(approx) 2 Hours
Light to Moderate mechanical skill required.
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Jake: Jake here for American Muscle and today I'm taking a look at the RTR Grille in black fitting 2018 to 2023 Mustang GT and EcoBoost models. I don't think anybody could convincingly argue that the S550 Mustang doesn't look aggressive right out of the gate. However, if you're looking to inject your car with a little extra something, then RTR has a great solution for you right here. With both an upgrade to your upper and lower grilles, this makes for a clean and stylish front-end treatment, it's going to give your Mustang just that little bit of extra edge that it needs to stand out.RTR has been producing cool parts for Mustangs and other Fords for nearly two decades now, and it shows in the quality of the products why everything is so popular. As they say, on their own website, they're available to all but not for everyone, and I think that's definitely the case here. Now, the fit and finish on both of these pieces is great, and they work really well with the vehicle's original styling cues, while still adding that extra something that the Mustang just didn't get from the factory. And that's the case with what we're looking at here today. So this is a pretty simple grille, both upper and lower, but I really think that it works well with the Mustang styling. Now, of course, you get the big honeycomb section here in the center, and that's going to provide you with a bit more airflow into the engine bay, and it also cleans up the styling on the front end here. There's no badge, nothing, no streak across the middle, just a clean, open design. It looks similar, but not quite the same as what you might get from the factory. And the same is true for that lower grille down there, too. It's a bit more open, and it features that same honeycomb pattern to create a cohesive look, both upper and lower.Where it really differs from other grilles, though, are these big nostrils on the edges. And the angular styling here, I think, really makes them stand out on the front end of the car, and it brings a cool, modern, aggressive look to it. It's got that kind of track-inspired Shelby type of style, and if you want your Mustang to stand out or look like Vaughn Gittin Junior's RTR Mustang from the Formula D circuit, then this is going to be a great option. Now, the cool thing about this is that the upper and lower portions are also sold separately, and you can opt for different nostrils here, too, because these do actually come right out. And we've got a lighted set available on our site, too should you want to make that upgrade later.Now I really think the construction is actually a big highlight for this product because everything is made from this injection molded thermoplastic olefin, a.k.a. TPO. It's very strong, it's very lightweight and it's very impact resistant so it's gonna make a great choice for a daily driver. Now I actually pulled these out of the box and I was surprised because they look and feel almost exactly like OEM parts that you would get from Ford or what you might even pull off of the car out of the showroom. Now these are created using OEM data from Ford in the engineering phase so this is gonna help ensure a perfect fit and it means that you don't have to modify anything on the car to get these on. You're just gonna have to do a little bit of assembly but we'll talk more about that in a moment.Now for the upper and lower grille that we're looking at here with these non-lighted nostrils, you can expect it to come in around $500. And that is a pretty good price for an upper and lower grille package. Now, again, like I mentioned a few moments ago, these pieces are available separately. The upper and lower are about $250 each as well should you want to do that. And again, we do have the lighted nostrils available on our site too should you want to make that upgrade. But again, you can do that a little bit later. And it's nice that you have a bit of that modular effect too. But overall, I do think this is really good value for your money because like I mentioned, the construction is really first-rate. It looks great on the car. It's a good value overall and it looks and feels pretty much like OEM.Installation is gonna get a two out of three and it should take you about two hours to complete this job. You are gonna have to remove the bumper to get access to your original grilles and to put these in, but it's still a pretty straightforward process. Certainly, something you can accomplish at home with common hand tools. It's just gonna take you a little bit of time and require some disassembly. But enough talking about it to show you everything that you gotta do to get this on your car, let's head out to the install bay.Man 1: The tools you'll need for this project are a 3/8 impact gun, a 3/8 drill. a ratchet, a long extension, a universal joint, a 5.5-millimeter socket, a 7-millimeter, an 8-millimeter, and a 10-millimeter socket, panel removal tool, a number two Phillips screwdriver, a soft trim removal tool and a 3/16 drill bit. Hi everyone, today we're installing a new grille on our Mustang, but first, let's watch a short video on how to uninstall the front bumper.Man 2: So to get started, we're going to pop off our radiator cover first or eight push pins that we're going to remove now with our panel removal tool. With our eight clips removed, we can now remove the radiator cover right now. Now, before we get the car in the air, we're gonna knock out these 8-millimeter bolts here securing the top portion of the bumper to the frame.With the eight mills out of the way, there are two five-and-a-half millimeter screws right here on either side, so we'll move those next. Now we need to remove the air dam here from the lower portion of the front bumper or front fascia. To do so, there are a number of 7-millimeter screws and a couple of pushpin fasteners as well, so we're going to remove those next.Now before we can totally drop our air down, there are two more pushpin fasteners here in the fender area that we have to remove next. And with that final clip out, the air dam splash shield here should slide on out. All right guys, we're just about to the point of pulling off the front bumper cover, but before we do, we still have a few more push pins to release here, and there is another 7-millimeter screw back behind the liner itself. So let's start off by removing these push pins.With those push pins removed, now we can kind of gently pry back on your inner fender liner here and expose this 10-millimeter nut. Now you're gonna need to remove that in order to remove the bumper itself. Our bumper has been off a few times so somebody loosened the nut for me already. All right, guys, since this is a 2018, they did change the bumper style a little bit here. There is a second 10-millimeter nut up there that we still need to remove. If you have a '15 through '17 car, then you'll only find one screw here or not in the place. So remove the second 10-millimeter now.At this point, our bumper cover is essentially ready to come off. But before you just go yanking it off, you do have to keep in mind there are a few things plugged in, some lighting and sensors. So what you want to do is carefully just kind of unseat the bumper from the bumper support. And at that point, either support it with your legs, grab a buddy, whatever. And then at that time, we're going to go ahead and show you where you need to unplug. So go ahead and release the bumper. Get it off the clips. And here's where we need to grab our wiring stuff. Okay, depending on your year range, you might have a few more plugs to unplug. In our case, we just have this top one here for the fog light and turn signal, and repeat that process on the other side. With those plugs removed, we can now safely set aside the bumper being careful not to scratch it.Man 1: Now that we've got our bumper off, first thing you're going to want to do is lay down some sort of protective padding, either of an old blanket or moving pad or something like that, to help protect the paint on the outside of the bumper. Then we're going to want to remove the center support section from the bumper so that we can actually access the clips that hold the grille in place. So to do that, what you're going to do is you're going to reach down inside here inside the center section, and there are a total of six clips that hold this in place. And what you want to do is move that to the inside of this center support section so that you can lift the support section out of the bumper. Now it's a good idea if you just start from one end and work your way down to the other. So here's our first clip right here, and we're just going to push this towards the bottom of the bumper and then lift up on the center support section. And then we'll just do the opposite to the other side. We'll push it towards the top of the bumper and just kind of hold it up in place then move on to the next clip. And move to the last two on the end. Now you can just lift this out and set it off to the side.Now there are 22 clips on the bottom, on the lower grille, and 20 clips on the upper grille. It doesn't matter which one you start with, they're all going to be the same. So we're just going to do basically the same thing that we did for our center support section. We're just going to push that clip in towards the center of the grille and lift it out, starting from one end and working our way down. So we'll start with the lower grille and we'll just push these clips in and start lifting up.And that takes care of our lower grille. Now we'll move on to the upper grille. Release our clips here. As we release it we'll just keep lifting up on the grille itself. Now in the event that you get some that are really tight, you can use a trim removal tool or a flathead screwdriver to just help kind of pry that out. It's always got to be that one. Now we can set this one aside as well.Now before we get to actually installing the grille back into the bumper, there's a couple of things we need to take care of first. One, we have these inserts that go in the grille like so. Okay. And the way that they're going to attach to the grille is with these little metal clips and these metal clips are gonna slide onto the grille insert like so. And the screw part is going to be at the bottom of these tabs. Now we do need to drill the holes that matches those into the grille itself. And you'll notice when you look at it, it's kind of hard to see on camera now. But in each of these slots, where these clips go, there is like a little V area that you can tell that's where the hole needs to go. So what you're going to need is a 3/16 drill bit and a drill and we're going to drill that hole right at the bottom of this V inside here. Now you don't want to go all the way to the bottom, you just want to go to the bottom of the V cut-out inside the grille. So let's go ahead and get that drilled out. So we'll just take our drill at the bottom of the cut out here and then just go ahead and drill the hole. There are three on each side, two on the top here and then one on the bottom. And then do the same thing on the other side.Now that we've got our holes drilled, we go ahead and insert our clips into our grille insert like so. Slide that in through the front of the grille. There we go. And then using the supplied screws and flat washers and a number two Phillips screwdriver, go ahead and insert those into the holes and screw those in. And then once you've got all three of them started, then you can go ahead and finish tightening them down. Now you don't want to over-tighten these because as you know they are plastic so you could potentially damage the grille. We just get them good and snug and then go ahead and do the other side. I'll go ahead and slide this into place. Put our flat washer on our screw. Make sure all three are secured. And now we can go ahead and install this back into our bumper.And we just line up the tabs on our bumper. with the slots in our grille. Set that into place. Once you've got all the tabs lined up, go ahead and just start pushing it down to lock those tabs in. And they should all just snap in. Just work your way around. And once you've got those all in place, now we can go ahead and work on the lower grille. We'll do the same thing with this one that we did for the upper. Just line up all of the tabs and the slots. You may need to use your trim removal tool to help kind of pry this into place since it is new.All right. Then once you've got it all locked into place you can just flip it over. Take a look at it, make sure everything is right. Now we can go ahead and reinstall our bumper. Now we'll go ahead and set our bumper back up on top of our core support here and then we'll go ahead and reconnect our turn signal harness. We just set this on the alignment pins here at the top of the core support. And then while everything is still loose, we can go ahead and reach in and connect our turn signal harness back to the turn signals.Now the turn signal is connected, we'll go ahead and insert the ends of our bumper back up into our fender and reattach it using the 10-millimeter nuts. Now we can install the same ones on the other side and then we'll insert the nut screws for the top of the bumper. Now we'll install our 8-millimeter screws across the top. And then the two smaller ones on the ends. Then we'll go ahead and tighten them down with our ratchet. Get the two on the ends. Now we can go ahead and reinstall the pan at the bottom. Now we go ahead and reinstall our splash pan, making sure of course that it goes over the lip on the front of the bumper and under all of the clips that we're going to be screwing into. Now we can go ahead and start inserting our screws. Now we can finish reinstalling all of our push pins. Then we go ahead and reinstall our radiator cover. We'll just slide our radiator cover back into place then we'll secure it using the original push pins.And that wraps up our review and install of the RTR Grille in black for the '18 and newer Mustang GT and EcoBoost. Thanks for watching and remember, for all things Mustang, keep it right here at americanmuscle.com.
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Features, Description, Reviews, Q&A, Specs & Installation
|Grille Type||Upper Grille|
CA Residents: WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm - www.P65Warnings.ca.gov
(approx) 2 Hours
Light to Moderate mechanical skill required.
What's in the Box
Combo Kit Option:
Upper Grille Option:
Lower Grille Option:
10 More Questions