While Chevy busied itself with a convertible dragster show car at this year’s SEMA, Ford has been doing some real work on their turn-key dragster. They unveiled a concept version of the Mustang Cobra Jet, powered by a turbocharged engine; the same sort of system they use for their EcoBoost road cars.
The Cobra Jet Mustang can be had with 5.0 liter V8s with or without supercharger. Now, superchargers are great for delivering lag-free, immediate power, but even the best kind of supercharger requires at least a 100 horsepower just to run. Turbochargers on the other hand, they use wasted exhaust gas, so there is no waste.
Ford also claims that there is no lag. An integrated, electronically controlled wastegates used on production EcoBoost engines enable the turbos to keep spinning and generating the boost pressure needed for low elapsed times and high trap speeds at the strip.
This could be the start of a new era for NHRA dragsters. This twin-turbo Cobra Jet also introduces Ford Racing’s new livery – white body accented with an asymmetric black and blue stripe running over the top of the car from bumper to bumper.