Steve Turner
Former Editor, 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords
December 31, 2013

Keith Koch - 1998 Mustang Cobra

Like having a Fox in the competition, we were just as happy to have an SN-95 in the running. Your author has a particular soft spot for ’98 Cobras, so it was really cool to have Keith Koch representing these early snakes. He had a rough ride with his Cobra after picking it up as a trade-in at the dealership where he works. After losing a couple of engines and having a questionable experience with a tuning shop, his girlfriend, Dawn, encouraged and helped Keith get the car going again. Obviously, he married her, which meant to he took a brief hiatus from modding the car.

Eventually he worked with Second Street Speed to get back in the game and bring the car’s combination to its current level. “In February of this year I saw on Mustang Week’s website that there was going to be a dyno shootout, and only 10 or so cars would be picked,” Keith said. “Not thinking I would actually get picked—and before I told my wife—I decided to enter. Later I told my wife that I entered and said if I would get picked I would like to change to a race fuel tune. Being the understanding wife she is she said, ‘Whatever makes you happy.’” She’s obviously an understanding lady because she too drives a Mustang, and not just any Mustang, an ’03 Cobra.


Eventually he worked with Second Street Speed to get back in the game and bring the car’s combination to its current level.


Unfortunately, the race-gas tune didn’t pan out exactly how Keith wanted it to. “I took it to get tuned on race fuel to make more power, but due to 85-percent humidity the car didn’t make the power I wanted...” Keith explained. “That doesn’t matter I had fun and stoked to be in the magazine.”

In the end, his Cobra put down more than 592 at the wheels to take the eighth position at the Battle.

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“Being the understanding wife she is, she said ‘Whatever makes you happy."


Keith Koch
RPM Power Torque
3,500 231.79 347.83
4,000 304.05 399.22
5,000 449.44 472.10
5,500 521.61 498.10
6,000 557.98 488.43
6,500 582.38 470.57
7,000 470.17 352.77

Tech Specs

Block
Stock Teskid aluminum block, bored 0.020-in over for 283 ci

Crankshaft
Stock

Rods
Manley forged

Pistons
Manley forged, 8.5:1

Camshafts
Comp Cams Stage 2 blower

Cylinder heads
Stock, ported

Intake manifold
Stock, ported w/ Accufab single-blade throttle body

Power Adder
ProCharger D-1SC w/ three-core intercooler

Fuel system
Weldon fuel pump w/ Weldon regulator, Aeromotive fuel rails, and Siemens 66-lb/hr injectors

Exhaust
BBK long-tube headers w/ MAC midpipe and MAC after-cat

Transmission
Tremec T-56 w/ McLeod twin-disc clutch and Pro-5.0 shifter

Rearend
8.8-in w/ Auburn Pro differential, 3.73 gears, and Moser 31-spline axles

Engine management
Motec

Ignition
Coil-on-plug w/ ’10 GT500 coils and NGK TR6 spark plugs


Chris Platt - 2004 Mustang Cobra

With a few cars dropping out right before the battle, we called up an underdog from the list of applicants. We had to have a Terminator represent in the competition, and this one came from a guy that loves Fox ’Stangs, but made the modular jump for his street car.

“I’ve had an infatuation with the styling of the ’03-’04 Cobra even before I knew the powerplant it offered, so it was a win-win situation for me,” Chris Platt explained. “I always liked the front bumpers of these car over any other Mustang, but the rear profile I was just in love with. I like that the tailpipes come together under the IRS and separate on either side of the gas tank, not to mention how it looks on a 315 radial.”


”I’ve had an infatuation with the styling of the ’03-’04 Cobra even before I knew the powerplant it offered, so it was a win-win situation for me.”


We can’t argue with that logic. The Terminator is still one of the best looking, best performing combinations around. Still, with only a few bolt-on parts on board, Chris’ car was the odds-on underdog. When he drew the number to become the first car on the rollers, the pressure was on.

“I expected my car to make high 400 horsepower (range), so I was OK with the power it made at the event,” Chris said. “I did not have any mechanical or tuning issues. Bob Kurgan did an excellent job tuning it.”

Putting down over 479 rwhp to clock in at the ninth Battle spot, Chris’ Termi ran just as he expected it too. He has big plans for the car’s future including an improved fuel system, more nitrous, and a possible move to compound boost.

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He has big plans for the car’s future including an improved fuel system, more nitrous, and a possible move to compound boost.


Chris Platt
RPM Power Torque
3,500 306.28 459.61
4,000 346.08 454.41
4,500 390.33 455.57
5,000 420.75 441.96
5,500 451.02 430.69
6,000 464.99 407.03
6,400 459.73 377.28

Tech Specs

Block
Stock iron 4.6-liter

Crankshaft
Stock forged

Rods
Stock Manley forged

Pistons
Stock forged

Camshafts
Stock

Cylinder heads
Stock Four-Valve aluminum

Intake manifold
Stock intercooled lower

Power Adder
Stock Eaton, ported

Fuel system
Stock w/ 60-lb/hr injectors

Exhaust
Stock w/ Magnaflow after-cat

Transmission
Stock Tremec T-56 six-speed manual w/ Ford Racing Performance Parts clutch

Rearend
Stock IRS 8.8-in w/ 3.55 gears and 31-spline half-shafts

Engine management
Stock w/ SCT tune by Bob Kurgan

Ignition
Stock w/ NGK TR6 spark plugs