If you are a fan of Mustangs and you are on social media, you have no doubt seen Lethal Performance’s Jared Rosen promoting his company’s latest project vehicle in a Goldmember costume. While he is clearly a fan of Mike Myers’ movie villains, Jared knows how get the word out on his gold and black 2018 Mustang GT. To push its performance higher, he also knows a thing or two about adding boost with a Whipple supercharger.
Just order the kit, install it, and you’re making some huge power and torque. — Jared Rosen, Lethal Performance
“…I’ve been saying the same thing for over a decade,” Jared said. “However, the facts are that pretty much every project car we’ve built has eventually gotten a Whipple on it. So it’s no surprise that a fresh, new Whipple now tops the engine in our 2018 GT.”
Regular readers know that the company’s latest twin-screw units were designed with the new Mustang in mind. From a larger intercooler to a more efficient rotor pack, these 3.0-liter units are all about taking the Gen 3 Coyote 5.0-liter to a new level.
“The new 2018 Mustang GT system is quite different from the previous ’15-’17 system. For one, it’s now a 3.0-liter head unit, which uses Whipple’s newest Gen 5 rotor profile,” Jared explained. “This new rotor profile creates more power at lower RPM and boost levels then the previous version as it doesn’t take as much power from the engine to make power.”
“The other big thing is the intercooler setup. The ’15-’17 kits mount the blower on top and intercooler on the bottom. Since the ’18 has less room to work with, Whipple designed the system upside down,” he added. “This puts the blower under the intercooler. After the air is compressed it goes up through the Whipple triple-core intercooler design and then it passes back through the intercooler into the engine. This design offers the largest intercooler out of any other kit available for the 2018 Mustang.”
These latest systems aren’t just about the Gen 5 blower, however. Whipple creates a complete system right down to the fuel system enhancements and its own tuning.
“This system includes everything you need at a level nobody else can compete with,” Dustin Whipple, Vice President of Whipple Superchargers, enthused. “First, we are the only 50-state legal system, we make multiple stages for power ranges, and we offer an optional three-year/36,000-mile powertrain warranty. Plus it comes with a flash tool, which is the only one that can change tire/axle ratio…”
“Since the 2018s are both direct- and port-injected , Whipple includes a high-flow, 415-lph in-tank fuel pump and 37 lb/hr, dual-spray-pattern fuel injectors for the port side to supply the fuel needed to support the power this kit makes . This is also the first kit to start shipping Whipple’s new Tomahawk flash device, which took the place of its Flare flash tool.”
Jared is definitely a fan of Whipple’s blowers, so choosing the latest version for his 2018 Mustang project, appropriately named Goldmember, was a no-brainer. He certainly presents a strong case though.
“The complete Whipple system for the 2018 Mustang is going to be hard to beat. The instant horsepower and torque of its twin-screw design has always been the main attractor, and now with the new rotor and intercooler design it takes things to a whole new level,” Jared enthused. “There are so many pros that it has over what others have to offer. It’s the most well-thought-out, well-designed kit out there. So, for the every day daily driver or weekend warrior, the kit has everything you need. Just order the kit, install it, and you’re making some huge power and torque. Not only that, but this thing drives just like the car does from the factory except when you mash the pedal to the floor. Then you smile ear to ear and know exactly why the Whipple system is so widely used and recommended.”
To add this system to Goldmember, Jared turned to the installation experts at Power By The Hour Performance in West Palm Beach, Florida. Much of the system installs like its predecessor, but the upside down arrangement and fuel system enhancements add some new wrinkles.
“The installation of the new 2018 kit is actually similar to the ’15-’17 setup. Most of the intercooler system, air box, and belt-drive system are just like the previous design. It’s really when you get to the actual head unit installation that differs slightly. The assembly bolts down differently, but is pretty straight forward like the 2.9-liter. The only thing that stands out is installing the required 415-lph fuel pump upgrade, which really isn’t difficult at all. The pump simply replaces the stock fuel pump and comes with the components needed for installation.”
Bolting It On
After Power By The Hour main man Jake Long spun the wrenches, teaching the factory PCM how to handle its newfound boost was as easy as flashing in the calibration provided in the kit. This is easily performed with Whipple’s new, proprietary Tomahawk tuning tool.
“Calibration is key, especially on a car with an aftermarket supercharger kit. No one wants to install something that makes great power but drives like crap. That’s where the Whipple calibration comes into play,” Jared said. “Whipple has a top calibration expert, who does tons of OEM and performance tuning work, handling its tunes. That means these tunes are based on a better platform and tools than most have available to them when tuning. Whipple’s calibration isn’t only designed to make power, but to drive like stock. All of the safety features from the factory as well as added safety features are used on the Whipple cal, so the car performs great with the same level of safety and reliability as a stock car.”
That level of performance didn’t come easy, as the company put in a lot of time testing the calibration to ensure that it delivered not only performance, but that coveted driveability.
“The Whipple calibration offers the best of both worlds. First, it’s 50-state legal, which is very important to us. Second, all the factory diagnostics are working. Many don’t know, but almost nobody will get the 2018 to work properly through the ‘emissions’ side due to the codes and parameters being hard coded in the PCM code,” Dustin explained. “We deliver a wide range of power, yet we still incorporate cat protection and many other factory functions. We spent countless hours durability testing and finding what will live and what won’t. Cold start, hot start, restarts, idle, deceleration, and part-throttle operation are all near OEM levels giving the customer many trouble-free miles…”
Lethal Performance 2018 Mustang Mods
• 3.0-liter Gen 5 Whipple supercharger
• 3.75-inch blower pulley
• 93-octane fuel
• 132mm Whipple throttle body
• Boundary 0il pump and crank sprocket gears
• Kooks long-tube headers and midpipe
• Lethal Performance resonator delete
• Lethal Performance axle-back exhaust
• Reische 170-degree thermostat
“Starting off with a baseline of 423 rear-wheel horsepower through a 10 speed auto is ‘schlepity pepidy good’ as Goldmember would say,” Jared laughed. “Then to install the complete Whipple system and make over 700 rear-wheel horsepower at 11-12 psi on pump gas with the out-of-the-box calibration is pretty insane. We’re pleased with the results especially on the Whipple calibration. Gaining nearly 300 rear-wheel horsepower over stock is outstanding.”
Ready For Launch
Naturally, after Goldmember rolls off the dyno, its next official appointment was with the drag strip at Palm Beach International Raceway. With sticky tires on board, Jared will try to lop a couple of seconds off the car’s elapsed time with all that twin-screw power.
“So far my best time at the track with this car is an 11.29 at 123 MPH with a Lund Racing E85 tune, Kooks headers, and the BMR Bread and Butter suspension package,” he predicted. “I’d love to see a nine out of this car with the Whipple calibration, which would be so awesome. So I’ll set that as a goal and see if we can make it happen.”
“I really believe that it can break into the nines,” Dustin added. “We went 10.3 and we short shifted three shifts, as we were only working on the engine side first. With the right launch and our latest cal, nines with a daily driver that passes smog is very possible!”
That is but one goal for Team Lethal, however. This crew doesn’t leave well enough alone too often. After wrapping the testing of the out-of-the-box system, Jared and Goldmember plan on partying even harder.
Drop-In Fuel Pump Upgrade
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In order to support the power created by a twin-screw-supercharged Gen 3 Coyote 5.0-liter, Whipple includes a 415-liter-per-hour fuel pump from DeatschWerks. The DW400 is the company’s highest-flowing in-tank fuel pump and is a result of collaboration between DW and Bosch, which manufactures the pump to DW’s specs. Sporting a pressure ranges of 70-100 psi, this pump is suited for boosted applications requiring a lot of flow, and it is compatible with high-ethanol fuels, like E85.
To install the new DW pump, Jared removed the factory fuel basket from the tank via the opening accessible under the rear seat. After removing the stock pump, he clearanced the basket to make room for the larger DW400 pump, slid the new pump into place, and reassembled the basket. The pump plugged right into the factory wiring, and then it was just a matter of reversing the process to make the fuel system blower-ready.
It’s safe to say that we’ll see some really aggressive performance from this car in the future, but for now the as-delivered kit definitely offers some impressive gains.