If there’s ever a Mecca for Mustang owners, it’s almost always Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. While this coastal town is already a destination for those seeking a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, the first week of September offers more than just a getaway. The end of the tourist season brings slightly cooler weather, but more importantly, it welcomes Mustangs from all corners, galloping into town. And these aren’t just young enthusiasts borrowing their parents’ rides; they are families, friends, and fellow Mustang aficionados who converge for one common purpose: to celebrate the Ford Mustang.
Although the Mustang Week show car field was limited to 600 entries, the task of singling out our favorites proved exceptionally challenging. The array of Mustangs on display spanned from 1964.5 to 2024, with each car bearing its own unique style, reflecting the owners’ individual vision of what a Mustang should embody. Narrowing down these contenders to just ten was no easy feat, but here are eight of the cars that truly captured our attention!
2+2 Equals One Badass Pro Street Mustang
When it comes to crafting a truly spectacular ride, no detail can be overlooked. For Phillip Tarlton, his objective was to create the ultimate Pro Street Mustang, and we believe he may have accomplished that goal with his finished masterpiece. Concealed beneath the striking metallic copper finish is an impressive amount of meticulous work, spanning from the chassis itself to custom hood hinges designed to fit snugly between the roll cage and engine bay. Every inch of the car has been thoughtfully designed and engineered to not only deliver exceptional performance, but also to look its absolute best.
Beneath the hood of this early-model Mustang lies an all-aluminum, Windsor-based 434 cubic-inch engine that produces a remarkable 844 horsepower on motor alone. Moreover, if more power is ever needed, a simple push of a button can unleash an additional 400 horsepower via a progressive nitrous controller. The power is efficiently transferred from the front to the rear, where it’s harnessed by a Chris Alston Chassisworks Fab 9, propelling this brute towards the massive rear tires. While the sum of 2+2 equals four, we eagerly anticipate witnessing this beauty make some 4-second passes down the track eventually.
Drop Top Gleams With Twin-Turbo Powerplant
It’s a rarity for a convertible to hold our attention, but Phil Sheets’ stunning ragtop is truly something special. Rather than sticking to a single purpose-built style, this convertible seamlessly blends the charm of a beach boulevard cruiser with the classic personality of a drag racer. With the top down, you can fully appreciate the custom brown and black TMI interior. However, hidden beneath the cowl hood lies a small-block Ford engine, equipped with twin turbos neatly mounted at the front of the engine bay.
Bernard’s Brute 1968 Mustang
While American cars have always been known for their powerful engines, it wasn’t until 1968 that the Mustang began to exhibit a more muscular appearance in its bodylines. Bernard Gill’s 1968 Mustang enhances this muscular aesthetic with an aggressive stance and the power to match.
Under the hood of his Mustang lies a potent 408 cubic-inch engine, utilizing a Ford Racing block. This block is equipped with a COMP camshaft and crowned with Edelbrock Victor Jr aluminum heads and intake. Fuel is delivered through a Holley 950 carburetor. All this impressive power is channeled through a Performance GT automatic transmission and directed to the rearend, where a set of 4.56 gears launch this brute off the line.
Light Grey Coupe Gets Heavy On The Looks
One of the greatest aspects of the Mustang is its versatility. Each build offers a glimpse into the owner’s mind, showcasing their unique vision for the final product. Sometimes it’s easy to discern their interests, whether it’s focused on racing, restoration, or even rescue missions. However, there’s something truly captivating when a build veers off the beaten path, introducing different elements to the equation. Vladimir’s 1969 Mustang accomplishes just that.
Vladimir’s 1969 Mustang blends styling cues from Pro Touring with a hint of classic and modern attributes, creating a unique masterpiece. An aggressive chin spoiler, Wilwood brakes, and 20-inch staggered Ridler Wheels exude the essence of Pro Touring. Meanwhile, Carter’s Customs rear diffuser, wing, and side splitters seamlessly merge the classic car with modern design elements. The interior has been elevated to a new standard, featuring black and gray stitching from Diamond Designs, and two 12-inch Kicker subwoofers to keep the music pumping. Despite the multiple simplistic gray hues, this Mustang is anything but ordinary.
Jonathun Catapano’s 1987 Mustang GT
If you wander through the show car field of Mustang Week, you begin to notice certain trends: centrifugal superchargers on Fox Body Mustangs, Torq Thrust wheels on vehicles owned by those over 50, and the list goes on. However, when you lay eyes on Jonathun Catapano’s stunning Mustang, everything you saw before fades from your mind. The bright red custom widebody, adorned with fender flares and molded side skirts, perfectly complements the polished CCW Classic wheels. Thanks to the RideTech air bags and management system, the car sits at a nice stance. But it’s not just the paint, wheels, and suspension that drew everyone to this build.
Under the hood, the front end has been replaced with a tubular setup to reduce weight. Rather than leaving unsightly gaps, custom side panels and a radiator cover have been seamlessly integrated. Nestled between the strut towers is a 4.6-liter modular engine that has been stroked to 5 liters and equipped with forged internals to handle the boost from twin Precision 6466 turbos cleverly mounted in the original fog light holes. The power is transferred through a Tick Performance T-56 Magnum transmission before making its way to the rear, where a meticulously-built and securely mounted 2003 SVT Cobra independent rear suspension rearend takes over. Needless to say, this Fox was more than just a refreshing take.
Jay Tucker’s 2014 Fox Body Mustang
It’s a bit painful to admit, but the entire Fox Body era is now eligible for classic car license plates. However, the exciting part is that these cars have entered the restomod stage, where new builds are introducing modern features to the table. The days of being a drag strip only car are slowly fading away, and Jay Tucker’s body-swapped Fox is a perfect example of this transformation.
Our initial curiosity led us to inquire about the firewall and the absence of a pinch weld when speaking with Jay. To our surprise, the car boasts more than just a fancy engine bay overhaul and some interior swaps. Instead, the entire floor pan and front end are from a 2014 Mustang, allowing for the incorporation of the 2014 interior, Coyote engine, and braking system. The rear half of the car is a Fox Body Mustang that has been skillfully grafted onto this new chassis. The car was like a hidden treasure hunt trying to find all the meticulous work that had been done. Even though it’s still a work in progress, it’s undoubtedly going to be an incredible ride when completed.
Sinister Cobra Slithers Further Into Supercharged Territory
The New Edge SVT Cobra will primarily be remembered for its 2003-04 Terminator rendition. This 2003 Cobra, owned by Chris Dufresne, is a testament to that, offering a touch of rarity combined with massive performance.
Chris decided to craft his engine with a 10.3:1 compression ratio, complemented by custom billet camshafts. Atop the engine, a 2.8-liter Kenne Bell supercharger reigns, resulting in an impressive output of 829 horsepower and 747 lb-ft of torque at 22 psi. The Cobra retained its third pedal, and a TREMEC Magnum transmission sits snugly in place, coupled with a McLeod twin-disc clutch. While the engine bay packs a punch in terms of performance, the aesthetics have been refined with a complete wire tuck and Scott Rod Panels.
It’s A Family Tradition
It’s not uncommon to come across families that are devoted Ford enthusiasts. After all, the Blue Oval has a way of creating bonds that run deep. But for the Hersh family, their love affair centers around the Mustang. At Mustang Week 2023, Hersh Sr. and his two sons proudly showcased their personal Mustangs. However, it was the youngest son’s Competition Orange 2015 Mustang GT that truly caught our attention.
Robert Hersh Jr.’s Mustang not only boasts an aggressive appearance, with its 4-inch Cervinis cowl hood, MP Concepts GT500 front bumper, and carbon fiber rear louvers, but it also excels in the performance department. Beneath the hood, you’ll find an ESS Tuning G3 supercharger kit, fine-tuned by Lund Racing, nestled alongside the 5.0-liter Coyote engine.
A Boss 302 intake manifold is combined with Modular Motorsports Racing oil and crank gear to accept the boost. To harness the 700 horsepower and deliver it to the pavement, a drag pack and Roush coilovers have been employed. We’re not certain about what’s hiding under the hoods of the other family members’ Mustangs, but we can’t help but dream of a thrilling three-car shootout!
Mustang Week 2023
With cars like these in attendance and more in the parking lot, it’s no wonder that Mustang Week has rapidly become the ultimate gathering for Mustang enthusiasts. Every year, we return, discovering new cars and forming friendships that feel like family. So, until next year, enjoy our extensive gallery from the Mustang Week 2023 show.