Steve Baur
Former Editor, Modified Mustangs & Fords
December 1, 2007
In about 70 seconds, we shaved off half of the tread life of the F-250's stock rubber. Yes, the SCT Extreme Race upgrade is a serious piece of tuning.

SCT's latest flash device, the Livewire, not only provides your fast Ford with improved power, it also records a number of performance measurements and datalogs many parameters. We've had the privilege of tweaking a 6.0L diesel, and today we bring you our test of SCT's 6.4L diesel performance tunes.

The 6.4L Power Stroke is pretty snappy from the get go, as the twin turbos spool up quite quickly and get the behemoth moving in a hurry. Our test vehicle belongs to SCT's Brad Grissom. The vehicle is a black '08 crew cab F-250 Power Stroke beast that's begging to be tweaked to unleash the Mr. Hyde within.

The Livewire is very easy to navigate, and we had the SCT Towing tuneup loaded in short order. Brad wanted us to start out with this program and work our way up toward the bad boy Extreme Race upgrade. Like its predecessors, this Power Stroke responds well to computer tuning.

The basic 6.4L Livewire unit starts off with a transmission tune that works with the stock engine tune. This was designed for those of you who are pulling 10,000 pounds plus more often than not. It increases line pressure to make sure your transmission can handle the rigors of hauling whatever you hook up to it.

Beyond the transmission tune is the Towing tune, which was a tad snappier in acceleration, along with a marked improvement in transmission shifting. The Towing tune offers an extra 50 hp and 90 lb-ft of torque.

Start by plugging in the Livewire and scrolling through the menu until you find the program vehicle option.

If you want to make your Power Stroke perform like a Mustang, then the Performance tune-up is your first step. Bolstering the Power Stroke's output with an additional 80 hp and 150 lb-ft of twist, the Performance tune will have you surprising a lot of pony car owners off the line, and it will certainly make pulling your trailer around much easier.

These days, the plume of black smoke from a turbo diesel engine generally means it has been tweaked for big power improvements, and for that, SCT offers the Extreme Race upgrade. Available in a separate tuner, the Extreme Race upgrade stacks the deck with a whopping 120hp improvement, along with an earth-rotating 230 lb-ft of torque. In testing at SCT's home drag strip, Orlando Speedworld, the team pushed the 8,000-pound truck down into the 14-second quarter-mile range with a best e.t. of 14.67 at 88 mph, which was nearly a 3-second reduction and 7 mph at the top end.