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“Mustang. Because nobody reminisces about their first Camry”

That was one of the “rejected” tag lines Steve Ling, North American Car Marketing Manager for Ford, told us about at the 37th annual Mid-America Team Shelby Nationals this weekend. I have been attending this event for the last 7 years, and even though I started out as very much a non-Ford guy, 7 years of this event has changed that. I am not necessarily a Chevy guy either, I don’t care for Camaros and I won’t even get started on Corvettes (1967 and older are exempt!), but GM is the mothership for my beloved Buicks, so I have to have a certain love for the General.

When Ford released the 2005 Mustang, I was all over it. I really liked it, it had a real retro flare and it was so much better than the fox body and the aging SN95 platform (1993-2004). Then the 2010 came out and refined the rough edges of the new platform, along with the Coyote 5.0, and I find myself dreaming of owning a Mustang. Of course, if I did buy one, it would have to be either a Boss 302 or a Shelby GT350. I had the opportunity to drive the new GT350 this weekend, and I absolutely love it. This thing can plain rip it. We had street tires and 525 horsepower and had no issue overtaking track-prepped race cars in the most advanced class (Class 1) at the Mid-America event. More on the GT350 later, this post is all about the Boss.

New for 2012, the Boss 302 is just as nasty. It comes with 2 keys; a street key and a track key. You don’t want to try to drive with the track key on the street, the 600+ parameters that get tweaked include the idle, timing, fuel map, and handling characteristics of the car. As much fun as that sounds (and it is), the track key can get you in trouble quickly on the street (ask me how I know), so keep the track key on the dresser for track days. At the dragstrip on Saturday (Tulsa Raceway Park), Gary Patterson of Shelby American took the Track key and a Boss 302 to the line and laid down a 12.79 second pass at 108 MPH. This type of performance on street tires came from an off-the-showroom-floor car. Damn.

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