The following parts were tested at the autocross. Note that Maximum Motorsports sells the Eibach sway bars, so they are available from either company. Also, most of these parts are available separately or as parts of kits. Because suspension parts have interlinking functions, we recommend buying kits—the more encompassing the better.
|Lower Springs||Maximum Motorsports||422HO||$247.00|
|Panhard Bar||Maximum Motorsports||MMPB99A||$359.95|
|Rear Sway Bar||Eibach||3510.312||$172.43|
We didn’t even wipe the crumbs...
We didn’t even wipe the crumbs off the Nitto NTO1 tread because we wanted to show exactly how good the tires looked at the end of the day. We ran NT01s on our open-track '96 GT with great success; they lived through two weekends of grinding open-track action and would last a whole year in autocross duty. A set of dedicated track tires is a huge asset to any autocross or open-track program. For our autocross test we used 275/35ZR-18 tires.
We have to say it was tasty to get on an autocross course after years of road racing and open-track driving. Autocrossing is much less expensive than those other two corner-intensive disciplines and is the best way for an enthusiast to introduce himself to the corner-bending business. Like grudge-night drag racing, autocrossing is an affordable motorsport.
If nothing else, there is essentially no chance of either car-to-car and minimal chance of car-to-wall contact, plus brakes and tires last far longer because they just don't get worked as long as on a road course. On the plus side, the quick timing and technical nature of the course layouts is superb driver training. Ride-along passengers are a regular part of autocrossing, so the all-important coaching from an experienced driver is easy to get.
Our autocrossing test session was sanctioned by Speed Ventures, a Southern California-based organizer of autocross, open-track, and training events. We've driven in Speed Venture open-tracks before and found them well-organized, and held at a variety of interesting tracks. Typical of autocrosses, the only gear required was a daily driver Mustang and a helmet, and we drove 31 laps between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. using about half a tank of gas. We can't imagine not giving it a try.