I'd been looking at the S197 Mustangs since they came out in 2004. I started some serious shopping in early 2008, and decided on a California Special. The only problem was that Vapor wasn't available with a CS in 2008. I decided to wait a bit and see what was offered for the 2009 model year. As luck would have it, Vapor was offered on the California Special for the 2009 model year. I went down to the dealership and put in my order.
I built this web site to document my Mustang. HTML makes for an easy way to link and document for me. I'm not sure if anyone else will make their way to this site, but it meets my needs.
I never liked the channel in the top of the radiator showing, but never saw any aftermarket parts (except for some outrageous looking/priced covers that covered more than I really wanted). So I've been thinking about what to do for a while. I finally settled on a pieve of aluminum that would just slip down over the sides and sit in place.
I finally got some time to devote to this, and I think it turned out rather well. You can see the finished product, as well as a write up here.
I checked around locally for some bulbs for the smoked marker lamps, and couldn't find any in red. I finally had to order some red bulbs off of eBay. The install was very simple, maybe 5 minutes per side if I wasn't taking pictures of the before and after. You can check out the pictures here.
Starting of the season, finally got around to installing some of the stuff I've been collecting.
Caliper Covers - I needed 1/8" spacers to clear 2 of the wheels, so I ended up adding them to all 4. While I had the wheels off the car, I also took the time to do a little cleanup, and add a coating of "Rim Wax" to them. I'm pleased with the outcome, makes the calipers blend in a little better with the overall look I'm going for. You can check it out here
Fuel Rail Covers - I've had these for quite some time, just never got around to putting them on. I wasn't too impressed with the mounting solution, but it'll have to do. It's just a friction mount on the posts on the cam cover, and I know removal at some point to replace them with some painted/powder coated cam covers. You can take a look at them here
Finally got around to installing the lighted door sills with my own RGB twist. The RGB Controller tucks into the passenger side kick panel. It took a while to get this one done, but it came together well in the end.
Went to the Smith Mountain Lake Powerboat Association Car, Truck, Bike & Boat Show (Link). They had about 45 cars and trucks, 3 boats, and 2 bikes. They had 4 class awards and a best in show, voted on by the participants and spectators.
Also went to the Roanoke Valley Mustang Club cruise in at the old Vinton Motors. We only had 10 or so cars, a couple of people from the Hot Rods and Honeys Cruzin Car Club showed up.
I found a good clearance deal on a CDC Detail Corral, simple to install, but looks great. Take a look at the link to see before and after pictures.
I finally finished the installation of the Trunk Release button and the lights in the trunk. I took the approach that I may want to "return to stock" at some point. I bought an extra emergency brake cover, and the used harness. I've got a complete write up on the installation Here.
I took a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway and took a few pictures.
I stopped by the dealership to get my tank of gas. Still no check engine light.
The dealership switched the driver's side cam sensor to the passenger's side and vice versa. The sensor threw the code on the passenger's side, so they replaced the sensor. Hopefully, this is the end of the check engine saga.
I stopped by the dealership to program the Fusion key fobs, and to make sure everything was in order. I let the Service Writer know I would be leaving town at 3:00pm.
I called the Sales Manager, he said he had spoken to the General Manager, and the person responsible for the Service Department. They were going to investigate to see what they could do
It rained yesterday, so she stayed in the garage. I drove it to work today, all was fine. I started it up after work, and the check engine light was back. I called the dealership and said I was bringing it back in. They hooked it up and scanned it, not the same code as before, but a code dealing with an intermittent issue with the same sensor (Driver side cam shaft position).
They held on to it. While I was waiting on my ride, I walked down to the showroom and spoke to the Sales Manager. I explained the issues (beginning with 7/18) I was having with the car.
A bit of a let down. I had planned a trip to South Boston, then to Charlotte to visit friends and show them the new car. As I already have expenses (hotel, event tickets, etc.) I have to continue the trip, but not in the new car!
I picked it up around 5:00pm. The Service Manager said that Ford had provided 3 graphs, and the bad alternator didn't match any of them on the Ripple test. I drove it around town a bit, no check engine light.
Still no engine light, I took it back in at 7:00am. They gave me a ride to work. Around 5:00pm, I talked to the service writer, he said that there was an issue with the alternator. They had one on order, and it may be in tomorrow.
I gave it a bath today, and installed the hood struts. Took a pretty good drive to a party, with no engine light.
I took it in at 7:00am, and they gave me a ride to work. About 3:30pm, they called and said they wanted me to drive it over the weekend.
They came to pick me up from work, when I got the the dealership, I spoke to the service manager. The code was a driver side cam sensor. He cleared the code, but indicated that it could be an issue with the alternator. He wanted me to drive it over the weekend and see if the light came back on, and bring it back in Monday morning.
I got in to drive the Mustang to work after lunch, and at 319.9 miles, the engine light came on. I called the dealership and let them know it would be there first thing in the morning.
Well, I got a call from my salesperson, she offered to pay me for the fuel, or I could bring it back in and they'll fill it up for me. I decided to bring it back in when I need a fill up. It seems they'll do whatever it takes to make me happy.
Throughout the order and purchase process, I've made a lot of requests. It hasn't gone as well as my slide-rule calculated, but the sales team, service, and body shop have made everything "right." I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them to prospective buyers in the future.
It took a while to add all of the new pictures (before and after for the parts), scans of documents, etc., but I think everything on the site is now up to date.
I got up ready to do a few installs of some accessories I had previously ordered. I installed:
I also took some before and after shots of these installs, and the after shots of the items that the dealer installed. I drove it around town a little, getting a feel for it. The ride is a little rough, and I find myself avoiding potholes, etc. a little more, but all-in-all I'm happy with it. In my daily driver (1997 Ford Explorer), I'm usually listening to the radio... So far in this car, the radio hasn't been on very much. I find myself listening to the exhaust more than anything else, and those M-5230-GTA mufflers sound great.
After months of waiting, I head down to the dealership to pick it up. While there, I met the owner of the dealership (he ordered the first 2009 Mustang through the dealership, mine was the second). The salesperson helped me put my plates on, and I put the WeatherTech floor mats in.
I also spoke to the Service Manager, he had a few notes for me. On the Roush louvers, instead of the black coated screws (eventually they'd rust) that came with the louver, he went down and got some hex drive stainless steel screws. He went the extra mile, and the car looks better for it. He also mentioned that floor to front fender lip prior to the suspension kit (M-2005-FR3) was 30", after installation, it's sitting at 27.5". That's a little lower than I expected, but it looks "right".
The dealership forgot to fill 'er up before I took it, so I had to go by the gas station for the first fill up. $40...
I headed home to install the license plate bracket. That installation was a breeze, now I just need to order some new plates... I've had these for over 20 years.
The final parts, the suspension pack (M-2005-FR3) were delivered to the dealership on 7/1. I went by to make my initial payment. I also stopped by to talk to the Service Manager, and ask him to hold onto the packing slip/receipt for the suspension kit. He mentioned that the license plate bracket and hood strut items were painted, so we dropped by the body shop to pick them up.
I only took a few pictures on the 27th. I decided to head back down to the dealership and take a few pictures. To my surprise, they had pulled the car into the showroom.
I even recorded a little movie with my camera.
Had a phone call in the morning from the salesperson. Since the car was marked as "Sold", it had already been prepped by the time she got to it. They had drilled the holes for the front license plate tag. I told her we could talk about it when I arrived at the dealership.
I wasn't a happy camper at this point, but it can be fixed. I take the car for a test drive, and on the way back, I notice a few additional issues: 1)the hood scoop wasn't sitting flush with the hood on the passenger's side, and 2)the dash panel was the stock bright aluminum instead of the ribbed charcoal applique (order code 67D).
I met with the Sales Manager to discuss the issues, and he said they would all be taken care of. We worked out the final deal, and finished up the paperwork.
As you can see on the Customizations page, there were already quite a few things that I wanted installed prior to delivery. The Service Manager has been excellent to work with, and I was told it would be around 2 weeks before I could pick up the vehicle. I also dropped off the parts I was sourcing to them.
I got an email from the dealership... a little too late to go see it.
I got the VIN from the dealer, and started a thread on Blue Oval News to track it.
The dealer was able to submit the order to Ford, I went in and re-confirmed the options. The dealer wrote up a buyer's order, and I gave them a good faith payment. I also reiterated my stipulations below.
Using a copy of the 2009 MY order guide from the web, I picked the options I wanted and went into the dealership to give them the list of options. The dealer put the options in their system, and provided me with a DORA that showed all of the options to confirm. I provided them with my stipulations: No dealership ornamentation added on the car, and do not install the license plate on the front bumper.