March 12, 2003

If you've previously tuned in, you'll recall that the entire concept of our project 3g GT is fairly simple: Create an all-around, hyperathletic Mustang that will not only corner, but also brake and accelerate, with at least 1g of force. Setting our sights high? You bet, but if anybody can do it, we figure the Mustang aftermarket can.

This time around, we're looking to gain a healthy dose of longitudinal acceleration by having Livernois Motorsports craft an all-aluminum 5.0 replacement for our cast-iron factory 4.6 short-block. This will be the first of a three-part engine project with Livernois. Next time, we'll have the company port up and flow test a set of Two-Valve PI heads to complement our extra displacement, and, in the final installment, we'll do some dyno testing to compare our resulting combination with a factory long-block.

In the past couple years, Livernois Motorsports has come to prominence in Mustang circles mostly through the exploits of Dan Millen's wicked and dominant Outlaw rides. But the parent company has a long history in Dearborn Heights, Michigan, involving, among other things, plenty of prototype work for Ford Motor Company. With an experienced technical staff and machine shop facilities that are second to none, it was only natural for Livernois to delve headlong into a modular engine program that includes the big-bore 5.0 Modzilla version--such as ours--as well as a hulking 5.9 Super Modzilla stroker variant (see Need More? sidebar).

The advantages of Livernois' 5.0 Modzilla short-block should be at least twofold: The extra displacement will no doubt churn out more horsepower and torque all by itself, and its sturdy reciprocating and rotating components will be much tougher--allowing us considerable peace of mind should we think about cranking up the boost on our ProCharger P-1SC blower for even more g-force giggles. As a bonus, its Cobra aluminum block will take a little load off our front wheels and maybe edge our handling limit closer to that particular 1g goal in the process. And remember--if it does all this for our ride, it can do the same for yours.

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Soon to find a home in our 3g GT project, Livernois Motorsports' 5.0 Modzilla is a stronger, lighter replacement for a factory modular short-block.