The Gen 3 Coyote burbles at the starting line on the freshly dried surface. The tree is coming down. Just off idle the 2018 Mustang lurches forward as the twin-screws stuff boost into the DOHC heads and the sticky Mickeys dig into the surface. The ’Stang tracks straight, lighting up with an impressively low e.t.. The number wows because — stop us if you have heard this one before — the car has a stock engine a stock transmission. And, oh yeah, it’s on the verge of running eights.
I plan on getting this car into the eights and it doesn’t seem to far away from that mark. — Ali Rasa
“My first trip out to the quarter mile, I managed to pull off a 9.18 at 152.96 MPH,” car owner Ali Rasa enthused. “This is after my team over at Midnight Performance and I literally dried the track ourselves with leaf blowers to help the staff at Evadale Raceway.”
Ali Rasa’s 2018 Mustang is another poster child for the potency of a 2018 Mustang GT paired with a power adder. On its first outing with a Whipple-boosted combo, this car ran a 9.18 at 152.96 MPH.
So the conditions weren’t exactly ideal, but this car is getting it done. Yet another showcase for what the latest Mustang GT can do with a power adder and the right supporting combo, Ali’s car is the quickest supercharged 2018 Mustang of the moment thanks, in large part, to a Whipple Superchargers Gen 5 twin-screw supercharger atop its stock Coyote.
“Before going with the Whipple, I was a big all-motor guy and well known for it. I ran 10s with the stock motor in a 2015 Mustang,” Ali said. “Before boost and with simple bolt-ons, the 2018 Mustang made 500 rear-wheel horsepower. Now it’s probably between 900-1,000 horsepower at the wheels.”
Bound For Boost
Those kinds of digits will definitely entice the performance-minded to move on from natural aspiration, but there are plenty of power adders to choose from. For Ali, the decision came down to the performance characteristics of this twin-screw setup.
“I decided on the Gen 5 due to the instant power and results posted by Whipple Superchargers,” Ali said. “The new-design Generation 5 3.0 Whipple sets the bar very high in the supercharger world.”
With a Whipple Gen 5 supercharger, a Steeda suspension, a custom Lund Racing calibration and a host of supporting bolt-ons, this combination is pushing four digits and running low nines. (Photo Credit: Ali Rasa)
Ali’s Mustang runs out of the Midnight Performance stable, which is home to another impressively quick new Mustang. While the shop performs the hardware upgrades, a car like this also needs custom tuning to maximize its performance. Ali also turned to the gurus at Lund Racing to dial the combo in. It doesn’t hurt that the company has its own Whipple-boosted 2018 Mustang development vehicle.
“Our in-house R&D vehicle helped us develop a calibration that’s repeatable. Being able to physically sit with the car for long periods of time and test changes by driving it on the dyno, street, or track allows us to properly calibrate,” Jon Lund Jr., of Lund Racing, said. “The biggest aid our car has added is allowing us to figure out the 10R80. Track testing was key into translating a similar calibration to Ali’s car.”
Power to the Pavement
One of the reasons Ali chose this twin-screw blower is its instant boost. However, that immediate hit of torque can present challenges on the drag strip.
“The main challenges to getting a positive-displacement blower to go this quickly is traction and nailing down the shift points,” Jon explained. “Ali’s car is making 200 more horsepower than our car, so the acceleration rate changes how we need to handle things in the calibration.”
When 9.18 is your opening performance, it sets the stage for an impressive run, and Ali’s tuner is confident this car will reach his e.t. goal. “I think a max-effort Whipple setup will go eights on the 2018,” Jon Lund Jr., of Lund Racing, predicted. “Once all the little details are ironed out to get that perfect 60- and 330-foot, it’ll do it!”
Making the power is one thing. Tweaking its power curve is another. However, putting it all together by planting the output to the pavement means upgrading the factory independent rear suspension. It was never designed to grapple with this level of thrust off the dealer lot. To gain the needed grip, Ali selected parts from another specialist, Steeda.
“With this list of parts the car efficiently puts the power down to the ground and eliminates any bit of rear subframe movement, which is notorious on these IRS cars,” Jigar Patel, sales rep at Steeda, explained. “With that issue solved, Ali could focus on making the power needed to go fast and not worry about traction.”
His car definitely made some power, and the complete recipe delivered in an impressive fashion. Even though Ali didn’t reach his goal right off the bat, the combo showed that it’s only a matter of time.
“Ali reached out to me with one ultimate goal. He wanted to be the first Whipple 2018 in the eights,” Jigar said. “I told Ali to look no further and started listing parts that have proven successful on our ’18 Silver Bullet drag car. Even though the car wasn’t able to get in the eights his first time out, it ran a low-9-second pass, making it the quickest supercharged ’18.”
• Whipple Superchargers Gen 5 3.0-liter twin-screw supercharger
“Steeda parts helped me put that instant power to the ground with absolutely no wheel hop or bogging at launch,” Ali added. “The 9.1 as just a first ‘Hey, we out this car together last weekend’ trip where it was a trial. I plan on getting this car into the eights and it doesn’t seem to far away from that mark.”
It’s not far away at all, so stay tuned to see just how quick this stock-engine, stock-trans 2018 Mustang can run with twin-screw boost.