Ford Mustang **Roush 427 R** **435 Horsepower** Chicago Cars Direct HD
Test drive of a stunning Supercharged 427R Stage 3 Roush Mustang from Chicago Cars Direct.
Jack Roush knows a thing or two about racing and Mustangs. His road racing career includes more than 110 wins and 20 national championships, and this vast expertise is evident throughout the ROUSH 427R Trak Pak.
Designed for the daily driver who enjoys pushing his car to the limits on open track days, the ROUSH 427R Trak Pak Mustang has plenty of specialized content to accommodate the unique needs of those who like driving up to the edge on the racetrack in a safe, controlled environment.
With the addition of the intercooled ROUSHcharger™ the 427R Trak Pak Mustang has 435 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque, plenty of power to quickly get up to speed on the straightaways. The cooling system has been enhanced with a black bar high flow front grille and radiator cooling shields. There is a functional strut tower brace under the hood to help strengthen the chassis and decrease unwanted twisting.
The suspension system has been completely revamped to easily manage the twists and turns of a road course. The ROUSH 427R Trak Pak suspension includes adjustable front and rear shocks, front and rear springs, front and rear stabilization bars, front and rear jounce bumpers and adjustable camber/caster plates.
To whoa this pony down ROUSH adds 6-piston front calipers with 14-inch, two-piece slotted front rotors and slotted rear rotors. The brake pads are replaced with high-performance racing quality versions, and the new ROUSH brake cooling system and high temperature brake fluid will ensure that the brakes will be ready when you need them the most.
The ROUSH three-piece aerobody kit gives the car a menacing look as it roars past the other cars on the track, and consists of a front fascia, front chin spoiler and hood scoop. The car rides on 18-inch forged wheels painted a dark charcoal and mounted to ultra-performance tires for maximum grip on the racetrack. The functional hood pins, unique graphics and badging add to the overall styling of the car.
Inside the cockpit the driver will immediately notice the addition of the new three-gauge dash pod with engine oil temperature, coolent temperature and a Boost gauge. A shift light has also been integrated into this dash pod as well. The ROUSH sport leather seating, short throw shifter with retro-style ball, and four-piece performance pedal kit help to round out the interior styling.
The number 427 has been intertwined in the Ford product line for many years, both as a car model and one of the most powerful and legendary engines in their line. It is only natural that ROUSH, as perhaps the best Ford engine builder in the country, is the company to reintroduce the number to the automotive lexicon using modern engine technology.
Based on the acclaimed ROUSH Stage 3 Mustang, this version is slightly less in content but includes 100 percent of the fun factor. The 427R horsepower package is highlighted by the intercooled ROUSHcharger* system which adds 135 horsepower and 65 lb-ft of torque to the base Ford 4.6L, 3-valve V8 powertrain system. The additional power upgrade comes via a ROUSH-engineered ECM calibration which has been specially-tuned to work in harmony with the different Exhaust system used on the vehicle. The resulting total power rating for this vehicle is 435hp and 400 lb-ft of torque.
Further adding to the style and performance of the 2008 ROUSH 427R is a four-piece aerobody kit which includes a stylized front fascia, front chin spoiler, hood scoop and rear wing and ROUSH 18-inch cast chrome wheels with high-performance tires and the special 427R striping kit.
We've driven our fair share of Mustangs, but it's a rare occasion that we get to drive one at the track. That's part of the reason why we made the seven hour trek from Southern California to Thunderhill Raceway in Willows, CA, to get behind the wheel of Roush's new 427R Trak Pak Mustang. What's so special about the Trak Pak? For starters, it's got a supercharged V8 packing 435 horsepower and an abundance of race-ready items like an adjustable suspension, carbon fiber wing, and 14-inch brakes that all make it ideal for the weekend warrior who wants his vehicle to handle the daily grind and track-day floggings. With only 100 being built, this may be one of the few opportunities to see one in the sheetmetal, let alone to drive it on the track. While inclement weather the night before threatened to ruin the trip, we were blessed with a rain-free day, allowing us to explore the limits of the Trak Pak'd 427R. Follow the jump to read our impressions
Porsche 911 GT3--Chicago Cars Direct HD
2007 Porsche 911 GT3 (997) test drive and walk around from Chicago Cars Direct.
The GT3 is the road-going basis of the world's most popular race car (more than 1000 have been built since 1998). That makes it the pinnacle of the Porsche production-car pyramid as well as the homologation special that justifies the existence of the GT3 racing car. The secret to its split personality is Porsche Active Suspension Management, or PASM, which allows drivers to alter the dynamic character of the car by pushing a button to modify the shock valving of the three-way adjustable Bilsteins. "You can never be happy with one setup for both the road and the racetrack," Hartmut Kristen, Porsche's director of motorsport, says from the pit wall while Walter R"hrl rockets past in a screaming yellow GT3. "With PASM, we don't have to compromise."
It's no coincidence that Porsche's motorsports honcho and a two-time World Rally Champion helped develop the GT3. Unlike the Ferrari Enzo, the Bugatti Veyron, and the Porsche Carrera GT, the GT3 isn't an exercise in corporate ego and wretched excess. Nor is it a car whose fundamentally uninspiring qualities have been overcome with heroic surgery, such as the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, the Chevrolet Cobalt SS, and various AMG Mercedes-Benzes. The GT3 is the 911 pared down to its essence. As such, it embodies the very soul of Porsche, a company that considers motorsports not merely a marketing strategy but a corporate imperative.
The first Porsche ever built won its first race a month after it was finished. The company established its bona fides during the 1950s with a series of giant-killing sports racers and burnished its image during the '70s with a string of ground-pounding, twelve-cylinder prototypes. Motor racing is so deeply rooted in the company's heritage that the 911 Carrera-the quintessential version of the quintessential Porsche-takes its name from the Spanish word for "race."
The GT3 is the spiritual descendant of the iconic 911 Carrera RS, the pared-down, pumped-up version of the 911 that served as the homologation basis for the Carrera RSR racing car. By the same token, the modern GT3 is the street version of the GT3 Cup car, which competes in international Supercup races and numerous national series. This fall, Porsche will launch an upgraded road car called the GT3 RS, and this, in turn, will be the homologation model for next year's GT3 RSR. To further confuse matters, the GT3 RSR will compete at Le Mans in the GT2 class. Don't mind the alphabet soup. Just think of the four models of GT3 as great, greater, greatest, and way out of your league.
Here in the States, most Cup cars race in Porsche club events and the IMSA-sanctioned GT3 Cup Challenge. This year's first IMSA event, a support race held before the Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, drew forty entries. (The enduro had only thirty-five.) Although the rules require all drivers to be amateurs, most cars are prepped to a professional standard, complete with gaudy graphics and trackside support. Arrive-and-drive weekends run about $25,000. If car ownership is your thing, the MSRP is $131,000, plus a $9000 spares package. Believe it or not, that's a sweetheart deal. "I couldn't build a car for that much. There's no way," says Dennis Aase, who prepared four of the cars that raced at Sebring. "Even if I started with a wrecked car, it would cost at least $175,000."
Porsche Motorsport North America president Uwe Brettel, the mastermind behind the series, sees it not as a moneymaker but as a marketing tool. "For sure, we could have made $20,000 more per car. But what for?" he says. "We are not out to make the maximum profit. We race because it's the best way to promote the road car. The link between the road car and the racing car is integral."
The first roadgoing version of the GT3 was built in 1998, but it wasn't exported to the United States. We weren't deemed worthy until 2003. At the time, the GT3 was based on the 996 platform. This, the first of the water-cooled 911s, sold well by Porsche standards. But with plenty of styling cues and mechanical components shared with the d,class, Boxster, it never got the love from Porschephiles. The more highly regarded 997 debuted for the 2005 model year, and the new GT3 is the first GT3 to be derived from it.
The GT3 starts life as a Carrera 4 body-in-white on the production-car assembly line in Zuffenhausen. The space devoted to the front axle in the four-wheel-drive model is used to hold a 23.7-gallon fuel tank, and some structural modifications are made to accommodate the new engine, transmission, and oil reservoir. Thanks to the aluminum trunk lid and doors, not to mention a host of other weight-saving measures, the GT3 weighs in at 3076 pounds
ROUSH Mustang 427R
The ROUSH 427R Mustang is one of the best looking, and most powerful Mustang's produced by ROUSH. This Ford comes equiped with a four-piece aerobody kit all around, 18 inch cast chrome wheels, and the brakes to stop on a dime.