2017 Ford Mustang
After many big changes to the Mustang in the year prior, 2017 was a fairly quiet year for the paragon pony car. The only notable changes is the once again availability of the striking 'Grabber Blue' paint color and a Sync3 infotainment update, now supporting both Apple Carplay and Android Auto. The 5.0L Coyote V8, 2.3L EcoBoost and 3.7L V6 carry over, as does the 5.2L V8 found in the top-performing GT350 and GT350R. A 6-speed manual or automatic transmission is available for all models, save the GT350 and GT350R, which are paired exclusively with the Getrag MT82 6-speed manual.
Reinvigorate the 5.0L
One way to add a bunch more horsepower and get a 2017 Mustang GT to pull much harder at high RPM is by opting for completely new camshafts. Given that the 5.0L Coyote is a dual overhead cam engine, a complete camshaft kit will come with four shafts - two per cylinder head. Aftermarket camshafts focus on two things: performance and sound. New camshafts will typically offer more lift and have an increased duration profile. Measured in degrees of crankshaft rotation, cam duration controls how long the associated valve will remain open. More duration equates to the valve being held open longer, allowing for more air to be drawn in or evacuated. Cam lift is the measurement of how high the valve actually opens. By increasing these two parameters, duration and lift, on a 2017 Mustang with a 5.0L engine, owners can net a substantial gain in high end horsepower. In addition, increased duration and lift do create a choppier idle, reminiscent of the famous pushrod lope of Pony cars back in the sixties. Retrofitting your 2017 S550 GT with a new set of camshafts is a job that should be done by a professional. It is complex and must be precise. Furthermore, tuning will be required in order for the PCM to properly manage the new cams, and in some cases, the factory cam phasers may have to be locked in place. Nonetheless, it is common to see gains of 50-60 horsepower with new camshafts and a matching tune - and expect your 'Stang to pull hard all the way up to 700 RPM!
Big Boost to V6, EcoBoost
While the camshaft swaps are mainly relegated to 5.0L Mustangs, those 2017 Mustang owners with a 2.3L EcoBoost or 3.7L V6 engine don't need to miss out on similar gains. In fact, both these engines will benefit tremendously from a cold air intake and tuner combination package.
- Reduced inlet restriction
- Improved air flow
- Custom vehicle tuning parameters
The advantage of purchasing a cold air intake and tuner package for your 2017 S550 is the fact that the included tune will be custom to your vehicle. First, the cold air intake is good for a gain of 10-15 horsepower on its own, thanks to improved air flow (less turbulent) and less restriction through a multi-stage high-flow filter. A standalone, pre-loaded tuner would provide similar results on a V6 Pony, whereas EcoBoost owners could likely see gains of double or triple that (nature of having a turbocharger!). This is achieved by playing with engine and fuel timing but overall could be considered a 'dumb' tune as it is intended to cover a wide spread of applications. This means power is left on the table. Combining a cold air intake with a matched tuner, however, will act greater than the sum of two parts, and this is because of the custom tune included. This tune not only takes into account the effect of a cold air intake on your S550, but owners will also specify further vehicle data (other modifications, intended use, driving climate, availability of premium gas etc.) which will then be used to produce a custom program. And it is with this level of customization and user specific profiling that maximum performance can be rung out.