Saleen 351 Mustang: Legendary name returns to the Mustang tuning game

Saleen 351 Mustang renderingThere are scores of tuned Ford Mustangs littering America’s roads, but not all are created equal. Steve Saleen has always been among the elite of Mustang tuners, and he unveiled his newest creation at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show. The Saleen 351 Mustang should do its name justice.

The “351” title denotes this Mustang’s 351-cubic inch engine, a displacement that harks back to the 1970s Boss 351 and Saleen’s own products from 13 years ago. The motor is based on the Mustang GT’s stock 5.0-liter engine, but Saleen adds a supercharger, Red Butterfly intake system, and other reinforcements. Backing up the 351 engine is a six-speed manual transmission with a Saleen-designed clutch.

Saleen is promising an impressive 700 horsepower and 655 pound-feet of torque, outgunning even 662 hp, Shelby GT500. Salenn did not release any performance numbers, but it’s hard to see how even a 700 hp car could improve on the Shelby’s nearly 200-mph top speed.

A new body kit gives the Saleen 351 a unique look. It features Saleen’s signature egg crate grille along with some performance related touches like a rear diffuser with Formula 1-inspired third brake light. The cosmetics are also made of carbon fiber, which should help keep this Mustang’s weight down.

Saleen did not quote a price, but the 351 will top the current Saleen 302 in the company’s lineup. Production begins in January 2013, but Saleen only plans to build 100 to 150 of these Mustangs per year.

Saleen shouldn’t have too much trouble finding buyers, because the Saleen name still resonates with many performance enthusiasts. Steve Saleen founded the company in 1983, and went on to produce high-tech tuned Mustangs and the S7 supercar.

Saleen left his company in 2007, but continued to work tuning Challengers and Camaros under the SMS Supercars brand.

On April 2, 2012, Saleen announced that he was reuniting with his namesake company, and the 351 Mustang is the first full collaboration between the two since Saleen’s return.

With the man himself back in action, it will be interesting to see how the 351 Mustang measures up to the creations of other tuners like Roush and Shelby, which is unleashing a 1,000 hp Mustang on an unsuspecting public.

Cars

Ford’s Mustang-inspired electric crossover will spawn a Lincoln luxury version

Lincoln will get its own version of parent Ford's first mass-market, long-range electric vehicle. While Ford's version will have styling inspired by the Mustang, Lincoln will take a more traditional approach.
Cars

Muscle cars, trucks, and EVs roared into the subdued 2019 Detroit Auto Show

The 2019 Detroit Auto Show was the quietest edition of the event in recent memory, but that doesn't mean nothing significant happened inside the Cobo Center. Here are the new cars and concepts we saw at the show.
Cars

2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 is ready to strike with over 700 hp

The 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 revives one of the greatest names in American muscle cars, and gives Ford some ammunition in the horsepower war with Chevy and Dodge. Debuting at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show, the GT500 boasts over 700 hp.
Home Theater

Spotify adds simplified Car View mode for Android users

What was once just a test is now a reality: Spotify is rolling out a new, simplified in-car user interface for all Android users called Car View, which automatically engages when the app detects a car Bluetooth connection.
Cars

Boutique carmaker Karma Automotive, legendary design firm Pininfarina team up

Karma Automotive is partnering with legendary Italian design firm Pininfarina on future luxury cars. The first product of that partnership will appear later this year, Karma said, without offering other details.
Cars

Sibling rivalry: 2019 BMW Z4 takes on the 2020 Toyota Supra

BMW and Toyota forged an unlikely partnership when they set out to build a sports car platform together. Here, we examine the similarities and differences between the 2019 Z4 and the 2020 Supra.
Cars

Driving Daimler’s 40-ton eCascadia big rig isn’t just fun, it’s electrifying

Daimler Trucks brought its all-electric eCascadia semi-truck to the 2019 CES, and invited us to take the wheel. What does it feel like to drive one? Simply electrifying, of course.
Cars

Tesla cuts workforce by 7 percent, ends referral program to trim costs

Tesla has announced plans to trim its workforce by seven percent, and it will end the referral program that rewards customers who help it sell cars. These measures are ways to cut costs and boost profits.
Cars

Worried about commuting in winter weather? Nissan has the answer

The Nissan Altima midsize sedan is now available with all-wheel drive. To advertise that fact, Nissan's Canadian division slapped some tank-like tracks on an Altima to create a one-off show car.
Emerging Tech

Too buzzed to drive? Don’t worry — this autonomous car-bar will drive to you

It might just be the best or worst idea that we've ever heard: A self-driving robot bartender you can summon with an app, which promises to mix you the perfect drink wherever you happen to be.
Cars

Lyft and Aptiv’s self-driving car program has come a long way (but not far enough)

Many companies talk about self-driving cars, but Lyft and Aptiv are already using a fleet of them to transport paying customers in Las Vegas. Hop in for a close look at the tech of autonomous cars, and the challenges they face.
Cars

Michigan OKs digital license plates with Rplate’s connected car platform

The state of Michigan approved the use of digital license plates on motor vehicles registered in the state. Reviver Auto, the manufacturer of the Rplate connected car platform, worked with Michigan's Department of State to pass the bill.
Cars

This Chevy Silverado pickup truck is made from more than 300,000 Lego bricks

To promote The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, Lego and Chevrolet teamed up on a life-size replica of the automaker's Silverado pickup truck made from more than 300,000 plastic bricks.
Cars

Prices for using Tesla Supercharging just skyrocketed

Tesla is updating their Supercharging pricing based on local electricity rates and customer demand, which has lead to an increase in charging costs by as much as 33 percent in some regions.