Michael Galimi
November 10, 2010
Photos By: Anthony Caggiano

On track, the car responded positively with a new best time of 12.20 at 114 mph. The driving technique was to launch at around 1,000 rpm and roll into the throttle. A swap to Nitto NT05R tires (on the same 18-inch wheels) was a major improvement as the car could leave at 1,800 rpm, enabling better 60-foot clockings and quicker times. The NT05R tires helped the car run its best time to date, a 12.08 at 115 mph with a 1.90 60-foot. The team did manage to cut a 1.88 60-foot but ran into some troubles with the shifting.

Development is an ongoing event with the new 5.0L as parts are coming to the market quickly and there is still a lot to learn. When AmericanMuscle embarked on its mission to run in the 11s with bolt-ons and a street-style wheel/tire package, the SCT software was in its infantile stages. That meant the automatic transmission functions were barely modified in the early tune-ups when the team ran 12.08.

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The problem was that if the tires spun enough, the ECU would put the transmission into a limp mode. This limp mode would kill the run by approximately 3-tenths of a second. The transmission would shift cleanly into Third gear and that is when the limp mode takes affect. Instead of going into Fourth, the transmission would shift back into Second and then quickly into Fourth. But that event only happened when there was noticeable tire spin at launch.

Thankfully, AmericanMuscle's tunes for automatic cars have since been modified for proper shifting thanks to SCT's efforts to crack into the transmission controls. An aftermarket tune will solve your problem if your stock or near-stock car exhibits some strange shifting problems on the dragstrip.

As of this writing, there is a Zex nitrous system plumbed into the massive C&L inlet tube, but it has remained dormant. The plan is to run the car on the jug after the new DynoJet chassis dyno is installed so proper testing can be done. The shop also plans on adding full-length headers, a looser torque converter, Mickey Thompson slicks, and Bogart racing wheels at all four corners. The goal is to run deep into the 11s in naturally aspirated trim and then launch solidly into the 10s on the spray. And it's not for fun but merely for the sake of research-wink, wink.

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