What would a supercharger issue be without a little controversy? After all, the companies that comprise this segment of the aftermarket get along with each other about as well as religious fundamentalists and the porn industry. They do everything but bomb each other's factories. Oops, we may have just given someone a very bad idea.
With this in mind, we decided to pull together four of the latest Mustang body style, each with a different aftermarket supercharger. Vortech, ProCharger, Saleen, and Kenne Bell were to be represented. All of the cars had five-speed gear jammer transmissions--no girl-o-matics here--and slicks were strongly suggested.
Well, sometimes things just don't go your way. The Saleen-infused Stang remained in the chassis shop the day of our slugfest, its interior removed in anticipation of its much-needed rollbar.
We then attempted to procure the Windveil Blue faux Saleen seen elsewhere in this weighty tome as a replacement, but it was not available on such short notice.
Then there was the Vortech-fed Roush Stage 2. Resplendent in bright yellow, we had visions of a cover car dancing in our heads. On judgement day, the owner twice called Raceway Park to let us know he was going to be "a little late."
Well, it's now some three months post facto, and we still haven't seen or heard from him. Good thing we didn't leave the lights on.
That left us with a pair of force-fed combatants--the Kenne Bell supercharged GT of John McGowan and Anthony Stoval's ProCharged Pony, both of which are '05 models. The latter was driven on this day by Justin Burcham of JPC Racing in Glen Burnie, Maryland, who built the car.
As usual, our rules were fairly simple and to the point: no gutted interiors, no nitrous, no race-only blowers. We wanted OE transmissions, stock long-blocks, and you could run any gear you wanted in the back.
Both cars were evenly matched. Each had been fitted with a set of 1 5/8-inch long-tube headers, a catalytic mid-pipe system, and after-cat mufflers. A set of 4.10 gears was present in each car's 8.8 and a Centerforce DFX clutch in each bellhousing. The pair also relied on DiabloSport programming for their respective computers. For two vehicles chosen at random, this was shaping up to be a remarkably fair test. They even had identical chin spoilers.