Eric English
December 1, 2004

Built around a Ford Racing Performance Parts Sportsman block, the Craft-built powerplant displaces 408 ci thanks to a 4-inch, throw-forged, Eagle crank and sports blower-friendly JE pistons and Eagle H-beam rods. On top is the same Saleen-modified Cobra intake and Edelbrock heads that were fitted at the Saleen factory, both benefiting from the Extrude Hone treatment. The airpath includes a Pro-M 77mm mass air, a custom aluminum supercharger inlet pipe, and an Accufab 75mm throttle body, while fuel system upgrades consist of a high-flow in-tank and inline pumps, an Aeromotive regulator, Vortech rails, stainless lines, and 42-lb/hr injectors. JMS Motorsports burned the chip for the EEC IV, helping contribute to 624 horses when measured on the Mustang chassis dyno at Auburn, Washington's Blood Enterprises. Since that time, the cam has been changed to a milder grind from Comp Cams, but nearly 600 rear-wheel horsepower would still seem a likely bet-all at a modest 8 pounds of boost.

With stout engine hardware in the bag, a few other bits and pieces were chosen to complement the big power. Try an aluminum Fluidyne radiator, '95 Cobra R headers, a Bassani X-pipe, Bilstein/Saleen N2 dampers, and Steeda rear upper control arms, to name a few. Also on the upgrade list was a Vortech SQ, whose whisper-quiet demeanor now keeps attention riveted on the sweet-sounding 408.

Do you think we'll find dissenters who argue our assessment of this SR351's status among all things Saleen? Perhaps, but we'll stand by our position to the end. Dave and Kathy have done a terrific job of raising the bar on an already impressive machine, and if a limited-edition, horsepower-laden, retina-searing supercar doesn't qualify as one of the best, what would?

5.0 TECH SPECS
ENGINE AND DRIVETRAIN
Block FRPP 351W Sportsman
Displacement 408 ci
Crank Forged Eagle 4-in stroker
Rods Eagle H-beam
Pistons JE forged
Cam Comp Cams hydraulic roller, 0.545-in lift, {{{240}}}/248 degrees
duration at 0.050
Heads Edelbrock Performer RPM (2.02/1.60)
Intake Saleen-modified Cobra
Fuel System FRPP 42-lb/hr injectors,
255-lph in-tank pump, Aeromotive inline pump and regulator, Vortech
fuel rails, -8/-6 stainless lines
Exhaust Metallic-ceramic-coated
'95 Cobra R headers, Bassani
X-pipe, Borla Cat-Back
Power Adder Vortech V2 SQ S-Trim
Transmission Tremec five-speed,
billet steel flywheel, and Centerforce
DualFriction clutch
Rearend 8.8 w/3.27 gears, Torsen diff Saleen girdle cover,
ELECTRONICS
Engine Management EEC IV, Autologic/JMS Motorsports chip
Ignition MSD
Gauges Saleen white-face