Back in 2000, I was working for a company, I swear, called “Internet.com”. I had a 1997 Mustang GT, black on black, and I wanted a Cobra. One of my friends (looking at you Jim Stinson) worked at a local Ford dealership, and said he got used cobras in from time to time, and he’d call me next time one showed up. So, one day I went down to look at a 97 or 98 (can’t remember, it’s been a while) black on black Cobra.
It looked a lot like my GT, but was a faster car and I was excited to check it out. Jim pulled out of the dealership, got into the Cobra a bit and a horrible scraping noise began emanating from the rear of the car. My excitement for buying a used cobra pretty much went up in smoke at that point.
When I got back to the dealership, my wife and son were sitting in the car you see here. It was an amazing car — it was the first year for Zinc yellow, and I didn’t know it at that moment, but it was a rare car. One of 930 or so made — it was a spring feature GT — basically a slug of left-over parts from the 35th anniversary edition GTs made in 1999. It’s number 864 on the yellow mustang registry.
Although rare in 2000, in 2001, Ford made a ton of 2001 Mustangs that were Zinc yellow — most of the cars you see that look like mine are not 2000s. Some of the rare elements, the stripes on the hood, the wheels (sold, last year — I’ll never use them) and the scoops, which became standard items for all GTs made after 2000. In other words, most of the features that made the car stand out in 2000 became rather common afterward.
Over the years I’ve really enjoyed (mostly anyway) modifying this car. It’s mainly rare these days, because it’s my car. It’s been all over the continental US. My wife and I have taken it to most of the wineries in Ohio — in 2000, we hit every one in the Ohio Winery association, except for one that was on the border of Kentucky. That’s on the bucket list…
My nieces have always enjoyed this car — many loud moments are embedded in my memory banks of them screaming at the top of their lungs as we drove it various places, usually to get ice cream or sometimes just to cruise. Note: You don’t need to scream at the top of your lungs when you’re in a yellow Mustang GT, with the top down and the radio blaring — but every little bit of attention-grabbing strategy is at play when you’re a kid — when you’re older, it’s more my inner kid grinning at the core when I drive this car. Even if there’s no one but me to enjoy it, it still makes me grin from ear to ear. A couple years back I thought seriously of selling it, and immediately heard from two nieces — they still love this car.
I decided after trading my 2004 Mach I that I would not sell it, and instead keep it, and see what I could do to make it a bit more civilized and dependable. Last October it got a host of upgrades — new springs, exhaust and an improved cold air intake. It helped a great deal — but I still miss the sound of the Mach I. Put a Bassani X-pipe and magnaflows on a 4-valve modular motor, it’s Music.
When the 5.0 Coyote Aluminator was announced, I decided to do some research. There were some early pioneers (and I’ll link to them here on the forum) — some of the swaps were very well thought out. A lot of them had me scratching my head. After a lot of research, I realized that hardly anyone had done a swap into a new-edge. The only new-edge I could find was a 2002 Bullet that, while clean, had some really obvious short-cuts.
What would it cost to do this swap? It’s not cheap — but as previously mentioned, it has real bonuses. Just about every upgrade needed for the Coyote to live in the engine bay is a step in the right direction. Some careful math and consideration, I finally decided to pull the trigger this past April. I had a lot of choices to make along the way, and hopefully I’ve made the right choices — because I’ll be living with them for quite some time.
Strap in, it’s going to be an interesting ride.