In the mid and late 1990’s, before anyone had uttered the words Terminator there were two options for the ultimate Mustang. One was the nearly unobtainable Cobra R models produced in 1993, 1995, and 2000. The other was a less traditional, and perhaps even more rare route, a Saleen S351.
In 1994 Saleen began dropping their version of the first generation Lightning 351 cubic-inch engine into some of their highly modified Mustangs. This top of the line Saleen was, by 1999 (it’s last year of production) available with a Vortech supercharger and cranked out a whopping 495 hp and 490 ft-lbs of torque that year.
The S351 was capable of traction limited blasts to 60 mph in under five seconds, with shifts coming via a Tremec T-56 manual transmission. It lit the quarter mile traps up at 13.0 seconds flat at just over 111 mph. Keep your foot in it long enough and the car topped out at 172 mph. While those numbers may not be as impressive today as they were back then, keep in mind this car could blow the doors off some of the top competition from both the USA and around the world at the time. The cars were available through Saleen authorized Ford dealers, and in 1999 just 40 were produced at a sticker price of around $55,000 each.
We recently came across this rare 1999 S351 up for grabs on eBay. The car is number 32 and the owner says he’s had it for 10 years. There are 41,000 miles on the clock, and the engine has undergone substantial modifications, cranking power up to 532 hp and 534 ft-lbs of torque at the rear wheels. Starting bid for this beast is $26,000.
Some Saleen purists are obviously screaming at their screens as they read that such a rare car has been modified, and we don’t see any mention that the owner kept the original parts, though we’d wager they can be sourced. Regardless it’s an awesome car, with a pedigree that makes it even more exclusive than even the current batch of Shelby mustangs.
With a new S351 on the horizon it should be interesting to see how high the company can set the bar for Mustang performance. If you can’t wait for the new S351 though, then you can get your hands on this one for the right price. Happy bidding.