Here is a step by step procedure for replacing the plastic steering wheel on your 2010 + V6 mustang with a leather wrapped steering wheel. These instructions should also work for a V8 mustang. This is what my plastic steering wheel looked like:
I am using the 2009 SVT steering wheel on my mustang, since I do not have the upgraded radio. The only controls on my existing steering wheel are for the cruise control. If you have the audio controls on your steering wheel, you will need to order either the Boss 302, or the GT 500. Any of these steering wheels can be found on ebay or in the Ford Racing catalog. For the SVT, the part number is M-3600-C. This is a leather steering wheel with red stitching. The 2005-2009 GT-500 steering wheel is the same single row steering wheel, but with black stitching. This is available from LMR for about $400.00 (M-3601-C). I got mine on ebay for $300.00. This is what the SVT steering wheel looks like:
The tools that you may need are a 24 mm socket, a 8 mm socket, a small flat head screw driver or a pick, blue loctite, wire stripper, soldering pencil and solder, shrink tubing, black electrical tape, and an inch-pound and foot-pound torque wrench.
Some of the tools needed for removal of your steering wheel.
1. Disconnect the negative terminal to your battery. Let your mustang sit a minimum of 10 minutes before you touch your airbag in order to prevent an accidental air bag deployment.
2. There are two plastic plugs that hide the two bolts that fasten the air bag to the steering wheel. Pry these out with a flat head screwdriver or a pick.
Then you can take out the two bolts that hold down the air bag. Lift the airbag out of the steering wheel.
There are two plastic air bag plugs that have two release buttons on the side. I’m using a “mosquito” medical clamp to illustrate where the release buttons are on the plugs. This is a very handy tool for this purpose, but is not necessary to remove these plugs. Release both plugs and set the airbag aside.
3. Remove the 24 mm bolt that secures the plastic steering wheel, and set it aside. You will probably need to hold the steering wheel with one hand while you remove this bolt, to prevent the wheel from moving. I used my knee.
4. Pull the cruise control connector from the steering column, and set your plastic steering wheel aside. This is when I noticed that my cruise control connector was a single row plug, and the SVT connector had two rows of plugs. However, both plugs contained the same 4 wires (Red, Blue, Black and Green). I either had to swap the cruise control buttons, or swap the connector. I chose to swap the connectors, as this would be easier. If your connectors are identical, skip to step # 6
Old steering wheel cruise control connector. Note only one row of wires.
SVT Steering wheel cruise control connector. Two rows of wires, will not fit into mating connector.
5. You may need to remove the horn switch from the plastic steering wheel, so you can get a long enough pigtail from your plastic steering wheel. The horn switch is a u-shaped device with springs on the underside, with a lug connector at the top. Pull the lug, and using a metric torx bit socket, remove the horn switch from your plastic steering wheel..
Then cut the 4 cruise control wires on the plastic steering wheel approximately 2” from the end, and strip the wires. you can use either a wire stripper or an exacto blade. Cut the end of the SVT cruise control connector, leaving about ½” on the connector, and strip the wires on the SVT steering wheel.
The best way to form a solder connection is to cut a ½ – 1” long length of shrink tubing, of the proper diameter to go over each soldered wire. I used colored shrink tubing for each wire. These wires are very thin gage wires, so go slow. Twist each wire pair, then touching the soldering pencil to the wire twist, let the wires get hot, then dab a little soldering wire on the twisted pair. Let the wires cool, and bend the pair over the wire.
Then apply heat to shrink the tubing. Repeat 3 more times. Remember to match up each of the 4 colors.
I use electrical tape over the soldered wires as this is more flexible than using more shrink tube over the wire bundle. This is what your SVT steering wheel should look like.
6. Place the SVT wheel on the steering column, and plug in the cruise control connector into the female connector on the steering column. Then apply blue loctite to the 24 mm bolt, and torque this bolt down to 41 ft-lbs. You will need to hold the steering wheel while torquing this bolt, to prevent the steering wheel from moving. I used my knee to do this.
Plug in the two airbag connectors and insert the air bag back into the steering wheel. apply blue loctite to each fastener, and torque down these bolts to 62 in-lbs.
7. Reconnect the negative battery terminal. If you have an alarm, have your keys ready to cancel the alarm. Enjoy your new steering wheel.