Entries for 'BillyJ'

29

TESTED: Ford Mustang GT Power Packs 1-3

by Billy Johnson

Ford Performance offers three different 50-state legal “Power Packs” for the 2015-2017 Mustang GT that increases horsepower without affecting the factory warranty*.  We back-to-back test Power Packs 1, 2, & 3 on a stock Mustang GT to see if Ford’s claim of 13-37hp increases are legitimate.  We then analyze the GT350 intake manifold’s effect on the torque curve to see if it really has less low-RPM torque than stock in favor of high-RPM power.  Finally, we determine which packages would be best for street and track use through in-depth torque and gear ratio analysis.


 

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10

TESTED: Ford Performance Cat-Back Exhaust and GT350 Valence

by Billy Johnson

The Ford Mustang may be the best-selling sports car in the world at the time of this writing, yes you read that right, but it is far from the best sounding sports car in the world. We reached out to Ford Performance for their far more attractive and aggressive M-5200-M8TBV Touring Exhaust System and GT350 lower valence with integrated quad-tips to improve the looks and sound of our S550 Mustang GT.


 

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15

TESTED: BG Syncro Shift II Synthetic Gear Oil

by Billy Johnson

Changing out the factory transmission fluid for a higher performance oil is a common solution to reduce the notchy-ness and improve shifting feel. This is especially important in the Getrag MT-82 used in the 2011-2017 Ford Mustang. While we already changed out the trans fluid in our test car, Tim at OPMustang.com said I “HAD TO” try the BG Syncro Shift II Synthetic Gear Oil. I wasn’t really motivated, since the current Royal Purple Synchromax was already a big improvement over stock, but Tim offered to buy me a steak dinner if I didn’t think there was an improvement, so I gave it a try.


 

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24

TESTED: STEEDA Anti-Wheel Hop Package

by Billy Johnson

First iterations of new technologies are rarely flawless. When the Mustang ditched the solid axle in 2015 in favor of a 21st century Independent Rear Suspension, it transformed into a modern-day sports car with greatly improved ride quality and handling dynamics. Unfortunately, the new diff and subframe are mounted with soft, compliant rubber bushings that cause a significant wheel hop when launching the car and unwanted toe changes in corners. This affects drag and road racers alike. In order to eliminate these issues, we tested Steeda Autosport’s Ultimate ‘Stop the Hop’ Package and Adjustable Differential Bushing Insert System.


 

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27

TESTED: Continental Tire ExtremeContact Sport

by Billy Johnson

“Same level dry performance as a Michelin Pilot Super Sport”. That is a HUGE statement by Continental when the PSS is hands down the segment leading benchmark.  Continental is extremely proud of their brand new ExtremeContact™ Sport tire that was just released earlier this month as a replacement for their ExtremeContact™ DW tire.  We logged nearly a thousand miles on the new Sport in both the wet and dry, and put it up against the outgoing DW in a back to back test at Palm Beach International Raceway to see if it lives up to Continental’s claims.


 

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26

Project Viper GTS: Part 9 – RareFab/Roe Racing Oil Pan Baffle Kit

by Billy Johnson

Due to the high capabilities of the Viper, a huge strain is put on the factory oiling system on road courses and at the strip.  This can cause oil starvation and a spun rod bearing.  Using modern rubber can increase this risk, especially for 1996-1999 Gen-2 Vipers which have arguably the worst oil pan of any generation of Viper.  To combat this problem, we upgrade to the larger 10-quart oil pan and windage tray from the 2000-2002 Vipers and install RareFab/Roe Racing’s race-proven Oil Pan Baffle Kit.


 

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20

Project E90 M3: Head to Head with 2016 Mustang GT

by Billy Johnson

Packing more than 50whp over stock, our Project E90 M3 took to the track at Palm Beach International Raceway (ROAD COURSE) to see how it stacks up against a 2016 Ford Mustang GT.  Both cars have similar power, weight, and are equipped with similarly sized Continental ExtremeContact DW tires.  How will our modified 8 year old sport sedan benchmark compare to a modern “pony car” that’s transitioned away from its roots to become a corner carver? Read on to find out.


 

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15

Driver Development Title

DRIVER DEVELOPMENT: Learning Processes

by Billy Johnson

How do we become better at driving? Practice makes perfect, right?  Well not necessarily.  Without feedback and direction, additional practice won’t always improve your ability and can possibly lead to the development of bad habits.  So in reality, perfect practice makes perfect.  In Part 2 of the Driver Development series, we discuss how drivers learn to improve their craft through various methods from coaching to data analysis to simulators which all aid in the advancement of the skill of driving.


 

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30
  Do your wheels flex?  We test Carbon Revolution's Carbon Fiber Wheels By: Billy Johnson There is a lot more to Carbo...

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20

Project Viper GTS - Part 9 - Bob's Air Oil Separator

Project VIPER GTS: Part 8 – Bob’s Air-Oil Separator

by Billy Johnson

All cars create blow-by and positive crank case pressure which pumps oil and vapors into the engine’s intake to be burned off for emissions.  This problem is worse on forced induction cars and performance cars driven at the track.  Not only does this oil gunk up the intake tract and valves, it reduces the octane of your fuel which robs power and causes detonation.  We installed a Bob’s Air-Oil Separator to the PCV valve and a catch can for the valve cover vent to see how much oil our Viper’s engine was pumping into the intake after some street and track use.


 

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16

Project E90 M3: Part 5 - K&N Filter Cover

Project E90 M3: Part 5 – K&N Filter

by Billy Johnson

We gave our M3 a quick and easy bump in power by swapping out the factory air filter for the industry-leading High Performance K&N air filter.  We have seen some impressive gains from K&N products and feel there’s no reason you shouldn’t have one on every car you own!  But how much power can really be gained over the OEM BMW air filter in this highly stressed and finely tuned 8,250rpm screaming V8?  Read on to find out!


 

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14

Project Viper Part 7 Heatshield Products Cover

Project VIPER GTS: Part 7 – HeatShield Products

by Billy Johnson

From coolant to cabin temperatures, Vipers are notoriously hot due to having one of the largest engines ever stuffed inside a sportscar.  To combat this problem we turn to the thermal insulation experts at HeatShield Products to keep the heat in the exhaust system to lower the temperature inside the cabin and side sills.  Hopefully we will prevent our side sills from discoloring and burning our legs when getting in and out of the car without proper clothing and ingress/egress technique.


 

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11

Project Viper GTS: Part 6 - Corsa Exhaust and Kooks HFC

Project VIPER GTS: Part 6 - Corsa Performance Exhaust and Kooks Green Cats

by Billy Johnson

After some impressive gains from intake work in Part 4, we now turn our attention to the opposite side of the engine to improve the evacuation of exhaust gasses as well as reduce the cabin temperature of our notoriously hot viper.  For as outlandish and attention grabbing the Viper’s style was, the exhaust note did not have the same head-turning appeal.  To remedy this we reached out to our friends at Corsa Performance for their 3” cat-back exhaust to give our viper a more sporty and refined tone.  To further boost the volume and greatly knock down the calf-burning side sill heat, we installed a pair of compact Kooks Green Cats which are both environmentally and power friendly. 


 

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18

Project NSX Pt 6 Title

Project NSX: Part 6 – Building the Ultimate Fuel Pump Assembly

by Billy Johnson

The NSX’s stock 155lph fuel pump reportedly maxes out around 400whp which will not suffice for our turbocharged 500whp+ goal.  We upgrade the factory pump with the new Walbro 416 E85 compatible fuel pump and visit our friends at Brown and Miller Racing Solutions for motorsport-grade alcohol approved fuel lines, fittings, and electrical wiring.  We finish the build by taking our hanger to be PTFE coated by Calico coatings.


 

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28

How to PROPERLY select and size TIRES for PERFORMANCE

by Billy Johnson

The most important part of your car is not the engine, suspension, or brakes. It’s the TIRES!!!  This is because your car can only perform as well as the capability of its tires. I’m often asked which tire is best and what size to buy.  In this article I discuss my methods for choosing and properly sizing the right tires.  I’m not into the “hella-flush” or “stance” scenes so this article is focused towards those who care about the PERFORMANCE of their car, whether on the street or on the track.


 

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13

Project Viper Part 5 Rad Fan Cover

Project Viper GTS: Part 5 – Radiator Fan & Wiring Upgrade

by Billy Johnson

The Viper is a “racecar for the street” in more ways than one; and like a racecar, it does not like to sit in stop and go traffic and can run hot and overheat without proper airflow on a hot summer day. To combat this we upgraded the radiator fan on our 1997 Viper GTS with the higher flowing, larger fan from the 1998-2002 cars. In addition, we safeguarded the potentially flawed wiring and relay box by running standalone relays with dedicated power and ground wires.  To further extend the life of the relays we used a trick pair of “NOsparc®” spark suppressors in the harness.


 

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06

Project E90 M3 Part 4 Wheels and Tire Cover

Project E90 M3: Part 4 – Wheels and Tires

by Billy Johnson

Choosing a tire is one of the most important decisions that anyone will make for their car. Since our M3 is a daily driver in Florida, wet-weather performance is very important along with excellent dry grip and stability for spirited driving, which is a prerequisite for an M3.  To give our car a more sporty appearance, we turn to VMR Wheels for a set of competition inspired 19” V703 wheels to replace our standard 19” wheels wrapped in Continental’s ExtremeContact DW tire.  We then head to Palm Beach International Raceway to log some laps to see how the new package performs.


 

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28

Project E90 M3 LED Angel Eye Cover

Project E90 M3: Part 3 – LED Angel Eyes

by Billy Johnson

Our E90 M3 is starting to look a bit dated now that its twin turbo successor is on the streets.  We turned to our friends at European Auto Source to help us update the look of our M3 by replacing the Angel Eyes’ original yellow halogen bulbs with a set of bright white EAS H8 LED bulbs that will give our M3 the modern look it deserves.


 

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11

Project Viper GTS Part 4 Intro

Project Viper GTS: Part 4 – Baseline Dyno and K&N Intake Test

by Billy Johnson

The Viper is truly a car built around its engine.  In Part 4, we take Project Viper GTS to the dyno for a baseline power audit and see if our mighty 8.0L V10 is cranking out the factory claimed 450hp and 490lb-ft of torque.  From there we add K&N replacement air filters and change out the disruptive corrugated plastic intake tubing for a set of ROE Racing polished aluminum smooth intake tubes to see if we can squeeze out a few more ponies.


 

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09

Project Viper Part 3 Cover

Project Viper GTS: Part 3 – Baseline Track Testing (Data & Video)

by Billy Johnson

The Viper has a reputation for being difficult to drive and even (incorrectly) known as a bad handling car.  Since the 2nd Generation Viper has not been reviewed by a magazine in close to 15 years, we took Project Viper to the track to dispel some myths and assess the car’s balance and handling ability.


 

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