ROUSH Performance, in partnership with the Ford Motor Company, is going to put the very last production 2008 ROUSH P-51ATM Mustang under the gavel and spotlights of the Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Event at West Palm Beach, Fla. This car, number 151 in a limited production run of 151, will be sold on Saturday, March 29 with proceeds going to the Salute to Education Scholarship charity.
"Number 151 is a pretty significant car for ROUSH considering the total inventory of ROUSH P-51ATM Mustangs basically sold out within 24 hours when the dealer order banks were opened up," said Joe Thompson, general manager of ROUSH Performance. "Whoever ends up with this car will truly acquire a part of ROUSH history."
Jack Roush, the motorsports legend, NASCAR team owner, and aviation enthusiast who owns and flies his own World War II P-51 fighter planes, will be in attendance personally overseeing the bidding on the highest horsepower Mustang that ROUSH Performance has every built. He is flying in from the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway specifically for the auction.
Shown in the Barrett-Jackson catalog as lot number 667, the ROUSH P-51ATM is expected to be seen going under the gavel live during the SPEED Channel television broadcast that evening.
"It is for a very worthwhile cause that we are putting up this ROUSH® P-51ATM Mustang," said Jack Roush. "I am proud of the work that the ROUSH® engineers put into the development, I am proud of the finished vehicle, and I am proud that we can help to support the Salute to Education with the proceeds from the auction."
The ROUSH® P-51ATM is easily the highest horsepower Mustang that the company has ever produced, and represents the first time that internal engine components have been upgraded by ROUSH® technicians in their Livonia, Mich., facility. The stock Ford 4.6L, 3V engine sees a rebuild of several of the functional internal components, including a forged steel eight-bolt crankshaft, forged aluminum pistons with increased dish to lower the compression from 9:8 to 8:6, and forged steel H-Beam connecting rods. These upgraded parts were necessary for the stock Ford engine (which comes with 300 horsepower from the factory) to be able to withstand the additional power generated from the newest iteration of the legendary ROUSHchargerTM supercharger system.
Additional alterations include a custom aluminum upper and lower intake manifold for the high capacity air-to-water intercooler and ROUSHchargerTM. ROUSH® installs a custom fuel rail and high-flow fuel injectors, a high-flow capacity fuel system, as well as a dual electronic throttle body. The new ROUSH® P-51A engine has a rating of 510 horsepower and 510 lb.-ft. torque. As with all ROUSH® vehicles, the P-51ATM has an industry-leading 3 year/36,000 mile warranty.
As an interesting side note, the yellow and red accent colors on the vehicle come from those used by the 357th Fighters Group, Eighth Air Force ETO (European Theater Operations) who were unofficially known as "The Yoxford Boys" after a village near their base. Its victory totals in air-to-air combat are the most of any P-51 group in the Eighth Air Force and third among all groups fighting in Europe. The 357th flew 313 combat missions between February 11, 1944 and April 25, 1945 and is officially credited by the US Air Force with having destroyed 595.5 German airplanes in the air and 106.5 on the ground. Pilots in this group included Captain Clarence E. "Bud" Anderson who flew a P-51 named "Old Crow." One of Roush’s personal P-51 fighters is painted as a replica of this airplane.
The Salute to Education Scholarship is awarded to high school seniors who demonstrate community service, academic achievement, leadership and strong educational and career goals. Ford Motor Company, participating Ford and Lincoln Mercury dealers, and Ford Motor Credit fund the program which has helped thousands of students realize their dream for a college or university education.
Participating Ford and Lincoln Mercury dealers and Ford Motor Company have distributed more than $11 million in scholarships and educational grants in communities in Texas, California and Florida.
"Ford and the South Florida Ford Dealers are excited to partner with ROUSH® Performance on this auction to benefit the Ford Salute to Education Scholarship Program. The P-51ATM Mustang is a real show stopper and will generate huge excitement at Barrett-Jackson Palm Beach bringing substantial money to the scholarship fund," explained Kevin Giacomini, regional sales manager of Ford, Lincoln Mercury Sales Operations Orlando Region.