Tag Archives: Saleen Performance Vehicles


“In these difficult economic times we wanted our first vehicle to deliver a lot for an affordable price,” — Mike Shields, CEO of Saleen Performance Vehicles.

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C., July 24, 2009 – Saleen Performance Vehicles today unveiled its first 2010 product, the Saleen 435S, based on the new 2010 Ford Mustang. The introduction took place as part of the Special Vehicle Team Owners Association’s annual “Mustang Week” event. The 435S is the first vehicle launched under Saleen’s new ownership, following the purchase of Saleen Inc. earlier this year.

This car continues the Saleen tradition of offering limited-edition, high-performance vehicles for enthusiasts who are looking for an exhilarating driving experience, with refined drivability for real-world road conditions.

The 435S is designed to provide affordable, high-value performance.

“In these difficult economic times we wanted our first vehicle to deliver a lot for an affordable price,” said Mike Shields, CEO of Saleen Performance Vehicles. “It was created much more for ‘go’ than for show. We focused on power and handling, and it’s a great platform to build on if a customer wants to take it farther later on.”

The heart of the car’s performance is its 4.6-liter, 3-valve SOHC V8 engine, complete with a Saleen Series VI twin-screw supercharger and two-stage intercooler. This engine produces a vigorous 435 horsepower and 425 lb.-ft. of torque, is mated to a 5-speed manual transmission, and has a 3.73:1 rear axle ratio with limited-slip differential.

The car rides 1.5 inches lower than a Mustang GT, thanks to its Saleen Racecraft performance suspension. The system is designed to reduce body roll, provide nimble, precise handling and improve traction, while retaining the compliant ride of a good daily driver. The suspension package includes springs, a stiffer front stabilizer bar, and nitrogen-pressurized shock absorbers tuned exclusively for the 435S.

The vented brake rotors, front and rear, are slotted and cross-drilled for improved feel and stopping performance. Larger, 14-inch slotted front rotors with 4-piston calipers are available as an option.

The 435S has the Saleen-signature long, low, sleek looks and aggressive stance that have distinguished the company’s previous cars. Traditional Saleen styling cues include an understated trim panel between the taillights with “Saleen” in raised lettering, mesh covers over the fog lights in the grille, and the Saleen name and chevrons as graphic elements placed low on each side. An optional Aero Package includes a lightweight chin splitter and rear spoiler for improved aerodynamics.

Other exterior highlights include unique, 18-inch, 5-spoke alloy wheels (19- and 20-inch wheels are available), and “435S” lettered on each side of the hood’s power dome.

Inside, the modifications are designed to enhance the driving experience and to express the car’s character. These include a new, short-throw shifter for quick, precise gear-changing performance, and new, driver-oriented gauges. These uniquely styled gauges retain Mustang’s MyColor™ capabilities that allow the owner to select from more than 125 custom colors for the instrument cluster. The car’s identity is highlighted by a Saleen logo embroidered on the headrests.

“All in all, we believe the 435S is the right car at the right time,” said Shields. “It’s a terrific performance value that we’re proud to offer. And this is just the first of many great Saleen vehicles we’ll be launching in the future.”

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To note:

  • In February, 2009, MJ Acquistitions purchased many of the assets of Saleen Inc., including the rights to the Saleen brand, and certain assets relating to Saleen’s supercharger, aftermarket and high performance street vehicle businesses.
  • That part of the company is now doing business as Saleen Performance Vehicles, as a member of the automotive technology enterprise that also includes Power-Tec Engineering, Cyltec, Control-Tec, and Arrow Racing Engines.
  • Saleen Performance Vehicles is preparing to launch two, new Saleen high-performance 2010 Mustangs this year, including a vehicle later this week during Mustang Week activities in Myrtle Beach, SC.
  • Steve Saleen officially left Saleen, Inc. in 2007.

Statement from Mike Shields, President and CEO of Saleen Performance Vehicles:

TROY, Mich., July 20 — We’re dismayed by the lawsuit that was filed this weekend by Steve Saleen, and even more disappointed by the fact that it appears to be an attempt to disrupt the debut of our new Saleen vehicle this week.

Our company’s purchase of certain assets in February entitles us to use the Saleen brand for our superchargers, aftermarket parts and high performance vehicles, and we look forward to continuing the legacy of great Saleen products that fulfill the brand promise of ‘Power in the Hands of a Few.’

While this lawsuit is an unfortunate minor distraction, our dedicated team of enthusiasts is excited about not only the launch of our exciting new Saleen car later this week, but also on working closely with our loyal dealers and customers to ensure their satisfaction. As I stated last week during a media teleconference, we are working to resolve past warranty issues and have every intention of going forward with a warranty policy that will provide confidence to all our valued stakeholders.

The Saleen Performance Vehicles brand is not about one person. It represents a legacy of high-performance vehicles that has developed over the past quarter century, and we feel privileged to be entrusted with that legacy going forward. Everyone in our company takes that responsibility seriously. That’s why we’re so enthusiastic about the future of our company, and why we can’t wait to begin its latest chapter this week at Myrtle Beach.

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June 19, 2009 — Irvine, California — After more than four months into the ownership of Saleen Performance Vehicles, President and CEO Mike Shields updates Saleen Owners and Enthusiasts Club members on the status of the company and its future plans in a statement released today.

Since the time Shield’s MJ Acquisitions purchased the assets of the production car and aftermarket divisions of Saleen from then-majority owner Hancock Park Associates, an extensive review process of the team, the company’s products and future direction has been undertaken. Certainly a challenge hard to ignore is how the brand will differentiate itself from Steve Saleen’s SMS Supercars, a business Saleen founded after leaving Saleen Inc. in 2007.

Part of this transition process for the new Saleen Performance Vehicles has been to integrate it with its new affiliates as a result of its relationship with MJ Acquisitions’s sister companies — Cyltec, LLC; Power-Tec Engineering LLC; Arrow Racing Engines LLC and Control-Tec LLC.

Shields, who now drives a S281 Supercharged Saleen Mustang in Lizstick, previously told SOEC that they will now be utilizing the resources of their sister companies to bring Saleen’s supercharger manufacturing in-house, as the company previously Saleen outsourced key components, such as the screws, from Europe. Other such consolidation and utilization of the companies is expected in the future.

“We will use the engineering, design and manufacturing resources of all the affiliated companies to take the Saleen brand forward, and are very pleased with the progress being made,” said Shields in today’s statement. “As we stated. . . when we acquired Saleen [on February 2, 2009], our intention is to ensure the process of delivering high-quality automobiles and components to consumers is not disrupted and the promise of ‘Power in the Hands of a Few’ continues.”

Certainly a heated topic among owners of newer models is a lack of a new-car warranty on the Saleen portion of the vehicle which is not covered by Ford. Shields further explained, “there has been some discussion and misperception about our decision not to honor warranty costs before our February 2, 2009 purchase. We are actively investigating warranty options for vehicles in dealers’ inventories and sold units still under their original warranty coverage. We are committed to resolving this issue and expect to make further announcements about this soon.”

For repairs that would normally be in-warranty or that require Saleen-provided parts, to assist owners, the company does continue to offer replacement parts to dealers at a discounted rate, in addition to a 1-year/12,000-mile warranty on eligible parts sold after February 2, 2009.

In a bold move in April, Steve Saleen stepped-up in a big way with the following statement:

“If any Saleen customer in the United States who purchased a Saleen Inc. product up until February 2, 2009, has a warranty claim, they can directly contact my new company, SMS Supercars. We will honor their remaining warranties as if they were SMS Supercars warranties.

Owners should contact SMS before visiting their dealer, and more details can be found at http://saleenwarranty.org.

Of course, individuals wishing to purchase Saleen-branded repair or replacement parts, graphics, letters of authentication or other services can continue to call Saleen Speedlab in Michigan at 1-800-888-8945 .

Shields emphasized, “The most important thing I want to stress is there will be a Saleen going forward, including new performance vehicles we will begin to unveil as early as this July in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Although it’s a challenging time to be in the automotive business, those challenges create great opportunities, and we’re excited about the future of Saleen, our loyal customers and dealers going forward. We want to enhance the image of the Saleen brand by bringing out the best products in the company’s history.”

Shields also promises us some exciting news in the coming weeks, and certainly Saleen owners and enthusiasts are going to be on the edge of their seats!

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2010 Saleen Mustang
2010 Saleen Mustang

2010 Saleen S-Series “Working Image” Leaked

By SOEC/Saleen Forums News — May 8, 2009 — Irvine, California

Earlier this week there were several sightings of a “2010 Saleen” image circulating the Internet and it has since been confirmed by more than one source at Saleen as being a working image of a 2010 Saleen and leaked by “one of our temps,” said a Saleen insider.

The image, displayed above, is said to have several characteristics of the final vehicle design, though it was an early working image and was not supposed to become public. While clearly a “Photoshop” depicting a sculpted Saleen with the Fabulous Forum arena of Los Angeles in the background, it is said to give good insight on the new model.

Conversations with Saleen insiders indicate the 2010 S-series will include an S281 model, though a 302 model has not yet been divulged. Initially it was thought it might be until 2011 for the next S-series, but it seems they are moving forward ahead of schedule.

The leaked image is putting to rest rumors that the Saleen brand would die after Hancock Park Associates sold the majority of Saleen assets to MJ Acquisitions earlier this year. But Mike Shields of MJ/Saleen has told SOEC that he and his partner and brother Joe Shields grew interested in keeping the brand alive as they enjoyed driving their Saleen Mustangs.

Shields, who drives a Lizstick red S281 Supercharged Mustang, also told SOEC that they will now be utilizing the resources of their sister companies Cyltec, Power-Tec Engineering, Arrow Racing Engines and Control-Tec. One example is to bring Saleen’s supercharger manufacturing in-house. Previously Saleen outsourced key components, such as the screws, from Europe.

In a related story, a proposed “Racecraft” model has been visually presented to Saleen and Ford dealers earlier this year with mixed reviews. While revisions are being made to its appearance package, a new name is also rumored to be assigned to the brand.

About Saleen: Hancock Park Associates, having been controlling stakeholder in Saleen since 2003, sold certain assets (most everything but the S7 program and the paint facility) to MJ Acquistions earlier in 2009. MJ Acquisitions is run by partners Mike and Joe Shields, who have also considered purchasing the Viper brand from Chrysler, which seems a natural as Arrow Racing Engines has provided services for the Viper program in the past. The Hancock Park Associates-owned remainder of Saleen has since changed its name to Plex. MJ Acquisitions is now doing business as Saleen.

About SOEC: The Saleen Owners and Enthusiasts Club was founded in 1991 and is the premiere organization of Saleen owners with more than 3,000 members worldwide. As the officially-recognized organization for the brand, each new Saleen owner receives a complimentary 1-year membership in SOEC. SOEC’s website, https://www.soec.org, gets nearly 40,000 visits a month by owners and enthusiasts alike, enjoying the world’s largest historical archive of Saleen-related literature and other resources. SOEC’s Saleen Forums has over 1,500 registered users, and is the largest and most active Saleen community online.

— Saleen Owners and Enthusiasts Club

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Photos from our friends at Saleen Performance Vehicles, taken during their west coast adventure.

10-0007 S281 Supercharged
10-0007 S281 Supercharged

[Source: Saleen Performance Vehicles]


Saleen Inc., amidst financial distress, ceases operations and
leaves Saleen vehicles and its owners without warranties

Breaking News — March 06, 2009

Today, all certified Saleen and Racecraft dealers were sent a letter from MJ Acquisitions, Inc., the new caretakers of the Saleen brand.

And like most stories these days, there is often good news and bad news — and this story is no different.

The Good News

MJ Acquisitions, consisting of an experienced and energetic staff who are very familiar with the Saleen brand, will continue to provide service parts, performance parts, accessories and letters of authentication to support Saleen and Racecraft vehicle owners well into the future.

The Bad News

Those Saleen and Racecraft owners needing dealer-provided in-warranty repairs of Saleen components are likely to incur an unforeseen out-of-pocket cost that my not be reimbursed, due to unfortunate circumstances with the financial condition of the brand’s former owners, Saleen, Inc.

Bad News Backgrounder

After announcing it was seeking a buyer last Fall due to the recent and current economic conditions, Saleen, Inc. — a company majority-owned by Hancock Park Associates — was on a direct path to cease all operations for public business as of February 01, 2009. After a brief period of negotiations, MJ Acquisitions stepped-in as a bailout action and purchased certain assets of Saleen, Inc. on January 30, 2009. This transaction was an effort to keep the brand from becoming completely extinct.

The now-former owner of the brand, Saleen, Inc., has just announced it has ceased all operations. Saleen, Inc. is responsible for warranties existing before February 2, 2009, and thus regrettably it has been announced that they are now unable to honor any warranties on any of its parts, services, and vehicles including cars, trucks, and aftermarket parts prior to this date. All inquiries regarding these and other financial claims for Saleen, Inc. should go to Jaimee L. Witten of Bodman LLP at (313) 392-1045.

Furthermore, it has been stated that Saleen, Inc. is responsible for parts and labor costs on all vehicles with a remaining Saleen, Inc.-backed factory warranty – those currently in the hands of owners, as well as those that may remain on showroom floors.

MJ Acquisitions, the “new Saleen,” will continue to sell parts to the certified dealers, at a discount, to allow dealers to service their existing inventory and customer vehicles. It will, however, be the dealer’s responsibility to contact the representative of Saleen, Inc. at the number above to obtain any reimbursement for parts and labor costs associated with the repair of a Saleen or Racecraft vehicle manufactured by Saleen, Inc.

It was further emphasized in the letter to dealers:

“MJ Acquisitions, Inc. is not responsible or obligated to cover warranties and/or any financial liabilities of Saleen, Inc.”

It was also expressed that the team at MJ Acquisitions does apologize for the hardship this places on its valued customers, and they understand that this will impact all parties, as it would with any automotive manufacturer closing its doors.

A Little More Good News

Parts purchased from MJ Acquisitions, on or after February 2, 2009, will have a 12 month/12,000 mile limited warranty against manufacturer defects.

MJ Acquisitions, Inc., as the new caretakers of the Saleen brand, has a dedicated staff of “Saleen-bred” professionals who are knowledgeable about Saleen, Racecraft, and Mustang products, and are eager to help.

And the balance of your Ford-covered components and their related warranty remains intact.

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