While the power-adder horsepower wars are well underway with Ford’s latest pony car, still others are pushing the 2018 Mustang GT to see just how it will perform naturally aspirated. In an effort to further its calibrations for customers, VMP Performance
has stepped up its in-house project car with E85 and tuning.
Running at stock weight with an unmolested factory suspension, VMP’s 190-pound hot shoe clicked off two passes in the car with a half tank of corn. Foot-braking the car off the line and launching at 1,800 RPM with the car in Drag Mode, the VMP 2018 Mustang GT dropped two tenths off its previous best pass with an 11.64 at 122.08 mph run.
The biggest challenge was the transmission calibration. — Joe Goodnough, VMP
Perhaps even more impressive is the car did so with the stock 3.15 rear gears and running a 1.763 60-foot on the stock 235/50 R18 Pirelli all-season tires.
For the 2 passes in the video the car was on a VMP E85 tune on an otherwise stock car. The car shifted at 7,700 RPM with the Gen 3 Coyote howling through the traps at approximately 7,300 RPM in Fifth gear.
VMP Performance’s 2018 Mustang dropped two tenths at the drag strip. With just a custom calibration and a half-tank of E85, it ran deep into the 11-second zone. (Photo Credit: VMP Performance)
“The biggest challenge was the transmission calibration. The control system interacts with the transmission differently,” VMP calibrator Joe Goodnough explained. “Most changes were to spark, cam timing, and transmission calibration.”
Cleary the dual-fuel 5.0-liter responds well to higher-octane pump gas and tuning, but that definitely made use wonder how much more was in the naturally aspirated tank on a car like this.
The next step is to bolt a blower onto the car and party with some boost. — Joe Goodnough, VMP
“That really depends on how much money you are willing to throw at it,” Joe said. “I believe with some headers, a Cobra Jet intake manifold, a cold air intake, and some more tuning you may be able to squeeze another 30 to 40 horsepower out of it.”
Save for the change in fuel and tuning, the VMP 2018 Mustang was stock right down the the factory rear tires. Imagine how well it will run as this combination gets more aggressive.
Since VMP produces its own line of TVS supercharger systems, this car probably won’t take that next all-natural step, however.
“The next step is to bolt a blower onto the car and party with some boost,” Joe added.
Seeing how well the car runs already, we can’t wait to see what happens when a Gen 3 Coyote meets a Gen 3 TVS supercharger…