Marc Christ Associate Editor
September 20, 2010

Our '93 SSP has appeared in almost every issue over the past year. When we introduced the coupe in "Back to Basics" (Nov. '09), it was only making 199 rwhp and 220 lb-ft of torque. At the track, it huffed to a modest 14.52 at 97 mph.

In that issue, we did some old-school tuning and simple bolt-ons, and yielded 243 rwhp and 278 lb-ft of torque, as well as our first 13-second timeslip. In the next issue, we installed Edelbrock's E-Street heads with roller rockers and upgraded the fuel system. These mods brought power output to 273 rwhp and torque output to 299 lb-ft. We also saw e.t.'s drop into the low 13s.

Next, we installed a Performance Automatic (PA) street/strip torque converter. Another trip to the track yielded a new best e.t. of 12.80 seconds, but the 180,000 miles of abuse coupled with the added heat from the torque converter took its toll on the original AOD. So we shipped our overcooked slush-box to PA for a refresh.

Once back in business with a fresh trans, we shed some weight with an A/C-delete, an aluminum driveshaft, removal of the front sway bar, and addition of skinnies up front. The coupe ran a best of 12.49 and we thought we were done tinkering with it.

Wrong. It wasn't long after "Lifting Weight" (June '10) hit the newsstands that we got a call from our friends at Zex, which had just announced the release of its new Blackout nitrous systems. Under the guidance of Matt Patrick, product manager for Zex, we ordered a Blackout system for our SSP. The wet system (PN 82023B) is designed to work on a variety of carbureted and fuel-injected vehicles, and comes with all the fittings, hoses, and hardware for installation, as well as jets for 75, 100, and 125hp shots.

Naturally, we were excited when the new all-black bottle showed up in the mailroom. "Zex has always been known for its purple colored components," said Matt Patrick of Zex. "Purple is one of those colors-either you love it or you hate it." So in response to customer requests, the Zex team, led by Patrick, developed an all-black system that is priced comparably to the standard Zex systems.

Zex, though its own company, is affiliated with Comp Cams, and is actually located under the same roof in Memphis, Tennessee. "Zex wasn't a company that Comp Cams bought out," Patrick told us. "We actually started the company from scratch. So we're not going anywhere. You can expect the same level of customer service and product quality as that of Comp Cams or any of our other product lines."

After installing the kit in a couple of hours, we drove to Ramsey's Performance in Lutz, Florida, for initial testing. Dennis Ramsey helped us make sure we weren't going to cause any damage with the nitrous oxide, and once we felt comfortable with the tune, we couldn't wait to get to the track.

We wanted to see our first 11-second timeslip, so we topped off the bottle and headed to Bradenton Motorsports Park on the drag radials. Follow along as we install, tune, and test our new Zex nitrous system.

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