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Saleen S302: The Mustang Ford Won’t Build



Article by Anthony_Alaniz. Images from Saleen.

Steve Saleen is almost ubiquitous with the Ford Mustang, diving into the Mustang modifying game all the way back to 1984 with the purchase of three Mustangs. Since then, he has done all sorts of crazy automotive things from the Mustang to the Saleen S7—an early 2000s supercar that won four different GT championships in 2001 and broke records at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Needless to say, the man knows his cars. 

While the company has been in some naming/ownership disputes in the last few years, that hasn’t stopped Saleen—the man and the company—from setting its sights on the next-generation, all new 2015 Ford Mustang GT. The car will be called the S302 and should break cover sometime leading up to this year’s SEMA show. Three trims will be available—White, Yellow and Black Label—in both coupe and convertible forms. 

The White Label packs 450 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque, up from 435 and 400, respectively. This is the starter car for Saleen. The Yellow and Black Label bump output to 640 horsepower and 565 lb-ft of that twisty stuff. To achieve these numbers, Saleen didn’t just toss a supercharger on top and gave the Mustang a slap on the ass. No, Saleen also freed up the car’s breathing ability and upgraded the fuel system, while also giving the car a limited-slip differential. Also available is brakes up to 15 inches in diameter with six-piston calipers. 




Restricted to the range topping Black Label is a front bumper with additional intakes, LED daytime running lights, carbon fiber elements, new shocks, springs and sway bars. Full pricing hasn’t been announced, but that hasn’t stopped Saleen from already taking orders—or having orders being placed. 

The biggest rival to Saleen in the aftermarket Mustang arena is Roush. While Saleen strictly focuses on V-8 behemoths from all major manufactures, Roush is deeply tied with Ford. Images of the 2015 Roush Mustang have just went live, and Roush is expected to offer different Roush kits for all three Mustang engine choices: the 3.7-liter V-6, EcoBoost 2.0-liter inline-four and 5.0-liter V-8. 

No horsepower figures have been announced yet, but looking at other, previous-generation Roush Mustangs, expect power near that of what Saleen is offering. Comparison test, anybody? Just like the Saleen, expect a new front and rear fascia along with unique wheels and other bits to set the Roush Mustang apart from off-the-factory-line offerings. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Anthony Alaniz (Anthony_Alaniz)

Born and raised in southeast Michigan. Chose to stay out of necessity. Staff writer at a small community newspaper covering city government, the schools and whatever else happens in town. J-school graduate from EMU, weekend mechanic, car enthusiast and open-road connoisseur. Open to all invites of hospitality and adult beverages.
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