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S550 2021 Ford Mustang Mach 1 Build Thread Profile - S550 Mustangs

18
61
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Houston, TX
Things are starting to come along with the Mach 1 as parts have finally begun to arrive over the past few weeks. My initial aim is to convert my "base" Mach 1 to a full handling package Mach 1, and then build the car up further from that. Some of the stripped and replaced "base" Mach 1 parts will be kept as spares and/or experimented with on the 2016 GT.

The GT500 spoiler and gurney flap were the first to arrive and came in gloss black. I had my favorite local body shop spray them in Ford Magnetic with a satin/matte clear coat. Install was straight forward, but removing the base spoiler and all the tape required a heat gun and was a pain.

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Days later, the secondary front splitter arrived. This install was also relatively straightforward; however, the provided instructions are actually for the GTPP2 splitter and not 100% accurate. 8 screws hold it in along with 21 plastic rivets...we will see how long the rivets last.

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Most recently, I received the HP bird nest rims and had Michelin PS4S's mounted on them. 305/30/19 front and 325/30/R19 rear. I opted away from the cup 2's this go around to have a little more wet weather flexibility with the car.
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20210420_212135.jpg
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The fronts poke out quite a bit and it is obvious why the HP cars get a molding on the front fender to cover the poke. I should receive the moldings in a few weeks.
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Over this past weekend, the Vorshlag camber plates and brake deflectors arrived. I will install these once the HP specific front springs arrive so I can install all of that at the same time.
20210417_114959.jpg

I am still waiting on many parts, but she is coming along. I should start getting the rest over the next few weeks including HP specific:
Front fender molding
GT500 mud flaps
Rear stabilizer bar
Rear springs
Front springs
Possible rear seat delete

She also now has a track dedicated set of Gloc R12/R10 pads and blank HC centric rotors (not yet used). Street brakes are stock rotors with hawk ceramic pads.

My next track weekend is May 1/2 and with a little luck, I'll be able to get her out on the track with most of this installed.
 
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yotah1

Ford Employee
334
442
Detroit
Nice looking build. Why did you not get the handling pack from the get go? It was not available I assume?
Could you give me the part numbers for the front and rear HP wheels (birds nest)? I've been thinking about getting a set for my 350.
 
18
61
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Houston, TX
Nice looking build. Why did you not get the handling pack from the get go? It was not available I assume?
Could you give me the part numbers for the front and rear HP wheels (birds nest)? I've been thinking about getting a set for my 350.

Thanks!

Here are the part numbers for the HP wheels:
Front: MR3Z 1007 D
Rear: MR3Z 1007 E

I didn't start with an HP car primarily because I had a short time window to work with and the HP cars were not available at the time. It happens to work out though - one of the first things I would have done on an HP car is replace the castor/camber plates (my experience with the stock adjustable plates on our GT500 is that they are not very friendly for adjusting on the fly or any kind of fine adjustment whatsoever). Also - those Cup 2 tires on the HP car would have died on me pretty quickly and I would have made the move to the PS4S for flexibility to have a wet weather/track travel car. On top of that, I happened to need the base Mach 1 wheels/springs for another project I have going on - so everything is going to good use!

With the exception of the wheels, it has been a relatively cheap conversion. The handling package is $3500 and, all in (including the wheels), it has cost me about $6500 doing it this way. Considering the tire and camber plate swap I would have done anyways on top of the ridiculous markups I've seen at some dealers lately for the HP cars, along with my need for the base Mach 1 wheels and springs, there may be a case to be had that my cost evens out or may be a tad cheaper - but that wasn't really my goal - if nothing else, it's a fun project and has helped me learn more about the car 👍
 
18
61
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Houston, TX
As of last week, I completed installation of the camber plates, rear stabilizer bar, rear springs, front springs, fender molding and rear mud flaps. This pretty much finalizes conversion of the car to handling package specs, albeit enhanced a bit with the Vorshlag camber plates and brake deflectors.

I had it out out the track this past Saturday and fortunately had perfectly dry track conditions for once, so was able to really push her for a bit. Compared to the base form of the Mach 1, the car is now much stickier, more deliberate and firmer - still great ride quality on the street.

Alignment Specs:
Front Camber: -2.7
Front Toe: 1/16" total out
Rear Camber: -1.5
Rear Toe: 1/8" total in

Here is a video of one of the track sessions:

Car mileage up to 1800 miles, 800 of which are track miles.

Up next:
Harness/Bar System
When replacements needed - Girodisc rotors
 
64
30
Exp. Type
Time Attack
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Bulgaria
Love the build. Do you mind posting part numbers for Swing or link where you bought it ? And for the front splitter and moldings ? I think you are the first to do such conversion so parts list will be great.
 
3
3
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Gilroy, CA
Love the build too, great info. I have basically the same car and was thinking about adding bits and pieces from the HP option myself, so part numbers would be much appreciated.
 
3
3
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Gilroy, CA
Also, I would like to run my car stock for a couple track days before I start making any changes. Just curious if you spent any time on the track stock, or if you or anyone else has any advice for me before my first track day. I’ve done a lot of drag racing, but no track days yet, outside of SPEEDVEGAS.
 

JDee

Ancient Racer
1,270
1,130
Exp. Type
W2W Racing
Exp. Level
20+ Years
halfway between Mosport and Shannonville
If you've never done any road course work then I'd strongly suggest signing up with a group that can provide you with an instructor. That is going to be worth more than anything you would need to do to the car, assuming you've got the correct air pressures in the tires. Seriously, the way you start can make a huge difference down the road.
 
3
3
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Gilroy, CA
If you've never done any road course work then I'd strongly suggest signing up with a group that can provide you with an instructor. That is going to be worth more than anything you would need to do to the car, assuming you've got the correct air pressures in the tires. Seriously, the way you start can make a huge difference down the road.
I signed up for one of the Track Night in America events. It sounds like they provide some basic instruction to beginners, but next time I’ll look for an event where I can get more one-on-one instruction.
 
18
61
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Houston, TX
Love the build too, great info. I have basically the same car and was thinking about adding bits and pieces from the HP option myself, so part numbers would be much appreciated.

Thanks!

@bnight Apologies for the delay - been a busy week. Here are the part numbers I used (note: the spoiler/gurney is now available on ford performance for cheaper - these part numbers are for the GT500 spoiler before the cheaper variant was offered)

HP Mach 1:
Front Springs (x2): KR3Z-5310-D
Rear Spring (x1): JR3Z-5560-M
Rear Spring (x1): JR3Z-5560-C
Rear Stabilizer Bar: JR3Z-5A772-A
Stabilizer Bar Insulator/Bushings (x2): F2GZ-5493-C
Front Bird nest Wheels (x2): MR3Z-1007-D
Rear Bird nest Wheels (x2): MR3Z-1007-E
Front fender lip molding: VMR3Z-16268-A
Lower Splitter: MR3Z-17626-AA
Spoiler: KR3Z-6344210-AA
Gurney Flap: KR3Z-6344210-AB
Adjustable Strut/Camber Plates: Do yourself a favor and go Vorshlag or something else - I do not like the Ford adjustable plates.

Non-HP Mach 1:
Front Springs (x2): JR3Z-5310-E
Rear Spring (x1): JR3Z-5560-R
Rear Spring (x1): JR3Z-5560-N
Rear Stabilizer Bar: FR3Z-5A772-E
Stabilizer Bar Insulator/Bushings (x2): F2GZ-5493-C (same on both cars)
 
Last edited:
18
61
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Houston, TX
Also, I would like to run my car stock for a couple track days before I start making any changes. Just curious if you spent any time on the track stock, or if you or anyone else has any advice for me before my first track day. I’ve done a lot of drag racing, but no track days yet, outside of SPEEDVEGAS.

I did run this car stock for two track weekends - the first time was with 40-50 miles on the odometer! Brake pads are the first thing you are going to want to address - the stock ones will likely work OK for you since it is your first event and you will *probably* be easier on the brakes. After your first weekend, you will likely be faster and have a bit more confidence - those stock brake pads wont last you for very long. The only reason I ran the stock pads was because I took the car out on the track they day after I bought it and didn't have a set of track pads to put on it. I put track pads on the second weekend and it was a much better experience. The second thing you will want to address, especially as you get quicker, is to change out the brake fluid with a higher temp variant. I am using Castrol SRF - I need it because I am starting to get to the point where I am really hard on the brakes and getting them quite hot.

In base form, the Mach 1 feels like a refined PP1/PP2 GT. There is a solid, notable difference when it is changed over to the HP variant - it is firmer and more direct/responsive. I believe the increased size of the contact patch with the wheels made the biggest difference, and then the suspension changes dial everything in to accommodate that. I came to find that when I was running the Mach 1 in base form, it was also REALLY hard on the shoulders of those 255 tires in the front due to the lack of negative camber. Adjustable camber plates did fix this - just be prepared to see some excess wear on the shoulders even after your first event until you can implement some negative camber.

The last thing I would suggest is to get a oil/air separator catch can - cheap insurance and easy to install. I just installed the Ford Performance M-6766-A50A separator, as the car seems to be eating a little bit of oil (not surprising given that it has seen mostly track miles).
 

yotah1

Ford Employee
334
442
Detroit
Love this car, best combo of colour and options you can spec on the Mach 1. That was pretty much the spec we used for the validation model in the studio and how I kept sketching it during the design development. Mark Kaski did an amazing job on those wheels (however I went to Ford and they quoted me 1200$ per wheel for them, so I'll go with Apex EC7s on my GT350 track setup)..

Looks like you're enjoying the car to its fullest potential, nice to see it being flocked around the track regularly as we intended it!
 
18
61
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Houston, TX
Its been a while but there are some updates to report. During the summer "offseason", we did a 2500 mile road trip to North Carolina from Houston in the Mach 1 to do the Mach 1 track attack, which was great! I got a bunch of scenic photos of the Mach 1 along the blue ridge parkway and definitely had a lot of fun pushing this car around on the amazing roads western North Carolina has to offer. Here are a few of my favorites from the trip:
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After returning from North Carolina, and during the remainder of the short offseason, my APR studs arrived and I installed them all around. These have made it significantly easier to thread open lug nuts onto the studs given how deep the recess is for the lug wells on the Mach 1 HP wheels. Also, no more concerns of ballooning the OEM closed lugs.

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Given the amount of track days the car had seen at this point (10), I also changed the transmission fluid to BG Syncroshift II. The rear differential fluid was also changed to BG Ultra-Guard 75W-140.

With two track weekends in a row coming up, I decided to make some new track numbers for the car. I am pretty happy with the result:
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The wife and I then recently did two track weekends in a row, one at MSR Houston and then this past weekend, we took the Mach 1 to Eagles Canyon raceway in Decatur, Texas. We went in with 10 track days (mix of mostly dry and some wet days) on the PS4S tires and after day 12, the shoulders began chunking and were starting to break down about 25% more after each session, and lap times were increasing quite a bit each lap (all weekend) despite pushing the car...so I called it quits after the third session of day 2 to save the brakes a bit and not make the tires worse for the drive home to Houston.

Here is one of the few videos I got from the weekend:

As you can hear in the video, the tires never stop screaming except for the straightaways. The car was set at -3 degrees camber, which should have been plenty to mitigate the shoulder damage. I do think I am making some amateur mistakes and overdrove the corners here, especially since this was my first time learning a new track, and a technical one at that with LOTS of grip. Braking too soon, throttling the turns too early and essentially abusing the tires to "cover" my mistakes. I video my sessions to better understand what is happening and in this case, I am glad I did, because I was having way too much fun in the moment to really notice what I was doing wrong. With more speed coming into the equation, bad habits are now creeping up, despite the worn out tires. I have a lot to learn/correct - time to take a few steps back and work on this! Here are the dead front PS4S tires...
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However, with dead tires comes new opportunity. Cup 2 tires have now been mounted onto the wheels and they will get broken in next weekend at MSR Houston. I don't expect these to last as long, but am hoping to get at least 3 track weekends out of them. We shall see...
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There is some additional fun in store for the Mach 1. The Watson Racing 4-point roll cage arrived today. I am waiting on the rear seat delete I ordered to arrive (sometime in November or December I've been told) before installing it. I plan to have the cage powder coated to match the orange of the brake calipers.
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That's all for now. I think the wife will get to break in the Cup 2's next weekend, as we finally have some nice, dry weather and the GT500 is screaming to get out. Fingers crossed.
 
5
1
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Texas
The sweeper-like nature of ECR really took a toll on those tires. Lets see how low you can get into the 40s at MSR H now! I need to get my game up as well. Once a saw the footage and got back from the track 2 weeks ago I realized I had been running with the engine basically misfiring all weekend long. Your CHT comment was right on. It would be awesome if I could get lower into the 1:50s. I currently sit at 1:54.5 CW. I hope to get into the 1:51s next time but I shall see.

Franklin
 

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