Steve Saleen has finally released pictures and information with his take on the 2011 Ford Mustang, with the 2011 SMS 302. This modern muscle car has completed the research and development stages and is set to go into production starting next month. It couldn’t be too soon either, never before has a naturally aspirated special edition Mustang ever been so potent and the 2011 Mustang is the perfect platform.
Saleen specializes in modifying production cars and then reselling them to special dealers. When a stock Mustang is purchased from Ford, it is brought back to the SMS plant and completely stripped down. Afterward the performance items are put in place, including a tear down of the engine, which in this case includes a reworked head. What makes companies like Saleen so special, is that they are considered an independent manufacturer. So, Saleen must pass government inspections and in many cases the modified Mustang you purchase comes complete with a warranty.
The 2011 SMS 302 Mustang features a 440 horsepower modified 5.0, which has been brought back to life for the first time since 1995. Also, Saleen has treated the suspension components to their SMS counter parts. Everything form the rear springs to the sway bars have been specially tuned to improve handling and increase grip. The results of Saleens efforts are a 0-60 in 4.5 seconds and a 1/4 mile trip time of just 13.5 seconds. Most likely Saleen has been extremely conservative with their estimates, which is typical, because the stock 2011 Mustang GT is capable of a 0-60 in 4.3 seconds and a 1/4 mile time of just 12.8.
The exterior has also been tweaked in Saleen fashion, including the obligatory wide mouth front bumper. The body panels also feature brake ducts, hood with an over-sized bulge, and of course heat vents. The 2011 SMS 302 also has some slightly revamped side skirts, to give the Mustang a defining stance. Interior components were also treated, including Alcantara upholstered seats, leather wrapped steering wheel and shifter knob, and a potentially useful 200 mph speedometer.
Early adopters should get their pocket books ready. The 2011 SMS 302 is available for order now at $54,990 and for $5,000 more you can purchase a convertible edition later in the year. If buyers are torn between the Shelby GT500 and the SMS 302 because of horsepower differences, perhaps they should wait until later in the year when Saleen releases a super charged version of the SMS 302, which will produce over 530 horsepower. In addition, Saleen has been keeping quiet on a 351X model Mustang, which will most likely dominate the Saleen model lineup in both horsepower numbers and in handling capabilities.