5.0 Mustang & Super Fords
New Edge Mustang Supercharger - New Kit On The Block
Tork Tech's Impressive New Blower Kit For The '99-'04 4.6 Two-Valve
Horse Sense: Since Tork Tech uses a number of major manufacturers to supply parts for its kits (Bosch, Lucas, Ford, and more), it doesn't control the manufacturing source for every item. Nevertheless, it's nice to know that all the items Tork Tech has specifically manufactured for this application (i.e., intake manifold, plenum, idler bracket/crossbrace, throttle body, assembly of aftercooler and intercooler, and so on) are built right here in the good ol' USA.
Consummate speed freaks that we are, the invitation was something we felt compelled to investigate. It was a call from Ron Feddema of Vancouver, Washington's Fast Specialties, asking if we'd be interested in checking out the installation of a new 4.6 Two-Valve supercharger his shop had helped R&D with emerging manufacturer Tork Tech.
With a two-day visit to the Pacific Northwest behind us, we think it's safe to say that we've seen the best blower setup being produced by a company you've never heard of. OK, so there aren't many unknown companies building a supercharger system, that's true. Nevertheless, the bottom line is that Tork Tech has put together a compelling supercharger kit for '99-'04 GT owners, and it has an obvious challenge in making a name for itself as it enters a well-established market.
The main man behind Tork Tech is Charles Warner, an experienced industrial engineer who is better known for marketing blower components for Thunderbird Super Coupes and Lightning trucks under the Magnum Powers banner. After a 10-year track record with such products, he was ready for a new challenge.
Charles brainstormed with Fast Specialties on tapping into a market ripe for a new supercharger product. It didn't take long to settle on the '99-'04 4.6 Two-Valve Mustang, as its limited displacement and modest performance capabilities make it a perfect candidate for the Roots blower Charles knows and loves. A plan was hatched with him doing the design work and Fast Specialties assisting with prototype testing. Development lasted for 21/2 years, and Ron tells us production and marketing began several months before our visit.
At $4,499 for the complete intercooled kit-the company figures it will be the most popular of four configurations-the bang for the buck is undeniably stout. Charles chose to base the new offering on an Eaton M112-derived Magnuson Generation IV supercharger equipped with a cast of impressive ancillaries, such as a dedicated eight-rib blower drive; large, single-blade oval throttle body; 42-lb-hr injectors; SVT Focus fuel pump; 90mm mass air; and healthy aluminum heat exchanger.
As mentioned, we took Fast Specialties up on its offer to show us the ropes: in this instance, installing the straightforward kit on Tork Tech's newly purchased '99 GT company demonstrator. Technician Travis Hall made quick work of the process despite our interruptions asking lots of questions, taking pictures, and so on. Ron figures installation by a pro shop can be accomplished within a day.
How about a decent backyard wrench? It's definitely doable, though it will take more time than the pros need.
Check out the photos and captions as we highlight some of the important features and installation issues associated with Tork Tech's new supercharger. While hardly a household name at the moment, our experience with Tork Tech's '99-'04 Two-Valve kit leads us to believe we'll see a lot more of this company in the future.
The final tune for an otherwise bone-stock GT was still undergoing massaging during our visit. Right after installation, tech Travis Hall had the car up and running a conservative program via SCT software, with 374 hp and 360 lb-ft at just more than 9 pounds of boost. The more aggressive tune shown here pumped out peaks of 406 hp and 399 lb-ft, but is frankly a bit more than Tork Tech wants as standard issue. Expecting many of these kits to be installed on stock short-blocks, the cookie-cutter tune will have a better margin of safety in deference to the 4.6's weak bottom end, more along the lines of 380-390 hp and similar torque. Nevertheless, the numbers here illustrate what can be achieved through your favorite local tuner with standard pulleys and pump gas. However, a beefy short-block is recommended.
We took a 20-minute testdrive on the 374-horse tune and found it to be as docile and well behaved as any stocker--until the throttle met the wood. At that point, the similarities end and '03-'04 Cobra-like acceleration takes over, along with enough blower whine to remind you of the reason for the extra thrust.
At press time, the following prices applied to Tork Tech's '99-'04 Two-Valve application. Note, there is a non-intercooled kit available for $600 less than the intercooled setup we previewed, but the intercooled arrangement is clearly money well spent. Also note that both kits can be had in "tuner" form, meaning there is no computer tuning, no mass air, no injectors, and no fuel pump. Tork Tech recognizes that some customers want to work with their own local shop for tuning, and may have previously purchased suitable high-performance gear which need not be purchased again. Tuner kits are intended for this group of enthusiasts.
Call it an opportunity rather than a drawback, but it's important to note an unmodified stock hood can't be used with Tork Tech's supercharger due to interference at the blower pulley and leading edge of the case. Two options are available to remedy the situation, with one being an aftermarket cowl hood. Tork Tech has verified clearance with a Cervini's product, and others are expected to clear as well. You always liked the look of an aftermarket hood, right? On the other hand, a cheaper and arguably stealthier option would be to fit a Tork Tech hood scoop. Similar in looks to the factory scoop fitted to some New Edge GTs, the Tork Tech scoop is longer in order to cover the necessary reliefs you need to cut when using a stock hood. If your GT had a factory scoop, the seven existing mounting holes are reused, and only two more need to be drilled. If your car never had a scoop, nine total holes will be drilled according to Tork Tech's included measurements. The scoop sells for $199.99 in a bare urethane finish.
It's not unusual for small production changes to occur over the years of a given bodystyle, but the '99-'04 GTs seem to have an unusually large amount. Part of this is the two different variants of 4.6 Two-Valve engines used-Romeos and Windsors. Know what kind yours is when you place an order with Tork Tech, as the kit hardware has some minor, but important differences.
Fast Specialties offers a couple of identifying hints, involving valve cover bolt count and fuel rail crossover location. Romeo engines have 11 valve cover bolts per side, while Windsors have 13. Romeo engines have a fuel rail crossover at the rear only, while Windsors have crossovers at both the front and the rear. For the record, Tork Tech's company demonstrator is Windsor-equipped.