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1999 Ford Mustang GT - Modular Revolution
Trick Flow Specialties built a sick ’99 GT to show off its new Two-Valve cylinder heads.
Trick Flow Specialties built a sick '99 GT to show off its new Two-Valve cylinder heads.
In 1996, Ford released the Mustang with an all-new, technologically advanced powerplant.
The modular engine family replaced the outgoing 5.0L with a smaller 4.6L, two-valve-per-cylinder, overhead-cam variant as standard equipment in the GT models. The early Two-Valve engines produced an anemic 215 hp, leaving performance junkies looking for much more.
By 2005, the success of the supercharged Four-Valve Terminators, coupled with Ford's newly released Three-Valve 4.6L left the Two-Valve engine as a nonviable option for anyone looking to make big power, even though Ford had released the newer Power Improved or PI heads. Trick Flow Specialties saw the need to fill the void in the Two-Valve segment, and the Two-Valve Twisted Wedge Track Heat cylinder head was born.
"We had a lot of people asking for an improved cylinder head for the modular market," explains David Canfield, sales and marketing coordinator for Trick Flow Specialties. "We won't build a product unless we can offer a significant improvement to our customers, and here we saw the opportunity to offer a much better solution to what was available." Trick Flow's new cylinder head was revolutionary for the modular Mustang market. The Twisted Wedge Track Heat cylinder heads are a true aftermarket casting designed to be superior to the ported casting enthusiasts were forced to run previously. It features Trick Flow's Twisted Wedge combustion chamber design, where the exhaust valve is rotated. The intake valve is also relocated to the opposite side of the camshaft for increased mid-lift airflow. This design also increases piston-to-valve clearance, which allows you to run a more aggressive cam profile.
Other features found on Trick Flow's new cylinder head are 185cc intake runners that feature the Fast As Cast design, your choice of 38cc or 44cc combustion chambers, OE PI-style intake inlets, four-bolt replaceable cam journals, 1.84/1.45-inch valves, and 125-lb/in beehive-style valvesprings for power-adder or high-lift applications.
"When Trick Flow released its new cylinder head, it was looking for a way to promote the product," adds Canfield. "We decided to build a Mustang for a few reasons. We wanted to showcase Trick Flow's new cylinder heads, but we also built it to show where hot rodding might be going in the futureùbig power with a lot of versatility."
The crew at Trick Flow started with a '99 Mustang GT as the base of its project. The 125,000-mile Pony was stripped in preparation for its performance transformation. At the heart of it all sits a 284ci modular powerplant built in-house by Todd Hodges. The base of the bullet is a 0.020-inch-overbore stock block. A Cobra crankshaft sets an octet of Manley connecting rods and 18cc Probe pistons into motion.
An off-the-shelf set of Trick Flow 44cc Twisted Wedge Track Heat 185 aluminum cylinder heads help produce a boost-friendly 8.5:1 compression, finishing the long-block. Trick Flow Stage 2 camshafts were given the nod and check in at 0.580/0.580-inch lift, with 234/234- degrees of duration at 0.050-inch lift. The powerplant was then topped with a TVS 1900 supercharger kit from Tork Tech, giving this Two-Valve the potential for huge power. The modular mill exhales through a set of Kook's Custom Headers long-tube headers into a Kook's X-style midpipe, and finally exiting through a Magnaflow after-cat exhaust.
When Hodges was finished assembling the engine, it was tuned on Trick Flow's in-house engine dyno. The results were impressive as the near-stock displacement Two-Valve produced 782 hp with 20 psi of boost on 112-octane race gas. When the race gas was swapped for pump gas and the tune modified, the bullet made an equally impressive 700 hp at the same boost level.
With this much power on tap, the Trick Flow crew knew the car needed the looks to go along with the power. The paint and body duties were given to Padula's Body Shop in Tallmadge, Ohio. Trick Flow turned to Summit Racing for the paint used on the New Edge. The once-black GT was stripped, and a Roush front fascia, spoiler, and Harwood cowl-induction hood were added before the car was coated in its Huggin' Orange and Blue Sky Metallic hues.
When the engine finally met the chassis, it was mated to a Hanlon Motorsports-built Tremec T3650 five-speed transmission. Power is transferred to the gearbox through a King Cobra clutch, and the transmission spins a stock driveshaft, which is connected to the 8.8-inch rearend housing. The rear is stuffed with a Detroit Locker differential, and 3.73 gears that help turn the Moser 31-spline axles, which transfer power to the 18x9-inch Forgeline wheels wrapped in BFGoodrich rubber. Ride height is completely adjustable, thanks to Ride Tech's Street Challenge Suspension, and SSBC brakes sit in all four corners so braking is never an issue.
The custom touches continue into the interior. The stock seats have given way to Scat race-style seats, which have been recovered to match the factory grey upholstery. Simpson Platinum-series five-point harnesses have also been installed to keep the driver and passenger safe when using all 782 hp.
Trick Flow Specialties' '99 GT is truly an amazing ride. Todd Hodges, Curtis Ellis, Ron Greczanik, Chris Senk, Jim Perdue, and Mark Lambacher, as well as Roger Rosebush of Be Cool and Charles Warner of Tork Tech, all came together to build a serious showstopper capable of tearing up the track and street in the process.
"The car is amazing!" exclaims Canfield. "It's completely daily driveable. You can drive it to the track, change the supercharger pulley and tune, put in some race gas, and it's a monster! It's fast, reliable, and gets good gas mileage.
"It started as a way to showcase our parts, and ended up with a Mustang that's very docile and driveable while making huge power at the same time."