2005 Ford Mustang - Test-Bred Bullet - Low 11s Silver Bullet
JMS Chip's Silver Bullet Project Car Ran Low 11s While Developing Parts For Your '05
writer: Dr. Jamie Meyer
photographer: Steve Turner, Courtesy Of JMS Chip
Chris Johnson, now of Superchips Custom Tuning, may be the busiest man in the automotive industry. Chris and his team at SCT spent the last 18 months trying to decipher the challenging and convoluted Spanish Oak programming that controls the new '05 Mustang. So, that instantly makes SCT one of the most wanted tuners on the planet as it seems every speed house in the world wants in on the sudden push to market that everything Mustang-specific now has. Interestingly, Chris' knowledge of these cars comes from several different sources.
When he left Alabama and headed to Florida to start SCT, Chris left a thriving tuning business, JMS Chip and Performance, in the hands of the employees who still man the post. Chief tuner Monty Johnson (no relation to Chris) was left in charge of the daily operations of one of the hottest fuel-injection tuning stations in the South. So, not only does SCT benefit from Chris' daily study of the newest in computer programming, but Chris has his own laboratory back home that helps supply him with up-to-date numbers on what it takes to push an '05 Mustang down the road with more efficiency.
When it came time to take delivery of a new '05 Mustang, add some parts, then test his tuning capabilities, Monty already had the JMS team ready to go. "This is a company-owned car," Monty tells us of the silver '05 Mustang GT featured here. "It came in as a five-speed car, and we immediately got to work designing the JMS Performance Packages."
Monty is referring to JMS' nice collection of parts that 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords magazine took a look at in our August '05 issue ("And, So It Begins," August '05, p. 111). Of course, mastering the control over the computer system was the biggest accomplishment. The JMS-spec cold-air induction, underdrive pulleys, CMRC delete plates, 4.30 gears, and M/T ET Street tires seem logical to add (these parts make up the top JMS Performance package), but it's the tuning that makes this combination of parts work so well together. Monty spends many of his days now answering questions from new '05 owners on what it takes to make their cars faster, and the common theme is that the JMS tune has to be in place.
"Man, they're a nightmare," Monty tells us in reference to the computer system in the '05. "The SCT tune is the answer for the tune, but we have quickly run into the real problem-the spark plugs. Still, with our Power Package III and street tires, our car ran 12.43 at 107 mph with the five-speed still in it. I think the '05 Mustang is an amazing performance car. It's all there. With $1,000 worth of bolt-on parts, you've got a mid-12-second car. I think the future looks great for these cars."
Once the deep 12s had been reached with little more than gears, tires, and a tune-up, the JMS crew got right to work on the next project-nitrous. Knowing that the bottom end in the Three-Valve wouldn't take much more than 400 hp at the wheels, JMS went ahead and upgraded to a 0.020-inch over block, Mod Max pistons, and ModMax rods. It also installed an automatic 4R70W Ford
transmission for increased durability and, more importantly, increased consistency when testing on the gas. With a 200-shot Nitrous Pro-Flow system and a full JBA exhaust system, Monty and the crew started testing. As they worked their way into the bigger jets of the nitrous system, the '05 Mustang responded with tremendous results. Their best pass came when the converter broke, and they rolled to an 11.07 pass at 123 mph. That came with an impressive 6.47-second e.t. in the eighth indicating that low, low-10s were not going to be a problem. That's heady stuff for a car that JMS started testing only four months before.
So, development of new parts for the '05 continues at JMS with the help of Dusty Renfroe, Glen Blakely, and Steve Sisler. In earlier issues of 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords magazine, we have detailed the problems that tuners are facing with the unique sparkplug that Ford Motor Company chose to install in the Three-Valve motor, which has kept tuners from going to a colder plug to avoid detonation in forced-induction applications. At first, JMS enlisted the help of Paul Svinicki at Paul's High Performance to create a tool to gap down the stock plugs. After hitting the wall again, JMS has worked out a special procedure that modifies the stock head to accept 10mm motorcycle sparkplugs. With a large number of heat range plugs available, JMS has once again gotten over a major hurdle (and perhaps the largest one) in tuning the '05 Mustang for more performance.
That breakthrough came as Monty and crew were preparing their new supercharged engine. This combination will feature a Paxton 1200 blower, a forged-steel Cobra crankshaft, ported heads, blower cams from Crower (reground stockers), and 17cc dished pistons. Look for the JMS '05 to be well in the nine-second zone by the time you read this.
5.0 Tech SpecsEngine And DrivetrainBlock0.020-over Two-Valve iron block built by JMSDisplacement 286 ciCylinder Heads Stock unportedCamshaftStockIntake Manifold StockThrottle Body StockPower Adder 200hp nitrous system by Nitrous Pro-FlowExhaust JBA long-tube headers, JBA H-pipe, JBA mufflers and after-catFuel System StockTransmission4R70W rebuilt by Dusty Renfroe of JMSRearendStock 8.8 w/Eaton differential, Moser axles, and 3.73 gears
ElectronicsEngine ManagementCustom tune flash of stock computer by Monty of JMS Chip and PerformanceIgnitionStockGaugesStock
Suspension And ChassisFront SuspensionK-member StockA-arms StockSprings StockStruts StockWheelsBogart Fluted StarsTires Mickey ThompsonBrakes StockRear SuspensionSpringsStockShocks StockControl ArmsSteeda rear upper/lower control armsWheelsBogart Fluted StarsTires M/T ET Streets 28x12x16BrakesStockChassis StiffeningNone