The inclusion of this JLT Ram Air Intake system netted us four more rear-wheel horses and four extra lb-ft of torque. Keep in mind: torque is represented as a seat-of-the-pants/driving-experience sensation. With the gains we're recording from each bolt-on, we're fairly sure Ivan will immediately notice a difference in the way his 'Stang accelerates. Amount of time required to bolt on: 30 minutes.
Bolting on a three-piece, aluminum underdrive pulley system similar to this setup from March Performance (PN 1180; $209.94) is the ultimate method of reducing the amount of horsepower the engine gives up (also known as drag) as the serpentine belt turns the alter-nator and water pump. With underdrive pulleys, the belt-driven accessories run at a slower speed than the engine itself. The reduced drag brought on by slower accessory speed basically frees up horsepower and torque.
The six-rib, 5-inch, SFI 18.1-approved crankshaft damper on the right is markedly smaller than the stocker. The two parts interchange easily. Once the fan is removed, Saul uses a standard puller to dislodge the OEM balancer, an 18mm socket, and Snap-On's air impact gun (PN XT7100; $369.95) to install the new one; if using a standard torque wrench, secure the crank-pulley bolt with 60 lb-ft of torque. Saul recommends adding a dab of black silicone to the keyway inside the March pulley before installing it.
Our trio of underdrive pulleys netted six more ponies, and torque gained 6 lb-ft as well. Amount of time required to bolt on: 1 hour and 30 minutes.
DiabloSport's Predator handheld flash tuner (PN U7146; $439) rounds out our experiment. The Predator isn't a bolt-on component; it's actually a plug-and-play device loaded with three preprogrammed tunes for Two-Valve Mustang engines. Each tuning file is designed to optimize spark timing, and air/fuel ratio curves for maximum performance using 87-, 89- or 93-octane pump gas. The Predator is also used for controlling various PCM-driven drivetrain (engine/automatic transmission) functions and sensors, data recording, and engine-code diagnostics. It also serves as a conduit between a 'Stang's PCM and DiabloSport's Chipmaster Revolution tuning software that Saul uses for some of the more specialized tuning he does with power-adder-assisted modulars.
We used Predator's out-of-the-box Performance Tune (adds spark down low/reduces fuel at top end) for 93-octane fuel. California's petrol unfortunately lacks 2 octane points (91 is tops in Cali), but is considered high-performance nonetheless. Although we didn't have an air/fuel gauge to determine the engine's actual rich/lean status, we detected a hint of detonation at the top of our initial dyno hit. We felt the detonation unfairly stunted our max horsepower and torque results. Saul used Predator to dial up 8 percent more fuel, which seemed to do the trick (the tuner allows fuel and timing increases and reductions up to 10 percent). Ivan's upgraded 4.6 roared to the tune of 243.92 hp and 271.40 lb-ft of torque when all was said and done. Amount of time required to bolt on: 15 minutes.