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2015-2017 Mustang Performance Pack: the Upgrades

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Just because you might have passed up the performance package doesn't mean you can't make your Mustang handle. From spring upgrades to a full new coil over set, you can dial in your Mustang the way you want it.

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When people are buying a new Mustang, there is always the debate of what trim to get. The big debate is whether to upgrade to the performance pack or pass it up. If you are one who is destined for road racing or ¼ mile passes, the performance pack is a no brainer. However, it is possible (albeit more difficult) to swap stock parts for performance oriented ones.

What Comes from the Factory?

There are two different performance packages, one for the Ecoboost and one for the GT Mustangs. While there are similar upgrades, there are minor differences. Both models come with upgraded springs, bushings, shocks, and a rear sway bar. They also have upgraded cooling and a strut tower brace.

For the Ecoboost, it comes with four-piston aluminum brakes. Complimenting these are 13.9 inch rotors in the front. Rounding out the brakes in the rear are a single piston, floating caliper with a 13 inch rotor. It also comes with a 3.55 rear gear ratio. Moving the car are 19x9 wheels with Pirelli 255/40R19 tires.

On the other end, the GT has similar upgrades with the addition of a few items as well. It has six piston brakes up front attached to 15 inch rotors (stock 2014 GT500 brakes). The rear brake upgrade is the same as the Ecoboost. The rear gear ratio is upgraded to a 3.73 ratio, which is perfect for all around driving aspects as well as performance. In combination with the 3.73 ratios, there is a Torsen differential as well. Moving the car, there are 19x9.5 inch wheels all around, with 255/40R19 Pirelli tires in the front and 275/40R19 Pirelli tire in the back. Rounding out the specific upgrades is a splitter that aids with brake cooling for the front brakes.

4-Piston, Slotted Rotor, Brake Kit for V6 and EcoBoost Mustangs
4-Piston Brake Kit for the V6 and EcoBoost

Performance Package Cooling Upgrades

The performance package Mustang features upgrades to many areas. This includes the brakes, suspension, engine, ‚Äčand cooling system. Whenever a car is being pushed to the limit or power is increased, the cooling system has to work harder in order to ensure the engine stays within range. With the performance package Mustangs, a high flow radiator is added to the mix. The performance package radiator is less restrictive meaning coolant can flow faster through the system. It also works to dramatically bring down the temperature because of the fact that it has a higher rate of volume at which the coolant passes through it.

Performance Pack Suspension Differences

Reaching for the performance package Mustang means that the suspension will vary from the standard Mustang. The shocks of choice are MagneRide shock absorbers. These are the real highlight as these state of the art shocks use an electronic current to tamper with the fluid in the shocks in order to change the way the shocks perform. The coil springs are stiffer, the sway bar is thicker. The reason for this is to keep the car level on the track. Stiffer springs and the wider bar will work fiercely against body roll. With the speeds and acceleration this car is capable of, these are must have upgrades.

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Upgrading My Base Model into a Performance Pack

While it may cost slightly more than getting it from the factory, it is possible to upgrade a base model GT (or Ecoboost) to performance pack specifications. This can be done through brake upgrade kits and products from Ford Racing. Aftermarket companies make products that match or exceed stock performance package benefits as well. On the wheel side of upgrades, utilizing the size of the wheel is the largest factor for the performance pack, not the wheel itself. While the size can stay the same, one looking up upgrade would be able to select any wheel style of his or her preference.

Performance Pack Rear Toe Link Set for 2015-2017 Mustangs
Performance Pack Rear Toe Link Set

Is the Performance Pack Worth It?

For most owners who aren’t looking to track the car, the performance pack is still beneficial, however it is not as nice towards daily drivers as it is towards track usage. While plenty of people opt to equip the performance package for daily drivers, it is mainly used for track purposes. If one didn’t get the option from the start and later had the desire to upgrade, the options are always available to do so whether it be the OEM performance package setup or an aftermarket setup. Looking back, if one was to upgrade from a base model, you would need (for the GT model):

  • Brake upgrade to larger rotors and calipers
  • Strut tower brace
  • Springs, bushings, shocks, and a rear sway bar
  • 3.73 rear end gearing and a torsen differential
  • 19x9.5” wheels combined with 255/40R19 and 275/40R19 inch tires
  • Splitter with ducts for brake cooling
Ford Performance Strut Tower Brace for 2015-2017 GT and EcoBoost Mustangs
Fitment includes: 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, GT, EcoBoost