We’ve seen all manner of engine swaps and cool builds involving Fox-body Mustangs. While the platform has enjoyed huge popularity for over 20 years, we’d be willing to wager that it may be on the cusp of a revival, becoming the next big platform for many builders.
With that said, once again just when we thought we’d seen every iteration of a Fox-body imaginable, someone else has proven us wrong. Jason Hall of Mississippi has constructed a modular powered Fox-body that takes the grand prize for ingenuity, determination, and skill in terms of both it’s execution, and it’s incredibly sneaky appearance.
Hall had a friend, who had the misfortune of totaling a 2007 GT500. That friend had purchased the car back from his insurance company intending to repair the car, however with mounting medical issues and bills he sold it to Hall. Hall’s initial plan was to buy a S197 V6 Mustang and transfer all the pieces from the GT500 to that car, essentially building his own GT500 for pennies on the dollar.
The wrecked GT500 had rolled over, and was more than mechanically viable, an ideal candidate for a car that Hall already owned, a Fox-body coupe that had sat behind his garage for years waiting it’s turn.
We have seen plenty of 5.4 and supercharged modular engine swaps into Mustangs in the past. That isn’t what makes this car special. It’s the execution of this swap that makes this car stand out. Hall didn’t just swap out the engine and control system. He swapped nearly everything from the wrecked GT500 with the exception of the body and suspension.
What may be even more exceptional is that Hall did this all with the help of a friend, not in a garage but outdoors under a car port. There was no massive, shop, no garage full of fabrication tools. This was Hall, and a buddy, with a small 135 MIG welder, and their spare time after work and on weekends for about 28 months.
“We started by pulling out the tape measure and checking everything, of course in the end it was a lot different than what the tape measure would make it seem to be,” Hall says.
Hall found there was a difference of three inches between the GT500 and Fox-body floor pans. Beginning there, he cut and removed the floorpans from his coupe, and measured precisely to cut and remove the floorpans from the donor GT500. He shortened the GT500 floorpans by three inches, this virtually eliminated rear leg room, but ensured the floorpans fit the car. Hall and his friend then installed the newer car’s floorpans into the coupe.
This solved a great number of issues for the swap as well as the tired old coupe body. First it renewed the car’s floorpans with fresh steel, something many aging foxes are in need of. That new steel also carried the benefit of many of the reinforcing structures already incorporated into the S197 floorpans, a huge advantage over stock or even aftermarket replacement floors in a Fox-body. The floorpan swap also allowed for the use of the OEM TR6060 transmission with it’s semi-remote shifter.
With the floorpan in place, and the use of a UPR K-member, control arms, and coil-overs, Hall installed the GT500’s supercharged mill, and transmission. He spaced the K-member to drop the engine lower in the chassis to allow retention of the stock hood. This not only preserves the original lines of the car, but to unsuspecting competition Hall’s coupe simply looks like another pretty fox.
This being Hall’s third foray into a modular powered Fox-body, he wanted to build a car that was comfortable and fun, “I wanted a car that I could just jump in, fire up and cruise” he says. This meant the car needed to be comfortable inside.
We know that S197 Mustang seats typically will not fit a Fox-body Mustang. Hall was able to use nearly the entire interior from the GT500 however, because he’d swapped the floorpans. This gave the seats the correct positioning in the car, and proper height, making them an OEM-like fit. He was also able to use the dash, stereo, console, and even the OEM climate control system. “I was surprised to learn that there was only a quarter of an inch difference between the dashes of the two cars. You would think as big as a GT500 is compared to a Fox-body that the dashes would be nowhere near the same size,” Hall says.
Aside from some of the plastic trim, the only interior components that didn’t come from the GT500 are the door panels. Those are a custom hybrid of Hall’s and a local upholstery shop’s design. The headliner has even been done in a matching GT500 perforated style material.
Of course Hall couldn’t leave well enough alone in the power department. He upped the power of the 5.4 liter GT500 mill with a Kenne Bell liquid cooled supercharger. The addition of that blower cranked things in the horsepower department up to 748 hp at the rear wheels on 19 pounds of boost. A SPEC twin disc clutch aides the shifting, and a Coast Driveline driveshaft was necessary as one of the final fitment pieces. Adding to the sleeper effect of the car are the smallish 2 1/2-inch tail pipes.
Jason Hall’s GT500 powered Mod-Fox is a shining example of a top tier build executed by an average guy with basic tools. This build required stamina and a lot of patience but the final product is a car that can take on nearly anything at the stop light or race track, while still being able to cruise comfortably around town, or cross country.