The well-known tech behind the S197 Ford Mustang has returned to the shop to get a nice shot of cold, dense air. This AEM Brute Force Intake system takes the cool blast and turns it into proven power gains that almost anyone can bolt-on. Our original StangNet.com write-up (with hi res images on demand) gives a real world overview and interpretation on how to perform the cold air kit installation on a 2008 Ford Mustang GT/CS. StangNet Staff member bigcat shows us just how it’s done.
S197 AEM Cold Air Intake Install
Tools required: 8mm, 10mm sockets, T20 Torx bit (provided in kit), 13mm wrench, 3mm Allen wrench
Step 1: Disconnect the negative battery terminal using an 8mm socket or wrench.
Step 2: Locate and remove the 10mm bolt securing the air box. The bolt is located between the air box and fender.
Step 3: Remove the MAF wiring harness. To do this, pull the red locking tab back. Then push down on the tab and pull the plug out.
Step 4: Unplug the PCV hose from the left side of the inlet, at the throttle body. To unplug it, push the bottom of the green ring toward the engine, and pull the hose off.
Step 5: Loosen the hose clamp securing the inlet tube to the throttle body using the 10mm socket. Remove the inlet tube.
Step 6: Remove the air box and inlet tube assembly.
Step 7: Remove the MAF sensor from the OEM air box assembly using the supplied T20 torx wrench. Transfer the sensor to the new intake tube, using the supplied new screws. NOTE: Be sure to install the sensor in the correct orientation. The “flow” printed on the sensor should point towards the throttle body.
Step 8: Unlock the wiring harness clips on both sides of the throttle body using same method as the MAF sensor.
Step 9: (If equipped with the factory cover) Remove the two 8mm nuts from the front of the cover.
Step 10: On the passenger side rear, locate the rubber grommet securing the cover to the manifold. Gently lift the cover off of the stud.
The driver’s side has a wiring harness clipped over the stud. Gently lift the harness off of the stud, and pull the cover gently off of the stud as well. Push forward on the cover, so it clears the throttle body studs and remove.
Step 11: Finish removing the throttle body. Use 10mm socket on all four remaining bolts at each corner of the throttle body. Be sure the orange gasket stays on the manifold.
Step12: Install the O-rings into the throttle body spacer. A dab of grease will hold the O-rings in place while you install the spacer. Double check the orange gasket is properly installed on the manifold. Install the spacer onto the manifold.
Step 13: Reinstall the throttle body. Make sure the O-rings are properly seated in the spacer before tightening the throttle body bolts. Be sure to torque the bolts to 89 in-lbs. DO NOT over tighten!
Step 14: Install the throttle body inlet coupler. Don’t forget to put the hose clamp first! Install the PCV hose adapter into the coupler. There is a groove in the coupler. Slide the adapter into the coupler from the outside. Install the PCV hose by pushing it onto the adapter. TIP: Install the clamp so that the bolt is on the bottom side to clean up the appearance.
You can see the bolt for the clamp is still accessible from the bottom side.
Step 15: Connect the throttle body wiring. Don’t forget to lock the connectors in place. You should hear a “click” when properly installed.
Step 16: Install the first inlet tube onto the coupler. This is the tube with the AEM logo. Loosely tighten the clamp. The clamp needs to be tight enough to hold the tube in place, but loose enough to allow for adjustment.
Step 17: Install the remaining coupler onto the inlet tube. Don’t forget the hose clamps. Again, for appearance, install the clamps so the bolt is on the bottom side.
Step18: Locate the ABS module, just behind the driver’s side headlight. It is the box with all the brake lines coming out of the top. On the lower rear, slide the gray lever toward the engine. This will unlock and remove the harness from the ABS module. Pull the harness out of the way.
Step 19: Remove the 10mm bolt that was under the harness connector. Locate the upper mounting bolt. It is located on the upper tie bar, near the headlight. Remove the 10mm bolt.
Step 20: Install the rubber gasket onto the heat shield.
Step 21. Install the heat shield; reusing one of the 10mm bolts you just removed in step 19. Install that bolt in the upper ABS mounting location. Use the new supplied bolt for the rear heat shield mount. Install the lower heat shield brace using the other 10mm bolt you removed in step 19. Using the new hardware, install the washers, nut and bolt through the heat shield, and attach the shield to the brace. Install the nut on the inside of the shield. (Under the air filter.) Adjust the shield for clearance to the brake lines and the hood. Tighten the mounting bolts.
Step 22: Install the rubber mounting bracket onto the heat shield. The rubber goes on the engine side of the heat shield. Install the remaining inlet tube into the coupler and the rubber mount.
Step 23: Install the hose clamp onto the filter, and connect the filter to the inlet tube. Don’t forget to hide the clamp bolt under the filter for appearance reasons. You can see there is easy access to the bottom side of the clamp to tighten it.
Step 24: Adjust the intake assembly for proper clearances and tighten the hose clamps. Reinstall the MAF sensor wiring.
Step 25: Reinstall the factory cover with the original hardware. Don’t forget to clip the wiring back into place once the cover is installed.
Step 26: Reconnect the negative battery terminal. Start the engine and let idle for 3 minutes. Check for any intake leaks or check engine lights. If the check engine light is on, you probably have a loose connection on the inlet tube. Check over the connections again. Once you are sure everything is fine, test drive the car and enjoy!