David Freiburger Editor-In-Chief
September 30, 2014

Whenever a new performance car is released, there's a battle among the aftermarket tuners to be the first to get the first car into the various e.t. milestones at the drag strip—10s usually being the prime target, and in this Internet world, the fight itself can come down to seconds. This time, with the 2015 Mustang, Ford Racing decided to do it all first. In the video below, hosted by our friend Jesse Kershaw at Ford Racing, you'll see how the factory engineers made a turbo four-cylinder model run 12.56 at 109 mph, how a naturally aspirated V8 went 11.77 at 116, and finally how a V8 with a Ford Racing supercharger kit blasted 10.97 at 128 mph. in each case, the video reveals the parts formula that was used to hit these numbers, both the Ford Racing stuff and the aftermarket goodies. The tests were done at both Milan Dragway and US 131, both in Michigan.

Here’s the scene where you can see no back or passenger seat in the V8 naturally aspirated car.

There are a few interesting things to note as you watch this. First, we found it interesting that every car, even the four-banger, used a "performance rear subframe kit," heavy-duty half-shafts, and half-shaft safety loops. Yup, these all remain IRS cars, as all the new Mustangs are. They all manage to lift a front tire just a wee bit—even the four-cylinder—yet they all exhibit some radical squat upon launch. Something for the aftermarket to work out.

Next, all three cars had a custom tune and off-road exhaust with turn-downs before the axle (the EcoBoost had no catalytic converters though, the V8 NA car car retained both cats), and the V8 NA car has Cobra Jet long-tube headers. None of that is highway legal. Not that most of you care. The tune on the EcoBoost did affect (raise) the boost pressure with the bone-stock turbo, and that testing was on a race-gas tuneup. Some of the tuning done will work its way into the Ford Racing performance packages for street gas.

Every Mustang lifted the front tire just a wee bit at Milan Dragway. This is the four-cylinder EcoBoost model.

Finally, it was interesting that none of the cars carried lightweight wheels in the video, though Kershaw tells us some Weld skinnies were tested on the EcoBoost (because it has smaller front brakes, so the wheels would fit), but, "We ran nearly the same ET's with the skinnies as with stock fronts." In one shot of the red car we can see that there's no back seat and no passenger seat. The parts list includes a Recarro racing seat, so clearly there's some weight savings. However, that weight saving is very likely negated by the addition of the rollbar in each Mustang. Kershaw says, "We are not releasing curb weights on the runs for various reasons but I can assure you these were not stripped out ultra-light cars. I have seen some doubters on the web, which is expected whenever you're the first to do something, but I am sure once the aftermarket gets some time with these cars there will be plenty of excitement and performance."

Overall, well played, Ford Racing. Thanks to Brian at Bangshift.com for the tip.

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