SN95 94-98 HISTORY***

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Will, Mar 9, 2015.

  1. Will

    Will Active Member

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    After 15 years of the incredibly famous Fox Body Ford Mustang, some enthusiasts were happy to hear about an intended redesign, the 4th full redesign of the

    model’s existence. The Fox Body Mustang brought the model line back up from near ruin, caused by the 4 cylinder, low performance Mustang II, and emissions

    standards that hurt the performance of the classic Mustangs. Though some hoped for a redesign through several years of the Fox Body, the look should be

    credited with putting the Mustang back atop the pony car market once again, right where it belonged.

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    1994


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    Prior to its release, this new 1994 Ford Mustang was attributed conceptual drawings showing a sort of futuristic form of the original, but when it debuted the cues

    were shown to be hints at best. Dubbed the SN95, this Mustang was far more aerodynamic than any before it, with smooth, rounded lines completely unlike the

    Fox Body era. While some people were unhappy with it, the new Mustang sold well and horsepower was up across the board. In place of the anemic 105

    horsepower 4-banger was a new 3.8L offering 145 horsepower. The GT received a bump in power up to 215, and, though the Cobra R was MIA in 1994, the

    Cobra was back with 240 horsepower. The interior received some upgrades to add more comfort to the model, as well; all of this translating to a rise in cost. In

    order to help promote the new 1994 Mustang Cobra, they put it in the public eye in a similar manner to that of the 1964 Mustang: lead the field at the Indy 500.

    To commemorate this event, all of the 1000 1994 Ford Mustang Cobra convertibles were “Indy 500 Pace Car†editions.While there was no Cobra R offered for the

    1994 model year, late in the 1994 year Roush Performance offered a performance intake system, as well as various suspension upgrades, and this Roush lineup

    would remain the same throughout the run of the SN95 Mustang. While the Roush offered a great handling and appearance package, the true Mustang buying

    horsepower junkies had another option, as Saleen Industries released the powerful new S-351 which offered 371 horsepower, and if that was not enough, you

    could opt for the SR, which built an impressive 480 horsepower, although the SR was very rare with only 2 being built. Overall, the redesigned Mustang was a

    success, selling over 10,000 more units than the previous year.



    1995


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    The 1995 Mustang brought about no significant changes to the base model, GT, or Cobra, but the addition of two new trim lines offered enthusiasts two quick

    new options. The first, more basic addition was the Mustang GTS. The GTS was basically a stripped down GT, with the performance aspects of the GT, as well as

    the badging, but there were no fog lights as found on the GT, and no rear GT wing. Also, the interior was similar to that found in the V6 base model with cloth

    manual seats; although a power driver’s seat was an option. The GT gauge cluster was standard on the GTS, but power locks and windows were not. However, if

    you chose a GTS, you could order any option that was offered for the base model. This trim line offered someone who wanted the grunt of the GT without the

    cost and options, and this was only offered for 1995. The bigger news was the reintroduction of the mighty Cobra R. Considering the popularity of the 1993

    Cobra R, the SVT engineers went back to work to produce an even meaner R, and the 1995 Cobra R did not disappoint. While the 1993 Cobra R used the same

    engine as the Cobra, the 1995 R used a whole new engine, and the 250 1995 Cobra R’s were basically a street legal race car, and a professional driver’s license

    (NHRA or SCCA) was required for purchase. The new engine of the Cobra R was a naturally aspirated 5.8L, producing 300 horsepower, mated to a Tremec 5-

    speed manual transmission, and fed by a 20 gallon Fuel-Safe racing fuel cell. The suspension was heavily upgraded with progressive rate springs, a front strut

    tower brace, and larger stabilizer bars; so not only would this new Cobra R get up and go in a straight line (running a stock 13.8 second quarter mile) but it

    would also handle the road course as well. Saleen Industries had the relative same lineup, with the power ranging from 371 to 480 horsepower. One other

    interesting and very rare Mustang offering for 1995 was the option of a hardtop convertible. 499 of this hardtop convertible were produced, and even more rare

    were a few convertibles which came with a hardtop and soft-top, and although they were never officially offered, there are some in public hands today. The

    hardtop option was cool, but it was inconvenient and would be done away with after 1995. Thanks in part to the new options, and the increased interest of the

    public the 1995 outsold the 1994 model.



    1996

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    When the 1996 Mustang debuted, it appeared to be the same as the previous year, but there were big changes under the hood. The famed 5 Liter engine, having

    been used since the years of the Mustang II, was gone, having been replaced with a new 4.6L engine which used an overhead cam (OHC) design. The base

    model V6 Mustangs, with the same 3.8L engine, got an increase in power, up to 150 horsepower. The entire model line received new tail lights in 1996, with

    three vertical lights separated by a body colored trim piece, and these new tails resembled the original Mustang; at least about as well as the other “1964 cuesâ€

    did so. While the GT did not receive a jump in power with the new engine, the Cobra went from 240 horsepower with the 5.0L engine to 305 horsepower with the

    new Dual Overhead Cam (DOHC) 4.6L engine. The Cobra was offered in Black, Laser Red, Crystal White, and Mystic. Mystic was by far the most intriguing (and

    most expensive) of the offered colors, and depending on the amount and angle of light, the different angles of the car would appear to be purple, green, or

    bronze. The GTs were not left out of the “special paint†department, and 829 bright Tangerine GTs were produced in 1996. Saleen also introduced a new model,

    with the S-281. This was a much lower performing Mustang than was the S-351, and was far more affordable. The S-351 power hiked up to 495, but production

    dropped to just 20, although the overall sales of the Saleen (thanks mostly to the lower cost of the S-281) to over 440 units, where the 1995 Saleen only saw

    about 133 units. Overall, production of then Ford Mustang dropped a bit from 1995.


    1997

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    This was a fairly uneventful year for the Mustang. There were no changes made to the V6 base model, or the Cobra (shy of the lack of the Mystic paint), but the

    GT received a standard revamped alarm system as well as a new standard fabric. Much like the standard models, the Saleen models remained the same, with the

    S-281 and S-351 being offered with the same performance ratings, however production of the S-351 went up a bit, and the production of the S-281 went down.

    Overall sales of the Mustang went down in 1997, with sales drooping to around 108,000; the lowest since 1992.


    1998

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    1998 would mark the final year of the SN95, and evidently the news of the SN95 coming to an end brought about a sales rush, as sales numbers jumped from

    around 108,000 to almost 176,000. This was surprising considering the relatively poor sales of 1997, and also considering the fact that nothing had changed

    from the 1997 model to the 1998 model, except for the deletion of the dash clock, but it can be assumed that an extra 69,000 people bought a 1998 Mustang

    because they didn’t like how the clock looked. The Saleen models were once again the same as the previous year with the S-281 and S-351, but to

    commemorate the 15th anniversary of the Saleen Mustang, the SA-15 was offered. The SA-15 was a dressed up S-281, and was very rare, with only 10

    produced, and those 10 are easy to recognize due to their bright yellow paint and wheels. The following year would bring about another redesign of the Mustang,

    and while at the time the SN95 was considered to be a nice change from the fairly boxy Fox Body Mustangs, the SN95s are considered to be less desirable than

    the Fox Body Mustang, as they are more powerful, but are heavier, resulting in a slower car in many cases. This generation was one of the most popular for

    special editions, and those special models are still well sought after, but for many, the SN95 was another dark time for Mustang enthusiasts, second only to the

    Mustang II. But all in all, the SN95 was a successful generation, and are still popular among performance minded enthusiasts, thanks in part to the wide variety

    of upgrades available for them.
     
  2. ElrodKTPQ_89

    ElrodKTPQ_89 Legend

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    Good read! Thanks Will!
     
  3. Will

    Will Active Member

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    No problem! This is pretty good information.
     
  4. mcglsr2

    mcglsr2 Well-Known Member SN95 Supporter

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    Good info!

    Something that I hardly ever seen mentioned in conjunction with the SN95, specifically the newly designed 1994 body is the Mustang Mach III concept car. This concept car essentially depicted what the 94 SN95 would look like. Looking at the pics of it, you will see A LOT of familiar design cues. Also look at the interior/dash - very similar to the production vehicle with the whole cockpit theme (with the exception of it being a 2-seater, of course).

    Blurb (and more photos) here.

    Some images from that site:

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  5. mcglsr2

    mcglsr2 Well-Known Member SN95 Supporter

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    Lol, I just realized, in the 3rd pic from the top in my previous post, in addition to all the other design cues they kept, they even kept that nasty rear wheel tuck ;) Look at that thing. Not even close to the outside of the fender :)