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SVT Cobra – Ford Mustang Indianapolis 500 Pace Car

Ford Mustang History and Development 1991 to 1993 – SVT Cobra

Looking back at the Ford Mustang and its progression it seems that there were times that there were very few changes from year to year. This is especially true in the early 1990s. In 1991, the only change that we can note is the new five spoke 16? wheels that both the LX and the GT had. This same car carried on through 1992 with minimal and less then special edition models with special wheels and paint jobs until the year 1993.

In 1993, the horsepower of the LX and the GT were both revised to 205 horsepower. The reason was most likely a marketing effort to help boost the sales before the newly redesigned Mustang made it to the streets in 1994.

There was a special edition SVT Cobra that came out in 1993 which was a mix of parts form earlier Mustangs, such as the taillights from the 1983 Mustang, front air dam for the GT, a new grill that included a running horse emblem and 17? wheels. This made for a remarkably attractive car.

The Cobra had a 5.0 l with slight modifications to increase it to a 235 horsepower engine. The improved suspension and bigger wheels made this model an amazing performance vehicle. There were only 4993 of these Cobras made for the 1993 model. There were of course another 107 track ready Cobras made with out the luxuries such as a radio and back seat and these were known as the “Cobra R.”

Ford had been producing the Mustang for just over 15years and had sold 114,228 Fox based Mustangs during the 1993 model year. One would think that the Fox bodied Mustang was a worn out design, but car enthusiast would question you on that.

1994 Ford Mustang Indianapolis 500 Pace Car

The new 1994 model was influenced by the Mustangs of the past. It was at this point that Ford realized that it had to keep the Mustang around no matter what. Though not even ten years earlier they had thought about making the Mustang no more, this seemed ludicrous as that the Mustang is the one car that people world wide associate with Ford. What they did have to do though was come up with a Mustang that was affordable.

You will also find that the engines available in 1994 were only the Base Mustang with a fueled injected 3.8L Essex with 145 horsepower and the GT had a revised 5.0 L V8 with a flat intake manifold with 215 horsepower. Each engine type could be made to either a five speed or four-speed automatic.

The 1994 Mustang GT handled much better as was more secure with its 16? or 17? wheels and tires. For only the third time in history the Mustang was the pace car for the Indianapolis 500. The Special Vehicle Team was put on the task of building another Cobra version of the Mustang. This lead to 5009 Cobra coupes being sold in 1994 and 1000 Cobra convertibles were sold as well.

While the Mustang of 1994 was a “hit” for Ford it was less then overwhelming with only 123,198 sold. Considering that it did not come on the market until January 1994, it really is impressive.




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