Project EcoBoost: One Year In
Recent Additions

It’s been a little bit over 12 months since I acquired my 2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost daily driver, and I realize that I’m long overdue for a project car update on this thing.


So with that said, I wanted to go ahead and talk about a couple of recent modifications I’ve made to the car, and also share some of my more general observations, experiences and impressions after one year and just over 12,000 miles of ownership.

Jan-2016 copy

First things first, I’ve had a couple of parts sitting in my garage for way too long, so this past weekend I finally made time to get them fitted. And it felt great to be wrenching on the Mustang again, even if they were only relatively basic upgrades.

Jan-2016-126 copy

The first modification happened under the hood, where I fitted one of Turbosmart‘s Dual-Power Kompact Shortie Mustang blow-off valve kits, as developed right here in the USA.

Jan-2016-128 copy

Here’s a view of the aircraft grade alloy-bodied Turbosmart unit – the world’s first aftermarket BOV offering for the EcoBoost Mustang when it released last March – next to the plastic OEM item. Even at face value the Kompact Shortie is a much more substantial piece than the factory BOV, but having a lightweight brass/aluminum 2-piece piston and a precision engineered spring, it can reliably handle plenty of boost, and of course give you that distinctive sound each time you release the throttle.

Jan-2016-130 copy

I’d never actually installed an aftermarket BOV before, but the process for the Turbosmart unit was quite easy with everything essentially plug and play. It took about an hour and a half to get it fitted, including plenty of pauses to make sure we were doing it right.

Jan-2016-129 copy

When I replaced the factory airbox with an FFTEC intake last year the sound of the turbocharger increased dramatically, so I was very interested to see what effects the new BOV would have on things.

Here’s a quick video clip I shot that captures the sound of the car with the Turbosmart Dual-Port Kompact Shortie installed. It’s not dramatically louder than it was before, but it’s certainly a more distinct sound, particularly under medium throttle.

Jan-2016-18 copy

And really, I can’t say enough about how big of an impact the intake, exhaust and BOV have had on the car’s personality. In my opinion the stock EcoBoost Mustang is far too quiet, and all of these parts do a tremendous job of making it feel like you’re driving something that’s much more alive.

Jan-2016-133 copy

After fitting the new BOV it was time to install another part that was sitting in the garage – a G-Trac Extreme front under brace from Steeda.

Jan-2016-135 copy

Steeda has been making Mustang chassis and suspension parts forever, and this brace is designed to add extra rigidity to the front end by adding more connecting points to the subframe.

Jan-2016-134 copy

The install for this one was a breeze, with the only challenge being raising the car high enough to access the four mounting points where the brace bolts on. Once in the air it took just minutes to get it on.


While you’d likely need a race track or really windy stretch of road to notice any seat-of-the-pants improvement from the brace, it’s a great way to complement the KW/Roush coilovers that are already fitted in the Mustang.

365+ Days Of Fun
Jan-2016-13 copy

Speaking of KW, in December I took the car over to KW North America to have some measurements taken for an upcoming sway bar kit. Once the parts are ready we’ll be throwing a set on Project EcoBoost, and I’ll be sure to keep you updated.


As for future modifications, I’m actually quite happy with where the car is right now considering it’s a daily driver that needs to remain comfortable and reliable. With basic power upgrades, suspension upgrades, and larger and lighter wheels and tires, it all feels pretty good. There’s always room for more improvement though, and I’m constantly keeping an eye out for what I’d like to to do next. Perhaps some subtle exterior upgrades?


One year in and I have to say it’s been a great ownership experience so far. The only mechanical issue I’ve had was a minor misfire, and that was fixed under warranty with a new coil pack. The front brake pads and rotors were also replaced under a factory service bulletin. But none of this is unexpected considering it’s a brand new platform with a brand new engine.

Jan-2016-13 copy

I still love driving the car; it’s quick when I want it to be, and it handles great and looks cool. It always gets a response with the unconventional sounds it makes, and it’s lots of fun to see the look on people’s faces when they hear four-banger turbo noises coming from a Mustang.


The car also continues to be an excellent road trip machine, soaking up the highway miles with ease and getting 30 miles to the gallon while doing it. Back in November I did a 1000-mile road trip to Las Vegas for SEMA, and it really shined during the long stretches of interstate driving.

Jan-2016-15 copy

And more recently I took a ride up to the snow-covered Sierras where it felt fantastic in the corners – particularly with the rush of midrange torque the current setup provides.

Jan-2016-8 copy

Do I have any criticisms about the car? Sure, I’d love a little more top-end power to make the 2.3 a lot more fun to rev out; the long snout means you have to be very careful pulling into parking spots; and the sloping roofline really puts a pinch on rear seat headroom. But those are all things I was aware of before I became an EcoBoost Mustang owner.

Jan-2016-17 copy

All in all it’s been a great first year for Project EcoBoost, and I’m quite looking forward to the next chapters in this car’s story.

Stay tuned for more.

Mike Garrett
Instagram: japanifornia_media



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i think the ecoboost mustang is too cool.  I would seriously go and buy a 2.3 instead of a 5.0 even if i had the funds for a gt.  the only mustang i would choose over a 2.3 would either be a gt350 or the r version, but those are, for all intentive purposes, basically realistic dream cars.  i think the new ecoboost direction is an awesome way to keep keep the sports car alive, emissions low, mpg high, and fun at a maximum, as well as a decent price range.  the entire ford line up is spot on.  i've never considered myself a ford guy until recently due to this.


As a lifelong Mustang owner ('66 model was my first car, still have it) I'm surprised and pumped that A) the Mustang model still exists and B) that it is truly a desirable car again. Proud to be a Ford owner right now for sure.


Excellent post Mike. Those braces look like a nice addition. Excited for possible subtle exterior modification! Some of the minor exterior mods available on the market really add some interesting aspects to the body style. Again, really like the wheel and colour combo! It's one of the cars wearing bronze wheels that has been circulating in my head to the point where I purchased a set. Going to try bronze Work Kiwami on my orange sn95, hopefully the combo works!
Keep up the good work.


See if you can get the Euro tail lamps for it


Other than the older models (including the fox body) this is IMO the best looking modern mustang. 
Any plans for weight reduction for this stallion?


I love the new Mustang.
I love the Ecoboost engines. Including the turbo-4 cylinder.

I just can't help but, dislike the combo. It's wrong in many ways. Although, I guess it's the best option to economize automobiles even if it means losing the heritage. 



Your modifications are so tasteful and I'm really starting to respect the EcoBoost a lot more than I already did thanks to your updates. Great job!


It came along really nicely! Beautiful.


I plan to buy a 2017 (with hopes that Ford transports the RS block to the EB Mustang) and constantly refresh speedhunters daily as well as troll you instagram for updates.  Thanks for keeping us updated.


I've always been a Mustang fan, but this one is taking its time growing on me. It's mainly the front end, but I'm slowly getting on board with the styling. I'm patiently waiting to see what the usual facelift will accomplish, as well as Ford getting to know the suspension and improving upon it. Who knows, I may have to get one of these. Though I'm kinda wanting the V6, if only because it would be a project car anyway and I love the sound of six cylinders.
You couldn't have chosen better wheels, by the way. I'm loving this.


With the exhaust, intake, and BOV done, next logical step would be a reprogrammed ECU. No need to go crazy upping the boost PSI, but you could get it to pull-hard to redline which would definitely change the nature of the car.


Syphogrant Mike already did a tune in a previous post along with upgrade IC


90nissanS13@my350z  There is still heritage in a 2.3L turbo I-4 powered Mustang...


How about some of those side window vents, or are those windows actually functional?


At this point, some exterior lifestyle mods would be cool.


You should be able to easily enough. All the European guys want the US spec rear lamps


I knew someone was gonna bring up the SVO and I contemplating the mention of it. When I say heritage


..But, I guess that can go either way. There is still v8 models commonly available. I don't know, the turbo-4 is just weird in a mustang while not being some kind of special edition thing.


When you have curly hair, all you want it straight hair. When you have straight hair, all you want is curly...

Men and Women aren't too different.


Richtea78 Lucky us that we can actually run either style. In Europe the red blinkers aren't legal.


this car grows on me more and more every time i see it. 
just two days ago here in Wollongong i saw a Red Mustang. Absolutely beautiful looking machine. And to be honest, the 2.3L just makes it even more interesting.


I'd treat the car with the GT350R exterior upgraded. But that's just me. Overall, your Mustang turned out great so far.




How about upgrading the turbo? A litlle bigger and meaner, with more boost? Something in 400 whp category? Any kits for that on market yet?


Car looks great so far. Do not ruin it with Shelby/Cobra stripes or anything like that.


This project has definitely been serving as a vessel to make me fall more in love with the S550, especially the EcoBoost model. Even as something as simple as the silver and bronze pairing oozes character for me. Keep at 'er Mike, love this machine.


IRONWOLF RD Thanks man!


B to the Ruce Don't worry. Never been a fan of those stripes on cars that aren't genuine Shelbys.


greenroadster There are kits out there. I drove FFTEC's turbo upgrade car last year and it was pretty wild. Might be a little much for a daily commuter though.


SeBaBunea Will be interesting to see if those parts get released as aftermarket upgrades.


timwise83 Thanks much!


Matt_Redondo That doesn't look half bad. You can see a little bit out of them, but no I don't think rear vision would be dramatically impacted.


CyborgGT Thanks!


ogi1der Anytime man. Will try to update more often this year :)


GregoryS Thanks!


mandeepchase Glad I could help haha.


90nissanS13@my350z Still plenty of V8s to go around. Just more flavors to choose from :)


_PEITRUS_ Weight reduction is one area where I probably won't be able to do a whole lot. If it was a track car there'd be stuff I could remove, but as a daily driver I'm not really planning on any big weight reduction at this point.


_PEITRUS_ Weight reduction is one area where I probably won't be able to do a whole lot. If it was a track car there'd be stuff I could remove, but as a daily driver I'm not really planning on any big weight reduction at this point.


SN95 Lover Thanks a lot!


SN95 Lover Thanks a lot!


toddwithrow9 Boy do I want a GT350. Maybe someday?


youre right. I forgot about the whole daily part. Once you start weight reducing you'll need to get another daily.


thank you ford, for coming out with the new silvia, much love


Always loved the Mustang but with the taxe rates (specially in my country), high price on gas and not so go twisting roads, a V8 petrol engine car with a rigid rear axle is just unthinkable! 
With this new approach things change! Love the car, Love the wheels and although the upgrades are simple, you are making the car a bit of a sleeper there! And that's awesome! 
I can tell you right away.. if i get one..I'll use your story as a guiding document to know what to buy and where to spice up the car the same way.
Keep it up and thank you for sharing.

Best Regards


phobos512 that's true. Well V8 were kings for sure, by technologies don't stay on one place and EcoBoost Mustang can be fairly called an ultimate driving machine. Of course it's slightly different feeling when the boost kicks in, but the sound can be very pleasant, just throw in a catback. Thank God there are many bolt-ons like this Magnaflow for instance: The sound is different form V8 but it's not any worse.


Any aftermarket hoods that reference the classic SVO foxbody? like with an offset intake to feed the turbo, or top-mount intercooler?


No, just high quality rice....


Lol eco boost on the mustang is waaaaaayyyyyy better then the v6 offered. That v6 shit is garbage sounds so terrible!!!


I have the 2015 Ford Mustang ecoboost and I love this car. For me to say that about any car is huge for me. I was just wondering if any of the modifications you've made have affected the recall in any way good or bad or did you make the repairs along the way?


the car was very good 
really really like to see the car that shiny new car fits like made ​​for walking trailsthe car was very good" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> and very fast" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> mix of colors" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> from which to" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> make want pobud see hatnya" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> kecepatanya" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> was very nice ," rel="dofollow" target="_blank">  suitable for a "" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> sharp bend or not sharp I guess motorists like this is" very skilled in the speed I hope I can membilinya someday will whether there are new cars are better I" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> 'll wait for it , with a stylish car classic" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> style I" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> also like" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> to see would be whether there is a" rel="dofollow" target="_blank"> car that is as fast and forius like in the " movie , the car very good car designed a way apparently hopefully there will be new cars more good and the price is quite pantastis then chances are I can membilinya the same as you have at this time


Shit. I had an Ecoboost only about a month ago. I totalled it (AKA mustang'd). But I remember ALWAYS going to your posts for inspiration on building her. I didn't get to do anything because broke life but anyone out there who wants an ecoboost mustang because you want a tuner muscle car, think otherwise unless you have the money. once you get past the tuning and basic bolt on stage, everything else is a very expensive leap. It's very discouraging because I bought a car that I thought I'd have a great tuner car to only have prices slap me in the face. If you don't care about that or the weight, they are an absolute blast. The independent rear suspension is amazing, the motor has great character, and its a absolute beauty.