As most of you know, we picked up an S550 Mustang as a shop car to learn more about the chassis and give an American “Classic” our own take. The mustang is by no means a light and nimble car, it has some mass to it. Weighing in at nearly 3800 lbs, we’re going to try and do everything in our power to make the car handle as if it were lighter while retaining the comforts of a street car that sees the occasional track.
Since the dawn of man, the human species has been wired to follow what our ancestors has established and improve upon throughout the evolution of our well being. Back then the car gods has invented a nifty little device that measured the amount of revolutions a engine shaft spun. That such device was called a Tachometer and it had a big display with segmented lines and a dial that displayed the revolutions per minute. This device was the precursor to many other important monitoring devices needed to manage the engine in each car. At it’s bare core, these devices were considered analog devices that takes in mechanical or electrical signals and convert them into a mechanical dial and rotated on a faceplate displaying various parameters in increments. You had A/F gauges, Boost gauges, Water temp gauges, Oil pressure gauges and etc.
Over the years OEM companies has standardized on a few devices such as Volt gauges, engine temp gauges, boost pressure gauge, oil temp gauge along with the typical Speedometer and Tachometer. As technology advances thru time, more and more digital solutions were implemented in manufactured cars. But where technology makes things easier, it also dumbs down the audience that uses such technology. Case and point, the Apple iPhone has simplified the operations of using a MP3 player through their 1 cable/1 software setup where everyone was able to just plug in and download all their songs from one source to their device without having to deal with setting up and installing various plugin’s and searching websites for songs. It was a one stop shop for all music lover. However in the automotive world, you probably noticed that back in the 80’s-90’s there were car’s manufactured with all sorts of gauges on the dash that made you felt more in touch with the car with all the analog dials spinning in front of you every time you pressed the gas pedal. The newer car’s of today from 2000 and up has got rid of most of those nifty gauges in place of “idiot” lights that remind you that your car is overheating or something is wrong with your car. This “dumbing” down of the audience always made me feel like I never know what my car is doing without having all those gauges. Technology gotten so good in the automotive industry that they feel that the computer can monitor everything and just display a “idiot” light to tell you something is working or not.
Now if you are like me and other car enthusiast out there, I would rather prefer everything laid out in front of me to decide what is crucial to me and my operation of my vehicle. Companies like DEFI, Greddy, AEM, Innovate and etc, all have been in the fore front of bringing us aftermarket gauges in various shapes and forms throughout the years. We are use to seeing big and small analog and digital gauges that clutter all over the dash. All those gauges usually tells people that you are serious about keeping your car in tip top shape either for racing or just increasing your rep points at shows. No matter how you choose to display them, they all come down to one big question “how do I place it on my dash so I can properly view it?”