Style is an important element to any Mustang, or any car for that matter. As enthusiasts we’re always looking for ways to set our Mustangs apart from the rest of those out there. With the S197 platform, Ford eventually offered sequential tail lights on the Mustang for the first time in over 40 years.
The three-bar tail light design though wasn’t new again with the retro S197; iit had been present since 1996 when the Modular engine platform made it’s debut. So all those SN95 and New Edge Mustang owners already have a Mustang that is begging for some sequential tail lights. We came across a New Edge owner in the market for some sequential lights, and turned toAmerican Muscle for a solution.
The Raxiom plug and play Sequential tail light kit installs in less than an hour with some very basic tools. The hardest part of the job is laying under the dash to install the modified flasher, which is an additional part that we also recommend.
American Muscle sent us the Raxiom parts we needed to convert our subject 2003 Mustang GT to sequential tail lights in less than an hour. The job requires just a few basic hand tools and at the most you’ll just get your fingers a little dusty doing the work.
To make life easier American Muscle sent us part number 49143, which is the plug and play Raxiom Sequential Tail Light Kit. This kit is a few dollars more than the splice-in kit, however, the wiring for this kit is a direct plug-in to the OEM body harness. What that means is that there are no wires to cut or splice, and owners can keep the original harness in-tact so if they ever decide to switch back to the stock setup, it’s simply a matter of unplugging and swapping the harnesses back.
The flasher is bright yellow and located just a couple inches above the OBD-II connector on the driver’s side.
American Muscle also sent us a Raxiom Modified Flasher, part number 99032. This replaces the stock flasher relay, to slow down how rapidly the tail lights flash in sequence. The sequence still happens rapidly, but we admit it’s much cooler look than the factory sequence.
The first point of installation is to remove the stock flasher. It is located above the driver’s knee panel near the OBD-II connector, and is bright yellow in color. Swapping the relay requires only the use of a tool to pry the relay from it’s mounting tab, the rest is plug and play.
Top Left: Each tail light is held in with four nuts that secure the studs to the body of the car. Top Right: Once the tail light is removed, the old harness can be disconnected and fed through the hole in the body. The new harness then feeds through this hole. It already has a grommet installed to seal it. Bottom Left: With our harness connected and bulbs placed in the sockets, we switched on the turn signal to determine the order the bulbs will cycle in, they need to sequence from the inside of the car to the outside. Bottom Right: To eliminate confusion we used a paint marker to label each bulb socket, this will make any future bulb changes easier.
Removing the tail lights and harness is also straight forward. The trunk liner must be removed from the rear section of the trunk to gain access to the four nuts that hold each tail light in place. With the nuts removed the tail light can be gently pulled away from body, and the bulbs removed. The OEM tail light harness is then unplugged, and the body grommet pried out.
Left to Right you can see how the tail light now sequences with the turn signal on, lighting each panel of the three-bar tail light in succession.
Now the new Raxiom harness can be connected. After transferring the bulbs to the new harness, we flipped on the turn signal to get the bulbs in the right order. We also labeled each one 1,2,3, and R for reverse. The sequence goes 1,2,3 from the inside of the car to the outside. Installing the tail lights is the reverse of removal, and the operation is the same for both sides.
With our lights in place we tested things one final time, and then drove away in style, knowing that whoever sees the tail lights of this Mustang will notice that there’s something different and cool about them.