It used to be if you wanted to impress the performance world, whether it was Mustangs or just the street car crowd in general, you headed to the drag strip. Setting the bar high with a blazing time in the quarter mile was enough to earn you the respect of your peers, and strike fear in your competition. While the drag strip is still a viable place to test and compete we’ve seen a new trend in recent years that appears to be growing exponentially in it’s popularity. Top speed runs at events like The Texas Mile, are quickly becoming favorites of enthusiasts, tuners, builders, pretty much the entire performance world. While seeing what you can do in a quarter mile is a lot of fun, seeing what your car can do flat out is something that’s peaked the interest of gearheads worldwide since the automobile was invented.
Late Model Restoration recently took their project High Impact out to The Texas Mile to see what its capable of, and how it stacks up against the competition. This deep impact blue 2013 has many of the bolt on mods that most of us might be shooting for on our own street/strip machine, or daily driver. The car was originally optioned with the 2013 Track Pack which included a Torsen differential, Boss oil cooler and Brembo brakes. They also had the option box ticked for the Recaro seats.
High Impact has had some mild suspension changes in the form of new springs, strut mounts, and dampers from Ford Racing Performance Parts. Under the hood an FRPP Whipple Supercharger has been added, along with a Blow By Racing off road X-pipe and a 2013 GT500 axle back quad tipped exhaust upgrade. The Whipple huffer is inhaling via a JLT GT500 carbon fiber cold air intake. It’s all been tuned with SCT software. Spinning the dyno rollers has revealed a stout 563HP at the rear tires.
Outside the car the styling has been tweaked a bit but LMRS kept it subtle, making changes that deceive the uninitiated and force even the most faithful Mustang fan to take a second look. Up front the stock GT grille was swapped for an OE Boss grille, though LMRS tweaked this a bit by leaving in the stock GT fog lights, a nice touch that we really liked. Matching that Boss grille is a Boss chin spoiler kit. Out back a GT500 rear valance was installed to allow the use of the GT500 axle back exhaust with quad tips. The car is riding on a set of 2011 GT500 wheels and Nitto tires.
LMRS sent us this video of them making the run at The Texas Mile. They stated that the car ran consistently all weekend long, this wasn’t a one and done 174.6 MPH pass. Also worthy of mentioning, the car held it’s own when compared to newer more expensive cars, including it’s big brother the 2013 GT500, and cross town rivals ZL1 Camaro and ZR1 Corvette.
We did a little math and figured depending on all your options, misc dealer charges etc, the car should sticker around $36-$40k. Per LMRS’s web site it has a grand total $13,958.91 in bolt on parts (not including tax, shipping or labor to install). When you compare that to the cost of a new GT500, or other car in this category, that’s not a bad price. That deal gets even sweeter if you spread the cost out over time by doing one mod at a time, and do the wrenching yourself.
The video was shot with multiple camera angles, looking out the front window, looking out the back window, one on the driver, one outside the car, and one on the speedometer. Most interesting of all to us though was the header cam. This car is still equipped with the stock stainless steel headers that came on it from the factory. While the full run video shows multiple angles of a 174 MPH run, and one shot of the glowing header, the header camera video might tell the story of what’s going on under the hood even better.
You can watch as the stock header goes from idle cold, to red hot, then a bright cherry what we’d probably consider white hot. With no EGT sensors on board for the run it’s hard to say exactly what the temperature was, but something else that we can point out is that the header was still glowing red a full minute after the run ended after the end of the video.
Left to Right: You can see the progression of heat in the header as time passes.
Also of note is how stable the car appears to be at speed. We hear stories on a regular basis of how a car moves around a lot at those speeds, which we’d believe. However if you watch both videos, you never really see the driver sawing away at the wheel. Also in the header camera video you can see the car’s steering shaft clearly. It looks as though it moves around more through the first few gears than it does at all after the car hits higher speeds. While we realize the faster you go the finer your adjustments must become, it’s still worthy of mentioning.
All of these high speed run videos lately have us itching to load up for the weekend and hit a top speed event. We’ll be keeping an eye on High Impact as well as others making the journey for top speed glory in the future. Of course we’ll be posting the results of those outings right here.