Horse Sense: SEMA used to...
Horse Sense: SEMA used to put an International Area on its show floor, but there's no need for that anymore. These days the whole show is something of a United Nations of hot rodding. Latinos, either from the U.S. or visiting from Mexico and South America, have become a large part of the crowd, so we heard a lot of Spanish. But we also heard Portugese from Brazilians, plenty of French in the media center for some reason, plus a generous number of Australian accents.
After a couple years locked in limp-home mode, the Specialty Equipment Marketing Association show picked up some welcome rpm this year. Everything was up-the number of exhibitors, buyers, and tire-kickers, and most importantly to us, Mustangs.
In fact, we'll admit we were caught napping by the squadrons of Mustangs at the SEMA show. The easy majority were '05-and-later, with the newest Coyote-powered GTs taking a greater than proportional share, as is normal with this show obsessed with the latest thing. Once past the newest Mustangs, mid-'60s classics showed in somewhat surprising numbers. No other Mustangs were well represented. Several Foxes and a couple of SN-95s showed; we didn't see any Mustang IIs.
As expected, '11 bolt-on bits such as exhaust kits and long-tube headers, along with superchargers, were the main Ford attraction this year. Once past those parts, however, there was a good smattering of internal parts for '11s: cams, pistons and such. But there wasn't a fire-hosing of hardcore parts, partially due to a relatively low need for new parts to service still-fresh '11 GTs. The suspension and brakes, for example, are carryovers from '10, so those parts are already available. Plus the '11 launch was just in time to allow some companies to get a car and quickly develop a part or kit for it, but not long enough to let everyone in on the Coyote fun, so we're expecting more '11 GT parts at the upcoming PRI show, plus more to trickle in throughout the year. They'll show as "new" parts at the '11 SEMA show.
Of course, there were plenty of other Ford-specific goods to ogle, not to mention the nearly endless cool stuff and beautiful sights populating the SEMA show halls. Besides what you're thinking of (and we're remembering), ProCharger had a centrifugal blower kit for Raptor pickups, for example.
Outside, Ford teamed with Monster energy drink to transform part of the front parking lot into a playpen for virtuoso drifters Ken Block and Vaughn Gittin Jr. They spent hours tearing up tires to the delight of thousands of onlookers clinging to the security fencing, while a few lucky types rode shotgun.
Overall the mood was definitely upbeat. Business can never be the same as it was during the first hair-on-fire years of the new millennium, but it's both satisfying and reassuring to see car enthusiasm rising once again.
Ah, a new Fox part. Afco/Dynatech (www.afabcorp.com
) displayed a new lightweight K-member for Foxes at $399.99. Bolt-in engine mounts for big and small Ford pushrod engines and modulars, plus small, big, and LSX Chevys are available with this K-member. The Dynatech side of things is offering long-tube headers and X-pipes for the '11 Mustang GT.
) has found a big demand for its high-volume, in-tank fuel pumps sold under the Stealth name. To help meet this demand, the company packaged its tried and true A1000 fuel pump (good for an easy 1,000hp worth of fuel delivery) into a drop-in fitment for the Corvette to easily convert it from returnless to return-style fuel injection. If you are asking what this means to you, just imagine a shorter version coming to a Mustang near you in the not-too-distant future.
American Racing Headers
Full-length headers, plus high-flow cats and X-pipes are 5.0 Coyote naturals, and header specialists at American Racing Headers (www.americanracingheaders.com
) had their 304-stainless effort on prominent display. ARH offers 1 3/4- and 1 7/8-inch long-tubes for the Coyote, along with your choice of X- or H-pipes. They say power goes 32 rwhp with no tuning through the stock mufflers with their gear. They also have new systems for the Lightning as well.
By deleting the outer lip of the 5.4 damper, ATI (www.atiracing.com
) has managed to work a 15-percent overdrive into its new GT500 harmonic damper and pulley. The lip is not needed with the Shelby's serpentine belt. Of course the big news was ATI's new Super Damper for the Coyote 5.0. As quickly as those cars are running, an SFI damper is becoming a must-have item.
Auto Meter (www.autometer.com
) continues to fill out its huge line of instruments and mounts with this three-instrument A-pillar mount for the newest Mustang. It's available in black for $129.99 retail.
Another rather fresh BBK (www.bbkperformance.com
) part was this 85mm throttle body for '11 Mustang GTs. Still a prototype, details were yet to be determined at SEMA, but clearly it supports BBK's existing cold air intake. BBK says it's a direct-replacement part, requiring no electronic support. BBK also showed off a full lineup of '11 V-6 bolt-on parts.
Aluminum coolant expansion tanks are hot sellers ever since the stock SN-95 tanks proved unreliable. Canton (www.cantonracingproducts.com
) had this one for the '11 GT at the show. It's slightly larger than the Three-Valve S197 tank, retails for $175, and is in stock now. The company says its working on a Coyote oil pan; it will join the annual production of over 7,500 oil pans and tanks. That's a lot of welding!
To make a point that it offers clutch upgrades for the '11 Mustang, Centerforce (www.centerforce.com
) showed off with this slick '11 GT in its booth. The car rocks a Cervini's body kit, and an amazing paint job highlighted by stripes that look like brushed aluminum.
Here's a four-some we were sure to see at SEMA: Comp Cams (www.compcams.com
) bumpsticks for the '11 5.0 V-8. Lobe specs vary hroughout what is actually a series of cams (mild to wild, naturally aspirated or blown, plus custom grinds) for the Coyote. All are billet parts, and significantly, they are counterbalanced to reduce power-robbing vibration. The large majority of these cams don't require a changein valvesprings, either. Comp also showed of phaser limiters and phaser locks for the Coyote engine. These are necessary to allow for larger camshafts without modifying the engine for more piston-to-valve clearance. Comp's sister company, FAST, is also offering a new XFI systems specifically for the Coyote engine swaps.
West Coast speed-demons CFR Per-formance (www.cfrperformance.com
) are making a big push into the Fox-Mustang realm. The company offers its own pulleys, alternator brackets, short-tube headers, valve covers, and more. Pictured is CFR's aluminum radiator for the Fox.
D.S.S. Competition Engine
For hardcore engine internals, D.S.S. (www.dssracing.com
) is always leading the way. It has multiple new Ford kits, but this reciprocating assembly for the new 5.0 Coyote is an obvious highlight. It uses a prepped stock crankshaft (eventually an upgraded aftermarket stroker crank will be available) along with D.S.S.'s H-beam rods and X-grooved pistons. For a piston/rod kit with rings and bearings, you'll need $1,399; for a complete kit with prepped crank, rods, and more, expect $2,199. D.S.S. has 5.0 short-blocks with pricing similar to its long-standing 4.6 offerings.
) prototype Coyote blower was a major feature of its booth. It uses the same Eaton-supplied TVS rotor pack as previous Edelbrock Ford superchargers, and promises the same OEM reliability and low maintenance, plus 50-state emissions compliance when used with the stock airbox. Changes from the existing S197 blower are the addition of Edelbrock fuel rails, position limiters for the injectors because of the Coyote's aimed injectors, and no coil covers (as the Coyote engine "is too good-looking to cover up"). Edelbrock is also packaging 15-inch of intake runner length into this kit for good off-boost torque. The first units should be on sale when you read this, and pricing was planned "at or below the current blower retail price of $5,999." For '11, the company also added the fully ported E-Series castings as the step-up heads from its street-replacement Performer and Performer RPM heads.
There are always plenty of surprises in store when we cross paths with JR Granatelli. This year Granatelli Motor-sports (www.granatellimotorsports.com
) showed off a host of new goods from a turbo system for the Coyote 5.0 to a line of modular, expandable fluid tanks. What really caught our eye was this frequency-based mass air that references a wideband 02 sensor to calibrate itself!
Hellion Power Systems
Hellion Power Systems (www.hellionpowersystems.com
) was sharing booth space with its turbo supplier, Turbonetics, and showing off its new turbo kit for the '11 Mustang GT. The kit promises a no-cut install and a power output range of 550 to 850 hp.
We like the cylindrical design of Hurst's (www.hurst-shifters.com
) new Billet/Plus shifter for the '11 Mustang GT. The arm is machined from 6061 T-6 aluminum billet, so you'll have to drive over this thing with a bulldozer to bend it. The pivot bearing is spherical, and the color is anodized into the aluminum. The throw is reduced by 37 percent, so expect a slightly higher effort.
Magnuson's 2300 (2.3-liter) supercharger was looking good in blue on an '11 GT. A 1.9-liter is also available; both use the stock throttle body and water-to-air charge cooling. An optional version with a cast-in 95mm throttle body is also available. Magnuson (www.magnusonproducts.com
) offers the blower kit at $6,650 with the stock airbox, as shown here. They also have a cold-air inlet for those not needing California emissions compliance.
) was quick to market with its 5.0 Coyote Power Pak pistons. A variety of domes for NA and boosted engines are available. Mahle's piston kits include coated skirts, wire pinlocks, and performance rings. Pricing is $603 per set.
Making a strong push into the '05-and-up exhaust market is MBRP (www.mbrp.com
), which has a full line of offerings-headers, H-pipes, and axle-back systems-for both the '11 Mustang GT and '11 Shelby GT500. Proving its serious about high-performance Fords, MBRP showed off its own Kenne Bell-supercharged '11 GT500 on the show floor.
) is a legacy name in the performance world that's always got a booth full of sharp new parts for Fords and Mustangs. Pictured is its '05-'10 aluminum coolant tank, which represents a bunch of new parts, including front motor plates; shim kits; improved breathers; a dry-sump-friendly, locking dipstick; a 9-inch Ford pinion wrench; anti-roll kits; plus no-crush rubber transmission oil-pan gaskets for C4, C6, AOD, AODE, 4R70W, E4OD and 4R100 transmissions.
Shades of its products for the original 5.0-MSD (www.msdignition.com
) released this compact, plug-and-play two-stage rev limiter for '11 Mustang GTs. It's designed to provide a lower rev limiter during dragstrip launches; retail is $221.40.
We know the '11 Mustang GT's Coyote 5.0 loves nitrous. Well, the spray gurus at Nitrous Express (www.nitrousexpress.com
) introduced the first plate kit for our new favorite engine. The kit engages the nitrous based on throttle position, and adds power in increments of 35, 50, 75, 100, 125, 150, and 200. Sounds like fun.
Not to be outdone by sister company Vortech, Paxton (www.paxtonauto.com
) showed its version of the all-black centrifugal High Output blower on this suitably midnight '11 GT. A Pep Boys Speed Shop program car, the GT carried Magnaflow 3-inch exhaust, Eibach Pro Kit springs, KMC Nova wheels, General tires, 3D Carbon's body kit, Kicker Audio and Pioneer electronics, Auto Meter gauges, and Lakewood suspension bits in addition to the Paxton blower.
Already on the market with its centrifugal blower, Procharger (www.procharger.com
) displayed its driver-side mounted '11 GT Coyote blower in a nicely dolled-up project car. Extras included a Canton overflow bottle, painted valve covers, Magnaflow H-pipe, Magnaflow muffler deletes, Granatelli Motor Sports suspension bits, 3.73 gears, and Street Scene body work. The hood-lift struts are from Classic Design Concepts; the wheels are 20x9-front and 20x10-rear Rocket Racing rims. Procharger offers its blower in Stage I and II form; Stage II brings on a larger intercooler, larger air filter, fan shroud, and coolant tank. That kit retails for $6,396 and delivers 615-plus flywheel horsepower using 7 pounds of boost, an eight-rib drive, and a P-1SC-1 blower. The standard kit is $5,899.
To prove it has the goods in '11 Mustang GT tuning, SCT had a special car in its booth. You gotta love guys who can tear apart a brand-new car and come up with a 10.4-second, 133-mph timeslip. That would be Fastlane (www.fastlaneturbo.com), which had its $7,995 turbo-kitted '11 GT in the SCT (www.sctflash.com
) booth. Ostensibly a 7-pound kit, the Fastlane effort includes a fuel pump, larger injectors, a big BorgWarner turbo and, of course, SCT electronic tuning. Beneath that, the Coyote had been to the vet, gaining Wiseco pistons, K1 rods, Cam Motion cams, and ported heads by Westside. Circle D upgraded the automatic trans. For 10-second duty, this car received 72-lb/hr injectors and dual Fastlane fuel pumps. It put down 730 hp and 650 lb-ft at the tire.
One of the coolest non-performance products we saw at the show was Scosche's (www.scosche.com
) dash kit for the '10-and-up Mustang. This custom, factory-fit dash kit incorporates HVAC controls and delivers a clean way to install an aftermarket head unit in your new Mustang.
Aluminum carving specialist SilverHorse (www.silverhorseracing.com
) offers a warehouse of bright billet for S197 owners. New at SEMA were the company's shock tower covers-too new for pricing, actually. Shown on its Explorer Xpress-supercharged Twisted Six Mustang, the covers fit in with the SilverHorse honeycombed rear valance insert ($149), bright aluminum fuel door ($159), door pulls ($109), door locks ($50), and other accessories.
Loud and louder might describe SLP's (www.slponline.com
) '11 Mustang GT mufflers. Two versions debuted at SEMA, both in stainless steel and with 4-inch polished tips. The more standard PowerFlo axle back retails for $599.95, the Loud Mouth is $439.95. More under the radar was SLP's rear blackout panel for all '11 Mustangs. It's an ABS plastic part that requires no drilling or cutting. It retails at $59.95.
Snow Performance's (www.snowperformance.net) Comp/One Boost Cooler. Especially appropriate for boosted Mustangs, the system offers a large 3-quart reservoir and Snow's Ultra High Output pump. But the heart of the system is DiabloSport Trinity flash tuner, which provides tuning for the car's ECM, as well as control over the Boost Cooler. It offers an all-in-one solution that should have great appeal for water/meth first-timers.
Looking racy, SPEC's (www.specclutch.com
) Super Twin clutch for Coyote 5.0s retails for $1,399. It's an all-billet, rebuildable, multi-disc clutch and flywheel assembly that's suitable for wild race power but easy enough to drive on the street. It's listed under PN SF49SST.
Keeping current with the fast moving world of technology, Superchips (www.superchips.com
) announced the launch of its Vivid tuning system based on an Archos tablet running Google's Android software. The tablet communicates with your PCM via a Bluetooth-enabled OBD-II connector. The Vivid will not only be able to tune your ride, but will offer such applications as a Maintenance Minder, Driving Coach, and G-meter. You'll also be able to run non-automotive apps, view pictures, surf the web, and get driving directions from the Archos. In the future, the software will be available to other Android devices, like the phone in your pocket.
We're always amazed by the amount of interest in Cleveland and Clevor engines. We see a few at shows and races, but the new parts of this revy combination never seem to stop coming. Trick Flow (www.trickflow.com
) had two new Cleveland/Clevor two-barrel intakes at SEMA: one for carbureted, the other for fuel-injected applications. Fresh from the foundry, the parts were short on dyno numbers or details, but company reps said interest was high, especially from the many Australian buyers at the show and Pantera owners, who prefer the EFI version.
We see plenty of mufflers at SEMA, but if you really want to catch our eye, put them under a sleek, unique Fox Mustang. That's just what Tim Phillips of Trinity Mufflers (www.trinitymufflers.com
) did. His Fox hatch features a unique lower cladding that smoothes the Fox's body lines by eliminating the molding. Tim plans to market this kit eventually, so we'll keep you posted.
For the carbon purist, Trucarbon (www.trucarbon.com
) has added a rear diffuser to its already extensive line of '10-'11 Mustang offerings. Retail is $1,100; it would look good with Trucarbon's Venom hood. Trufiber was also showing a $399 carbon-fiber Coyote 5.0 intake cover.
There were plenty of modified '11 Mustangs at SEMA, but the Tjin Edition (www.neiltjin.com
) was one of the more extensive of the design exercises. Subdued DuPont Cromax colors set the tone, while a black Vortech and Nitrous Express gas put the bite into the project. The vertically thick body kit is Tjin's Extreme Dimension, while Air Lift did the in-the-weeds lowering.