How to Install a Stage 2 Clutch in a Mustang GT for Enhanced Power Handling?

Street racing enthusiasts and car aficionados, buckle up and prepare to delve into the world of Mustang GT modifications. Through this journey, you will learn how to elevate your beloved car’s power handling by installing a stage 2 clutch. This article is designed to guide you through the process, elucidating the role of different components such as the clutch disc, the aluminum flywheel, and the pressure plate. Furthermore, it will point out why opting for reputed brands like Exedy for your kit is recommended. Let’s not wait any longer and get your hands greased up for this thrilling endeavor.

Identifying Your Stock Clutch Components

Before embarking on the installation process, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the existing clutch components in your Mustang GT. It’s also essential to understand their functionalities, facilitating a painless and efficient replacement process.

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Your Mustang’s clutch is a complex system consisting of a flywheel, a friction disc, a pressure plate, and a release bearing. The flywheel, often made of aluminum, is the interface between the clutch system and the engine. It plays a critical role in transferring the engine’s rotational power to the clutch disc.

Attached to the flywheel is the pressure plate. As its name suggests, it applies pressure on the clutch disc, holding it against the flywheel. When you engage the clutch pedal, the pressure plate releases this pressure, disconnecting the engine from the gearbox momentarily.

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The clutch disc is the component that, when pressed against the flywheel by the pressure plate, transmits the engine’s power to the gearbox. This disc can wear out over time, necessitating a replacement.

Lastly, the release bearing, or throw-out bearing, aids in the disengagement of the clutch disc from the flywheel when you step on the clutch pedal.

Selecting Your Stage 2 Clutch Kit

Choosing the right clutch kit is paramount for a successful Mustang GT modification. Stage 2 clutch kits are designed to handle more power than your stock clutch, making them ideal for street racing or modified Mustangs.

When you’re in the market for a stage 2 clutch kit, brands like Exedy should be at the forefront of your mind. They offer kits that are renowned for their durability, performance, and longevity. A typical stage 2 clutch kit includes a high-torque clutch disc, a pressure plate, an alignment tool, and often, a new release bearing.

Notably, the clutch disc in these kits generally features a sprung hub with a puck design on the friction material. This design provides a greater surface area for power transfer, hence better power handling. Furthermore, the pressure plate in these kits will exert more clamping force than the stock counterpart, ensuring the clutch disc remains engaged, even under high torque situations.

Removing Your Stock Clutch

Once you’ve secured your stage 2 clutch kit, it’s time to remove the old, stock clutch from your Mustang GT. This process will necessitate a certain level of mechanical expertise and a range of tools.

First, you’ll need to disconnect the battery and remove the starter motor. Following this, you’ll have to disconnect the gear linkage and the driveshaft. The next step involves supporting the engine and gearbox with a jack before you start to unbolt the gearbox from the engine. Once you’ve successfully separated the gearbox from the engine, you’ll gain access to the clutch assembly.

Afterward, you can remove the pressure plate bolts gradually in a crisscross pattern to avoid warping the plate. This action will free the pressure plate and the clutch disc, which you can then remove.

Installing Your Stage 2 Clutch

The installation of your stage 2 clutch involves a reversal of the removal process. However, it’s important to note a few additional steps to ensure a successful installation.

You should begin by thoroughly cleaning the flywheel surface to remove any residual friction material. If your kit includes a new release bearing, it’s a good idea to add it to the gearbox input shaft at this stage.

Next, place your new clutch disc onto the flywheel, aligning it with the supplied tool. Following this, you can install the pressure plate over the clutch disc and onto the flywheel. Ensure to tighten the bolts gradually, again using a crisscross pattern.

Once the pressure plate is securely installed, you can reattach the gearbox to the engine, ensuring to align the input shaft with the new clutch disc. Proceed to reinstall the driveshaft, gear linkage, and starter motor. Lastly, reconnect the battery, and voila, your Mustang GT is now equipped for better power handling with a stage 2 clutch.

Break-in and Performance

After installing your stage 2 clutch, it’s crucial to give it a proper break-in period. During this time, it’s recommended to avoid hard launches or aggressive shifts. Typically, a break-in period of around 500 miles of city driving will ensure your new clutch achieves maximum grip and longevity.

Equipped with your new stage 2 clutch, your Mustang GT will be better prepared to handle the rigors of street racing or spirited driving. You’ll notice enhanced responsiveness and power delivery, affirming the worth of your investment and effort. Remember, the key to enjoying the benefits of your stage 2 clutch is its correct installation and break-in.

Fine-Tuning Your Mustang GT Performance: Additional Modifications

Once your stage 2 clutch is installed, there are a number of further modifications that you can undertake to fine-tune your Mustang GT’s performance. Whether you’re revving up for street racing or simply desire a more responsive ride, these modifications can significantly enhance your driving experience.

Consider upgrading your drivetrain exhaust for a boost in power and performance. A high-quality drivetrain exhaust system can help reduce back pressure while increasing horsepower and torque, essential for high-powered street pro racing. Various options, including single disc and twin disc systems, are available in the market to suit different performance needs.

Furthermore, replacing your pilot bearing can prove beneficial. The pilot bearing, located at the rear end of the crankshaft, supports the input shaft of the transmission. Installing a new, high-quality pilot bearing can ensure smoother shifts and reduce the risk of transmission damage.

Finally, also consider adding a high clamp pressure plate to your clutch system. A high clamp pressure plate provides greater clamping force, enhancing the transfer of power from the engine to the transmission. This upgrade can be particularly effective when combined with a stage 2 clutch, ensuring power is reliably transferred, even during aggressive shifts.

By integrating these additional modifications with your stage 2 clutch installation, you can significantly enhance the power handling and overall performance of your Mustang GT. But remember, each modification should be carried out carefully and accurately to ensure optimal results.


Installing a stage 2 clutch in your Mustang GT can provide a noticeable enhancement in power handling, making it an ideal modification for street racing enthusiasts and performance car aficionados. This process, although intricate, can be accomplished with careful attention to detail and a thorough understanding of your vehicle’s clutch components.

Remember, the key to a successful installation lies in your preparation. From correctly identifying your stock clutch components to selecting a reputable clutch kit like Exedy, every step bears significant impact on the final result. Additionally, giving your new clutch a proper break-in period and considering further modifications like a drivetrain exhaust upgrade or high clamp pressure plate can further optimize your Mustang GT’s performance.

This endeavor undoubtedly requires time, effort, and a certain level of mechanical expertise. However, the reward of enhanced power handling and a more responsive ride makes it worthwhile. So, get your hands greased up, add that stage 2 clutch kit to your cart, and embark on this thrilling journey of Mustang GT modification. Happy modding, and remember, the roads await your newly empowered Mustang GT.

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