Modified Mustangs & Fords
2004 Ford SVT Mustang Cobra - Snake Charmer
This Civil Engineer Started Helping His Friends Get More Power From Their Cobras. Now, He's A Part-Time...
Jason Roth's 2004 SVT Mustang Cobra
While he was attending Florida State University, Jason Roth was getting a degree in Civil Engineering. As it worked out, he was also getting an education in the performance arts for Mustangs. Over a three-year period, his 1992 LX hatch acquired a 306 cid update with Fox Lake Stage 2 Twisted Wedge aluminum heads, a Ford Racing E303 camshaft, Edelbrock Performer intake manifold and a Vortech T-trim supercharger. The LX also received a Tremec 3550 and a 31-spline solid rear setup. "It was my first Mustang and how I started to learn about modifications, and making my car faster," Jason told us a while back. Like most of the rest of us, he continued, "Then it grew into a hobby and then a passion." He credits much of his education to Bart Tobener of Delray Beach, FL, who did a lot of the work on the LX, but also took time to share his knowledge with Jason.
After graduation, Jason got a job and moved to Maryland to pursue his career. He'd been deeply involved in the local Mustang scene in Florida and felt he needed to take a break. As a result, an SVT Focus adorned his parking spot for the next 18 months. Though he enjoyed the handling and performance of the Focus, he'd always felt that the loss of total power was a step down for him. Shortly after, he bought a 2003 SVT Cobra through an Internet auction site. That car was a disappointment because of undisclosed mechanical issues, but it also turned into a grey cloud with the proverbial silver lining. "I traded it in for the Competition Orange Cobra and the dealer gave me more for it than I paid on the auction." Nice deal!
Because he knew that the bottom end of the Terminator's engine had been "done right", Jason began to look at power adders. Though he wasn't looking specifically for 'big power' at the time, Jason knew that he wanted to do something different and that particular qualifier led him into the world of turbochargers. After checking out the marketplace, Jason decided to go with a Hellion Power Systems kit - a decision he's never had cause to regret since. That kit starts with a Turbonetics T-76 Q-trim turbocharger that is supplemented by a Hellion 24 x 6 x 3-inch, air-to-air intercooler and all-stainless steel hot and cold parts that come with a lifetime warranty.
As well, the 2003-04 Hellion Cobra kits come with a new front K-member, tubular A-arms and coil-over conversion. While he was still in Florida, Jason had become more comfortable with the mechanics of Mustangs. As a result, he was prepared to install the Hellion kit himself. Overall, that process took him about two months on an evenings-and-weekends basis. The only problem he encountered came from the fact that, early on, the K-member was shipped directly from the manufacturer. In Jason's case, it was the wrong part, but nobody was able to figure that out until it was too late. Regardless, the rest of the kit, including the 3-inch downpipe, 2.5-inch intercooler piping, Evolution 3.5-inch wastegate, Turbo XS blow off valve, polished 4-inch turbo inlet and the myriad of other pieces came together like a dream.
Adding some beef to the rest of the driveline became a priority as well. A CenterForce DFX single disc clutch and steel flywheel were called up for duty, as well as a set of Driveshaft Shop Level 5 axle shafts. A Maximum Motorsports coilover conversion was added over top of the factory Bilstein struts and shock absorbers. A staggered set of chrome FR500 rims - 18 x 9-inch front and 18 x 10-inch back - are wrapped in BF Goodrich KDW tires, with 275/35-18 versions in front and 295/35-18 at the stern.
After he moved to Maryland, Jason hooked up with the Mid-Atlantic Cobra Association, a group of more than 300 Cobra owners of all years. Putting together a project Cobra like this one is seldom done alone and Jason is quick to point this out. Among those picked out for acknowledgement were Sean Martin, Dwight Galt, John Lund, Jared Rosen, Charles Secrist, Matt Ignace and Ken Krusie, along with John Urist and the whole crew at Hellion Power Systems.
When Jason turned to the interior of this Snake, he started with an 8-point chromoly roll cage, built for him by Insane Racing Fabrication; Auto Meter supplied the Lunar series gauges, including boost pressure, fuel pressure and oil pressure. The Innovate Motorsports air/fuel ratio gauge was also added. The center stack now sports an Alpine 9835 head unit with radio, CD and iPod controls. Outputs are passed through a Memphis Belle 1300 watt, 5-channel amplifier on their way to an assortment of Memphis speakers liberally scattered throughout the interior.
Start Me Up
With the engine mods in place, the SVT Cobra has turned out 713 RWHP and 719 RWTQ at a healthy 20.7 psi of boost (with more in reserve) and with a dollop of race gas. A trip or two to the Cecil County track has proven the car capable of turning in runs as fast as 10.49 seconds at 137.6 mph. Last summer, Jason joined up with a friend of his, Rob Brough, in a fully restored 1970's-era K-5 Blazer and hooked in to the Hot Rod Power Tour.
At this time, the Power Tour was already four days old, having gathered enthusiasts together in Kissimmee and Gainesville, FL stops, as well as in Perry, GA and Columbia, SC. Before the tour was done, it had picked up more than a thousand "long haul" participants - those who had driven more than 1,700 miles. Enthusiast activities were provided at each stop and a popular one was the mobile dynamometer. Jason and Rob had found the dyno event during their Harrisburg, PA stop. As they checked out the posted results from the day, they thought that the numbers showing up weren't particularly high.
It was too late that day for Jason to get in a run, but the dyno would be at Englishtown the next day. With some encouragement from his friend, Jason decided that he would get the Cobra strapped on and measured out. At the end of the day, Jason Roth and his 2004 SVT Cobra were crowned the 2006 Hot Rod Power Tour Dyno Champions.
With all the work he'd had been doing for MACA club members, Jason's time was at a premium. His Dad encouraged him to turn this hobby into a part-time business. Even if he didn't make a lot of money at it, there would be tax deductions available that he didn't have before - just as good as cash from Uncle Sam. After some consideration, Competition Speed and Sound was born. These days, he has another Cobra in the driveway as well, a 2003 Satin Silver model.
Jason and his Competition Orange Cobra have brought home other awards as well from local car shows. That color is simply too difficult to miss and draws spectators from all around its parking place. For the moment, the length of the mods list has dropped to zero. Jason is busy enjoying life and working with other people's Cobras. He knows that he needs to practice his racing skills, with particular emphasis on launch techniques. With some improvement in the 60-foot times, he's confident of seeing elapsed times in the high nine to low 10 second range - and wouldn't that be charming?
Jason Roth's 2004 SVT Mustang Cobra
Ford 4.6-liter, DOHC 4-valve, V8
Turbonetics T76 Q-trim turbocharger, 0.96 A/R, 35mm external wastegate; Hellion intercooler, 3" downpipe, 2.5" intercooler piping; Turbo XS blow-off valve; Centerforce DFX clutch, steel flywheel; Aeromotive fuel filter; Weapon X ignition controller; NGK TR-6 spark plugs; Borla Stinger 2.5" mufflers; MSD DIS-4 tach adapter
Driveshaft Shop Level 5 driveshaft
713 RWHP @ 20.7 psi boost, 719 RWTQ Best ET To Date: 10.49 @ 137.64 mph
Insane Racing Fab 8-point chromoly roll cage; Auto Meter Lunar series gauges, including boost pressure, fuel pressure, and oil pressure; Innovate Motorsports' air/fuel gauge; Alpine 9835 head unit; Memphis Belle 1300w 5-channel amp, front and rear speakers; JL Audio Stealth 10w3 sub-woofer box; Custom headrest lettering by headrestembroidery.com
Maximum Motorsports coilover suspension with Hypercoil springs over Bilstein shocks and struts, caster/camber plates;
Wheels And Tires
FR500-style chrome wheels, 18 x 9" front, 18 x 10" rear; BF Goodrich g-Force KDW tires, 275/35-18 front and 275/35-18 rear