Home » This 700 Horsepower Supercharged GT Is The First Mustang I Have Ever Driven

This 700 Horsepower Supercharged GT Is The First Mustang I Have Ever Driven

Alanis Gt Review Ts
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When I posted about driving a 2016 Ford Mustang GT recently, I got all the usual responses.

Watch out for pedestrians!”

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Don’t take it to Cars & Coffee!”

“Keep it off the median!” 

The Mustang’s been on the wrong side of car enthusiasts’ jokes for years. But I think people joke about Mustangs because they’re afraid to admit how great they are. 

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This 2016 Ford Mustang GT is currently available for sale on Cars & Bids. Check it out and bid here

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The 2016 Mustang GT has a 5.0-liter Coyote V8 engine that makes 435 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque from the factory, and the car I drove has a ton of modifications. It was tuned by an Austin, Texas shop called ProModular Performance, and it has a Whipple supercharger, a Kooks-branded cat-back exhaust and long-tube headers, the Ford Performance Track Handling Package, Wilwood brakes, a McLeod RST clutch, and a Barton Hybrid 3 short throw shifter. I don’t have any dyno records to prove it, but the current owner said it makes about 700 horsepower. 

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This GT was also the first Mustang I’ve ever driven. Most jobs as an automotive writer don’t involve constantly driving cars; someone has to be at their desk covering the news all day, and when an interesting car pops up, it’s often on a “dibs” rotation between staffers. 

I’ve been wanting to get into a Mustang for years. My friend and colleague Kristen Lee swears by them, and I’d trust her if she told me to jump off a cliff. The GT proved Kristen right once again: Mustangs deserve so much more than the reputation we give them. 

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I picked the GT up from the current owner’s house, where its Competition Orange paint glowed against a backdrop of Texas suburbia. It had black racing stripes, a daringly low splitter with no nose-lift function, and a matching black-and-orange shift knob inside. All the mods were meant to make the car stiffer, scarier, and more race-car-like, and they did. 

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I sent Kristen a picture, clunked the car into gear, and took off. Soon, she responded: “It’s like the personification (car-sonification?) of a kid’s race-car bed.” She was right! The car—gurgling at stoplights and shrieking at any speed, even in a quiet neighborhood—made me feel like a kid. I was the Mustang guy, hissing and growling for no reason except my own joy.
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The car was excessively angry yet friendly to drive at low speeds. The clutch pedal caught first gear with ease—no lurching or biting—and the car’s low splitter made me pay extra attention to the road and any elevation changes. It leapt when I accelerated, and underneath me, the rear wheels got a bit squirrelly. I immediately let off the gas when that happened; I was in suburban Texas, and the last thing I wanted to be that day was that Mustang driver. 

I knew the Mustang would be a blast to drive, and it was. What I didn’t know was how much I’d come to appreciate the whole Mustang lineup. 

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The Ford Mustang is one of the longest-running nameplates in the car industry. It was also an immediate hit; when it launched in 1964, Ford expected to sell between 100,000 and 150,000 Mustangs in the first year. The company sold 22,000 on the first day. Even today, the Mustang is everywhere.

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Saturation can be a disservice to any car—making it less of a novelty and more of an everyday sight. But when I think about it, so many Mustangs are novelties. 

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In a single nameplate, there’s everything from a $30,000 Mustang EcoBoost to a $300,000 Mustang GTD with 800 horsepower, and they’re all considered Mustangs. But that’s just the beginning; there’s such a huge aftermarket and tuning culture around Mustangs that they’re often dripping with the owner and modder’s personality, just like the one I drove. I’m sure its next owner will tweak or modify things to make it perfectly align with their personality, too.

Alanis Quote

So often, people dismiss the Mustang as a car-meet missile or a common sight on the road. But that’s too simplistic. 

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To me, the heart of a Mustang is making it your own—so that even if the nameplate is everywhere, yours never fully blends in with the crowd. Or eats it.

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Martin English
Martin English
28 days ago

Australian resident here, where Mustangs are stupid prices.The only time I drove a Mustang, I fell in love 🙂

The background is that I had a ‘work’ conference in Las Vegas in 2018, that started the same day as my birthday. As a birthday present to myself, I went over 4 days early and rented a GT 500 to drive from LA to LV. It took me 3 days, but in my defence, I went via Utah.

Martin English
Martin English
28 days ago
Reply to  Martin English

PS forgot to mention how much i’ve missed your writing, Alanis !!

67 Oldsmobile
67 Oldsmobile
29 days ago

I can appreciate the Mustang because of the sportscar it is and generally always has been,but this particular one looks like a asshole-mobile. That being said I still kind of like it..

JJT554
JJT554
30 days ago

I’m definitely not a Ford guy, but had met a fetching lady who owned not only an Explorer Sport, but a manual transmission GT (bone stock, but with side window louvers!) which she graciously allowed me to drive, even as I slyly made Ford jokes. I finally had to admit that it was a damn good all around sporty car – good engine note and exhaust, decent clutch and shifter and gobs of torque! It even handled fairly well. Fun fact, it was the first car I got a 40+ over ticket in… and did not lose my license thanks to small town sheriff and county attorney I knew through work. Still not a Ford fan, but absolutely nothing wrong with a ‘Stang.
(Pssss-pssss-pssss to Portia!)

Last edited 30 days ago by JJT554
Ben
Ben
30 days ago

The car—gurgling at stoplights and shrieking at any speed, even in a quiet neighborhood

I actually hate this about Mustangs in my area. They’re loud, but somehow they managed to make a V8 sound bad. Or maybe they’re all EcoBoosts.

That said, I do love a good gurgling idle. I still remember getting waved down on a back road near Galena, IL by a couple of women looking for directions, in what I assume was a cammed Mustang that sounded like it was boiling tar under the hood. In retrospect I’m not sure why I didn’t offer to escort them to their destination, but then my lack of anything resembling game is the stuff of legends. 😀

Cool Dave
Cool Dave
30 days ago

My ‘08 is a California Special, basic bolt on stuff, makes maybe 400hp on a good day. I don’t get to drive it often enough but every time I do it’s a reminder of why I love it, it’s fun! It’s loud, it’s got a choppy idle, it’s simple and mechanical and it’s not full of screens and gizmos.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
30 days ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

While the 5.0 Coyote is (rightfully) praised for the advance that it was, I remember a slightly contrarian piece at the time mourning the loss of the 4.6 Modular a little in that it was properly raw and uncouth, and took some effort to work around town.

I always liked that – the Coyote is a good engine, period, but the Modular was a good Mustang engine, at least for that era. Mine’s 20+ years old, and generally runs great but has developed all sorts of little ticks and unevenness that makes driving her even more fun.

Last edited 30 days ago by Jack Trade
Cool Dave
Cool Dave
30 days ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

You articulated better than I could my love for the objectively worse 4.6. The Coyote is a good V8 for sure, the closest thing Ford has to an LS I would argue, BUT man that 4.6 in both 2 and 3 valve configurations just has a sound and feel to it that the 5.0 can’t match.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
30 days ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Your comment about the simplicity and mechanical nature really got to me, as that’s exactly what I love about bad-old-days Mustangs. They’re visceral in the best of ways.

BTW that rear diffuser on the CS is one of my favorite bits. So distinctive and low key cool.

Racer Esq.
Racer Esq.
30 days ago

I do not mean this to be personal because this is a phenomenon across the industry. However, it is interesting that we have a generation of product reviewers that, for example, have not driven the highest-selling sports car in the world (depending on counting methodology and definitions) as a frame of reference.

Citrus
Citrus
30 days ago
Reply to  Racer Esq.

I’m a huge film nerd and yet haven’t seen Scarface.

People have wild blind spots sometimes.

Racer Esq.
Racer Esq.
30 days ago

I was in suburban Texas. . .”

Texas is the only place where people refer to the suburbs in relative to the state instead of a particular city.

Somewhere in the Texas Triangle, same diff

BolognaBurrito
BolognaBurrito
30 days ago

Tinted taillights and headlights? What a friggen’ douche nozzle.

Racer Esq.
Racer Esq.
30 days ago
Reply to  BolognaBurrito

The convenient thing about a Mustang is that the most unique, “cool”, thing a person can do is leave it stock.

JKcycletramp
JKcycletramp
1 month ago

I had a significant amount of suspension work done by ProModular Performance, on a 2012 BOSS. They were great to work with and I’m really happy with the result.

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 month ago

Of all the Mustangs out there, I want to drive Black Sunshine:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_svlYSvb7jM

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
1 month ago

I own an ’02, nothing special…but she’s still, after all these years, magic in my eyes.

I’ve also driven others, from originals to contemporary models, and it’s fascinating how the Mustang is transitioning from a pony car to a pure sports car. Mine is from the very end of the pony car era…starting in 2005, they became a quite modern, relatively well put together machine. I keep waiting for a new, more streamlined pony emblem.

Mustangs are indeed common, always have been. But so is a hamburger and a beer, and that doesn’t lessen how good they taste.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
30 days ago

Nah. What’s really moving is that freakin’ car. I’ve never had that kind of Mustang experience, and frankly, would be afraid I’d wreck it.

I think we underappreciate the courage that good automotive jouros have to be able to get in something like that (that doesn’t belong to them and is usually pretty pricey) and wring it out, just to be able to tell us what it’s really like!

Last edited 30 days ago by Jack Trade
Turbotictac
Turbotictac
29 days ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

I always tell people I love my 04 Mach 1 because it is one of the last analog muscle cars. When I sit in it and close my eyes it feels and sounds like a much older car in the best ways possible

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
29 days ago
Reply to  Turbotictac

Esp. given how you’ve hotted her up… 😉

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
29 days ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

That is true! I am frustrated with it because it keeps eating throw out bearings but I love driving and listening to it enough to deal with that. Well, listening to it besides the loud chirping noise of the tob…Really wish it had a hydraulic clutch system but oh well.

I am planning on going on one of the drag weeks in the relatively near future in an 04 Cobra that I helped with some but was mostly built by one of my friends. It makes ~1300hp and still has a 4.6L albeit with very few stock parts remaining. Also still a T56 but again heavily upgraded. I will let you know so you can catch us on the livestream lol. It will most likely be Sick Summer if the car is ready.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
29 days ago
Reply to  Turbotictac

Please do on that livestream!

I’ve replaced the TOB on mine once, and have another on the shelf in case I need it. Apparently, Ford upgraded the part like a decade ago, so while my stock-from-the-factory one chirped, the replacement (also Ford) hasn’t at all in like 8 years. Go figure.

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
29 days ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

I have been through 4 in 15k miles. The last two were Ford Racing heavy duty and each lasted less than 2k miles before getting noisy. I think I may try a standard Ford instead of the HD next. It is frustrating due to needing to remove my passenger headers collector each time in order to remove the TR3650. Also because I cannot seem to pinpoint what is causing their premature wear.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
29 days ago
Reply to  Turbotictac

Wow headers. Of course given your setup, but I remember way back looking at them b/c cool, and then learning what a complete pain they are on the mod motors. Not only the install, but even periodically accessing the bolts to make sure they’re tight.

Even the guy I talked to at the Ford Racing hotline basically said don’t do it unless you really need to.

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
29 days ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

Mine had them when I purchased it. The only way I will ever be able to remove them is with the engine out of the car. Given how bad the hardware looks I expect it will be difficult to remove them even then and likely would leave several broken in the head. I don’t intend on doing so unless I proceed with a built engine. Even then…maybe not.

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
29 days ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

I do have a tubular k-member however, which makes it easier at least.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
29 days ago
Reply to  Turbotictac

That’s what the FRPP guy asked me. “Stock K-member?” “Yeah.” “Then really don’t do it.”

He did send me the install instruction sheet though just in case though. 🙂

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
28 days ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

A lot of it depends on brand. And it is much easier on a 2v to do. But honestly it isn’t much in the way of gains unless you’re going the boosted route or max effort n/a. The shop I worked at typically saw something like 15-20hp total gains between headers and tuning on 2vs and realistically most of that is just from having it dyno tuned not any gains from the headers. The stock aren’t much of a restriction at the power level they are in.

MATTinMKE
MATTinMKE
1 month ago

Formerly owned a 2002 Mustang GT convertible with the stick. It was the only “performance” car to actively resist my attempts to drive quickly. The stick was clunky, the steering was slow, and the cable-actuated clutch weighed a ton. Sold it and moved on, and never looked back.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
1 month ago
Reply to  MATTinMKE

Own almost (mine’s a coupe) exactly that one myself. I love her mostly for all the unintentional retro charm, like the things you (fairly) cite. For me, it’s like owning a vintage Mustang that has airbags and ABS.

Last edited 1 month ago by Jack Trade
MATTinMKE
MATTinMKE
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

DT said it best, there’s room in the great tent of cars for fans of all kinds.

All that being said, I’d love to take a new mustang for a spin.

Knowonelse
Knowonelse
1 month ago

I drove an early Mustange once. The seating position was terrible, almost sitting flat on the floorboards. Didn’t want to drive one again.

Neomancer Nz
Neomancer Nz
1 month ago

Is this by Alanis or Peter Vieira?

Greensoul
Greensoul
1 month ago

Glad you started out driving one of the best Mustangs of the breed. If the first Mustang you drove would have been a, oh lets say, 1979 model with the 2.3 LIMA 4 and a 3 speed auto, you would never want to drive a Mustang again! Feel free to ask me how I know that to be factual…..

Dolsh
Dolsh
1 month ago

I’m pretty sure I need to get a Mustang eventually. I bought a Miata over a Mustang 4 years ago….and now I think I should just get both. Must have V8!

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
29 days ago
Reply to  Dolsh

Definitely both. I have had 6 Miatas and 3 Mustangs. Currently still have 2 Miatas and 1 of the Mustangs and my brother owns one of the others.

Dolsh
Dolsh
28 days ago
Reply to  Turbotictac

So what you’re saying is, I should get another Miata, AND a Mustang.

I like where you’re headed with that.

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
27 days ago
Reply to  Dolsh

Precisely that

Mr E
Mr E
1 month ago

I’ve been driving a Mustang of some sort since 2017 and I haven’t killed a pedestrian/spun out of control/jumped a median/etc yet.

Am I doing something wrong?

Wolfpack57
Wolfpack57
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr E

Check your tire pressures (digitally)

Austin Mercer
Austin Mercer
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr E

Yes. I’ve spun one 180 degrees in the middle of the Highway. Granted, it was a 67 with 4 wheel drums, and i panic braked to avoid deer, but loosing control with a stang is required at some point. My sister slid.her 97 into a ditch because of a light dusting of snow. It is a right of passage

VanGuy
VanGuy
30 days ago
Reply to  Austin Mercer

I’d love to personally experience the horrors of 4-wheel drum brakes in a controlled environment.

My ’97 Econoline had rear drum brakes and I always figured they were decorative. Didn’t feel any different the one time they were replaced over my ownership of it.

Austin Mercer
Austin Mercer
30 days ago
Reply to  VanGuy

They are good training for ice. Especially if they are not right and one locks up before the rest. You learn to not trust them.

Mpphoto
Mpphoto
30 days ago
Reply to  Austin Mercer

In high school, a friend had a then-new 4th gen Mustang. He lost control accelerating from a stop light and hit a tree. He got in some trouble from that crash because he had a knife in his glove box with a blade that exceeded legal length. Not sure how the cops found that. Maybe the crash caused the glove box to open and it fell out.

The same kid also eluded the cops when speeding. I’m not sure if it was in the Mustang or a different car. He didn’t pull over and kept driving to his house. He thought if he was in his house, he couldn’t get a ticket for speeding. Even as teens, we knew what he did was ridiculous. But he’s a nice guy and successful now!

Turbotictac
Turbotictac
29 days ago
Reply to  Austin Mercer

I briefly owned a 67 with 4 wheel manual drums. I took it to get tires put on and the employee of the tire shop nearly ran his manager over and drove in to the tire machine because he didn’t expect the brakes. He came into the lobby and asked me to pull it back out because he was scared to when it was done.

I have owned a Mustang of some sort since 2011 with the exception of a gap of around 4 months. In that entire time I have only truly spun once which was very early on to me getting my first one around 2012-13 when I was fresh out of high school. I took a left turn too aggressively and ended up doing a 180 ending up right back at the stop sign. No harm no foul luckily. I did have one instance shortly after my supercharger install on my 04 Mach 1 where I overcooked a sharp u-turn a bit but was able to save that one so not counting it.

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