K.J. Jones
July 19, 2007
ACCEL/DFI's PowerProcessor (PN 79100; $399) is a one-stop flash programmer for all '96-to-present OBD II Fords.

For the last 20 years, ACCEL's Digital Fuel Injection has been recognized as one of the leading engine-management systems available for drag-race and next-level street Mustangs using fuel injection.

The powerful Gen VII version of DFI is a standalone processor/harness system that allows users to custom tune nearly any engine and power-adder combination for optimum performance. We see this unit in action often while we're covering the NMRA each year. We've marveled over the horsepower, torque, e.t., and speed that DFI tuners are able to make engines and Mustangs produce. They simply slide their fingers across a laptop's touch-pad mouse and peck at various keys. They make it look so easy, but we know there's a lot more behind DFI science-we'll save that for another time.

ACCEL/DFI's latest tuning product is the Ford PowerProcessor (PN 79100; $399), which is a handheld flash tuner. Usually, this is the time when we give specific application information (i.e., "for '99-'04 Mustangs," "fits '79-'93 hatchbacks," and so on). Doing that for this device is challenging because the PowerProcessor will work with nearly every late-model Ford on the road today.

The first step is to connect the PowerProcessor's cable into the diagnostic port. On a New Edge Mustang ('99-'04), the OBD II connector is located under the dash panel on the driver side. For this exercise, the 'Stang's negative battery cable remains connected. It's actually a good idea to make sure each battery cable has a solid connection with its post. The PowerProcessor relies on steady voltage in order to process data being taken from and delivered to the PCM.

Because of its wide range of programming logic, the ACCEL/DFI Ford PowerProcessor is a multi-use device that will plug-and-play with nearly any OBD II-equipped post-'96 vehicle, from Focus to F-350 (gas and diesel). It allows users to optimize a PCM's engine and transmission function parameters via three separate Power Tunes, created for 87- (street/economy), 91- (performance), and 93-octane (max performance) gasoline.

The PowerProcessor also offers 16 different engine and drivetrain adjustments, including WOT air/fuel, spark timing, rev limiter, traction control, automatic trans shift firmness, idle speed, fans, and so on, for gas-powered Fords. There are six additional adjustments for diesel trucks. Its built-in scanning tool lets users check for diagnostic trouble codes and clear them from a PCM.

We're interested to learn what the tuner will do for Mustangs, so we enlisted the service of a bone-stock '03 GT. This car has only 1,000 original miles on the clock. It's probably the most-virginal 'Stang we've ever seen for its age.

Follow along as Saul "The Surgeon" Gutierrez of Extreme Automotive gives ACCEL/DFI's new Ford PowerProcessor and our low-mileage test 'Stang a diagnostic check against the Dynapack Evolution 4000 chassis dyno.

RPMBASELINEPERFORMANCE
TUNE
MAX PERFORMANCE
TUNE
DIFFERENCE:
BASELINE
VS. MAX
POWERTORQUEPOWERTORQUEPOWERTORQUEPOWERTORQUE
1,50065.37222.8770.81242.0969.9232.894.5310.01
1,60966.94212.8174.37228.3679.11220.5912.177.77
1,70469.4208.2876.77224.3581.74217.7912.359.51
1,82872.86203.92{{{80}}}.87220.0286.06217.1513.213.23
1,92375.99202.0883.84217.5389.97218.7413.9816.67
2,01879.97202.786.96218.4293.72220.4213.7617.72
2,11585.72207.2592.17220.499.19222.{{{57}}}13.4715.32
2,20491.63212.697.66222.27104.13223.8112.511.21
2,30897.99217.13102.28223.16108.66224.1910.677.06
2,407103.15219.15107223.33113.77224.5510.{{{62}}}5.39
2,503107.09218.83111.24223.36118.11224.7611.025.93
2,608111.43218.53115.39223.06122.18224.6310.756.1
2,706115.61218.53119.94222.75126.82224.5911.216.06
2,812120.05218.37124.34222.57131.5225.0411.456.67
2,907124.26218.61128.78222.73136.9226.212.647.59
3,011129.09219.27133.85223.84143.31228.914.229.62
3,119134.49220.5140.21226.48150.24232.5915.7612.09
3,{{{200}}}138.9222145.06228.91155.67235.7516.7713.76
3,302145.24224.95151.41232.38162.24239.081714.13
3,402151.84228.25158.25235.53168.8241.5916.9613.34
3,516159.26231.66165.37238.18175.29242.8816.0311.22
3,621165.16233.28171.42239.25180.79243.4815.6410.2
3,710169.85234.14176.85239.72186.47244.4316.6210.29
3,815174.44233.85181.09{{{240}}}.09192.27245.8617.8312
3,922179.58234.17185.78240.46197.52246.7217.9412.55
4,022184.62234.77191240.56201.96246.7317.3411.97
4,118189.37235.18195.51239.57205.69245.5216.3210.34
4,211193.5235.02198.34237.87208.58242.9315.097.91
4,318197.65234.11200.7235.46210.09239.5712.445.47
4,407199.97232.08203.45232.72211.6235.6911.633.61
4,511202.25229.31205.15229.5213.04232.2210.82.92
4,609203.95226.32206.91226.31214.04228.6610.082.34
4,811207.12220.17207.78217.97213.32218.846.2-1.33
4,910207.57216.21207.03212.59212.09213.444.52-2.77
5,008207.2211.61204.86206.11209.5206.832.3-4.78
5,104205.71206.11201.88198.87206.26199.770.54-6.34
5,203203.51200.03198.33191.64202.96192.91-0.55-7.13