Santa didn’t deliver that Boss 302 Mustang you’d wished for? The next best thing is our new 2012-2013 Mustang Boss 302 section, including hundreds of high-def images of the 2012 and 2013 models. Examine the engines in close detail and enjoy! But don’t wait until next year, because there will not be a 2014 model.
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While we’re waiting for the huge number of introductions to start rolling out for the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit next month, and while we’re eagerly awaiting further spy pictures of the 2015 Mustang, we thought it would be fun to pull out a project car from 1995: the infamous Ford SVE BOSS 604 from 1995.
This is a John Coletti project car. But then, who else would have ever conceived of it?
The SVE BOSS 604 was built by the Ford SVE team in response to a challenge from the “bow tie boys” across town. They had just put a 572-cube Donovan-built “rat motor” in a late-model Camaro and thought they were tough. In response, John sent the word out to build something with a motor exactly twice the size as stock: hence 604 cubes and 853 horsepower. Only little boys wear bow ties!
We encountered the BOSS 604 at the Houston Mustang Club of America show in August 1995. Ford brought the BOSS 604, and also a prototype of the 1996 4.6 DOHC Cobra. When we were asked which car we’d like to drive, we made the wrong choice and drove the Cobra prototype. Or perhaps the right choice, since we liked the car so much we ordered one from our dealer the following Monday and took delivery that fall of the very first 1996 SVT Cobra in the State of Texas.
The race against the bow tie boys didn’t take place as planned… a few years later we encountered Coletti again and he told us that the race would happen “any day soon” and that Car & Driver would likely report on it.
We took this new opportunity to get some additional pictures of the car. We noticed the intake has been slightly modified from what we’d seen before.
Click on the images below for a high-res image.
|Intake path – Dual throttle bodies.||Engine compartment – details.|
|Engine compartment – right side.||Engine compartment – left side.|
|Dash – gauges.||Dash – note sticker “110 octane fuel only”.|
- Driving Enthusiast network: Ford Concepts, Prototypes, and Showcars section: this section of the parent site consists of pages and images of Ford, Lincoln, Mercury, SVE, FRP, SVT, and historical car and trucks concepts, prototypes, and showcars from Ford Motor Company. Many also have press releases.
There has been enormous amount of speculation recently about the upcoming 2015 Mustang, to go on sale in April 2014 on the 50th anniversary of the debut of the original car. Much of that speculation has been dead wrong or even ridiculous; some has been “hopes and dreams” that are either unrealistic, or represent problems inherent in the design of the current car and in the budget Ford has allocated to it’s development.
So lets attempt to set this right with some extrapolation from what we do know, and the minimum of speculation.
There are any number of facts that we don’t yet know at this early point in the development and release process. And nothing official has been announced: as of this writing it is still much too early for any official announcements. But Ford executives are giving us clues in interviews, and we do have the extensive set of spy photos that have appeared over the past several months. Given what we have, let’s extrapolate forward into 2015 and 2018 from what we know today. And with a little bit of personal preference thrown in as a long-time Mustang owner and driving enthusiast.
The following chart has specifications of the 2013 Mustang taken from the Ford press materials. We then go one step further to extrapolate this information the 2015 Mustang (first models delivered in April 2014 and further models in 2015). And while we’re at it, we’ll take a further step out onto the limb and take this out to 2018. Read more
The Boss is back, likely for a final year in this series. No mechanical changes this year, but with the new nose and appearance shared by all 2013s. And the Boss 302 package pays homage this year to the 1970 model, with similar side stripes to the iconic ’70 model.
Ford Press Release follows:
Ford Mustang Boss 302: Back with More for 2013, Paying Homage to a ’70s Legend
- 2013 Ford Mustang Boss 302 builds on the heritage of the 1970 Boss 302 with new, reflective hockey stick graphics package – first modern application on a production car
- Also new for 2013 is heritage-inspired School Bus Yellow paint and Sterling Gray accents on Boss Laguna Seca, which delivers race-ready suspension, aerodynamic details and removed rear seat
- Ford SYNC® connectivity system becomes a standard Boss feature for 2013, adding to a specially tuned engine, quad exhaust, brakes, suspension and design that optimize weight, aerodynamics and track performance
- Hands-free, voice-activated calling via a Bluetooth®-connected mobile phone and control of a USB-connected digital music player
- 911 Assist™, the automated emergency calling service that is free for the life of the vehicle
- Vehicle Health Report, the on-demand diagnostic and maintenance information service
As part of the purchase price of a brand new Mustang Boss 302, Ford provides a free day of high-speed driver training at Miller Motorsports Park. Very nice… and if the buyer already has track experience, the event can be transferred to a close family member.
Ford Press release follows:
Boss Track Attack Days Now Open at Miller Motorsports Park
- Team Mustang and Ford Racing offer “Track Attack” program to provide comprehensive hands-on track experience for owners to understand Mustang Boss 302 capabilities
- Program is complimentary for new Mustang Boss 302 owners
- Owner sessions will take place at Miller Motorsports park in Tooele, Utah
DEARBORN, Mich., Aug. 11, 2011 – For new 2012 Mustang Boss 302 owners, the unique chance to take part in a “track attack” is now a reality.
As part of a complimentary program offered by Team Mustang and Ford Racing, instructors at the Ford Racing High Performance Driving School at Miller Motorsports Park are offering all new 2012 Mustang Boss 302 owners a chance to learn what their car is capable of over the surface on which it was born – the racetrack.
The Boss Track Attack provides owners with a full immersion into the Boss experience, with driving instruction and extensive track time with professional instructors. The intent is to enable Boss 302 owners to learn just how capable the new car is, and how much fun it can be on one of the country’s greatest tracks.
“This is the first program of its kind from Ford. We’re so proud of the new Boss 302 that we wanted to offer owners the opportunity to stretch their legs – and carve corners – on one of the coolest tracks in America,” said Mickey Matus, marketing manager, Ford Racing. “The Boss 302 is such a legendary nameplate, and our latest version is such a tremendous, fun-to-drive car that we wanted to ensure this exclusive group of owners learn all they could about it, and experience its capabilities in the fun, controlled environment that Miller Motorsports Park can provide.”
Boss owners need not bring their own cars. Miller Motorsports Park has a fleet of track-ready Boss 302s on hand for this driving experience.
The one-day experience begins with a private reception and dinner the evening before at the Larry H. Miller Total Performance Museum at the track, where participants and guests will be immersed into the history of the Boss nameplate. They will be given behind-the-scenes access to some of the stories behind the development of the Boss 302 and will get a private tour of Larry Miller’s amazing personal collection of high-performance Ford and Shelby vehicles.
The next day, owners will start with a dynamic classroom session with school instructors, then spend the rest of the morning learning car control, cornering, braking and vehicle dynamic techniques, before breaking for lunch in the track’s clubhouse.
The afternoon session features more on-track driving including lead and follow exercises, instructor ride-alongs and hot laps with professional drivers. The day finishes with participating owners receiving a special graduation pack from the team.
2012 Mustang Boss 302 owners can now register for their complimentary Boss Track Attack sessions slot at http://www.bosstrackattack.com/ or by calling 435-27-SPEED.
There are 15 individual sessions available between now and the end of the year. Every owner has a year from receiving his or her car to take advantage of this program. Dates for sessions in 2012 will be determined in due course and communicated via the website. Participants can, at their own cost, attend a second day of the driving school or bring a guest to attend with them. Complete information about the program is available at the website.
About the Boss 302
- The limited-production 2012 Mustang Boss 302 is the quickest, best-handling straight-production Mustang ever offered by Ford, based on the world-class foundation provided by the 2011 Mustang GT
- Boss upgraded in nearly every vehicle system; engine output, brakes, suspension, interior and exterior all examined to optimize weight, aerodynamics and track performance
- Full Mustang team effort results in a comprehensive re-engineering available only through the factory; new Boss is not a package that can be purchased out of a catalog or achieved through tuning or aftermarket parts
- Limited-production track-oriented Boss 302 Laguna Seca model expands on Boss racing aspirations, deleting rear seat and adding race-ready suspension and aerodynamic treatments
A very disturbing video: note that his dealer threatened him with loss of warranty coverage if he engaged in any “irregular driving”. And their definition of “irregular driving” is enthusiast driving. Good luck if you happen to do an HPDE weekend… and if you happen to take your BOSS 302 to an HPDE weekend.
This kind of dealer nonsense is exactly that, nonsense. And it’s the reason why people leave Ford for good. And with no solution from Ford for this transmission issue, why take the risk of buying a GT, BOSS; or V-6 Mustang with a manual transmission?
And then there are the dealer problems. Read what happened to the owner of this Mustang: http://www.allfordmustangs.com/forums/2541254-post3195.html. Absolutely rediculous. Why would anybody want any Ford product after this? We know we don’t.
For about $12,000 USD, this crate engine can be yours. Forged and strengthened parts will benefit reliability.
Ford had initially said the engine and other Boss parts would not be available – meaning the Boss would be exclusive. But now that they have changed their minds an enthusiast will be able to build the equivalent of the Boss Mustang very easily. What you don’t want however, given all the terrible reliability problems, is the Getrag MT82 transmission.
Ford Press Release from the original introduction of the Boss 302 engine follows:
HIGH-REVVING FORD 5.0-LITER V8 DELIVERS POWER, SPEED, FLEXIBILITY BEFITTING THE BOSS NAME
- 2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302 engine delivers 440 horsepower and 380 ft.-lbs. of torque without the aid of forced induction
- Purpose-built Boss engine is based on production 2011 Mustang GT 5.0-liter DOHC V8, heavily modified with unique, Boss-specific parts to withstand all-day thrashing
- Revised intake, CNC-machined heads, lightened valvetrain and strengthened reciprocating assembly result in a race-proven engine meeting production durability standards
MONTEREY, Calif., Aug. 13, 2010 – The all-new 5.0-liter dual-overhead camshaft (DOHC) V8 in the 2011 Mustang GT already is the most powerful naturally aspirated production V8 Ford has ever produced. To make it worthy of the Boss name, Ford engineers tweaked more than a few bits of the engine.
They reengineered an entire dynamometer cell to handle the engine’s projected 7,500 rpm redline; put the first engines into Boss 302R race cars and sent them straight onto the track; and they designed a torture test equivalent to running the Daytona 250 race flat-out more than 175 times – in a row.
Only when the 440-hp V8 passed these tests, ensuring maximum power output without sacrificing durability, reliability and drivability, was it worthy of being called a Boss.
Bulletproof and blower-free
Planning began with a small group of engineers within the 5.0-liter V8 team. Starting with open minds and enlisting the help of two members of the original 1969 Boss 302 design team, the group began working its way toward the ultimate evolution of the new 5.0-liter: 440 horsepower and 380 lb.-ft. of torque, along with a broad, flat output curve all the way through its projected 7,500 rpm redline.
The Mustang team knew a supercharger would be the simplest way to extract significant power improvements from the new 5.0-liter V8, but they elected not to pursue forced induction for the 2012 Boss to stay true to the original Boss 302 engine.
“The core group of engineers on the Boss 302 engine understands and respect the heritage of the name and the history behind the original engine,” explains Mike Harrison, Ford V8 engine program manager. “The first Boss 302 was a specially built, free-breathing, high-revving small V8 that gave it certain desirable characteristics on a race course – and we capture that essence in the new engine.”
The team also realized the additional hardware meant more weight, the bane of any racing program and the opposite of what the Boss design team was attempting to achieve. Instead, the same technology that has made the new Mustang GT engine such a formidable force was applied to the Boss 302.
“In keeping with the spirit of the original, the new Boss 302 engine achieves its maximum power output at speeds at or above 7,500 rpm,” says Harrison. “Unlike the original engine, however, low-speed torque and driveability are uncompromised thanks to twin independent variable camshaft timing (Ti-VCT) technology and computer-aided engineering design tools.”
Harrison and his team began exploring Boss 302 concepts starting with the engine’s ability to breathe – essential to the production of horsepower. Because credible track performance requires high power production between 5,000 rpm and 7,000 rpm, the team needed a new approach to intake manifold design.
Borrowing from the Ford Daytona Prototype engines, the resulting short-runners-in-the-box design virtually eliminates lag when the throttle is snapped open while producing peak power output at high rpm.
“The effect of the new intake design is dramatic,” says Harrison. “When I took the prototype car to Mustang Chief Engineer Dave Pericak, he took a short drive, tossed me the keys and said ‘Book it…it’s in the program.’ He knew what we were onto, and that’s really the point where the Boss 302 was born.”
To take advantage of the racing intake manifold, cylinder head airflow was fully optimized by CNC porting the entire intake and exhaust port and combustion chamber. The painstaking machining process takes 2.5 hours per head to complete.
To accompany the higher peak-power engine speed, the team had to engineer a lightweight, high-speed valvetrain and bulletproof reciprocating assembly that would not only hold together for 150,000-plus miles but also produce power at peak rpm.
“What most people don’t realize is that engine stresses increase exponentially as engine speeds rise,” explains Harrison. “So moving up from GT’s 7,000 rpm redline required significant re-engineering of many different parts. Sacrificing reliability and usability over the GT engine was never an option.”
Some of the Boss-specific parts contributing to the Boss 302 V8’s output and durability include:
- Revised composite intake system with shorter runners, inspired by Daytona Prototype racing engines, for high-rpm breathing
- Forged aluminum pistons and upgraded sinter-forged connecting rods for improved strength, needed for the higher combustion pressures and engine speeds
- New high-strength aluminum-alloy cylinder heads with fully CNC-machined ports and chambers for exceptional high-rpm airflow without sacrificing low-speed torque
- Lightened valvetrain components to provide excellent dynamic performance up to speeds well above the engine redline
- Sodium-filled exhaust valves for improved heat dissipation
- Race-specification crankshaft main and rod bearings for higher load capability and improved high-speed durability
- 5W50 full-synthetic oil with engine oil cooler for improved oil pressure and longer-lasting lubrication during extreme racing conditions
- Revised oil pan baffling for improved oil control under racing conditions and during cornering loads greater than 1.0 g
Close connection with race teams
Contrary to normal engine development protocol, the first batch of durability test engines weren’t installed in an engine dyno. Instead, thanks to a request from Ford Racing, they went straight to the track.
“Ford Racing had challenged the Boss engine team to give them the first available Boss 302 engines,” explains Harrison. “They came to us in August 2009 and told us they needed engines as soon as possible to build a limited number of Ford Racing Boss 302R cars for the January Daytona race. They got the engines 12 weeks later and the team got five Boss 302R cars prepped for the January race. This gave us a fantastic opportunity to be able to get full-on race experience with the engine so early in the program.”
The Boss engines have run reliably all season without a single mechanical failure. Boss 302R cars have also racked up the most laps led so far this season in Grand-Am racing.
Using race telemetry, the Boss team has been able to gather on-track data to help optimize engine calibrations, oil pan designs and cooling. In order to engage in virtual racing whenever they needed, the team used the telemetry data to re-create a hot lap at Daytona on the dyno back in Dearborn, allowing further fine-tuning.
“Working with Ford Racing has been invaluable,” said Harrison. “They were a wealth of information for setting up torque and power curves for road racing and for identifying areas of concern during track runs that we wouldn’t have considered if we were just building a hot street engine. Every Boss 302 owner will benefit from their contributions to the program.”
Production engine durability testing
Despite its racing heritage – and the rigors of track-day testing – the Boss 302 V8 is still a production Ford engine, built alongside the 5.0-liter GT engine at Essex Engine Plant in Ontario, Canada. That means it has to meet or exceed all the standard durability testing every Ford engine is required to complete.
The high-winding engine presented a challenge: The engine had no trouble staying together at its redline, but the Ford durability dynamometers weren’t designed to operate at the speeds the Boss engine was capable of.
“Ford had no engine test cells built to run at that kind of sustained speed,” said Harrison. “Ford Racing had one, but it wasn’t instrumented to do production durability testing. So we had to re-engineer the dyno cell with new balancers and jackshafts so the dyno wouldn’t fly apart running at redline hour after hour.”
Once an adequate test stand was configured, the Boss engine was run at its full rated output for tens of millions of cycles, eventually outperforming its specifications at every stage of testing. Engineers calculated that the test regimen was equivalent to running the Daytona 250 race flat-out more than 175 times – in a row.
Team members also devised an additional durability test specific to the Boss 302 engine – one that reflects the unique demands of Boss drivers. The engine was subjected to a regimen simulating 1,500 quarter-mile races typical of events at drag strips across the country.
“Even though the production Boss engine is designed to be very close to a full race engine, it had to achieve the same vehicle durability signoff any other production engine requires,” says Harrison. “Then it went on to get the track durability test signoff too. It’s really an engineering accomplishment that a Boss owner can thrash his car on the track and still expect the same outstanding reliability that the owner of a regular Mustang GT will enjoy.”
The 1969 and 1970 Boss 302 Mustangs were homologation specials, built specifically to allow the car to compete in SCCA Trans Am racing. The cars were fitted with special handling options, but the most distinctive feature was the engine itself. The engine was basically a Windsor 302-cube motor fitted with 351 Cleveland type heads. There were reliability problems and several changes were made over the two years of production. The resultant horsepower was only 290. Although the figure was known to be under-rated (probably closer to 350), this was gross horsepower and was measured without engine accessories or driveline. Therefore, the power output was certainly far less than today’s 2011 Mustang GT or 2012 Boss.
1628 Boss 302 Mustangs were produced in 1969, 7013 in 1970. In addition, the Boss 302 engine was also offered in the Cougar Eliminator for both years. 169 were built for 1969. The Cougar was considerably heavier than the Mustang and would perform somewhat less. Authentic Boss 302 Mustangs and Cougars are amongst the most collectible of all special edition Fords and prices remain very high.
Car life reported in July 1969 a 0-60 time of 7.1 seconds and a quarter mile of 14.08 @ 102.85 MPH. While good for that time period, it would be totally unacceptable for today’s Mustangs. Even the 2011 V-6 Mustang handily outdoes that. In fact, the Consumer Reports October 2010 issue shows the 2011 V-6 Mustang overwhelming a 1970 Boss 302 Mustang, with a 0-60 time of 6.2 seconds versus 8 flat, and fuel economy averaging 24 for the v-6 versus only 11 for the Boss. We think this is a very telling example of progress… although as usual we are disgusted to see such a crude chassis after 40 years of so-so-progress. At least Ford finally understands that a base model Mustang doesn’t have to be a miserable box, and it’s taken them 45 years to remember that this was a fundamental reason for the success of the original mid-60s Mustangs.
We’ve had the good fortune to encounter both a Boss 302 Mustang and Cougar this year at the Cars and Coffee shows in Austin, Texas.
We’ll start with this absolutely gorgeous 1970 Cougar Eliminator. We’ve seen several of these over the years but this one looks the best, with a near-perfect restoration. We had both 1969 and 1970 Cougars in our family, and our own loaded 1970 Cougar XR-7 remains a handsome favorite. But it was nothing compared to this one… it’s the car we’d take of the two Boss examples shown here.
In profile, the Cougar was a sexy cat: long, low, lean, and curvy. It doens’t get any better than this from Mercury.
One indication of originality is the drip channel added under the start motor relay. Only Boss powered cars had these. It’s a clear sign that this example is almost certainly an original, although the shocks, battery, and chrome dipstick are clearly not original. This car still even the air injection (“smog”) device present (canister to the right, with hose leading down) – bravo to the owner for this attention to detail.
This 1969 Boss Mustang also made an appearance – again a very sharp looking Mustang, with (amazing for a Mustang) zero fake scoops. In fact Ford went to the length of removing the fake scoop behind the side door handles solely for Boss production. That wasn’t cheap to do, and it shows that Ford understood that a “form follows function” philosophy was what serious enthusiasts expected. That was a practice we wouldn’t see again from Ford until the Mustang SVOs of the 1980s. It’d be great to see Ford follow this practice again… the current Mustang can be ordered with a huge fake hood scoop and 4 non-functional side scoops. Poseurs!
This Boss is far less original than the Cougar above…the intake manifold and air cleaner are, unfortunately, completely wrong.
Will the 2012 and 2013 Boss Mustangs be as collectible as the originals? It’s hard to say at this point, but with only 7500 street cars to be made over two years it’s likely we’ll see high prices in 20 or 30 years. The majority of them will immediately go into storage instead of being used on the roadrace track, as they were designed for. Other recent special edition models such as the Bullets or Machs can be found at low prices… and are often modified past their original specifications. And the 2013 will mark the end of the current model Mustang… it will undoubtedly be replaced by something much lighter but with the same engines and a far better rear suspension. For an original Boss 302 powered car, we’d take the Cougar or Mustang shown here. But for a late model car, we’d rather wait until the Mustang gets replaced in 2014. We have higher expectations than Ford can currently deliver.
Information from Ford on BOSS302 dealer allocation. Will there be enough to go around, and enough so that the dealers don’t mark these up unreasonably?
Ford dealer notice follows:
The New Boss 302 is back after a 40 year hiatus. This no-nonsense enthusiast track car is built for the street with the race track as its lab. The 2012 Mustang Boss 302 is set to become the best-handling Mustang ever offered by Ford.
This purpose built vehicle is available in two trims for a limited run –Boss 302 & Boss 302 “Laguna Seca” package featuring a 440 HP Hi-Po 302 V8 Engine.
Methods for Earning Allocation
All Ford dealers will have the opportunity to earn a 2012 Boss 302 Mustang. There are two methods for earning allocation:
1) Share of Nation
- Approximately 75% of the 2012 Boss 302 production will be allocated to the Ford dealers as a Share of Nation
- 12 months of sales (October ’09 – September ’10) will be used to determine dealers participating in the Share of Nation. A dealers opportunity to increase share of nation allocation or inclusion in the Top 75% is increased with each Mustang sold through the end of September
- Each of the dealers participating in the Share of Nation is guaranteed at least one Boss 302
- Those Ford dealers not participating in the Share of Nation will be entered into a Lottery for the balance of the allocation
- Each dealership participating in the Lottery will receive one chip (entry into the lottery) for being a dealer and one chip for each retail sale over the 12-month period (October ’09 – September ’10)
- Those dealers with ZERO Mustang sales over the last 12-month period will each receive one chip in the lottery
- No dealer will earn more then one Boss 302 through the lottery
Note: The Laguna Seca Package will be allocated by a second lottery for all dealers earning a Boss 302 through Share of Nation or Lottery.
To help manager customer expectations for ordering the 2012 Boss 302 Mustang, all 2011 MY dealer production guides will be communicated in early October. Dealers will be given their full year guide numbers along with the quarter(s) their unit(s) will be scheduled. This will enable dealers to manage customer expectations regarding availability and timing.
Production is scheduled to begin in late January and will conclude in December 2011.
Since it’s unveiling on August 13th, the 2012 Boss Mustang has created a tremendous amount of excitement amongst our dealers and customers. It is our hope that this allocation strategy will support your efforts in providing customers with a clear understanding of this new and exciting best in class product.
Those dealers that sell 75% of the retail Mustangs will participate in the Share of Nation allocation (retail Mustang sales % of Nation) — through July, this is the Top 794 Mustang dealers.
Jay Leno was at the introduction of the Boss 302 a few weeks back and now has the video of his visit with Tom Barnes, Vehicle Engineering Manager for the Mustang. There is only a little bit of new information here, but more importantly we get to hear how the Boss sounds.