"Zero Fox Given"

Darrel Merryman's '85 LX

“We believe we have the fastest stock short block 4V Cobra engine in the country”
— Darrel Merryman

       I never cease to be amazed at the insane power levels being achieved with stock Ford hardware. Keep in mind I grew up with the push rod cars, and making big power meant an R block, Aluminum heads, and so on. I really have to hand it to the 4V engines, their potential seems to be limitless, with some unnatural aspiration. If you read last week's feature, even Kevin MacDonald's 3V 4.6 runs in the sevens with help from twin Precision turbos. When I was younger I would listen to the older guys talk about the muscle cars of the late sixties and early seventies like they could reverse the earth's rotation with all the power they made. Compared to today's standards, they wouldn't stand a chance. 

     When Darrel Merryman picked up this '85 notch as a roller, his evil plan was to make it the fastest stock short block 4V Cobra powered car in the country. No small task to be sure, as tracks are littered with nasty Terminator powered cars.            

     The car was an obvious choice as it already had a 25.5 roll cage, mini tubs, and full suspension. They began with replacing the front with a Team Z k member, Team Z A arms, Strange adjustable coil overs, Racecraft Elite caster/camber plates, and Racecraft travel limiters. In the rear, Racecraft double adjustable upper/lower control arms were bolted up, Racecraft anti-roll bar, and Big Gun adjustable coil overs wrap things up. Connected to the rear suspension is a built and braced 8.8 with 9" ends, Strange axles, Strange spool, and 4.10 gears. Finishing off the rolling chassis is a Strange chromoly driveshaft, and Wilwood disk brakes at all four corners, to reign in the little coupe from nearly 140 mph 1/8th mile blasts.  

     At the heart of the matter is a 100% stock '03 Cobra short block. Moving upward, the heads received a full race port from DGR Performance, with custom ground turbo cams. The intake is stock Terminator fare, while the upper is a custom fabbed piece from DGR, and connects to a 90mm Accufab throttle body. The turbo kit is all custom fabricated by DGR, including  the headers. The compressed air comes via a Precision single 7685 turbo, and the incoming air is cooled by a custom air to water intercooler. All of the boost is kept in check by twin Precision 46mm wastegates.    

   Managing the inner workings of the little notch is handled by a Big Stuff III brain, and is piggybacked with a AMS 1000 boost controller, and SCU-001 bump box. All of the vitals are monitored by a Racepak digital monitor. These allow Darrel to keep the engines internals, internal. 

    The transmission of choice is a stock case powerglide, with a JW bellhousing, BTE internals, Neal Chance converter, and is shifted by a PPP power shifter. 

    The exterior is finished off with Schoneck carbon fiber nose, VFN cowl hood, and a Racecraft 15" strutless rear spoiler. The rolling stock consists of Weld Alumistar 2.0 front runners, and Billet Specialties comp 5s in the rear, with Champion beadlocks.  

    To date the car only has eight test hits on it, weighing in at 3200 lbs, she's gone a 5.35 @132. Once the tune is dialed in, and the suspension is figured out, we have no doubt this coupe will rewrite the record books. CR


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