What Is the Mustang Saleen S302E?Last Updated August 4, 2019
The E in the Mustang Saleen S302E stands for “Extreme” — and for once, that’s no exaggeration. Boasting a supercharged V8 engine producing a whopping 620 horsepower, the Saleen S302E is built for performance, yet doesn’t sacrifice the company’s long history of superior handling and ride quality either. Debuting in 2008, the S302E was a limited-edition vehicle with production capped at no more than 100 units per year.
Starting at $79,990, the Saleen S302E Mustang was not for the faint of heart or light of wallet. Those who did manage to get their hands on one, however, were treated to one of the most powerful production pony cars ever built.
Here’s how Saleen made it happen:
Engine: You don’t get to 620 horsepower without a powerful engine. In the Saleen S302E’s case, that engine starts with a standard-issue 4.6L V8 — the same found on the 2008 GT. Similarities end there, however, as the S302E’s engine has been completely bored out to increase displacement to 302 ci. Add to that a port-matched Saleen Series VI supercharger, a pair of CNC aluminum cylinder heads with performance camshafts, 39 lb/hour fuel injectors, a dual-stage water-to-air intercooler, forged aluminum pistons … the list goes on.
Suspension: With that much attention paid to what’s going on under the hood, it’s no surprise Saleen went all out for the S302E’s suspension and steering too. Components include Saleen’s proprietary Racecraft sport-tuned coil springs, sway bars, and HD bushings, as well as a Watts-style rear axle linkage. Brakes were upgraded to 15” discs with six-piston calipers.
Exterior: Outside, the Saleen S302E can be fitted with a speedster convertible top or glass roof. Upgrades to the standard sheet metal include an aluminum hood with heat ventilation, front and rear fascia, a carbon fiber front splitter and body diffuser and several other lightweight, aerodynamic components.
Sales and Legacy
With that much power under the hood, it’s clear the Saleen S302E isn’t for your average driver. But for those who appreciate pure performance and a refined ride, the Saleen S302E more than holds its own among competitors like the Corvette Z06 and Viper SRT10.
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With no more than 100 vehicles produced a year, the $79,990 Saleen S302E was not for the faint of heart or light of wallet. This Mustang featured a Saleen Series VI supercharger capable of producing 620 horsepower as well as Saleen's proprietary Racecraft sport-tuned coil springs, sway bars, and HD bushings.
One of the more popular Saleen Automotive variants first available in 1996 was the Saleen S281 Cobra. This Cobra featured a 4.6L V8 engine capable of producing 320 horsepower. The Saleen S281 production continued until 2004, producing 128 of these Mustangs.
Fetching high prices at auctions due to its extremely rare nature is the Saleen SC Mustang. Only a total of 28 were released from 1990 to 1993. The Saleen SC Mustang showed how much potential the Fox body platform had to offer producing 304 horsepower with a sporting refined handling.
Saleen Automotive celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2008 by producing the Saleen S302E Sterling Edition Mustang. The E stands for Extreme and it doesn't disappoint. The S302E features a twin-screw supercharger making this Mustang capable of going from 0 to 60 mph in just under four seconds.