Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords
Crowning America's Baddest '05 Mustang
Nine competitors hit the tarmac for the 1st Annual Nitto Tire/MM&FF '05 Mustang Shootout--and one didn't.
Street Tires - Naturally Aspirated WinnerBest ET/MPH: 12.84 at 108.40 mph
Car Owner: Cory Zaker
Driver: Cory Zaker
If there was one sleeper in the group, it would be Cory Zaker's sedate-looking Mustang. It rolled to the starting line rather inconspicuously and ripped off 12-second times on the stock tires. Mouths dropped as people watched Zaker make his run at Columbus. It didn't even sound like it was a 12-second ride. The list of modifications is quite interesting. Zaker resisted the urge to throw a supercharger on the car (for now anyway), and the major modification thus far has been a set of Livernois Motorsport CNC-ported Three-Valve heads. He gave acknowledgement to Alternative Auto for handling the computer tuning in this 325-rwhp machine.
From the moment Zaker bought the car in fall of 2004, Lidio Iacobelli and the boys at Alternative Auto have been tuning on it using SCT software. Once the computer was dialed in, the usual array of bolt-on parts were thrown at it, including an exhaust and a C&L cold-air kit. But Zaker wanted more from the '05. and that is when the cylinder heads were replaced, a modification that required the removal of the engine. In the end, the Mustang did not perform as well as it should have at our Shootout. Zaker attributed it to Second gear going away in the trans-mission. After 100-plus quarter-mile runs this season, the stock transmission was showing signs of weakness. Zaker's best time has been a 12.68 at 112 mph in non-NMRA competition. That was accomplished with the stock tires out back.
Stock Tires - Power Adder Runner-UpBest ET/MPH: 13.07 at 103.48 mph
Car Owner: Fang Performance
Driver: Shawn Lons
Despite our usual attention to detail, we somehow missed the fact that the Fang Performance Mustang had two turbos lurking under the hood. Visually, everything seemed cool. But after talking with driver Shawn Lons, he informed us about the two tiny turbos that sit underneath the car. It was a prototype twin-turbo kit that Fang Performance was working on along with Hahn Turbo. The stock exhaust manifolds were retained for ease of installation and a sleeper look.
Our shootout was the maiden voyage for the Fang Performance kit. Unfortunately, the crew simply did not have enough time to get the computer fully tuned up. Lons ran 13.07 but has recently gone 12.40s with a small amount of boost in testing. At the time of this printing, the Mustang was producing 400 hp to the rear tires. Fang Performance's goal is to offer twin turbo kits at comparable pricing to the supercharger systems on the market. The Stang was revamped for this year's SEMA show, and Lons said it shocked showgoers with its per-formance and looks.