C5R Racing Engine Powers Street-Going Mustang GT
by Jason Giacchino
It wouldn’t be too far off to compare the following build to drinking Coke out of a Pepsi bottle or Superman getting an organ transplant from Lex Luthor. Some rivalries are so embedded into society’s collective consciousness that blending seems absolutely ludicrous. And, while it’s tough to imagine a rivalry bigger than Ford & Chevy throughout the years, just such a merging has been witnessed.
The concept of a Chevy powered Mustang chassis is beyond mind bending. When we first heard of the following build we half expected the Mustang to reject the Corvette block the way a human body would reject a pig’s heart. Yet somehow the unholy union proved not just possible, but it appears to have succeeded in combining the Vette’s otherworldly performance potential with the roominess of the Mustang design.
The end result was the product that found its way to a Texas shop known as Muscle Carz Inc., but the guys behind this one went beyond just buying a base-model ‘Stang and dropping a stock Vette engine into the engine bay. Instead these guys integrated the same engine that powers the legendary C5R Corvette racecar, rather than the 7.0 Liter LS-series engine for consumer use.
The recipient for this most incredible of transplants was a then-new 2006 S197 Ford Mustang adorned in Bumblebee Yellow trim.
The racing engine boasts billet connecting rods, a billet crankshaft and forged pistons to develop output ranging from 758hp at 6 psi or a whopping 1015hp at 18 psi. The Ford transmission was also transplanted with the Corvette’s own six-speed manual. Finally the hybrid sits on 20-inch wheels to maximize the increase in power output.
Perhaps as interesting as the car itself, the vehicle’s history proves that it wasn’t an easy sale to either Ford guys (who scoffed at the GM engine) or the Chevy camp (who balked at the Ford’s chassis). Ads placed by Muscle Carz for the hybrid in Hemmings back in 2008 asked $70,000 and said that trades would be considered.
A little while later the car appeared on eBay in the form of an auction in 2009, believed to have been taken out by a private owner with the following information given: The story behind this build begins with a Texan car enthusiast who wanted a Mustang that would embarrass his friend’s 2009 Corvette ZR1. Money was no object for the build and $150,000 was spent to turn a run of the mill Mustang GT into a ZR1 killer.
Since the Mustang owner was located in Texas he contacted nearby Nickens Brothers Racing Engines in Conroe to build the engine. If you’re not familiar with Nickens Brothers, they built some killer NHRA Competition Eliminator and Pro Stock engines back in the day and will gladly tackle anything with pistons.
The engine is a GM C5R Aluminum 427 cid block developed for the Corvette ALMS program. It is built with a billet crankshaft, billet connecting rods and forged pistons to deal with the boost from the supercharger. The supercharger is a Procharger F-1 centrifugal blower with intercooler. It has a custom, hand built sheet metal manifold induction system.
After the Nickens Brothers completed the build, the engine made 1015HP on 116-octane race gas at 18psi. In daily driver mode, this car makes 785 hp on 93-octane gas and on a street tune (6psi). The transmission is a GM Heavy Duty ZF-6 speed, which is more than capable of handling all the power.
There are just a little over 1600 miles on this car but only a couple of hundred miles on the engine & transmission.
“This is a lot of car and a lot of performance to handle. We don’t want someone buying this car as a gift for a teenage girl or boy…you should be someone who has the experience and wisdom to handle a car like this…street racing is for idiots…that’s why we have safe supervised tracks all over the world.”
Unfortunately, what isn’t as clear, even in the vast archives of the Internet, is whether or not the car was sold at that auction or who owns the piece at this time. We thought the $70,000 price tag was a bit steep until we learned that original owner dropped more than double that amount in the build. Whether or not he did in fact roast his buddy’s 2009 ZR-1 is yet unknown but one thing’s for certain, this ranks up there as one of the wildest transplants we’ve ever encountered.
So, what do you think? Is this hybrid one holy beast or a complete sacrilege? Voice your opinion here!