5.0 Mustang & Super FordsCar Reviews
2005 Mustang V6 Test Drive - Blowing The Budget - Procharged V-6 'Stang
Testing ATI Pro Charger's Intercooled P-1SC For The '05 V-6 Mustang
"We finished our supercharger kit for the six-cylinder '05 Mustang three days ago. We don't have any idea what it'll do, but we want you guys to come test it." That statement, made by Dan Jones of ATI ProCharger, was just like one of those irrefutable propositions you thought only happened in gangster flicks. The mere idea of the V-6 '05 Mustang getting love from ProCharger-in the form of the same P-1SC supercharger and a two-core, air-to-air intercooler that have more than proven themselves on 4.6 and 5.0 V-8s-had us scrambling to get to Kansas right away, to be the first members of the Mustang media to check out the setup in person, and to flog it on the strip, street, and dyno.
It's difficult to dispute the notion that '05 Mustang GTs shot to the top of the affordable-sports-car heap the instant they went on sale. For just about $26,000 on a base-model GT ("Deluxe" as Ford calls the entry-level trim), enthusiasts can own a Mustang with more horsepower (300 hp, advertised) and better handling than in any other non-Cobra 'Stang prior. And, it's a car that instantly ranks new owners a few notches higher on the cool scale with friends, family, and other envious souls the moment they get behind the wheel, thanks in part to its much ballyhooed retro styling.
But the high cost of fuel these days and-more importantly-the large sums of dough GT owners have to fork over each year to keep their pride-and-joy insured, can put a major kink in the whole "affordability" scheme for some folks, namely the age-25-and-younger set, leaving them no recourse other than to dream of winning Lotto one day soon. Aside from its lower, $19,215 base price, the Deluxe six-banger 'Stang is every bit the same as its V-8-powered brother in a general sense. But two cylinders and 90 less horsepower (210 hp, advertised) do make a huge difference in terms of overall cost to own, especially when the driver's age and insurance costs are factored into the equation.
Our proposed test plan was simple. First, we would take ProCharger's blown V-6 '05 and make a few time runs at Kansas City International Raceway, to see what the P-1SC and 'cooler would or wouldn't do for the car in terms of dragstrip performance. Once we had the with-supercharger data, the plan was to have ProCharger's performance technician Dorian Comeau remove the assembly and return the surprisingly small assortment of stock components to the engine. Dorian would also use DiabloSport's Predator handheld flash tuner to reenter the stock fuel and timing program to the PCM (a Predator is included with each Stage 2 P-1SC kit and has easy-to-enter calibrations stored, which eliminate any tune-up guesswork or need for a dyno to dial in the blower). We would close out the track study by making another series of passes, with the 'Stang in naturally aspirated, bone-stock trim.
With the exception of the blower kit, Nitto drag radials, and the acquired-at-the-last-minute American Racing rear wheels, with backspacing that made the car look totally stink-bug, the Screaming Yellow '05 was absolutely stock. The car was driven to the track-not trailered-and our jockey, KCIR's track manager Jeff Martin, had explicit instructions to not, under any circumstances, give the car special treatment of any sort.
All the track testing went off without a hitch. Jeff did a fine job of maintaining consistency, yet drove the 'Stang like he stole it every lap. We noted the numbers, and then we called it a wrap from KCIR and headed over to ProCharger headquarters and our date with the dyno-the second phase of our evaluation.
When we arrived at ProCharger after an issue-free blast across I-435, Nick Jensen, the creative force behind the V-6 version of the Stage 2 P-1SC, and Mike Carlson were waiting for us and immediately strapped down the 'Stang on the dyno when we pulled into the shop. Baseline naturally aspirated horsepower and torque were measured, then the blower and intercooler were reinstalled to determine what the actual gains were (based on what we saw at the dragstrip, we were sure the blown 'Stang was going to put up some impressive dyno figures).
It's important to note that both the dragstrip and dyno tests were performed in "normal" Kansas summer heat conditions-warm and muggy. Also, the only significant downtime the car saw were the barely-an-hour sessions needed for swapping the blower off and on. ProCharger's technicians can perform this procedure in such a short time because it's their business and they've done it a lot more than we have. Normal installation time for the '05 V-6 kit is about four hours, and two hours to take it off. We really did workhorse ProCharger's blown, V-6 'Stang. It never failed, and it did impress us. Read on to see how the Stage 2 P-1SC made the stock engine come alive, and why this kit could be considered the answer to younger, budget-conscious, Mustang enthusiasts' prayers.
At The TrackDragstrip testing was done at Kansas City International Raceway. We initially hoped an anticipated rain front might come through early and cool things off a bit, but Mother Nature wasn't that kind. Temperatures ranged from 80 to 85 degrees as early as 7:30 a.m., and the 62-percent humidity gave us concerns about the quality of the supercharged and naturally aspirated numbers we'd get. Keep in mind, with the exception of the blower and intercooler and Nitto drag radials, our test Mustang was all-Ford stock.
Jeff Martin shoed the V-6 for a total of eight laps, four with the blower and four without, and by primarily shifting the AOD transmission manually but leaving it in Drive for one pass in each configuration. Jeff was instructed to forego doing burnouts before staging and a footbrake launch of 2,000 rpm (against the converter) was a constant throughout the test, as were 5,800-rpm shifts (on the passes that the AOD was manually shifted). Cooldown time between laps was set at approximately seven minutes.
The first hit was made with the transmission left in Drive, and the blown 'Stang covered the distance in 14.001 at 99.42 mph. "It started to really pull at 180 feet or so and was continuous throughout the powerband," Jeff says. We noticed the transmission did shift into OD during the pass, and considered that a contributing factor in the 14-second e.t. The 'Stang cracked into the 13s less than 10 minutes after that. On the second pass, shifting manually, Jeff clocked a 13.868 e.t at 99.71 mph. That's surprisingly quick for the six-cylinder version of the Mustang, and we were fairly sure that a solid, 100-mph speed was probably being stunted by the awful air.
Backing up a "record" is an all-important requirement these days when it comes to performance achievements. The Mustang "backed up" its e.t. to the thousandth, with another 13.868 on its third supercharged run. Miles-per-hour dropped to 99.23, but we think the AOD had a hand in the loss, as we noticed a distinct transmission flare in the 2-3 shift, which sent the engine into the rev limiter. We closed out the supercharged session with a shot that proved to be the closest we would get to the magical speed number (100 mph) that day-99.76 mph.
We have no doubt the V-6 Mustang with ProCharger's blower will easily cover the quarter-mile in 13.5 seconds at 101-102 mph, provided weather conditions are better than the heat card we were dealt, and certainly if the car is equipped with a free-flowing dual exhaust. The fact that the 'Stang settled right into a normal attitude after each pass without any driveability problems or need for attention was impressive. It was as if you would have never guessed the thing had just been run flat-out for a quarter-mile-perfect idle, normal temperature, and no idiot lights glowing.
With our blown numbers recorded, Dorian went about removing the P-1SC and 'cooler and prepared the 'Stang for a round of testing without the power adder. This kit was definitely done right. The disassembly was straightforward and didn't require any exotic tools. Swapping the 39.5-lb/hr fuel injectors with stock 19-lb/hr injectors is probably the trickiest step in the process, but Dorian handled it without a problem and said any mechanically inclined enthusiast can install this kit and take it off without any problems if the directions are closely followed.
In bone-stock trim and with the tranny in Drive, Jeff clicked off an initial lap of 16.269 at 87.25 mph. By this point, weather data showed it was 5 degrees warmer (90) and 5 percent drier at KCIR. After our 7-minute break, and shifting the AOD at 5,800 rpm, a naturally aspirated "best" e.t. of 15.817 at 85.79 mph was achieved.
At this point, we wished our test 'Stang had been equipped with a five-speed transmission, because it was clear that mph figures for the blown version and the all-motor V-6 passes were hindered by the AOD and the factory shift references in the PCM (transmission shift adjustments were not made with the Predator for this test).
The fun didn't stop when we finished at the track. ProCharger engineers Nick Jensen and Mike Carlson went straight to work when we rolled the car onto the dyno, taking naturally aspirated readings first, then reinstalling the blower and 'cooler, and running the car over the rollers once again.
Getting straight to the details, the intercooled blower pumped up the stock six-banger by 130 additional horsepower and 90.2 lb-ft of torque at the peaks and even more at the top of the tach, surprising everyone who bore witness to it. Add a good exhaust, additional transmission programming, and cooler temps/better air to the mix, and we're certain those numbers will climb dramatically.