How to Reduce the Weight of a Mustang

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Adding horsepower is not the only effective method to make a Mustang faster. When it leaves the factory, a Mustang is like most new cars, which is to say pretty heavy. In addition to adding power to gain speed, another widely used approach is removing weight and improving the car's power-to-weight ratio, which refers to how many pounds the engine's horsepower has to lug around.

  • Start with the interior. Remove the cushy but very heavy stock seats with some lighter one-piece buckets from Recaro or Sparco. These seats won't be as comfortable as stock seats, but will be far lighter as well as hold you in better during aggressive driving.

  • Remove the stock airbag equipped steering wheel, which is also pretty heavy, and install a lighter sport wheel from Grant or Momo. If you really want to get extreme, remove the backseats.

  • Remove the factory carpeting as well as the sound-deadening material underneath. To maintain a finished look, install a layer of thin carpeting, but don't use sound-deadening material underneath.

  • Remove interior items like the center console and door panels. At this point, you're really stripping the interior to a pretty rough level.

  • Install a carbon fiber or fiberglass hood and trunk lid in place of the heavy stock items. This technique can also be used to good effect on the front and rear bumpers.

  • Remove excess exterior trim. Most mustangs come with some type of side skirt or side body molding, as well as a rear spoiler. While these parts may look cool, they only serve to add additional weight.

  • Replace the side windows and rear window with lighter Lexan in order to drop more pounds. You can either make these or buy them from a company that sells racing parts.

  • Remove the heavy fog lights and all of the wiring and bracketry that go with them.

  • Install lighter aftermarket wheels and brakes. Unsprung weight is the amount of poundage that the suspension has to lug around. Reducing weight in this area will not only make your Mustang lighter overall, it will also make it feel more nimble around corners.

  • Remove the air-conditioning compressor and associated hoses and bracketry. More weight will be shed and the motor won't suffer from the parasitic drag of the A/C when it's being used.

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