Denham Springs, LA
My garage: Ford Mustang Ana

About my car

It was early 2011, with my college graduation looming I decided that it was a good time to get a nice weekend car. I had been combing the local classifieds for some time, just to get a feel for the market. One day I found myself on a regional ad site, and that's where I saw her. "1990 Mustang 5.0, 59k miles, 6k obo" drew me in, but the picture told me everything else. As I stare at this clean LX hatch sitting on a nice set of Pacer Dragstars, only one thought came to mind: this is my car.

A couple days later I drove down to New Orleans to meet the owner. A quick jaunt around the block had me sold. That's when the owner gave me a run-down of the car's history. His step-father had bought the car brand new, drove it for a while, then mothballed it... cool. After a few years, he bought it from his step-father and with a little work was driving it on the weekends... sweet. To my surprise he told me that a few people had responded to his ad, but I was the only one to come see it in person... score. I offered to buy it for $5400 and he gladly accepted.

The next day brought a bit of bad news. The owner told me about a hailstorm that had hit the area earlier that week, which explained the couple of negligible dings I had noticed. He had planned to take it to a paintless dent repair shop and had filed a claim with his insurance. The insurance company wanted none of it and instead declared the car totaled. Because this likely meant the car would have a rebuilt title, he offered to sell it for less. I wasn't about to let that stop me, so a new deal was struck for $4800. As we were transferring the title I learned that according to Louisiana law I would receive a clear title, only a footnote would indicate that it had sustained hail damage. Fate had truly smiled on me.

I have long felt that any car worth its salt should have a decent name, but it's not something that should be rushed into. The answer came to me one sunny Louisiana day as I was driving around listening to the latest Slash album. When the song "Anastasia" came on, so did the proverbial light bulb in my head. "Ana" suited her perfectly.

While she is currently down for some serious upgrades, I'll run down her last setup. She retaind the factory 5.0 H.O. longblock, backed up by a Fanatical Performance refreshed T-5 trans. Mods were mostly basic bolt-ons. A BBK Cold Air Intake and '94/'95 70mm MAF fed the mill that Ford gave her all those years ago. An MSD 6AL-2 and Ford Racing plug wires touch off the air/93-octane mix with plenty of timing thanks to the tune on a Moates F3 chip. That tune was done by David Blundell, and courtesy of Craig Moates (of fame), who used my car for a training class. MAC 1-5/8" Long-tube Headers, a MAC H-pipe and a pair of Flowmaster Super 44s processed the out-bound air and made some beautiful music to boot. A Lincoln Mark VIII electric fan keeps things cool while Energy Suspension mounts hold the engine and trans steady. A B&M Ripper shifter adds some precision to the cog changes as power is channeled through a Ford Racing aluminum driveshaft to the 8.8 stuffed with factory-option 3.08 gears.

Knowing the Fox platform's flexible nature, it wasn't long before a set of Maximum Motorsports Full-Length Subframe Connectors and accompanying Strut Tower Brace tightened things up. While I was at it, a set of torque box reinforcements also took up residence, serving as cheap insurance and further fortifying the car's structure. A pair of MM's Extreme Duty LCAs help plant the power, while a SN-95 brake swap slows things down when necessary.

Many of my friends have Foxes built for drag racing. They will often suggest I try things on my car based on what has worked for their goals, but I'm talking a different approach. While power is undeniably a part of that equation, I have often held that how fast you get through the corner is just as important as how fast you get to the corner. I live on a fairly curvy stretch of road, something that has undoubtedly played a role that decision. My plans for Ana will be to balance plenty of power with a heavy dose of corner-carving ability.

The exterior is purposefully basic, as I prefer the clean look of the LX bodywork. Most of my work on that front is simply restoring and replacing old trim. There are a few changes though, like the ultra-clear headlights. I've also changed all of the exterior light bulbs out for LEDs. This has significantly lightened the load on the electrical system while putting out more light, especially the headlights. Beyond that, I just keep her as clean as I can.

Patience pays off when searching for cars like this, but once I had my sights set on her I refused to let go. I'm glad I did, because it sure paid off in the end. Getting Ana has made a profound effect on my life, leading me to good friends and good times. No one knows precisely what the future will hold, but more go-fast parts and more fun are part of the plan.

  • This car was made in 1990 and I've driven it since 2011
  • The Ford Mustang (3rd Gen) was in production from 1979 to 1993

Sorry, I've been busy. I haven't made a post yet.