SP Rides: Secrets of The Atom
BY MICHAEL KITCHENS
Name: Atom Figueroa
Occupation: Hawaii Air National Guard
Hobbies: Cars, Draw, Poetry
Year, Make, Model: 2015 Mustang GT
Color: Guard Metallic
Engine: Air Raid throttle body spacer, Roush cold air intake, Ford Racing exhaust w/ muffler
Exterior: RTR grille, RTR rear spoiler, Mp concept rear window spoiler, Cervini C series 4442 Chin Spoiler, Farmah Performance 6 piece Diffuser, Factory Ford performance package, Mustang Euro Spec taillights
Interior: Ford Racing short throw shifter, RTR shift knob
Suspension: Airlift performance suspension airlift 3p Managment, 2 Viair 444c compressors, custom trunk install
Wheels, Brakes, Tires: SSR Sp5 wheels in spectrum silver, Brembo big brake kit, Nexen N’fera SU1 tires
Atom Figueroa grew up in a muscle car family. His father was totally into the car scene back in the 70s and 80s. As a kid, Atom would listen to the stories his father would tell…about running at Sandy’s and the freedom that time period seemed to represent.
Figueroa was a fan of the classic muscle car movies…Bullitt, Vanishing Point, and the older Gone in 60 Seconds…movies where the heroes were always driving cool muscle. At the time Atom wanted to be that guy. The nostalgia left a mark on Atom, who still has a penchant for muscle, but with a twist.
His first Mustang was a 2003 Mustang Mach 1 and spent many years enjoying its performance. However, eventually he felt that he needed an upgrade. Enter this 2015 Mustang GT. The evolution of the Mustang has been constant. Unlike his Mach 1, this Mustang has quite a few techy bells and whistles on it. It’s definitely less raw and more electronic.
This ‘Stang was purchased with the intent to modify from the beginning. From the beginning, he had a them in his mind that was ready for primetime. The theme was to build an American musclecar infused with a taste of JDM goodness. “Well, we’re situated perfectly between Japan and the mainland. It only makes sense to have a JDM-inspired musclecar.”
To carry out this build, the stance was important. Instead of big meaty slicks, JDM SSR SP5s slathered in Spectrum Silver were used and wrapped in Nexen N’Fera SU1 tires. Coil-overs were a no-go due to Atom’s need to roll slammed at the press of a button, therefore, an Airlift Performance Suspension along with 3p Management system has installed. This includes two Viair 444c compressors which gives this ride its lowered profile. The entire setup is housed in a slick trunk install featuring some manga characters.
The exterior has been upgraded with a newer aftermarket front grille as well as a rear spoiler from RTR. A slick MP concept rear window spoiler helps conduct better airflow, while a Cervini chin spoiler and Farmah 6-piece diffuser adds a very race-inspired look. This Mustang has been equipped with Euro-spec tail lights for a nice change of pace.
The stock GT is already pumping out 435HP which is nothing to snort at. Atom has upgraded these numbers with an Air Raid throttle body spacer, a Roush cold air intake, and a Ford Racing exhaust. Further performance is increased thanks to the Ford Racing short throw shifter and RTR shift knob.
“I like Mustangs…I wanted to be into musclecars thanks to my Dad. But I love the JDM look as well” says Figueroa. It all comes down to creativity. This Mustang holds quite a few secrets and the JDM goodness is one of them.