Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords
1993 Ford Lightning - Force Of Nature
Bad Weather Is On the Horizon When This Turbo Lightning Hits the Street
For most folks, going fast in a Ford means sliding behind the wheel of a Mustang.
Others, such as Ryan Wall from Dallas, Georgia, prefer something with a bit more heft. Ryan's choice is a '93 Ford Lightning, but it certainly isn't your run-of-the-mill pickup. His rig features a huge turbocharger, lots of engine mods, and a racing suspension ready for serious abuse.
Ryan is the business development manager at Injected Engineering, a performance shop located in Kennesaw, Georgia, and he's spent hours transforming his Lightning into a killer street truck. He bought it completely stock at age 17. Soon after, he started the long list of modifications by bolting on a set of Edelbrock cylinder heads, and installing an "F" cam and a NOS Big Shot 250hp plate kit.
After growing bored with this combination, Ryan decided on a turbo build and created the combination you see here. Though it certainly has race-inspired details, the Lightning is perfectly happy on the street—although fuel mileage suffers greatly.
When Ryan began the build, he sent the truck to Jimmy Blackmon at Straightline Chassis for a number of rear suspension upgrades. Straightline Chassis ditched the leaf springs and installed Competition Engineering ladder bars, along with a pair of Strange coilovers. The new suspension attaches to an 8.8 rearend housing, which has been narrowed 4 inches and fit with a spool, a 4.10 gear set, and a pair of 35-spline Moser axles.
Traction comes by way of M&H Racemaster drag radials, 390/40R17 and wrapped around the stock Lightning wheels, which have been widened to 12 inches by Weldcraft Wheels. The extra material was added to the backside of the wheels, so the polished rollers have the factory look to match the stock 17x8-inch front wheels.
To get the stance he wanted it, Ryan installed Bell Tech lowering springs and shock absorbers, as well as DJM drop I-beams. In an effort to save weight, Ryan tossed all of the original steering equipment and installed a manual Mustang rack-and-pinion setup, but retained the stock brakes on all four corners.
Horsepower comes from an original '93-model 351 Windsor, but the block is the only remaining part of the equation. Ryan sent the engine to Steve Petty at Pro Line Racing to be assembled. A final bore size of 4.030 inches and the 3.75-inch stroke from the forged Eagle crankshaft results in a displacement of 382 ci.
Other bottom-end goodies include forged H-beam connecting rods, forged dish-top pistons, and a Melling oil pump. The cylinder heads are out-of-the-box Brodix Track 1 aluminum castings, which feature 2.08- and 1.60-inch valves; and a set of Comp Cams Pro Magnum 1.6:1 roller rocker arms, put into motion by a custom-grind solid roller camshaft from Cam Motion.