Michael Johnson Associate Editor
March 16, 2010
Photos By: Steve Turner

Jim D'Amore III
The D'Amore name should be no stranger to Mustang fans. Jim D'Amore's family owns JDM Engineering, a New Jersey shop responsible for some wicked Mustangs.

Jim the Third brought his '06 Saleen S281 to the KOTS party, which is the same car he competes on the NMRA tour. I was skeptical about Jim's "race" car performing in the KOTS, but the car did well where I didn't think it would, which is on the street.

With an Edelbrock E-Force super-charger, the power delivery of Jim's Saleen was comparable to the other positive-displacement superchargers on other KOTS competitors' cars. Jim's Saleen boasted a stock 5R55S automatic transmission, but with the Edelbrock, power was available everywhere in the rpm range. The transmission, which featured a Precision Industries converter, hit pretty hard at times, but under acceleration, it delivered the power and came back for more at every stab of the throttle.

With a mixture of suspension goodies from Saleen Racecraft, QA1, Metco Motorsports, and a BMR Fabrication antiroll bar, Jim's Saleen handled well, even with the Holeshot big 'n' littles. Since Jim regularly races the car, it had a cage, but with swing-outs and stock seat belts, so we didn't deduct any points in that area.

An area that stuck out during the Ride & Drive was the car's Saleen S7 carbon-fiber seats. They were comfortable; once I was seated, I knew I wasn't going anywhere. I was like a baseball in a glove wrapped with a couple rubber bands. In my notes, I wrote that Jim's car was impressive on the street. It dispelled my initial thoughts of Jim's car.

I wasn't surprised Jim did well in the Drag Race category when he ran a 10.24 at 134 mph to finish with a 10 in the Drag Race category, but his Saleen made the least horsepower with "just" 590 at the wheels on Modular Depot's Dynojet. I was surprised at how well it did during the Ride & Drive portion, earning an 8 in that category. In the Fit & Finish category, you can tell Jim's car is driven, and hard. As such, it suffered a 6 in Fit & Finish, and the Engineering score wasn't much better coming in at 7. In the Popular Vote, Jim's Saleen finished with 17 votes, earning the car a 5 in that category. Jim's final KOTS score was a 57.

Ride & Drive: 8
Horsepower: 1
Fit & Finish: 6
Engineering: 7
Drag Race: 10
Popular Vote: 5

5.0 Tech Specs
Engine and Drivetrain

Block: Ford Racing iron 5.0-liter modular
Bore: Standard
Stroke: 3.750 in
Displacement: 323 ci
Rotating Assembly: Kellogg steel forged crankshaft, Manley Performance connecting rods and pistons, Total Seal piston rings
Camshafts: Comp Cams customs
Heads: JDM Engineering-ported Three-Valve, M2 Racing CNC-ported, Manley Performance valvesprings
Intake: Edelbrock
Throttle Body: Edelbrock 85mm
Mass Air Meter: Saleen PMAS
Power Adder: Edelbrock E-Force supercharger w/ 2.6-inch supercharger pulley and 22 pounds of boost
Fuel System: Ford Racing GT500 fuel pump, stock fuel lines and rails, 60-lb/hr injectors, stock regulator
Exhaust: Kooks 13/4-inch long-tube headers with 3-inch collectors and H-pipe, Saleen/Magnaflow mufflers
Transmission: Stock 5R55S, Precision Industries 2,400-rpm stall converter, stock shifter
Rearend: 8.8 w/Detroit Locker True-Trac differential, 31-spline axles, and 4.10 gears

Engine Management:
Stock computer, SCT XCal 3 with JDM Engineering tune
Ignition: Stock, Autolite spark plugs
Gauges: Stock

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