Fox Body Mustang Is the Perfect First Drag Build
Chevy fans like to say their cars are great, but this youngster is turning against his family allegiance in his search for speed.
The battle of Chevrolet versus Ford is nearly as old as the automobile itself. But for one Bowtie family, there’s a dissenter in the midst. For Austin Hart, performance is more important than a badge, so he’s building a Fox Body. We caught up with the young racer to get the scoop on his ragged but raucous Mustang, why he made the smart decision to jump to Blue Oval, and what his plans are for the future.
Like many young drag racing fans, it started with a family obsession. “You know, I’ve always been around Chevys. My grandfather and I, we had a ’75 Vega we built and drag raced.” Truly, there’s some GM blood inside the kid. But he saw something strange happening at the track.
“My grandfather, he always told me how horrible Fords were. It’s why we raced the Chevy. But you know, every time we go down to the track, and every time I see one of these cars go down the strip, they go down just straight as an arrow. So I know I can make the chassis work. If I don’t like the motor, I can swap in anything I want. You can build anything to be fast but the important part is getting the car to the end of the run.”
Plus, telling a teenager they can’t do something is the best way to make them do it. So with his family trash-talking Fords, he started looking to buy his first Mustang.
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The car he ended up with is a proper tool for an aspiring drag racer. “I paid for the motor and stole the car, basically” is how Austin describes it. And when you see the modified V8 under the hood of this Mustang, it’s obvious why. The engine is a 90 roller block that has been bored out to a 306. And while it still has the stock crank, it’s been upgraded with Speed Force pistons. On top that you’ll find an Edelbrock 600 carb, GT40 heads, an E303 cam and a Victor Jr. intake. Not a bad deal for a $3,500 car. Tucked into the corners are SVE Series 2 wheels, sized 18×9 up front and 18×10 in the rear.
And the car is far from finished. Austin plans to swap in a Holley 650 carb, add a new MSD ignition, and swap the sluggish 2.73 rear gearing for a 3.73. From there it’s some suspension modifications to keep the rear fenders from digging into the tires, and maybe a different set of wheels.
We asked if Austin planned to leave the car looking ragged. “No, I plan on replacing all the trim, painting the whole thing white and going with some of the old GT graphics. But I’m making it fast first. I’ll worry about making it look nice later.”
When we ask about how far he wants to push things, he grins a little more and tells us he wants to take it easy. “First goal is around 400 horsepower, and I want to run pretty consistent 8s in the 1/8 mile. But who knows after that.”
We never found out how fast the Vega was that Austin and his grandfather built, but it’s easy to see that being a target for this Fox Body. We can’t wait to hear about the first time they run side-by-side.