Greg Monroe, Downey, CA
550 hp—HA! You know that's a damn lie. But it’s the story Greg Monroe is sticking to when people ask him how much power this 4.6 engine makes. When pressed, he says, "Maybe 560 on a good day with ice in the intercooler reservoir." But he can't stifle the grin on his face as he says this. The truth is, this engine has got to make well over 800 hp. An early version of it propelled Greg's '01 Bullitt Mustang to a best quarter-mile time of 8.20 seconds at 170 mph on C16 race gas. Now he's got more compression, more boost, and E85 to burn. He's looking to crack into the 7s.
Aside from the fuel pump, there are none. This is a dedicated race car. Greg's got a tiny battery in the trunk that he charges in between rounds, so there's no need for an alternator. There's no power steering or air conditioning, and the Meziere electric water pump eliminates the need for any of the factory pulleys and belt.
Taking residence in the space behind the bumper is a pair of 67mm Precision turbochargers, which are packed with the trick stuff for fast spooling: ball bearing cartridges and billet wheels. Fed by a pair of HP Performance turbo headers, they breathe into the plumbing system custom-made by Greg, which incorporates an air-to-water intercooler where the passenger seat used to be. At full song, they push 30 pounds of boost into the Sullivan intake manifold.
E85 is finally becoming more readily available in Southern California, and Greg is taking advantage of that. The fact that it is much less expensive than race gas is an added bonus. If you’ve been reading CC long enough, you know the air/fuel ratio for E85 is close to 9.76:1, meaning you need to supply a lot more of it than you otherwise would with gasoline. To that end, Greg employed an Aeromotive beltdriven fuel pump, Sullivan fuel rails, and 235-lb/hr Moran fuel injectors to keep up with this boosted engine’s insatiable appetite for air.
Greg is the owner of Racers Edge Tuning in Downey, California, so he knows a thing or two about EFI. He chose a BigStuff3 computer to run the engine. Sharp eyes will have noticed the octet of GM LS1 coils. “The BigStuff works best with them, and they deliver a hotter spark than the Ford coils do,” Greg says.
All this good stuff is in Greg’s ’01 Bullitt Mustang, a car he’s owned for about four years. A Powerglide trans is bolted up to the engine, and the rear axle is the original Ford 8.8. The suspension is stock, except for Afco coilovers, and Fab Tech in Canoga Park made the rollcage.
Heads and Valvetrain
The cylinder heads are also factory castings, in this case from an ’03 Cobra (they also came on Mach 1 Mustangs and Mercury Marauders). These are the best-flowing cylinder heads available for 4.6L engines. Greg tuned up the ports with a Dremel and replaced the stock cams with a set of sticks from a Ford GT. He also replaced the stock valvetrain with Crower springs, valves, and retainers.
Greg built his short-block with a stock Cobra crank. These are forged pieces, manufactured for Ford by Kellogg, and are good to 1,000 hp. The connecting rods are some crazy, billet I-beams, and on them are Diamond pistons. The compression ratio is 9.5:1.
One of the most impressive things about the newer engines from the Big Three is just how much power the stock blocks will support. The foundation for this impressive plant is a Teksid block, named after the casting plant in Italy that produced these blocks for Ford from 1993 to 1998. They were originally used in Lincoln Mark VIIIs and '96 to '98 Mustang Cobras and have the reputation of being some of the strongest production modular engine blocks.