Words: Rob Raton
Photos: Erik Breihof
I’ve always had a thing for Mustangs, but every few years when I tried to buy one, it would fall through. When I saw the new redesign of the 2010 model, I really fell in love. Shortly after, I finally saw the specs on the new 5.0 Liter v8 for the 2011 model, and then I knew it was time to finally get a Stang. I purchased the car in January of 2011 and it was actually a used car on the lot. It was marked at a good price and only had 4,000 miles, so it seemed like a pretty good deal, especially considering I could barely find them new with the options that I felt were “must haves”.The car stayed stock for around 4 months before the modding bug bit me. AT first, an ECU tune, intake, gears and exhaust saw their way onto my car, but soon, H&R Super Sport springs, and RTR wheels were added. The car was nice but still pretty basic, and stayed that way for around a year and a half. In the summer of 2012, the car was keyed by the ex-boyfriend of a girl I was which led me to a complete respray by a local body shop.In the fall of 2012, I attended H2Oi with a few good VW friends and saw videos of the Air Lift Performance mustang at the ALP booth. My best friend Bob had his MK6 GTI bagged for a while, and it made my mustang look like a monster truck when he would air out next to me. I slept on the decision for a while, and did a lot of searching on the Internet for bagged 2011+ Mustangs, with only 2 or 3 results. I wanted something different. I wanted something low. I wanted Air Lift.While the management was back ordered for a little while, the strut kit was ordered and shipped just in time for spring. I eventually came into contact with Jeremy Hart of Air Lift Performance on Facebook and he invited me for a booth spot for Carlisle Ford Nationals, which is a huge Ford event in PA. That’s where I eventually met Formula D competitor Vaughn Gittin Jr. Later that year he awarded me his celebrity pick at Americanmuscle.com’s car show. I also obtained a small sponsorship from the good folks at Hurst and Flowmaster because of that show. That fall, a friend of mine was involved in a serious accident where his car flipped over a few times. His car was totaled but luckily he walked away completely safe. I ended up purchasing his Paxton supercharger, and the fuel system upgrades that he had on his car. The install took some time due to me having to replace certain sections of intercooler piping, but the work was well worth it. The car was dynoed at 610rwhp and 500ft/lbs with the dyno tune from Rev Auto and managed to run an 11.5 second 1/4 mile at 125 mph with a very soft launch on some old drag radials. In the spring of 2015 I was given an early prototype rear spoiler from a local Maryland company that specializes in parts for airplanes. I also obtained an early prototype set of RTR fender flares for the car around that same time. Cutting into the fenders and quarter panels was a little scary, but overall the install wasn’t that bad.I spent most of the season testing out different plasti dip colors, and styles on the car. Even doing a harlequin scheme for H2Oi weekend in Ocean City, MD. A few weeks after the flares were installed I decided to dip it again with an idea that I Photoshopped on the car a long time ago. I had a lot of help from my friend Brandon Fugitt with the vectoring printing of the main graphic. I also decided it was time for a new hood and a tiger racing hood which I had been wanting for a while, became available at the right time. I’m very happy with where the car is currently but I have new custom seats by TMI going in this week and maybe a few other little mods.
I know that no matter what happens, I’ll end up tweaking the look of my mustang for years to come.
Words: Rob Raton