Ah, yes-the warm, sunny, Central...
Ah, yes-the warm, sunny, Central Florida landscape was the perfect backdrop for the '05 Performance Racing Industry show. The Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, swallowed up the show. Many in attendance thought the '05 show was smaller than in previous years, but our feet begged to differ. In Orlando, PRI has space to grow within the convention center and into its spacious parking lot.
The '05 PRI show attracted more than 1,400 performance companies exhibiting in 3,950 booths. The building in which the PRI show was held-the North/South Building of the Orange County Convention Center-is nearly 1,000,000 square feet.
In the past, we've had a love/hate relationship with the Performance Racing Industry show. Although we loved catching up on new performance products and seeing our boys, at the same time we had to leave the warm confines of the Sunshine State and travel to the frigid North, which is the part we loathed. With the PRI show outgrowing the Indianapolis Convention Center and moving south to Orlando, Florida-until at least 2010-all we had to do was hop in the Mustang and make the hour-long trip from our Central Florida home office to Mickey Mouse's backyard. Most importantly, we didn't even have to pack a jacket in order to see the latest go-fast equipment. What did you miss by not being there, besides the beautiful Florida weather? Check out the captions and see for yourselves.
The folks at Aeromotive [(913) 647-7300, www.aeromotiveinc.com] are always busy working on new fuel systems and products. To go with its complete line of fuel rails and kits for just about every late-model Mustang-including the '96-'04 GT and Cobra models and '05-'06 GT models-Aeromotive is working on this Pro-Mod fuel pump. As of this writing, Aeromotive was busy testing the pump for performance and durability to meet the needs of Pro 5.0/Outlaw rides that produce more than 2,000 hp. The Pro-Mod is designed to be an all-out pump for today's high-horsepower applications, and it's gasoline or alcohol compatible.
Anderson Ford Motorsport
In this latest age of keeping tabs on your 'Stang's air/fuel levels, Anderson Ford Motorsport [(217) 935-2076; www.andersonfordmotorsport.com] showed us the EF-UEGO 2000. The digital, wideband gauge and air-fuel/rpm recorder works for all gas- or alcohol-powered (EFI) 5.0s, 4.6s, and 5.4s, and doesn't require a PC to display data, unlike other wideband air/fuel monitors.
Boss 330 Racing
Boss 330 Racing's [(772) 299-0775; www.boss330racing.com] Al Papitto made quite the splash with this carbureted 5.4 engine at PRI. Known for his Four-Valve exploits, we'd guess Al had plenty of show-goers confused as to what type of engine it was. But having known Al for a few years now, we knew it had his fingerprints all over it. Sure enough, we found his business card under the Barry Grant Demon carburetor-topped Sullivan Racing Products intake, and Al wasn't too far away, either. Boss 330 Racing's Chris Starnes spent roughly 200 hours modifying the intake to fit the '05 Ford GT block and heads, and the bottom end consists of Manley billet rods, CP pistons, a Lincoln Navigator crankshaft, an Aviaid [(818) 998-8991; www.aviaid.com] dry-sump oil pump, and an ARE Racing Engine Systems [(916) 987-7629; www.drysump.com] oil pan.
Not long ago, we hadn't even heard of BMR Fabrication [(813) 986-9302; www.bmrfabrication.com], but we're pretty sure everyone living in 'Stang nation knows its deal by now. With a catalog stuffed full of '05-'06 Mustang parts, we're beginning to see a slant toward a few Fox and SN-95 parts. BMR's focus is still aimed at the latest Mustang, however, and its new '05-'06 Mustang tubular K-member amplified that point.
Canton Racing Products
It's come to our attention that even NHRA Stock Eliminator racers read 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords. The Fox-bodied Mustang is a widely popular choice of race car in Stock, so this is for those who play on that side of the drag-racing fence. Canton Racing Products [(203) 481-9460); www.cantonracingproducts.com] introduced this Stock Eliminator rear-sump 302 oil pan at PRI. Unlike a factory piece, this stock-appearing (required by NHRA rules) oil pan features a slosh baffle, a crank scraper, and magnetic drain plugs. The pan is also notched for the two-bolt rear mains of SVO blocks.
If your '05-'06 Mustang needs better braking capabilities, check out Classic Tube's [(800) 882-3711; www.classictube.com] new Stop Flex brake lines. These stainless steel braided brake hoses eliminate volumetric expansion, which causes a mushy brake pedal as a result of the expansion of rubber brake hoses. Stop Flex brake lines promise immediate brake response and are corrosion resistant. These lines are also available for Fox, SN-95, and New-Edge Mustangs.
Competition Clutch [(800) 809-6598, www.competitionclutch.com] had its Mustang clutch offerings at PRI, including the Stage 1 and Stage 3 clutches shown with a Ford Racing Performance Parts pressure plate. Competition Clutch manufactures clutches ranging from the Stage 1-which is ideal for Mustangs with up to 450 rwhp-to the Stage 5 clutch disc that's rated for cars boasting over 650 hp.
If you're looking to open up your '05-'06 Mustang GT's exhaust, check out Dynatech's [(800) 848-5850, www.dynatechheaders.com] SuperMaxx system. You can get Dynatech's headers by themselves, but pairing them with the SuperMaxx system reportedly results in a dramatic horsepower and torque increase, not to mention a more muscular sound. Manufactured from T304 stainless steel, the SuperMaxx system promises a 54 percent exhaust-flow increase, which is huge for those scoring at home. The SuperMaxx system features PowerCAT converters to keep your 'Stang environmentally friendly.
Ford Racing Performance Parts
The Boss is back! Ford Racing Performance Parts gave 'Stangfreaks a first look at its new Boss 302 engine block. The Boss-a much stronger, Siamese-bore, 8.2-deck legacy of the block that helped Mustangs dominate Trans-Am racing in the early '70s-features a splayed four-bolt-main cap on the No. 2, No. 3, and No. 4 mains, revised oil- and cooling-system passages, including crossover holes for improved cooling, "screw-in" core plugs, and the big deal: enough meat to easily support the 4.125 bore size that's currently the latest rage for mega-inch, small-block Ford builds. We have some pretty big plans in the works for the Boss 302, so be on the lookout for more on this legend's triumphant return.
Griggs Racing Products
Showing off its suspension prowess, Griggs Racing [(707) 939-2244; www.griggsracing.com] had a complete Mustang frontend on hand at PRI. Griggs calls it the SLA Front Chassis System, and the track-tested system is reported to substantially increase front-end grip with improved turn-in, reduced entry and mid-corner understeer, improved anti-dive, improved braking with less static camber, improved front-tire wear and temperature balance, and more. The system is available for both street and race applications, makes for an easy alignment, and it accommodates wider wheels up front.
No stranger to the damper market, Innovators West [(877) 898-2645, www.innovatorswest.com] had its 4.6 damper on display at PRI. This 360-degree damper is degreed every 2 degrees and utilizes an aluminum case to cut down on total weight. While a steel hub is standard, an aluminum version is optional to really keep off the weight.
Can you believe it-a new small-block Ford head? CFE Racing Products' [(586) 773-6310, www.cferacing.com] new ProKing small-block head sports either drag-race- or circle-track-specific five-axis CNC programs. These heads feature raised intake runners, a 10-degree valve angle, 32-58cc chambers, 274-286 intake ports, four-angle intake-valve geometry, and a full-radius exhaust-valve job. The heads are available assembled with titanium valvetrain components and triple valvesprings.
Fluidyne [(888) FLUIDYNE, www.fluidyne.com] had this Pro Drag radiator at PRI, which can be had with or without a water pump, a fan shroud, assorted bracketry, and an 11-inch electric fan. Also, Fluidyne now manufactures a performance radiator for '05-'06 Mustangs featuring polished-aluminum tanks, high-efficiency air fins, a 100 percent brazed-aluminum core, and an OE-type fitment.
Two cool features make Hypertech's [(901) 385-1888; www.hypertech.com] HyperPAC more than just another handheld tuner for '03-'05 Mustangs. We hadn't seen any programmer that featured a "Drag Strip" simulator, let alone a built-in dynamometer for calculating horsepower and torque. The flywheel/rear-wheel horsepower is corrected to Standard Temperature and Pressure format. This touch-screen unit includes those functions, as well as the performance tuning and diagnostic capabilities in other popular tuning devices for EFI 'Stangs.
Jesel Valvetrain Innovations
NMRA and Fun Ford Weekend modular racers have proven that Two- and Four-Valve engines are more than capable of hauling the mail. Jesel Valvetrain Innovations [(732) 901-1800; www.jesel.com] has taken notice of the performance ability of these engines-thanks to high-lift cams, greater spring pressures, and power adders-and developed these new, double-roller cam followers (rockers). Available for both solid and hydraulic lash posts, these aluminum followers operate with less friction than stock pieces, thanks to needle-bearing rollers at both the valve tips and camshafts. Bring on the revs!
Kuntz and Company/Booze Brothers Racing
Booze Brothers Racing[(717) 375-4839; www.boozebrothersracing] doesn't hide why Charlie Booze Jr.'s Hot Street car is so fast. Yes, Charlie is an excellent driver, and his team of Matt Wirt and brother Brian knows a thing or two about getting down the track. But a key ingredient to both Booze brothers' racing successes is Kuntz and Company [(870) 246-2595; www.kuntzandcompany.com]. Kuntz is the engine builder behind Booze Brothers Racing, and they can build one for you, too. You won't find an overview of stroker engine combinations on Kuntz's Web site because he builds custom engines tailored to each customer's specific needs.
A power hitter in the Mustang aftermarket, Livernois Motorsports [(313) 561-5500; www.livernoismotorsports.com] always comes to PRI with new stuff. Livernois had on display CNC'd Three-Valve heads, a modular stroker kit, and engine mounts to make it possible to swap a pre-'05 modular into an '05-up Mustang. With factory Three-Valve blocks good for only around 550 rwhp, that swap doesn't sound like a bad idea.
This brute-strength, rearend housing for '05-'06 Mustangs comes from Moser Engineering [260) 726-6689; www.moserengineering.com]. It's a bolt-in replacement for the factory 8.8, and features beefed-up bracketry (the third-link mount is among the highlights), and overall thickness everywhere-the dang axle tubing is a quarter inch thick-in comparison to a new 'Stang's stock rear. This is the ticket for racers building S197-based cars that require stock-style rear suspensions.
Metco Motorsports Solutions
Metco Motorsports Solutions [(864) 332-5929; www.metcomotorsports.com] is mostly known for suspension components and pulleys, but at PRI we were surprised to see these '05-'06 Mustang GT fuel rails. Metco's rails feature an 1 1/16 inside diameter, a polished and engraved finish, stainless steel hardware, and brackets that allow the use of larger injectors.The base kit ($319) includes rails, crossover, and attaching hardware.This kit is for those using aftermarket fuel lines. Metco's other kit ($360) will include a new fitting designed for the factory lines.
We caught Mustang Dynamometer's [(330) 963-5400; www.mustangdyne.com] portable chassis dyno/dragstrip with an '05 Saleen lining up against a Cobra convertible. The Mustang Dyno units are all loading-style and are designed to duplicate real-world operating conditions. They feature a patented control system that utilizes eddy-current power absorbers to load a vehicle exactly the way it would be loaded on the street. By the way, the Saleen whipped up on the drop-top, but that's because it had been given lots of love from Lamotta's Performance in Longwood, Florida, and a Vortech-blown Three-Valve.
Nitto [www.nittotire.com] had big things to talk about at the PRI show. Maybe the biggest unveiling was its new NT1320 front runner and drag slick offerings, which we had heard about. We got to see the slicks in Nitto's booth mounted on John Urist's Super Street Outlaw whip. Robin Lawrence will have them mounted on his Real Street car for 2006 as well. Nitto was busy in the off-season testing John's and Robin's cars to make sure the slicks were ready to battle it out with other, more established drag-slick brands. Nitto also had on display its NT-01, a DOT-approved competition radial designed for road racing/autocross events.
Performance Automatic [(301) 963-8078; Performance Automatic www.performanceautomatic.com] brings true, drag-race transmission performance to '94-'03 SVT Lightnings with this new PA73300 transbrake valvebody. Fully automatic shifting is retained with this valvebody, and its quick-release 'brake is functional from the Drive position of any E4OD transmission.
Suncoast Race Cars
We saw this fiberglass '05-'06 Mustang body hanging from the PRI rafters, and it really surprised us because we didn't know a full-on, lightweight replica of the S197 was available for drag-race competition. Suncoast Race Cars [(352) 628-5001; www.suncoastracecars.com] offers complete, OEM- and ProMod-style bodies-in-'glass in coupe and roadster (convertible) styles.
Toyo [(800) 678-3250, www.toyo.com] had Manny Buginga's Super Street Outlaw dominator in its booth at PRI. That wouldn't be news if it weren't for the fact that Manny's whip is wearing Toyo Proxes drag-racing slicks out back and free-rolling front tires on each side of his turbocharged quarter-mile terror. The Proxes slicks will be available in all the popular Mustang sizes, including 10.5W sizes, 26x1011/42, 28x1011/42, and all the way up to 33x17 on a 15-inch rim.
We got a good look at Zoom's[(800) 258-8312; www.zoomclutch.com] Mustang GT project car prior to the PRI show, and we can tell you it's built to run. If you're building your Mustang the same way, Zoom has a clutch for you-from a Stage 1 standard upgrade-style clutch set to a Stage 4 setup featuring a solid six-paddle clutch disc with sintered-iron material. You need a flywheel, too? Zoom has you covered there, in aluminum or steel. For you 7.3 Power Stroke diesel rowers, Zoom's Variable Torque performance clutch adds more clamp load as cut increases, which translates to more power getting to the ground.