That sounds ****ing mental.” I’m surprised to see the lone Telstra worker sitting at the end of this long and twisting mountain road, but he’s not surprised to see me. The Roush RS3 has been announcing its approach for quite some time, belting out a bent-eight aria that’s echoed through the valley, but then this supercharged Ford Mustang has plenty to yell about.
The RS3 is the latest and greatest creation from iconic American tuner Roush Performance, put together and sold by Roush’s authorised Australian agent Mustang Motorsport in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs. The $59,660 kit effectively doubles the price of a standard Mustang GT, but the addition of an Eaton TVS R2650 supercharger lifts outputs to a healthy 560kW at 7000rpm and 908Nm at 4600rpm.
Massive power creates massive heat, but keeping the resultant temperatures under control is an extra supercharger intercooler, extra radiator, larger primary radiator, transmission cooler and differential cooler. It all works, too. Not once during our test does the RS3 show any sign of heat-related stress. Roush recalibrates the MagneRide suspension (or provides the option of one- or three-way adjustable coilovers for passive suspension cars) and adds lowered springs, while wider wheels and tyres are added to the front, the RS3 now wearing 20 x 9.5-inch rims and 275/35 Continental ContiSportContact 5Ps at both ends.
Engine aside, these changes alone alter the character of the Mustang, but for better or worse will depend on your preferences. Whether as a result of the wider wheels and tyres or simply the altered geometry, the steering is a fraction heavier and less ‘crisp’ in its communication, though it controls a front end that’s now much keener to stick to the road. Swings and roundabouts. Roush’s MagneRide remap is firmer than both the standard car and Ford Performance’s effort, the resultant ride being sportier if you’re feeling charitable or more uncomfortable if you aren’t.
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