Steve Baur
Former Editor, Modified Mustangs & Fords
March 15, 2007

In a previous issue of MM&FF, we experienced exceptional results with the Snow Performance Boost Cooler on a hopped-up 5.0 Mustang ("Chemically Cool Your Colt," July '04). So when Snow Performance contacted us about its new kit for '03-'04 Cobras, we said "ship it out and let's git-'er-done."

As none of us magazine types can afford an '03-'04 Cobra (maybe a '77 Cobra II if it needs work), we needed a test subject, so we put in a call to JDM Engineering, which hooked us up with Paul Merces, owner of a Mineral Gray '03 SVT Cobra. The Pony was equipped with a Whipple supercharger upgrade, an off-road H-pipe, a Borla Cat-Back, a solid 8.8 axle, a JDM cold-air kit, and a hot JDM SCT computer tune-up maximized for 94-octane gas. In this form, the Cobra knocked down 577 hp and 507 lb-ft of torque at the wheels at 15 psi of boost.

At this point, the car was running out of fuel system and would need $1,000 worth of injectors and fuel pumps to provide adequate fuel for further horsepower levels. However, we found an inexpensive way to make more power without the fuel mods.

JDM tech Shaun Lacko removed the front wheel and wheelwell liner to gain access to the windshield washer fluid reservoir, which we intend to use as our supply tank.

The Snow Performance kit for '03-'04 Cobras retails for a mere $399 and includes a pump, a reservoir, fluid line, hardware, and the Mass Airflow Variable Controller. Whereas our previous test used a boost-indexed controller, the MAF kit reads the Mass Air voltage and adjusts water/methanol output accordingly. This results in better driveability and a more efficient use of the water/methanol supply.

"The MAF Digital Variable Controller is preferred with positive displacement superchargers and small, fast-spooling turbos with their inherent instant off-idle full boost," says Matt Snow, owner of Snow Performance. "In these applications, using a boost-actuated system results in com-promised low-/mid-rpm power because too much is injected too soon. The MAF system solves this."

In the last test, we were able to get a gallon of methanol from our local track for a mere $1.50-a real bargain compared to using race gas at $6.00 a gallon. But it is a little more difficult to obtain during the winter as the track empties its reserves. Thinking fast, we parlayed $7.00 for a few bottles of HEET, which provided our methanol for the 50/50 water/meth mix we intended to use.

The combination gave us a little more than a gallon, which we barely touched despite half a dozen dyno pulls. "A 50/50 water/methanol mix acts like 120-octane fuel, in terms of detonation control," Snow says. "In boosted applications, this means that combustion doesn't have to be cooled with rich, power-robbing air/fuel ratios."