It certainly bears repeating that all the horsepower and torque in the world means very little if you can’t adequately plant it to the pavement, and that where not only a quality shock, but one with a range of adjustment virtually pays for itself.
While one can certainly spend a pretty penny on a good set of racing shocks, trickle-down technology has made high-quality parts and pieces affordable to the masses — even the street car crowd that demands some adjustability but without the high-end bells and whistles more commonplace in hardcore drag racing. To target that part of the market,AFCO this spring launched their new Street Fighter series of single-adjustable front and rear shocks, which slide in above their more entry-level, three-way adjustable shocks as a more advanced option for drag racers.
A monotube design with AFCO’s latest technology, the Street Fighter shocks bolt in to the OEM mounting locations, making them a fairly straightforward install void of any cutting or fabrication work. Versus your factory shocks or other non-adjustable pieces, these improve your control and consistency with a wide range of rebound adjustment right at your fingertips, from full soft to full stiff — this allows you to tune the chassis and control the transfer of weight and adequately and precisely plant the rear tires at the initial hit.
Like AFCO has done with their higher-end racing shocks, the adjustment dial is on a detent so you can count the number of turns in either direction and not get “lost” in your tuning. This also makes for simple adjustments when moving from track to track, once you have some data in your back pocket. The adjustment is also highly valuable to weekend-warrior bracket racers, who can tune the chassis, much in the way they do with tires pressures, to improve how the car responds at launch, thereby effecting their reaction time.
“The bracket racers with decent power are looking for a shock that gives them a little better control than what the thee-way adjustables offer,” explains AFCO’s Eric Saffell. “It’s hard to give a firm performance boundary, but any car that has the capability of snapping the rear and lifting up off the starting line — a heavy door car with a bunch of gear, it’s going to be of real benefit. Any car that has the capability of wheels-up launches, where there’s enough torque, gear multiplication, and power to make weight transfer happen — these shocks can be a timing device to speed that up or slow it down.”
Current Street Fighter applications include 1967-2002 Chevrolet Camaro, 1967-87 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 1964-67 Chevelle, 1972-77 Vega, 1979-93 Ford Mustang, and a host of other popular makes and models. Two part numbers for front shocks are available for each make/model, with a standard and wheel stander version, the latter of which carries stiffer valving on the compression side to keep the car from pushing the oil pan or headers into the ground upon landing.