Modified Ford Mustang GT Built for People with Disabilities

2005 Mobility Motor Mustang GT

Ford's Mobility Motoring program partnered with Tiger Racing to bring a modified 2005 Ford Mustang GT to Ford Division's main floor stand at Detroit's 2005 North American International Auto Show. The award-winning Mustang has been specially equipped for people with disabilities.

Approximately 14,000 people with disabilities received benefits from Ford Mobility Motoring in 2004. Since its creation in 1992, the program has assisted more than 120,000 customers with financial aid, state-specific information packets and referrals to equipment installers.

Ford's Powertrain Research & Development group first started working with Covina, California-based Tiger Racing in early 2002 with the goal to accelerate the development of its auto-shift/select-shift manual transmission, which allows for "push-button" control of the transmission for gear selection, while managing all aspects of powertrain control.

This new transmission was needed to help Tiger Racing's paraplegic driver, Carol Hollfelder, who races a 2003 Mustang in the SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge. Hollfelder needed the electro-hydraulically actuated paddle-shift transmission system to help her move quickly through the gears while on the track. The combination proved successful and helped Hollfelder to become a more competitive racer.

The Mobility Motoring program heard about Hollfelder's story and found that her competitive free spirit conveyed the right message for their reimbursement program, which provides customers with $1,000 towards the cost of adaptive mobility equipment. They quickly began using Hollfelder as a spokesperson for the program.

In the beginning of 2004, Ford's Project Vehicle program and the Mobility Motoring program decided it would be a good idea for Tiger Racing to develop an all-new 2005 Ford Mustang GT for the 2004 Specialty Equipment and Manufacturing Show (SEMA) to showcase some of the latest technology in mobility adaptive equipment.

Ford provided the Mustang GT and technology from Ford's Intelligent Vehicle program. Tiger Racing did the rest. The project was a success and the Mustang GT wound up being awarded a product excellence award by Ford's Product Development Community for its development of new products, vehicle appearance, use of aftermarket parts and overall fit with Mustang's brand image.

New York, April 1, 2005
Source: Ford Mustang news from the Ford Motor Company

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