Last year Ford Performance made a big splash at the SEMA Show revealing its Eluminator electric crate motor and teasing its potential with a way-cool swap in an F-100 pickup. That inspired a sell-out of preorders for the motor lifted from the Mach-E GT parts bin, and now one is appropriately powering a tire-shredding S197 Mustang.
“The fact is, electric performance is fun, and as the industry moves toward electric vehicles, motorsports and the performance aftermarket will too,” said Mark Rushbrook, global director of Ford Performance when the Eluminator was revealed. “Just as Ford is committed to leading the electric revolution on the product side, Ford Performance is equally committed to winning on the performance and motorsports front.”
Until recently, Eluminator-powered machines were still factory fantasy, but AEM EV recently staked its claim to the first Eluminator swap in the S197 Mustang seen here. If you aren’t fully up to speed, the 50-state-legal Eluminator retails for $4,340 and delivers 281 horsepower and 317 lb-ft of torque, but it ships without a battery, control system, or traction inverter. That’s where AEM EV put its expertise to work.
“You probably know about our black TeStang — that’s our Tesla-powered Mustang EV swap car — so we decided that we already know S197 Mustangs, let’s build another one,” Nate Stewart of AEM EV explained. “And that’s exactly what we did here, but what’s unique about this car is that it’s actually Ford-powered, so obviously first and foremost we have the Ford Performance Eluminator crate motor so powering the Ford Eluminator drive unit is a Cascadia Motion CM-200 inverter.”
Rounding out the package, AEM EV installed a battery pack based on six LG battery modules, plus its PDU-8 Power Distribution Unit, Eight-Button CAN Keypad V200 Vehicle Control Unit, and CD Carbon Digital Dash Display. Controlled by AEM software, the Eluminator also benefits from the company’s AEM EV Phase Bar upgrade that enhances both the phase bars in the motor and the connecting cables to ensure the optimal voltage is delivered to the motor.
“Our application engineers took the experience learned from our development on the Testang and created the first Eluminator-swapped car in the country!” the company said. “Internally nicknamed Judith, she’s a beautiful example of what’s possible with the Eluminator, and keeps it pure with Ford electric ponies packaged in the iconic S197 Mustang GT chassis.”
Of course, the only downer, if you are a Blue Oval purist, is that AEM EV customized a Telsa subframe to mount the Eluminator in the Mustang. With any luck, aftermarket solutions are in development for these swaps, but for now, that was the path of least resistance.
Given that the company’s previous Tesla swap powered an S197 to 11-second elapsed times, it will be interesting to see what a 281-horsepower can do in a 3,800-pound Mustang.