Review & Install Video
Hey, guys. I'm Justin with americanmuscle.com, here with my detailed overview of Exedy's Mach 500 Stage 3 clutch with hydraulic throwout bearing, available for your 2011 through 2014 Mustang GT. The Exedy Mach 500 that I have in this video should appeal to the manual S197 GT owners out there, looking to stick with a single organic disk for the clutch material, and one that is capable of holding over 700 foot-pounds of torque at the crank. This makes this clutch appealing to just about anybody out there, street guys, street strip guys. Naturally aspirated setups, and even most forced induction setups will be able to take advantage of this clutch and its holding capabilities. Now, to be honest, guys, this is essentially going to be a very beefed up factory replacement, so it's going to be very streetable. It's going to give you a decent lifespan, and this one will include that brand-new hydraulic throwout bearing, totally freshening up the clutch assembly in the process. But I do want to focus in and talk about prospective buyers really enjoying this clutch on the road. Because in my experience, using a sprung hub design with an organic friction material tends to deliver a friendlier stop and go-type situation or experience while driving, as opposed to the more aggressive materials for that clutch disk, such as the metallic materials or even a puck-style disk. Pricing-wise for the Exedy here is going to fall right in line with some of your other similar options on the site at the mid-$500 price point. But keep in mind, you are getting that new hydraulic throwout bearing here as well. Install, guys, well this one is going to get a full three out of three wrenches on the difficulty meter from me, as that transmission will need to get dropped. But we will have a little bit more detail on that later on. So I'm sure a lot of you guys are familiar with the Exedy name, definitely one of the most popular names in the world of aftermarket clutches. But did you know, they also supply a lot of auto manufacturers with their factory clutches as well. So needless to say, they know what they're doing and have been doing so for a very, very long time. In fact, they're coming up on 100 years since being funded in the early '20s, which is kind of a rarity in the automotive world. Well, let's focus in a little bit more here with the Mach 500, and again the big numbers to keep in mind, guys, are those torque ratings or torque capacity. Just over 700 at the crank, just south of 600 at the tire, making this thing good for a lot of users out there. Obviously, any NA car. Right? Because I don't know of any naturally aspirated car making over 600 foot-pounds to the tire. But even mild forced induction setups as well, this one should be pretty good for you. Nitrous cars, well, depending on how big your shot is, nitrous cars tend to make a lot of torque. So if you're using a small shot, great. You should be fine. If you're really pushing a lot of nitrous through your setup, then you might want to consider a different clutch. But what I'm trying to say is, guys, just follow those torque ratings closely and you should have no issues with slippage using the Exedy. You'll probably notice that Exedy does prefer to use torque as opposed to horsepower when rating a clutch, for a couple of different reasons. But first and foremost, they just think torque is the most accurate interpretation of the engine's turning force, and is just a simpler, easier way to gauge the clutch's capabilities. That's why you'll see all of their clutches rated in torque and not horsepower. But let's talk a little bit more about how the Mach 500 can hold that power, and it all starts with the friction disk. Again, you're looking at the organic material here with this particular clutch, which in my experience has its pros and its cons. The big pros here with that organic material is that it's going to be very streetable, a lot easier in stop and go-type situations. The engagement is a lot easier as well, just a very streetable clutch overall, and it can still hold some power for nearly half the price of those twin disk options. Now, the big con with choosing an organic material is that you will eventually run into a limit or ceiling when it comes to power holding capabilities. At that point, you're left with a choice, go with a more aggressive material, such as your cerametallic, metallic, or even Kevlar, which aren't usually as forgiving on the street. Or if you can afford it, go with a twin-disk clutch, which is ultimately going to give you the best of both worlds if you can fit it into your budget. So we know that the Exedy Mach 500 or Stage 3 equivalent will feature that single-disk organic compound, once again. You are looking at the sprung hub design here, which will help reduce drivetrain shock with engagement, and this isn't something that's unique to Exedy, by the way. It's something a lot of manufacturers do incorporate, and it does help reduce the shock and helps smooth out the engagement overall. Now, this particular Mach 500 does feature their high clamp load pressure plate, but with an ungrooved surface. They do offer the Mach 500 on the site with a grooved surface for the pressure plate and, in Exedy's words, it's going to help you maintain or hold a little bit more power. In fact, just north of 600 foot-pounds with the grooved option, about $30 to $40 more if you wanted to check that out on the site instead. Or you could just check out the standard Mach 500 that we have here. Finally, you are receiving the brand-new hydraulic throwout bearing here with this particular clutch. If I can be completely honest, this is something every owner should do every time a new clutch is installed, because you're going to be in there. You're doing the work. You'd hate to cheap out, not install a new throwout bearing, and then have it fail on you a few thousand miles after the new clutch is installed, have to rip everything out again. You get where I'm going with this. So yes, it's going to add to the price, roughly $100 extra to the actual clutch kit. But it's just one of those things you do for peace of mind and a little preventative maintenance. While we're on the topic of price, the Exedy Mach 500 that we have in this video, at first glance, will seem to be the most expensive in the category at the mid-$500 price point. But that is a little bit misleading, considering you're getting that new hydraulic throwout bearing included as well. If I can take that a step further, I believe this is going to be one of the most capable in the category of its kind, in addition to being one of the most streetable as well. So a couple factors to keep in mind there. As far as flywheels, well, you can use the Exedy with your factory flywheel if you'd like. But while we're on the topic of upgrading, probably not a bad idea to check out some lightweight flywheel options on the site if you can fit them into your budget. Switching gears here, let's talk about the install, no pun intended, and this one obviously won't be for the faint of heart if you're not really into wrenching. However, if you don't mind spending some time in the garage or shop, doing a trans or a clutch really isn't all that big of a deal. Nevertheless, I'm going full three out of three on my Wrench-o-Meter here, and anywhere from a few hours to a half a day or more in the shop or garage, depending on your level of expertise and your setup. I say "setup," because this will be a hell of a lot easier doing on a lift with a transmission jack, as opposed to doing it on your back with a set of jack stands. Trust me. We've all been there. It's not fun. Now, you will need a solid set of tools, in addition to the lift, jack, or jack stands, of course, and if you do plan on swapping those flywheels, just make sure to grab a torque wrench and some blue Loctite to help you with you install. Now, we're not going to run down step by step, bolt by bolt here. But some of the big steps will include dropping the exhaust, dropping that drive shaft, and then of course, dropping the physical transmission itself. Again, on a lift with a transmission lift, not that bad, or a transmission jack, I should say. But if you are doing this one on your back, it's not going to be that fun. We've all been there and we all speak from experience on that one. At the end of the day, if you're not feeling too confident with this one, give your local shop a call. I'm sure they'll be able to blow this one out rather easily for you in a couple of hours. Wrapping things up here, guys, the Exedy Mach 500 will be one of the strongest in the category, when looking at a single-disk organic compound, will be good enough for any NA build out there and most mild forced induction setups, and is going to be very streetable. So that is my overview of the Exedy Mach 500, which you can grab right here at americanmuscle.com.