A Different Breed In Indy – Skyler Hardy’s 1992 Mustang LX Hatchback

A Fox Body Mustang with a Coyote engine is far from rare these days. At Ford Muscle, we’ve featured our fair share of 4-eyed and aero nose Mustangs with the beloved modern 5.0L engine shoehorned between the strut towers. While some remain practical with a naturally aspirated setup, other power-hungry owners opt for forced induction to quench their thirst. In the realm of cookie cutter builds, it would seem like the nitrous oxide variant was left off the roster. However, for Skyler Hardy the nitrous check box was never left unattended and his desire to do things differently has become an obsession.



I chose nitrous over a blower or turbo setup, as I always like to do things differently with the car. I caught flack for years by taking the wing off! However, I knew spraying the car to 8000 rpms would be a ton of fun. Skyler Hardy

A ton of fun indeed, as he has owned this vehicle for the past 20 years. Seven years ago, Hardy decided it was time to build the car into what you see today. A well modified and race worthy competitor. As his pocket book was thrown towards the new parts, he managed to not only upset the drag purist, but also create a worthy competitor in a variety of classes. Currently Hardy participates in the NMRA and NMCA True Street along with Streetcar Takeover Stick Shift class and a variety of local events in the Indianapolis area.

If you’re around enough events, you’ll notice Hardy’s 1992 Mustang LX hatch lurking in the pits. The dark red paint, which is fully detailed by Automotive Cleaning Solutions products, is only offset by a matte black hood. A glance into the interior will show that Hardy not only loves his Mustang, but loves to drive it. The odometer currently reads well over the 300,000 mile mark! Inside the cabin a Stormin Normand’s custom rollcage is welded up and certifies the car to run as fast as 8.5 second ¼-mile time. A Sparco steering wheel with twin nitrous buttons adorn the wheel, allowing Hardy to spray nitrous into the engine while maintaining focus while racing down the dragstrip.

Photos by Chad Montgomery

A 2013 Coyote engine with a Cobra Jet oil pump and Triangle Speed Shop crank sprocket resides under the hood. A Fore Innovations fuel system with twin Walbro 465 pumps provides fuel, while a Nitrous Outlet hardline kit with ProMax dual channel progressive nitrous controller pushes the nitrous oxide into the engine. Intake air is sucked in via a Boss manifold that has been well ported and caressed by Brett Barber. The exhaust gasses exit through American Racing 1 ¾-inch long tube headers with a final departure through a custom 3-inch exhaust. In order to ensure the fuel and nitrous collaborate correctly, an OZTuning map is loaded into a SCT controller.

While a coyote swap and some nitrous might not be enough to set Hardy apart, he went a step further and avoided using the 6R80 that was mated to the Coyote engine. Instead he opted to row the gears of a TREMEC TKX instead. The TREMEC was outfitted by SilverSport Transmissions with a Quicktime bellhousing, and a McLeod Racing RXT Q1200HD. Hardy’s lightning fast shifts have resulted in a personal best of 10.2 at 138 mph.

In a field of prefabbed builds with a price tag based on the horsepower number, it’s refreshing to something different. Skyler Hardy went the extra mile to create something that he can call his own. A nitrous-huffing Coyote-swapped Fox Body Mustang was just the check box he was needed.

Photo taken from left to right by Chad Montgomery and Stephanie Phillippi,


About the author

James Elkins

Born into a household of motorsport lovers, James learned that wrenching takes priority over broken skin and damaged nerves. Passions include fixing previous owners’ mistakes, writing, and driving.
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