang that the shop first built back in 2005, based on the previous generation car. Bright red with white stripes, this car takes take the Stang's classic lines and add some wild sport compact-themed aerodynamics. Still, in person it was somewhat underwhelming. What is more impressive, however, are the rest of the car's modifications with a complete Steeda suspension setup, a Brembo brake upgrade and NC Forged three-piece 22-inch wheels.
The only convertible of the bunch is from Galpin Auto Sports and as much as we mocked the Ford Vehicle Personalization Mustang when we first heard of this lineup of cars for SEMA, the Galpin car is our new whipping boy. It's not all bad, with a pretty aggressive widebody conversion although as much as we like the wheels (a set of massive Forgiato rollers), they just don't seem right on a Stang. The real travesty, however, is out back where an overly ornate rear diffuser just makes us nauseous. Under the hood there are 550 ponies thanks to a Ford Racing super pack, and as silly as those wheels might look, the rear 345 tires will be needed with all that power.
In the sheetmetal, the H&R Springs 2010 Mustang is as impressive as Ford's teaser photos led us to believe. The car features a Street Scene aero kit along with an APR rear spoiler and some nice LED lighting. It sits low on an H&R Springs coilover suspension, with upgraded sway bars and some track spacers to push the 20-inch OZ Superleggera III wheels to the far corners of the car. Other highlights include a Vortech supercharger and a Flowmaster stainless steel exhaust.
The Christmas tree loving team at Paul's High Performance have built a beast for low 60 footers and high trap speeds. The car features a big functional hood from Cervinis and custom built rear wing. Under the hood, there's a 4.6-liter Ford V8 with plenty of Ford Racing parts, including new heads and a new valvetrain, cam kit, throttle body and long tube headers. The car also gets a 9-inch rear end with 4:56 gears. Other highlights include the Weld Racing Torq-Thrust Pro wheels and Mickey Thompson drag slicks out back.
One of the most highly anticipated Mustangs debuting at the SEMA Show comes from Steeda Autosports. Teased for months ahead of the event, the Steeda Q Series package is a well-rounded group of modifications designed to deliver improved performance in all areas. The track-tuned, street legal package includes new springs, sway bars, strut tower braces, a bump steer kit and aluminum lower control arms. Other highlights include an exhaust, intake and short throw shifter kit as well as Brembo brakes and Steeda Spyder wheels. And of course, there's the new Steeda Autosports aero kit.
When we first heard about the Street Scene Equipment 2010 Mustang it didn't sound all that special, but in person it's much more impressive - although we could still do without those rear quarter window covers. Otherwise, the car sports a complete aerodynamic package including items like a new grille and hood. Other highlights include a Vortech supercharger, Headman headers, a Magnaflow exhaust, H&R coilover springs and 20-inch Giovanna wheels.
Even more impressive than we had expected is the Vaughn Gittin Jr. RTR-C 2010 Mustang. With a complete carbon fiber body, the car also gets a set of carbon fiber HRE wheels. Named for championship drifter Vaughn Gittin Jr., the car was built by Autosport Dynamics (ASD) in Charlotte, NC and retails for $135,000. Other highlights include a 550-hp Ford Racing Super Pack upgrade under the hood.
In reality the Ford Vehicle Personalization Mustang isn't nearly as bad as Ford's teaser pic has led us to believe. Assembled using Ford Custom Accessories, apart from the swirly side decals and interior design, it's not so bad. In fact, even the gold wheels aren't nearly as obviously horrible as we expected. We do like the carbon black paint, but we'll stop here while we're still in a good mood.
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