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Discussion Starter #1
NASA Mid-atlantic region Member. Took my 05 roush mustang to VIR last weekend and had a blast. Im really hooked on this sport and really dont want to take my roush out again. Im thinking about getting another stang, not sure which year would be best to set up just as a track car....Fox, or SN-95. Any opinions of advice is appriciated.
 

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The SN95 is probably the best balance of cost vs. performance. But Fox bodies can be had for very little money, and can be made to perform really well with a little thought.

Pay aprticular attention to the brakes and suspension. Lots of folks get hung up with engine power, and that's only half the battle. Good brakes can shave 2-3 seconds off your lap time.

The other thought is - where are you going? If you're looking at wheel to wheel racing, then you want to start out with something that does or can easily meet AI or CMC specs. But if you're interested in TT, then the sky's the limit.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have to finish HPDE first, but want to eventually get into CMC, so I would want to build the car to those specs
 

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Fox bodied cars pros: Cheap, easy to work on, tons of parts available, lightweight.

Fox bodied cons: Flexible chassis, drum rear brakes, tiny front brakes, smallish wheels.

SN95 pros: Slightly more rigid chassis, 4 wheel disc brakes standard, 94-95 have the 5.0L, Cobra has larger brakes and more powerful head/cam/intake combo

SN95 cons: Several hundred lbs heavier than Fox, 5.0L calibration sucks for mods, 96-98 have anemic 4.6L while 99-04's 4.6L has more power but still more complicated than 5.0L, more expensive to start with.

If I was looking to start from scratch, I'd be looking for a 94-95 Cobra. It has the large brakes and the better version of the 5.0L engine along with the benefits of the slightly improved chassis.

If I couldn't find one of those, it would depend on price. If you can get a Fox for a couple grand less than an SN95, you can put on the Cobra brakes and the cage will pretty much equalize the chassis anyway. All the bolt on suspension pieces are a similar price for either chassis.
 

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I got lucky and already had the car I tell people to start out with, the 94-95 GT or Cobra. Really the 94 -98 are great starting points. I just don't know enough about the 96-98 4.6's to give advice on. The 4-wheel disk brakes 5-lug are a big plus. These are things you wont need to spend money on with a fox. Also the chassis is stiffer then a fox but you'd still want to weld on subframes, makes a word of difference. Now since your looking for a track car you can find a fox already with the good stuff installed. Being that the fox is like 300 pounds lighter that be the way to go. From my experience you can find a nice dedicated track car be it fox or SN-95 already fitted with all the goodies for cheap. You'll spend much less money buying a car thats been already prepped for track events but just know what your buying. Some guys prefer to start fresh with a stock car and work their way from there but it cost more. I love my car but if I where looking for a track only car, I'd look for one thats been modded for road racing.
 

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94-95 GTs sound like the way to go everywhere I read. Don't waste your money on a Cobra though, you can upgrade a GT to Cobra brake specs for a couple hundred dollars, a Cobra will cost a couple thousand more.
 

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do not buy a car to build buy one built. They are all over the place for $5k-$60k Its way cheaper!
If you buy a 94-95 gt in good condition it will cost you $2500- on up.
You will have $5k in it in tires,wheels,shocks,struts,rear end gears,springs,brakes etc. And it will be lower than what you took to the track for your first hpde by far. Do a search on line for an American Iron car you will be amazed at what you can get for $10k.
I bought my race car with trailer for $9k
Full cage with nascar side impact, full fiberglass body,475 hp motor,tko 500 trans, 2 sets of wheels,brakes, fuel cell, sla suspension.
I got $50k in invoices from the build. Do not waste your money.
 

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do not buy a car to build buy one built. They are all over the place for $5k-$60k Its way cheaper!
If you buy a 94-95 gt in good condition it will cost you $2500- on up.
You will have $5k in it in tires,wheels,shocks,struts,rear end gears,springs,brakes etc. And it will be lower than what you took to the track for your first hpde by far. Do a search on line for an American Iron car you will be amazed at what you can get for $10k.
I bought my race car with trailer for $9k
Full cage with nascar side impact, full fiberglass body,475 hp motor,tko 500 trans, 2 sets of wheels,brakes, fuel cell, sla suspension.
I got $50k in invoices from the build. Do not waste your money.
Wow! what a deal that was.....

If you have to build your own, as some feel they have to. Consider an 05 V6. Your going to change dam near everything in the car anyway. They are pretty inexpensive. The front geometry and the initial stiffness of the 05s are way ahead of the earlier cars. The Foxes are good after a bunch of mods but do not really start to handle unless you totaly change the rear suspension, either torque arm or watts link.
 

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Wow! what a deal that was.....

If you have to build your own, as some feel they have to. Consider an 05 V6. Your going to change dam near everything in the car anyway. They are pretty inexpensive. The front geometry and the initial stiffness of the 05s are way ahead of the earlier cars. The Foxes are good after a bunch of mods but do not really start to handle unless you totaly change the rear suspension, either torque arm or watts link.
Yup!
3 link rear end with pan hard bar, front end is better also. Stick a cage in it and modular motor in it pads , ss line, tires and it would be pretty fast from there. Lot less to do thats for sure.
 

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The single BEST track car to build is:
1) one you can afford
2) one you can do most of the work on yourself
3) one you can afford to DRIVE as much as possible

Do NOT worry about the HP number... rather, worry about the number of HOURS you can spend behind the wheel...

Welcome to the afliction and infection that is performance driving. Carry on...

Jeff Lacina
Owner / Lead Instructor
Track Guys Performance Driving Events
 

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The single BEST track car to build is:
1) one you can afford
2) one you can do most of the work on yourself
3) one you can afford to DRIVE as much as possible

Do NOT worry about the HP number... rather, worry about the number of HOURS you can spend behind the wheel...

Welcome to the afliction and infection that is performance driving. Carry on...

Jeff Lacina
Owner / Lead Instructor
Track Guys Performance Driving Events
Man, that is the truth! I race against a lot of other cars, and drivers. I regularly beat guys with a greater power:weight ratio. And I get beat by guys with smaller ratios. The differance is seat time. If you can cut the apex just right, lap after lap, you'll be pretty darn fast in an "underpowered" car.

Last year, One guy was driving a early 70's Mazda B1200 pick up. It had a new Mazda engine, trans, and suspension, I think out of a miata. No power adders. In the corners he was blindingly fast, I couldn't quit keep up with him. Once we hit the front stretch, I could easily catch up, and could have passed well before turn 1. But for 3-4 laps I hung on his tail, and learned his line.

It didn't long before I was a lot closer at the last turn. Still not as fast as he is, but better. The differance there was seat time. He'd had a lot of time on that track and really knew the line, and how much was too much.

Seat time, seat time, seat time. One of the reasons I'm not interested in Autocross.
 

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This is also the set up on the car, knowing the tires etc... you aint taking no stock suspension mustang and beatting a mazda race car. You still need a good car. Stock brakes and tires will not do the trick. HP does not matter much 300 hp vs 400 hp in the same car is a drivers race. But there are suspension packages that will help alot. A stock mustang set up vs a griggs sla is a no brainer. A miata has a great suspension set up far greater than a mustang with half the weight. I hate those cars but have to give it to mazda for building a great car stock. They are fast on tight tracks.
I went from a 03 cobra with 460rwhp full coil overs, CC plates,888r's, hawk dtc70 and 80's to a 366 hp full race car and was way faster. 2 secs off AI lap times at Cal speedway. The car does matter too!
 

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I think you should run the Roush. That's what it was made for. I keep hoping I'll see more of the newer stangs at some of these events, but it's mainly the older ones.

Last weekend there were probably around 50 cars at TWS and only two S197's(one was mine lol). The rest were SN95, Foxes, Vettes(probably 1/4 of the cars were vettes), GT500's and other misc cars....even a GTO.
 

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Also, you can look on the A Sedan (SCCA class) site for cars for sale. Specifically, older, non-competitive cars, or rollers. You might find the bargain "found in Barn" car, that might fit your wallet, and your plans. Anything pre-built is better than building yourself, both for time and expense.

As said above, for now, concentrate on getting the most out of your money for seat time. Leave the car building/modifying for later, when you have a clear idea of where you will end up.

Good racing.

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for all the advise, I decided to buy a car that had the work done already, after figuring the expanse to build, seemed like a no brainer.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Here is some of the work that has been done to it...Dont know how well she'll do, hell I havent even seen it in person yet, I work in Iraq and my wife and father in-law went to pick it up for me. I have video, it sounds good...

302 block stroker 342 cu.in.
forged flat top pistons
cast crank,
I-Beam Rods
Main Bearing gridle
Ford B-cam
Roller Timing Chain
roller Lifters
crane 1.7 roller rockers
reworked Iron heads cut 20 thousands
Mallory Unilites Ignition
aluminum flywheel
king cobra clutch
hooker headers
Edlebrock AirGap intake
Holley 650 double pumper
8.8 rear with 3.55 gear
limited slip clutch pack
Ford World Class T-5 transmission with 2.95 first gear
Steeda Tri-Ax shifter
Ford racing aluminum driveshaft
Maximum MotorSports Suspension components
 

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Sweet. Buying one already built usually saves some big bux. Looks like a lot of fun.

I'm certainly not an expert in AI rules. But I see things on this car that I don't see on the AI cars in my region. And I see some things missing that I'm used to seeing. But, again, I'm not an expert on the rules.

Of course, for HPDE, who cares about those rules?
 

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I think you should run the Roush. That's what it was made for. I keep hoping I'll see more of the newer stangs at some of these events, but it's mainly the older ones.
+1. The first 2 years after buying my Roush, it was a car show car and driven often. After getting hooked on the road course sport, its now pretty much just a road course car. I guess after all these years, I've done bout all there is to do and this is something different, exciting and safe.
 
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