In South Georgia over the weekend, the RPM soared and the nitrous sprayed as the first major 2018 Mustang GT performance milestone fell just days after the cars hit dealer lots.
When each new Mustang model arrives the race is on to be the first to hit the major quarter-mile e.t. milestones, which really get serious beginning with the 10-second zone. When the S550 launched, Ford Performance set those records itself before the cars even arrived. With the launch of the 2018 Mustang, the cars landed with the public to set the records and Team Beefcake Racing set out to run be the first to run in the 10s at the Mod Nationals held at South Georgia Motorsports Park.
Just a week after taking the key fob for this 2018 Mustang GT automatic, Terry “Beefcake” Reeves (of Team Beefcake Racing) and Brian Campbell (of Finish Line Performance) put the first 2018 Mustang GT in the 10-second zone at the Mod Nationals.
“We also took our new 2018 Mustang with the new direct injection and 10-speed auto after just owning it a week and being the first to the 10s in a 2018,” Terry “Beefcake” Reeves announced on social media.
Late Model Restoration had already hit the dyno and run 11s with its 2018 project car, so the pressure was on to run in the 10s. Terry was busy running his 8-second 2015 Mustang in the race’s 6R80 automatic class, so he enlisted Brian Campbell, owner of Finish Line Performance, to pilot the bolt-on 2018 Mustang.
“Yes, our goal this weekend was to see just how fast we could get this new platform to go on a few simple mods,” Brian said. “We knew there was another company out there trying to make their car go ’11s in stock form. And we congratulate them on succeeding!”
Knowing the bar had been raised already, Terry added a choice set of bolt-on mods (see sidebar for the complete list) headlined by a Nitrous Outlet single-stage kit to the car and pulled out some of the necessary trunk carpet to drop a little weight. And, to get the combination working as a cohesive unit, Terry and Brian turned to Lund Racing for a custom calibration delivered by the new SCT Performance BDX handheld tuner.
When we saw that 11.32, we knew this car was going into the 10s! — Brian Campbell, Finish Line Performance
“…Lund Racing then just decreased ignition timing a bit. Then we set up the Nitrous Outlet WinMax Dual-Channel controller to start spraying at 3,000 rpm and shut off at 6,800 rpm,” Brian explained. “The car responded and went 11.322 at 123 mph, even though we were shutting the spray off before the shifts it was pushing through the shifts and hitting the rev limiter. When we saw that 11.32, we knew this car was going into the 10s!”
“Then Lund backed down the shift points a bit to keep it off the limiter. That is all the tuning that was done,” he added. “We then just played around with when to turn the spray on and off.”
Drag Strip Mode
At first Brian turned all the drive modes and traction control off and sprayed with the first pill.
“I was launching the car at a foot brake rpm of 2,000 rpm,” Brian said. “The spray would come on full force at 3,000 rpm (hence the lazy 60-foot times) and when it came on, felt like someone hit you in the rear, and was gone! The car feels and drives great!”
Quickly they turned up the nitrous and lowered its cut-off point to jibe with the car’s 7,000-rpm shift point.
The cornerstone of the modifications was a single-nozzle Nitrous Outlet wet system pilled for 150 horsepower.
“We ran the 11.32 running in standard mode with active traction turned off. All of this was on a 100 shot,” he explained. “So, we upped the pills to a 150 shot, put it in Drag Strip mode, lowered the spray to turn off at 6,500, to give the car a little more time to shift with the extra spray. The car responded very well and went the amazing 10.897 at 129.21mph.”
The Team Beefcake 2018 Mustang busted well into the 10s at 3,970 pounds, which included a half tank of gas, a 15-pound nitrous bottle, and its 230-pound driver.
“I think once we can spray through the shifts, the car may very well have a 9 in it on a 150 shot,” Terry said. “The wheels we are running on the front are actually 20x7s, so they aren’t small. I ordered them months ago in anticipation of getting a Performance Pack car, and something that would double duty on the street, but still match the rears.”
In addition to Weld Racing wheels and Mickey Thompson tires, the supporting cast of modifications includes a Corsa Extreme quad-tip cat-back exhaust, D.S.S driveshaft and halfshafts; a K&N drop-in air filter; Steeda’s Stop The Hop kit and lowering springs; a UPR Products oil separator catch can; and Viking adjustable dampers.
I think once we can spray through the shifts, the car may very well have a 9 in it on a 150 shot. — Terry “Beefcake” Reeves, Team Beefcake Racing
“Once we are shifting the car at 7,600 to 8,000 and spraying through shifts, this car will be pretty sick. I think gearing would help too,” Terry added. “I know LMR cut better 60s with a 3.55 gear, skinnies, and less weight, so it will be interesting to see how gearing plays out in the these transmissions. I know on the 6R80 it really didn’t seem to make much of a difference, but this car feels like it just has a little delay coming out of the hole. Perhaps some throttle body tuning will correct that.”
Brian is also confident that with improved 60-foot times the combination as it sits could run in the mid-10s. Of course, we’ll see it remain in this form for long, as boost is the next mod on the schedule for this record-setting ride.