"Build me the nastiest, streetable, vintage-looking Boss 302 you can." Those were the instructions given to Kenny Maisano of Mascar Modern & Classic Autobody & Paint Repair by car owner Scott Tedro. He wanted the ultimate Boss 302, and Kenny delivered with this car, dubbed Mr. Nasty.
First off, this car is a real Boss 302, but the car's drivetrain disappeared a while ago, making it easy for Kenny to deviate from a straight restoration, to something more powerful and modern. He reworked the car from stem to stern, upgrading the drivetrain, suspension, and brakes to current supercar standards, and this Boss could easily hang with most new Corvettes, Porsches, and Ferraris. Yet it retains the iconic and beautiful lines of a '69 Boss. Save for the lowered stance and 17-inch wheels, the car looks stock. You know it's not with a twist of the ignition key, however. A sharp bark from the exhaust indicates more compression, more displacement, more cam, and more fun. Would you believe this engine is cranking out 661 hp? You would if you heard it run. Backed by a modified Tremec TKO600 transmission and a stout 9-inch rear, the rest of the drivetrain is up to the task of delivering the power to the ground. Peak power came at a stratospheric 8,000 rpm, but the engine is far from peaky. We followed Kenny as he drove the Mustang to our photo-shoot location. The Boss dealt with stop-and-go traffic without a single complaint. By bumping the displacement up to 360 ci, Kenny was able to use a big cam yet still keep low-rpm driveability, and the engine pulled away from stoplights without any bucking or 2,000-rpm friction disc-melting clutch slips.
Don't let our smooth-driving accolades fool you; this is still a wicked-sounding engine, worthy of the Mr. Nasty moniker. Kenny easily roasted the tires for our clichéd (yet always entertaining) burnout shot, and when he cracked the throttle on the way to our photo spot, we were left slack-jawed as the car rocketed toward the horizon. "Would you want to drive this car every day? I wouldn't want to," says Kenny. It does have a nasty disposition, but the point is you could jump in it any day and drive it anywhere you want. And it would be a thrilling experience every time.
Who: Scott Tedro
What: '69 Ford Mustang Boss 302
Where: Costa Mesa, California
Engine: Starting with a Ford SVO engine block, Kenny Maisano built a potent, 360ci engine with an Eagle crankshaft, Eagle rods, CP pistons, and Total Seal rings. Kenny requested a custom-ground solid roller cam from Cam Motion. The specs are cool: 252/260 degrees duration at 0.050-inch tappet lift, and an impressive 0.750-/0.710-inch lift, ground on a 112-degree lobe separation angle. The lifters are from Isky, the pushrods are from Smith Brothers, and the timing set is from Ford Racing. The heads are a pair of Scott Cook aluminum "cheater" heads, which mimic the shape and casting contours of the stock, cast-iron heads. They contain stainless steel valves, measuring 2.19-/1.68-inch intake/exhaust. T&D shaft-mount rocker arms provide rock-solid valvetrain stability, even at this cam's high lift specs, while a set of Isky valvesprings and Manley titanium retainers mitigate the possibility of valve float at 8,000-plus-rpm engine speeds. The intake manifold is a vintage Gapp & Roush single-plane, topped by an 850-cfm Holley, enclosed in a custom-built airbox fed cold air directly from behind the grille opening. This combination made 662 hp at 8,000 rpm and 480 lb-ft torque at 5,600 rpm on the dyno at Westech Performance Group. Kenny Maisano machined and assembled the engine.
Exhaust: Ford Powertrain Application headers route the exhaust into a custom 3-inch system with Dynomax mufflers.
Transmission/Rearend: An evolution of the Ford's Toploader transmission, a Tremec TKO 600 was chosen for its durability and driveability offered by the 0.82:1 overdriven Fifth gear. A QuickTime bellhousing mates the trans to the engine, housing a Centerforce clutch assembly. Out back is a Currie 9-inch rear with 4.30:1 gears and Strange 33-spline axles.
Suspension: To modernize the Mustang's suspension, Kenny installed Total Control Products complete front and rear suspension, ditching the front strut-rod suspension for an improved upper and lower A-arm system. The rear leaf springs were shelved in favor of TCP's G-link trailing arms, and Vari-Shock coilovers are located on all four corners.
Brakes/Wheels/Tires: Wilwood 12-inch rotors are installed front and rear and are gripped by Wilwood's four-piston calipers. The wheels are retro-modern American Racing Magnum 500, measuring 17x8 and 17x10, front and rear. The tires are BFGoodrich G-Force 245/45ZR17 and 275/40ZR17.
Paint/Body: This Mustang was treated to a rotisserie restoration at Mascar Modern & Classic Autobody & Paint Repair. Not only did Kenny build the engine, he also painted the car with a custom mix of Acapulco Blue with a touch of blue pearl.