Ringbrothers Built The Hottest Cougar With A 460HP Coyote Swap

From its earliest days, the Mercury Cougar shared a lineage with its Ford cousin, the Mustang. Though the Mercury brand faded from existence a decade ago, the Cougar remains one of its most popular models. In particular, the 1968 version is fetching, but after Ringbrothers performed a frame-off restoration and swapped in a modern engine, this Cougar is hotter than ever.

We had never done a Cougar before, so this was a fun build. I love working with new shapes and coming up with new ideas. — Mike Ring, Ringbrothers

The full Ringbrothers restomod treatment on this 1968 Mercury Cougar included fresh floor pans, a revamped trans tunnel, a Detroit Speed and Engineering suspension, Baer Pro+ 14-inch brakes all around, and forged, three-piece HRE Series C1 C103 wheels wearing Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires measuring 245/35-18 in front and 275/40-19 out back. (Photo Credit: Ringbrothers)

“We put our heart into each car we build, and this Cougar is no exception,” Ringbrothers co-owner Jim Ring described. “The finished product is mild and classy, yet any enthusiast instantly knows it’s not stock. I imagine this is what Mercury designers would have come up with if they were building the Cougar today.”

Under the hood is Ford’s latest 5.0-liter engine, the dual-fuel, Gen 3 Coyote, which pumps out 460 horsepower and 420 lb-ft of torque. Obviously freshened and upgraded inside, the only clues to the modern power lurking underneath the hood are the paddle shifters on the column and the modern pedals in the footwell.

To that end, the shop installed the aforementioned Gen 3 Coyote 5.0-liter engine and backed the 460-horsepower powerplant with the 10-speed automatic transmission from the F-150 Raptor pickup. They even retained the paddle shifters for a purely modern driving experience in this muscular classic, which also serves as a showcase for the company’s line of Cougar hardware.

Sprayed in BASF Glasurit Waterborne Ford M3067 Augusta Green Metallic and riding low on its DSE Aluma Frame Quadra-Link suspension, this Cougar appears both lean and muscular.

“While we couldn’t bring the car to the SEMA Show, we hope it can be shown to the public soon,” Mike Ring, co-owner of Ringbrothers, added. “We had never done a Cougar before, so this was a fun build. I love working with new shapes and coming up with new ideas.”

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About the author

Steve Turner

Steve Turner brings decades of passion and knowledge in the world of Ford performance, having covered it for over 20 years. From the swan song of the Fox Mustang to the birth of the Coyote, Steve had a front-row seat.
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