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Saturday / 25 September 2021
HomeFeaturesBehind the scenes at an epic Ford Performance Centre in Pretoria

Behind the scenes at an epic Ford Performance Centre in Pretoria

Just off the N4 near Centurion sits the Performance Centre, a Ford-approved establishment housing more Mustangs than you could handle.

This is a haven for Ford fans, as this company specialises in converting “normal” 5.0-litre Mustangs into 500kW beasts.

They can also remove the whole loading bed of a Ford Ranger and replace it with a cooler box.

The bottom line is that they take their Fords seriously.

Inside the centre

The Performance Centre opened its doors in 2016 and houses a family-friendly restaurant that gives you a peek into the dyno room, several vehicles on the showroom floor, and a merchandise store where you can buy Ford-branded gear.

They have a variety of products on offer to boost the looks and performance of your car, and hold events where enthusiasts can join and experience the power of the vehicles they build.

Since opening, they have converted more than 50 pre-facelifted sixth-generation Mustangs to “stage 3”.

For the newest, facelifted model, they have done six full conversions, 13 superchargers, and over 50 custom orders that range between the smallest paint protection treatment to the largest body kit installation.

Insurance claims also falls under their umbrella, and they do not shy away from developing impressive one-of-one vehicles if the customer has an ambitious vision.

Stage 3 and the showroom

On the day we visited the Performance Centre, a stage 3 Mustang had just rolled onto the dyno and roared to life shortly after.

As it hit 206km/h on the speedometer, the dyno’s computer screen stated 518.kW and 838Nm – while the exhaust pipes screamed at the top of their lungs.

Next up was the showroom.

Here stood several vehicles that were for sale, including one that was not.

It was a black Mustang convertible that Monster Energy had given away as part of their their latest competition.

Next to that was another Mustang painted in a striking silver, a previous-generation Focus ST, and a Fiesta – all for sale to the public.

As we walked through the parking lot, we were greeted by the biggest Ford Ranger we had ever seen.

The performance centre built three of these examples for Monster Energy, and they are kitted from top to bottom.

At the back, the entire loading bay has been replaced with a cooler box, the whole vehicle has been lifted by a few inches, custom rims and suspension kits were installed, a body kit was fitted, and the engine was tuned.

They took one more step, and installed four speakers on the exterior sports bar – which would bring the total height of this vehicle to over 2 metres.

Next to this behemoth stood a tarpaulin-covered mystery.

Below it, squeezed between a wall and a Ranger, is the Performance Centre’s inhouse gymkhana Mustang.

The only thing that seemed stock on it was the outer shell and maybe the wing mirrors.

It is used at events and races to showcase what the Performance Centre is capable of, and its roof has been removed in favour of a naked roll cage.

Videos of this vehicle doing what it was built for can be found on the Performance Centre’s Facebook page.

We moved over to the workshop, where the magic happens.

A Ford Ranger in the air, a Focus RS without a nose, and a stage 3 Roush mustang with a naked engine – and its supercharger lying next to it – were in the shop.

The supercharger alone – pictured below – is close to the size of a small car engine.

The power

The centre’s specialist explained that their Rangers were able to push out around 190kW, their Focus RS cars over 300kW, and their Mustangs over 500kW.

To manage these astounding figures, they dig deep into the engine of the Mustang and replace several crucial parts.

This includes the intake manifold, airbox, and supercharger.

They also have specialised Mountune performance parts that fit on most small Ford hatchbacks, and this sees their output greatly increased.

For the Rangers, they swop out the intercooler, exhaust, and turbos in favour of their own parts – while a software tune is given to make it all work together in harmony.


Performance Centre – Photos


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