People like to toss around numbers when they talk about muscle cars, so here are a few to keep in mind when you see the 2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302 Laguna Seca: 440 hp, 380 lb-ft of torque—and $450,000. That last one? It was the winning bid for the very first of these track-ready creatures to come off the assembly line, as recorded at the recent Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Ariz. (Ford Dealership Chicago told us the proceeds from the sale went to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.)
And although the Barrett-Jackson car has already found a new home, Ford Dealership Kansas City said it was just the first of a limited run of units that will be available to the public this year, all offering the same comprehensive approach to high performance.
“The team at Ford wanted to offer their fellow Mustang enthusiasts something really special—a beautifully balanced factory-built race car that they could drive on the street,” explains Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. “The Boss 302 isn’t something a Mustang GT owner can buy all the parts for out of a catalog or that a tuner can get by adding a chip. This is a front-to-back re-engineered Mustang with every system designed to make a good driver great and a great driver even better.”
That means Ford stripped out the boring stuff and packed in the 5.0-liter V8 from the Mustang GT—boasting a new intake, revised cams and more aggressive control calibration—along with other go-fast goodies like a race-inspired clutch with upgraded friction materials, close-ratio six-speed manual transmission, 3.73 ratio rear axle, an aero packaged derived from that on the Ford Racing Boss 302R and a limited-slip differential equipped with ceramic-fiber plates. According to Ford Grand Ledge, Recaros and a Torsen torque-sensing limited-slip diff are options.
Adrenaline surges come standard.
“Boss is a hallowed word around here, and we couldn’t put that name on a new Mustang until we were sure everything was in place to make this car a worthy successor,” added Pericak “We were either going to do it right or not do it at all.”