GM's axing of Mustang's strongest competition--Camaro and Firebird--in
2003, Ford beefed up its Mustang lineup for the year, supercharging the
Cobra and reviving the Mach 1 moniker.
Dark Shadow Grey and Redfire were
added to the color options, replacing Mineral Grey and Laser Tint Red.
Azure Blue was available for the Mach 1 only.
The 2003 V-6 Mustang got the hood
from 1999 and 2001 Cobras with a small rear-facing scoop.
The Pony Edition Mustang was added
to the nationwide lineup in 2003, after being a Florida-only edition in
2001 and 2002. It was a V-6 with the raised GT hood scoop, Stampeding Pony
door graphics, polished 16" wheels, and black bumper inserts.
An interior upgrade package was
added for the 2003 GT, and included larger headrests and silver interior
enhancements like the shifter ring, door lock soldiers, and instrument
bezel. A Bright Wheel option was available, but this was nothing more than
the chrome 1999 and 2001 Cobra wheel with Mustang centercaps.
Ford celebrated its 100th
Anniversary in June of 2003, and made limited edition F-Series Super Duty
trucks, Explorers, Tauruses, Focuses, and Mustang GTs to commemorate the
event. The 100th Anniversary models only came in black, and included
Premium Verona-grain Imola leather seating surfaces in two-tone parchment,
and the Mustang got the GT premium package which included 17" wheels,
anti-lock brakes and traction control; dual exhaust; power driver's seat
with power lumbar support; leather-wrapped steering wheel; and Mach 460
AM/FM Stereo with six-disc CD changer, as well as 100th Anniversary badges
on the fender and decklid and embossed on the seats. The Centennial
Package was a $995 upgrade.
The Mach 1 returned in 2003 with a
four-valve DOHC 305-hp V-8 engine sitting under a functional Shaker hood
scoop. A flat black stripe ran from the scoop to the front of the hood, a
black Mach 1 stripe ran the length of the side, the spoiler was painted
black, it got rolled exhaust tips like the 2001 Bullitt, and Comfort Weave
seats like the original Mach 1. A new version of the classic Magnum 500
wheel was the only option for the 2003 Mach 1. The Mach 1 was available in
six colors: Oxford White, Zinc Yellow, Torch Red, Black, Azure Blue, and
Dark Shadow Grey. Visit the
Mach 1 Registry for more info on Mach 1 Mustangs.
2003 Cobras began hitting showrooms
in June of 2002 with a supercharged 4.6L DOHC V-8 pushing 390-hp. Two
inverted hood scoops extracted heat from the engine, the front and rear
bumpers were redesigned, and GT side scoops and a new spoiler were added.
The '03 Cobras had 6-speed manual transmissions.
Ten years after SVT introduced its
first product--the 1993 SVT Cobra R--they released a special 10th
Anniversary 2003 SVT Cobra. The 10th Anniversary Package was available as
either a coupe or convertible, and featured unique 17x9-inch dark argent
painted anniversary wheels, red leather seating surfaces in the front and
rear, interior trim with the appearance of carbon fiber, red painted brake
calipers, and SVT 10th Anniversary badges on the floor mats and rear
decklid. SVT produced 2,003 units of the Anniversary model, which were
available in Torch Red, Black Clearcoat, and Silver Metallic.
The aftermarket was thriving in
2003, and tuners like Roush, Steeda, and Saleen made 2003 the most
diversified model year since 1970.
Roush Performance offered Stage 1,
2, and 3 Mustangs, as well as the 380R, Boyd Coddington California Roadster, and Jack
Roush Classic. The 380R and Classic had 379-hp. Only 200 380Rs were made,
and they were split between coupe and convertible and white with blue
stripes, red with white stripes, and black with gold stripes--a new
combination for Roush. Only 50 Classics were made in both coupe and
convertible form. The Boyd was only offered in convertible, and only 100
were made. They were originally split between silver and black and red and
black, but I've gotten pictures of yellow and blue ones too. Only 25 had
superchargers. The ones that did used the standard Roush hood which was
also used on 1999 and 2001 Cobras as well as 2003 LX Mustangs. The
non-supercharged versions had the standard GT hood.
Steeda introduced the Q400 to mimic
its Q400-R race car. Purchasers could choose between a Vortech centrifugal
supercharger or a Paxton Novi roots supercharger and numerous other engine
and exterior enhancements. Steeda advertised 400-hp, but Motor Trend
tested theirs at 425-rwhp, and the car ran 0-60 in 4.9 seconds, and the
quarter-mile in 12.7 seconds at 111.7 mph.
In celebration of their 20th anniversary,
Saleen offered the ultimate in limited edition vehicles: the SA-20
Speedster. The SA-20 Speedster, based on the Saleen S281, was available as a
convertible only and was powered by a 375 HP, 4.6L V8 featuring a Saleen Series
IV Screw Type Intercooled Supercharger and Saleen Powerflash performance
calibration system. There were only ten made, factory-custom painted Pearl White
with Five Spoke 18Ē wheels painted to match. The SA-20 featured Saleenís
brand-new, never before seen 20th anniversary Tonneau cover with integrated
light-bar design. In addition, the vehicle featured 20th anniversary black and
yellow graphics, Saleenís lightweight, vented, composite hood, S281 Extreme Wing
and S281 Extreme Rear Fascia with center exhaust. The interior of the SA-20
featured 20th anniversary special edition Saleen leather sport seating, console
plaque, custom floor mats and custom door panels. Of the ten SA-20s made, one
was special ordered with an automatic transmission.