How To Upgrade A Ford Mustang On A $5,000 Budget

Tuning / 11 Comments

If you had $5,000, how would you upgrade your Mustang?

Ever since the Ford Mustang debuted back in 1964, it has been one of the ultimate affordable performance cars with limitless tuning capabilities. It didn't take long before companies like Shelby, Roush, and Saleen all made names for themselves taking ordinary Mustangs and transforming them into supercar-rivaling monsters. But not everyone can afford a Mustang from one of these famous marques, which is why many owners turn to the aftermarket to create their own unique builds.

American Muscle, one of the leading sources for Mustang parts, is currently offering a $5,000 shopping spree courtesy of SR Performance. SR Performance offers a variety of Mustang parts and accessories but the company says you can spend the $5,000 on parts from any performance brand like Brembo, Magnaflow, or dozens of others. The sweepstake is free to enter and the winner will be chosen by October 7, 2019. If we were the lucky winners, here are the five parts we'd buy.

Wheels & Tires

Wheels and tires are often the first upgrades enthusiasts opt for when they begin their modifications. American muscle has plenty of options to choose from, no matter which Mustang generation you own, including wheels that look like the OEM GT Performance Package wheels or the wheels from the previous generation Shelby GT500. If you're going to buy a new set of wheels, we recommend wrapping them in some new tires to provide better traction and handling for your Mustang.


Mustangs have come a long way from having a live rear axle and the inability to take corners with any sense of composure. Anyone who thinks a Mustang can't tear up a racetrack clearly hasn't driven one lately but a set of performance shocks can still greatly improve your lap times. We recommend an upgraded suspension for anyone looking to track their Mustang. But just be aware, it will likely cause the car to be less comfortable out on the road.


The Ford Mustang is a very powerful car, but that doesn't stop owners from adding even more power through various engine upgrades. Adding power is usually not a bad idea but only if the brakes are upgraded to handle it. Brakes are often the last item people change out when upgrading a car but a good set of brakes from Brembo or Wilwood not only help the car stop quicker on a racetrack, but will also make the car safer in the event of a near-crash.


Part of the fun of owning a Mustang, especially a V8 Mustang, is hearing the wonderful exhaust note. While a stock Mustang can be tremendously loud, there will always be a demand to crank up the decibels even further. American Muscle offers plenty of exhaust options including axle-back, cat-back, headers, h-pipes, mufflers, and tips.


We highly recommend upgrading parts like the brakes and suspension first, but if you already have those upgrades fitted, a nice supercharger could be just what the doctor ordered. American Muscle sells an assortment of supercharger kits from well-known companies like Edelbrock, Roush, and Vortech, that can take your Mustang far beyond its stock horsepower output. Some of the kits will break the budget but a few can be found within the limits of the $5,000 shopping spree.

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