Goodguys Foxbody Mustang – A Pace Car from 1979

The Goodguys Foxbody Mustang made its grand debut at the 2017 SEMA show. It was the only Foxbody car on the floor in central hall and it made a major splash. Quite frankly, nobody has made a Pro-Touring car this sinister out of a Fox. There is one guy who bagged a ’79 Fox – but this full perimeter chassis ‘Stang is downright wicked.

Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel CurveThe car was built to showcase the coming wave of next generation muscle cars. It is also signifies a major change as Goodguys event gates are opened to 1987 and earlier show cars starting next spring.

Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel Curve

Artist Eric Brockmeyer was tasked with the vision – take the pewter ’79 Mustang Indy Pace Car and make it unique to the Goodguys gang with their signature yellow hue being the only real guiding factor. As you can see, Brockmeyer kept everything but the silver tone – sticking with the stripes, graphics and famed four eyes.


Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel Curve

It was then up to Jonathan Goolsby and the team at Goolsby Customs down in Hueytown, Alabama to make it come to life. Being muscle car specialists, they were up to the task but the Pace Car was uncharted territory.

Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel Curve

Let’s start with the body mods. The wheel flares were all widened to handle the massive 18×10” and 19×12” Forgeline centerlock wheels shod with Michelin 265/35/18 and 345/30/19 tires. While that was happening, a Goolsby team member was underneath cutting out the floors and adding mini tubs before welding the rockers over the custom scanned, fully independent, perimeter Roadster Shop Fast Track chassis. Baer brakes and a Bowler-prepped Tremec T56 6-speed transmission round out the handling and drivetrain package. Once the fully massaged metal shell emerged from the Goolsby Customs body shop, it was coated in a combination of PPG Vibrance colors staying true to its pace car lineage right down to the galloping Mustangs.

Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel CurveGoodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel Curve

The heart of the Fox is Ford Performance’s beastly Aluminator XS (pulled from a pace car) necessitating a relocated firewall to replace the original 2.3 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder. Putting down 550 ponies, it features an 11.0:1 compression ratio thanks to MAHLE hard-anodized forged pistons and Manley H-beam connecting rods. The monster V8 screams through custom headers and 3” exhaust before meeting the Flowmaster Mufflers.

Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel Curve

Inside, the car was treated to a fresh M & M Hot Rod Interiors masterpiece featuring the finest black leather from Relicate. The stock seats have been reshaped with bolsters keeping things tight in the command center. Custom one-off yellow Dakota Digital gauges keep track of the vitals while the Vintage Air climate control blows ice cold. A hi-powered Kicker audio system insures the 80s soundtrack never dies.

Ridiculously fast, stanced just right with the handling characteristics of a track beast, the Foxbody Pace Car joins Goodguys’ iconic ’32 Ford sedan and G/RS ’69 Camaro in the company garage. This car was purpose-built to remain in the Goodguys family stable as well as flog at track days and driving events.

Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel CurveAs you might imagine, the furious Fox blew up plenty of skirts at SEMA where we were able to sneak in this impromptu photo shoot right inside the Goodguys booth. Car & Driver devoted an entire story to it. Jalopnik called it “one of the raddest cars at SEMA,” and Ford Muscle weighed in too. Could this car be the beginning stage of more Pro-Touring Fox track monsters? Only time will tell, but the blueprint has been established and now Roadster Shop as well as Goolsby Customs have the system in place for those that will follow in its footsteps.

Goodguys Foxbody Mustang, SEMA 2017, Mustang GT, Goolsby Customs, Fuel CurveIn addition to the suppliers mentioned in the story, Goodguys wanted to thank other industry partners for their generous contributions to this project. They include: American Autowire, C & R Racing, Tilton, Boom Mat, Rick’s Hot Rod Tanks, MP Fabrication, California Car Cover, Ididit, Earl’s Performance, Inland Empire, Optima Batteries, Detroit Speed, Grundy Worldwide Insurance, Speedway Motors, Prestone, 3M, Lucas Oil, Meguiar’s, Hurst and K & N Filters.

Senior Editor, Digital Media

With three decades of automotive journalism under his belt, John Drummond serves as Senior Editor – Digital Media for Fuel Curve and Goodguys Rod & Custom Association where he has worked since 1990. Drummond got his start in motorsports reporting by making a fake press pass to gain starting line access. The ruse worked and he began covering auto races as far back as 1986 in Northern California, eventually getting his stories published worldwide. He has owned and driven everything from a 1957 Plymouth Belvedere to a ridiculously modded Subaru WRX as well as a string of Mercedes AMG’s, most of which had the warranties voided the day after leaving the dealership.

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