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2002 Ford Saleen Mustang S281 Extreme

1 of 20 Saleen S281E Convertible 4.6L V8 600HP 6 Speed
Stock #
Body Style
4.6 Liter V8
Exterior Color
Torch Red
Interior Color

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Why Buy
2002 Ford Saleen Mustang S281 Extreme Red For Sale
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  • Supercharged V8 that produces roughly 600 horsepower
  • Many Saleen Racecraft suspension components
  • 18 inch Saleen wheels
  • 1 of only 20 S281 Extreme convertibles produced for the 2002 model year
  • T56 6-speed manual transmission
  • Saleen 13 inch four wheel disc brake system
  • Torch Red exterior that’s accented by a full array of Saleen visual enhancements
  • Saleen Maxgrip rear end
  • Saleen high flow exhaust system
  • Dark Charcoal interior that includes many Saleen enhancements

The Mustang has always been one of those cars that does a great job of representing all things to all people. From six cylinder ‘secretary specials’ to fire-breathing Shelby Cobras, enthusiasts have always been able to build pretty much any platform they wanted through either a factory order form or an aftermarket phone number. That said; the most impressive Mustangs are typically those prepared by firms that have an OEM level of expertise but aren’t hamstrung by OEM regulations. And for almost 30 years, Steve Saleen and his team of octane-fueled engineers have turned out some of the hottest cars the late model market has ever seen. Saleen is quick to point out that they are a full-blown manufacturer, as opposed to a mere tuner, and as a result their cars possessed a level of polish most aftermarket entities can’t achieve. And that all-encompassing mindset begets creations like this low-mileage S281 Extreme convertible, one of only 20 Extreme convertibles built for the 2002 model year, which holds its value amazingly well and enjoys a special place at the top of the Mustang hierarchy.

Logging only 9,267 miles since it rolled out of Steve Saleen’s Irvine, California headquarters, virtually every piece of this killer Mustang drop-top retains a factory-fresh glow. The car’s a spotless gem that’s stacked with almost every available bolt-on for the 2002 model year. And if that’s not enough, it’s also been professionally tweaked above and beyond the S281E’s already mind blowing performance. Here’s a breakdown of the original Saleen window sticker that’s included with our sale:


Ford Base Components:

  • Air conditioning
  • Mustang Power Group
  • Anti-lock braking system
  • Power windows
  • Power door locks
  • Power decklid
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Illuminated entry
  • Mach 460 AM/FM stereo that’s complete with an in-dash 6-disc CD changer
  • Ford Leather sport seats

Saleen Base Components:

  • Saleen S281E 4.6 liter 2V V8 that produces 425 horsepower
  • Saleen Series V screw-type intercooled supercharger
  • Saleen forged aluminum pistons
  • Saleen forged steel crankshaft
  • Saleen forged steel connecting rods
  • Aluminum heads that are equipped with Saleen camshafts and Saleen valve springs
  • 90mm mass-air sensor
  • 42 lb./hr. sequential fuel injectors
  • Saleen “PowerFlash” calibration that’s complete with a 6,500 RPM redline
  • Saleen special inlet tube and intake
  • 11 inch aluminum flywheel that’s equipped with an 11 inch full asbestos clutch disc
  • -
  • Saleen premium 13 inch brake system
  • Saleen twin gauge pod that includes both a boost gauge and an intercooler temperature gauge
  • Saleen quick ratio 6-speed manual transmission
  • Saleen 8.8 inch Maxgrip differential
  • Saleen short throw shifter
  • Saleen water-to-air intercooler that’s complete with a heat exchanger
  • Saleen cold air induction system that’s complete with a performance air filter
  • Saleen high-flow performance fuel pump
  • Saleen custom balanced driveshaft
  • Saleen 2.5 inch stainless steel four way high flow exhaust system that’s complete with an x-pipe crossover
  • -
  • Saleen urethane front fascia
  • Saleen urethane rear fascia
  • Saleen urethane side skirts
  • Saleen louvered side scoops
  • Saleen competition design S281E rear wing
  • Saleen lightweight hood
  • -
  • Saleen Racecraft progressive rate front and rear springs
  • Saleen Racecraft N2 (nitrogen) gas shocks and struts
  • Saleen Racecraft sway bars which measure 1.38 inches up front and .94 inches in the rear
  • Saleen rear axle lower control arms
  • Saleen 18×9 five spoke alloy front wheels
  • Saleen 18×10 five spoke alloy rear wheels
  • 265/35ZR18 front and 295/35ZR18 rear Pirelli P Zero radials
  • High performance chassis tune and wheel alignment
  • -
  • Saleen white faced 200 MPH speedometer
  • Saleen tachometer and gauge cluster
  • Saleen leather sport seating
  • Color-matched door panels
  • Saleen performance driving pedals
  • Saleen windshield graphic, badges and champ wreaths
  • Saleen graphics and accent stripes
  • Saleen serialized engine bay and console plaques
  • Saleen serialized bumper number
  • Saleen shift knob
  • Saleen floor mats


  • Chrome alloy wheels ($1,119)
  • Saleen sport bar ($999)




Bathed in vivid Torch Red Clearcoat, S281 Extreme number 62 has every trick Saleen knew built right into its sleek ‘New Edge’ body. Originally delivered to Team Ford in Marietta, Georgia, this awesome blue oval bombshell has been pampered and loved since new and, based on its slick appearance, is a product of very limited road time. The car’s fit and finish is exceptional, thanks to the largely hand-built nature of Saleen’s custom add-ons. Its paint is simply amazing thanks to major improvements in Ford’s factory spraying process. And naturally, that paint covers a solid body that’s never been subjected to metalwork of any kind.

More than just a half-hearted paint-and-decal polish, and certainly more than a simple resto-mod style engine up fit, the S281E package includes a number of appearance and functional improvements. And, as you would expect, Saleen’s aggressive panels and subtle upgrades fit the car extremely well both visually and aesthetically. At the front of the body, a familiar chrome horse and showroom-fresh headlights hang over a custom, sequentially numbered Saleen fascia. Above that fascia, a square-jawed Saleen hood fronts spotless factory glass that’s branded with Saleen decals, flanked by black Ford mirrors and capped by a black canvas top. Below that top, Ford’s famous ‘New Edge’ side panels hang small “S281 SALEEN” emblems and textured Saleen louvers above traditional Saleen decals and seamless Saleen side skirts. And behind those side skirts, a flat Saleen wing rides above a small blue oval emblem, a small “S281 SUPERCHARGED” badge, a numbered and “SALEEN” branded fascia, and large, center-outlet exhaust tips. If ever there were a muscle car that had a scowl to match its evil demeanor, this is it!

Did I hear someone say “power”? Oh there’s power… LOTS of power! Completely massaged by Saleen, the 4.6-liter ‘mod motor’ rumbling beneath this Mustang’s lightweight hood is equipped with a screw-type supercharger, reworked heads, a forged crank, forged connecting rods, a tweaked fuel system, a cold air intake and a Saleen PowerFlash tune. And thanks to the good folks at Roush Performance, the rev-happy mill is bored .020 over, delivers roughly 600 horsepower, and has a wide torque curve that thrives throughout its entire RPM range. Like all modern Ford V8s, this overhead cam champ ramps up in a smooth rush; and when you let it wind out, you’ll appreciate how Saleen’s “Power in the hands of few” motto translates to triple digit speeds and nowhere near slowing down. Additionally, it features a virtually perfect OEM appearance that looks as classic as it is technical. The placarded engine bay is exceptionally clean, with nothing out of place, and honestly, no dirt or other signs of wear. And from a quality standpoint, there’s that familiar combination of first-rate workmanship, OEM-level reliability and raucous idling that Saleen builds have made famous.

It’s no secret that this is one aftermarket firm which staked its reputation on getting Mustangs around tracks at high rates of speed. So it should come as no surprise that the bottom of this awesome S281E is fitted with some of the best ‘faster Ford’ components in the world. Saleen’s suspension upgrades began with Saleen Racecraft sway bars that straighten the curves, progressed to Saleen Racecraft springs, struts and shocks that fine tune the ride, and ended with Saleen chassis geometry and wheel alignment that keeps the power to the ground. Behind the engine, a T56 6-speed bounces torque from an 11 inch aluminum flywheel and a Stage 3 racing clutch to a custom balanced driveshaft, a rugged Maxgrip rear end and Team Ford-installed 3.73 gears. At the corners of floor, stops are provided by a 13 inch Saleen disc brake system that makes good use of Ford’s factory ABS. Turns come courtesy of performance-tuned power steering and a standard stability control system. Exhaust flows through a 2.5 inch Saleen exhaust system that’s complete with an x-pipe crossover and bright stainless tips. And all this first class speed and agility rides on a set of familiar 18 inch Saleen wheels which spin sticky 275/35 Nitto NT555 Extreme ZR street radials and 305/35 Nitto NT555 Extreme ZR drag radials around an optional chrome finish.

Drop inside this low-slung Ford and you’ll immediately notice that the car’s bolstered sport seats, which feature “SALEEN” branded hides, fit like a glove. In front of you a familiar Mustang instrument panel hangs Saleen’s traditional white-face telemetry above Saleen foot pedals. At the side of that instrument panel a Dark Charcoal dash props a duo of Saleen gauges, which monitor the big engine’s boost and intercooler temperature, above familiar Mach 460 6-disc CD changer and a Saleen-autographed glove box. Beneath that CD player a slick gray console anchors a small Saleen badge in front of a short throw shifter for the T56 transmission. At the sides of that console, “Saleen” branded floor mats flow toward spruced up door panels which hang body-matched switch plates above “S281” branded kick trim. And naturally, all the luxuries you’d expect in a modern muscle car are ready and waiting including: cruise control, intermittent wipers, power windows, power door locks, power mirrors, a power driver’s seat and a tilt steering wheel. You know what’s better than cruising around with the top down and the wind in your hair? Cruising around in a modern American classic which coddles you in a level of comfort and reliability that a 40 year old muscle car simply can’t touch!

The sale of this super clean Mustang drop-top includes the original Saleen window sticker outlined above, an original Saleen owner’s manual, some random Saleen marketing materials, a receipt for the car’s Team Ford modifications, and a receipt for its current Nitto tires.

This low mileage S281 Extreme is a turn-key thrill ride that has been immaculately preserved, has mind-boggling power, and is probably one of the most collectible modern Mustangs your money can buy. It’s essentially a brand new car with a roster of well-engineered components that add both performance and prestige. And best of all, you can buy it for roughly half of what the sticker said just 9,200 miles ago! Don’t miss your chance to own one of the coolest Mustangs ever built.


Secondary Make
Model Name
Secondary Model
S281 Extreme
Vehicle Type
Passenger Car
Hobby Segment

Engine / Transmission

Engine Type
Engine Size
4.6 Liter V8
Engine Number
Fuel Specification
92/93 Octane
Fuel Delivery System Type
Electronic Fuel Injection
Transmission Type
6 Speed Manual
Transmission Spec
Transmission Number


Entertainment System Type
AM/FM CD Changer
Battery Location
LH Engine Compartment
Battery Shut Off
Battery Charger
Power Steering
Air Conditioning


Interior Color
Seating Type
Seat Material
Shifter Type
Center Console


Body Style
Safe Body Color
Torch Red
Paint Type


Front Suspension Type
Rear Suspension Type
Axle Specification
Front Wheel Specification
Rear Wheel Specification
Front Tire Specification
Rear Tire Specification
Front Brakes Specification
Power Disc
Rear Brakes Specification
Power Disc
Exhaust Type
Dual Exhaust
Muffler Type


Restoration Status
Mileage Since Restoration
Awards Summary
Historical Documents Summary
Original window sticker, Original Saleen owner's manual, Maintenance records, Saleen brochure,

Our Service Programs

Seal of Approval Basic Safety Check

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