Tuned In

Field Report: A 900hp RUN IN Tune? 4G63 Madness.

November 15, 2023 High Performance Academy
Tuned In
Field Report: A 900hp RUN IN Tune? 4G63 Madness.
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

When a team is just starting with 900hp in a street-driven 4g63 powered EVO drag car, you know big things are coming!

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Why a 4g63 instead of a 4g64, nitrous for turbo spool and a 400hp boost, fire ring cylinder sealing and more from Jimmy Assaad of ERS Evolution Racing Spares as he runs us through this street-driven roll racer that has its long-term sights set on the 1/4 mile.

Putting down 900hp at 50psi on a rolling road dyno using pump E85 to start with, this Micks Motorsport-built 4g63 is no joke, with 1500hp at around 80psi running methanol fuel being a longer-term plan for the drag strip with the addition of a few more Siemens fuel injectors. A Platinum Racing Products-supplied Precision 8085 Next Gen turbo takes care of the boost with an Emtron electronics package, including a KV12 ECU and ED10M dash logger managing almost everything on the car via 50 odd sensors.

The Bullet Cylinder Heads billet 4g63 block runs copper gasket & aluminium bronze fire ring cylinder sealing setup, aluminium rods, custom pistons and non-MIVEC head with aftermarket cams package, all combinations that have been tried and tested over the years.

With an 18-inch SSR wheel package for the street and a 15-inch Belak package for the track wrapped in 275 Hoosiers, no compromises need to be made when it comes to comfort vs. grip, and a Wilwood brake package still fits under the 15inch rim nicely to haul things up at the end of a run.

A paddle-shifted Holinger Engineering sequential, Active Traction Service (ATS) carbon clutch and a retained active centre differential (ACD) round off the drivetrain, with carbon clutches being more common in circuit racing but likely to hold up fine for drag racing, too.

At the time of filming, the immediate goals are to see what power can be made while still running pump E85 at 60-65psi of boost with a 400hp nitrous shot on tap for further testing.

Speaker 1:

We're here at Sydney Dragway with what has to be one of the cleanest, tightest Evo drag builds that I've seen. We're here with Jimmy from ERS to find out a little bit more about it. Welcome to High Performance Academy's tuned in field report podcast series. In these special midweek episodes, we look back through our archives to find the best conversations we've had through years worth of attending the best automotive events across the globe. We've pulled the audio from these tech filled interviews with some of the industry's most well known figures and presented it in podcast format for you to enjoy as a quick hit of insider knowledge. So, jimmy, it's hard to know if this is a show car or a drag car. Talk us through the sort of idea behind the build.

Speaker 2:

It's actually a street car, but yeah. Sydney street car, sydney street car. Yeah, it's a drag roll racing street car. Bit of everything. It's got all of it, all the package, but yeah, man, it's only one.

Speaker 1:

Let's start with the intention behind the car. Obviously, if you want to keep something street streetable, the legality side of things is one element, and then you've got two very different disciplines with some crossover with roll racing and drag racing. So can you talk to us about the sort of the idea behind the parts chosen and how that works for this build?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So obviously the intention from the owner. When he approached us to build this car, it was already a bit of a show car. He loves all the show, the sex spec look of the back in the days, auto salon days. And then we wanted to mix it up with presenting it to 2022, make it look good, tough and also perform well. And then we turned it up from there halfway through the build where he goes I want to break records. So we're like, okay, we'll do whatever it takes to break records and obviously all the brains behind us working hard on the circuit building drag cars before and what's out now? The technology out now. We said, look, let's just implement it all into the same car.

Speaker 1:

I mean, obviously, technology has come a long way in the last decade or so, certainly between the times when I was back drag racing and now. It's gotten a lot easier to make power. You've got better engine components, you've got billet blocks and everything. Is it suffice to say, though, that some compromises in a build when you want to keep the car looking as good as it does? I mean, you look at that interior. It's not stripped out, it is a work of art. Clearly, for nothing else, it's going to be heavier than a stripped out interior.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, we tried to find the balance between obviously looking awesome, not gaining too much weight, trying to lose weight, but also keeping a full interior for the fact of it's a street car. It's comfortable to drive, you can drive it anywhere and you can Like I drove it yesterday to the track, drove it back home, but yeah, man, we tried hard to. It's got a full cage for safety, because that was the most important thing for the owner. It's looked safety comes first. It's got a parachute, it's got everything ready to set up to break records and the car's got two different looks as well, like we've got a set of drag wheels, we've got a different bonnet, we've got an exhaust out of the bonnet once we go for a time, and then we've got the street sort of, as you said, legality set up where you can drive it with street tyres and stuff.

Speaker 1:

Let's just talk about that wheel package. It's a little off trajectory, but let's just cover that scene. As you mentioned, at the moment sitting on a set of 18 inch SSRs, and that's going to be great for driving on the street, but not ideal when you want to go drag racing. It's difficult, though, because the go to combination for drag racing is a 15 inch wheel opens up your options for a proper drag tyre. You can't really fit that over stock Mitsubishi Evo brakes, so what have you done there to allow that 15 inch wheel to?

Speaker 2:

fit. So one thing that I get asked about all the time, especially in the workshop, is from customers is I want to lighten my car. I said to them okay, lighten the rotational mass items first wheels, wheel studs, wheel nuts, try to go to a smaller rim. Obviously, if it's drag, a lighter tyre, brakes, anything that's spinning right, towel shaft, stuff like that. So we've got the SSRs are just there for looks, maybe a roll racing, whatever. We've got the 15 inch bellac wheels which are a proper drag wheel, and we've got a nice fat Housia 275 tyre, which Housia has been awesome with the car. They've helped us out heaps. And yeah, we've got titanium wheel studs, we've got titanium wheel nuts. We've got this car's got titanium through everything.

Speaker 2:

I went all out. I said to the owner. I said, look, leave the titanium stuff to me, all the bolts and nuts and everything. We tried to go titanium. And we've got wheelwood brake kit on it. So we'll see how that goes. We're a bit worried there, but we've got parachute anyway. So yeah, 15 inch wheel, small wheel with brake kit and we can go with an RS non-brembo front caliper if we needed to.

Speaker 1:

And the benefit, of course, with drag racing is that, while, yes, you're going to be stopping from high speed, you've got that parachuter, as you mentioned, and you only have to stop once, so there's not a lot of heat to dissipate out of that brake package. Okay, let's get to the exciting part, though, which is obviously the engine combination. These days, billet has sort of become the go to option for anyone serious about drag racing. It looks like this is no different.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so this has got a Bullitt 4G63, a lot of big drag cars go to the 64, I opted for the 63 just to keep it original. I love the 4G63, you know set up. So we went. We worked closely with Mix Motorsport. Mix Motorsport's got his engine package in this. We've obviously worked together with him on what sort of specs we're going to put cams, you know, rod combos and what not. So we worked together on that to make the best decision for this car. And, yeah, it's got a non-myvec head. So we decided it's better to just get away from the myvec for now. Firing gasket, set up alloy rods yeah, man, custom pistons.

Speaker 1:

Let's just go over a few of those elements you've just discussed in a bit more detail. So for a start, 63 versus the 64 block. The 4G64 is a 2.4 with a factory 100mm stroke. The 63 is 88mm stroke, 2.0, and quite often people will go to the 64 route for that extra capacity. Obviously 2.4 versus 2.0 it's a reasonably big difference. But the downside is with that 100mm stroke it tends to hurt the ability of the engine to rev. So is that why you stuck with a 63 block.

Speaker 2:

Well, that's one thing. Obviously, the 64 has a bit of a taller deck, so if we ever wanted to just put a cast block in as a spare motor or what not? At least it's all the same heights and everything.

Speaker 2:

So all your fabrication will work with a factory 63 block 100%, so we wanted to keep it not complicated too much. Obviously the car is very high end, but we didn't want to complicate that part, in case we needed to try something. Also, yeah, like the 64 100mm crank, I love it. I love like my car is a 2.3 liter. I love the stroke, but for obviously big power, more harmonics, all of that stuff revs as well. Yes, we love the torque from the 64 2.4, but it's trying to find that balance between so there are different applications.

Speaker 1:

I mean your car, which we've interviewed you about previously, is for circuit racing, and that bottom end response is important, and I'm guessing you're probably not revving to 10,500, 11,000 RPM either, so that's where the 100mm stroke doesn't really work well.

Speaker 2:

That's correct. Yeah, so it's got a 94mm crank. So just to get that revs 100mm stroke. Again that 9,000, 10,000 RPM, it's just too much.

Speaker 1:

The 2.2 kit that you get with that 94mm stroke. That's kind of my sweet spot as well. It gives the extra capacity but still doesn't really hurt the ability of the engine to rev. I mentioned Alloy Rod as well.

Speaker 2:

Yes, alloy Rod custom piston. The Alloy Rods were something that we decided to do, me and Mick, just for, obviously, application and, again, like what you said before, obviously we're very young compared to the guys that were racing 20, 30 years ago, but I think technology has come a long way, from what I understand, on servicing Alloy Rods and bearings and all that.

Speaker 1:

And the Alloy Rods definitely got some advantages. The downside is that they do tend to fatigue over time, so they don't have the service life of a steel rod. But for a car that's not going to be running 10 passes of drag strip every weekend, that's probably not necessarily a huge issue. I want to come back to that head gasket, because this is always the weak link for any turbo charge drag engine in terms of how much boost you can physically cram into the engine and keep the head gasket sealing. So you mentioned a fire ring. Can you elaborate a little bit on what that term actually means?

Speaker 2:

So firing is the seal around the cylinder. There's different combinations from what I understand, but the common firing that we use, obviously in Sydney, is copper head gasket sealer firing and just send it with boost.

Speaker 1:

Knowing Mick and I've bought parts from him in the past it'll probably be the aluminium bronze sealing ring. That seems to be the way and has sort of become the go to standard across ProMod Plus just about any really high output turbo charge engine. So the bottom end really is kind of there just to support the power in and of itself. It's not really sort of doing much other than hopefully holding together that the head and the turbo charge is really the sort of the key to the whole combination. You mentioned the non-yvec head. Are there any compromises in terms of cam profile to keep the thing somewhat streetable?

Speaker 2:

Yes, like we obviously tried to go a big cam not too big on the exhaust, big on the intake sorry, opposite way exhaust bigger than the intake just to get the air out but obviously keep it streetable. It's very nice, very lumpy, which is what the owner wanted. So we went away from the myvec, even though I love myvec and I wanted to keep the myvec. But we just had that bit of worry of breaking the cam which has happened on another car that was making like 1100 horsepower. It's actually the owner's other car and we just wanted to. You know what? It's not in the application for it. It's good for the circuit. We've got an L circuit car. This is again different application.

Speaker 1:

Do you want to take your car knowledge game to the next level? Join us in the next free lesson at hpacademycom. Slash free and start developing your own skills today. Generally as well, the downside with any variable valve timing mechanism is that it does tend to limit how big a cam profile you can physically fit in there. Plus, when you're looking at a rev range out to 11000, the benefits of the variable cam timing tend to go out the window to a degree as well. So I think it'd be a pretty standard setup for something of this nature. Tebocharger, what are you running there?

Speaker 2:

So we've got a Precision 8085, which the guys at PRP helped us out with that. They're the main dealers for them. It's a next gen. We're going to push it see how it goes. At the moment We've got it on a run engine at 900 horsepower, so it's a pretty healthy run engine.

Speaker 2:

So that's a, you know, you call it your Sydney running tune. Just drive it on the street, just some dial in the car, just make sure you get all the teething issues sorted, you know, if there's a little leak here or there, and then yeah, once we're happy with it all and we do a few runs, maybe if you have a test day or something, then we'll start putting some more boost in it.

Speaker 1:

So yeah, when are you at BoostWise to make that 900 and, more importantly, can you give us a sense of where you expect it to be both power and BoostWise when it's all in? Yeah?

Speaker 2:

So on E85 fuel and that's just Bowser E85. We're at 50 psi of boost and it made 900 horsepower on a roller diner, so we're happy with that. It was good numbers, good sign. We want to try with the same fuel, just due to the fact of racing a roll racing and the rules probably try to put 60, 65 pound through it. Obviously we're happy with the engine. The engine can handle it. You know, the head gasket setup is set up for it. And then hopefully, if we don't run out of fuel with methanol when we want to drag the car, we might, because it's got eight injectors at the moment, eight semen. We might need to put 12. So yeah, to run the methanol and probably go up to like 80, 85 pound of boost.

Speaker 1:

And where do you sort of see that sort of boost level with that turbocharger? Can we take a stab in the darker where you think that power might end up?

Speaker 2:

We're hoping to get 1500 horsepower.

Speaker 1:

That sounds pretty reasonable for that combination yeah 1500 horsepower with that turbo.

Speaker 2:

We see ourselves obviously putting a bigger turbo later, but we just want to get the car out. You know we started building this car in COVID so just slowed the whole process down and things changed over time. So now it's just the goal is to just get it out, run the car. But there's big plans, big goals. You know we want to break records, sure yeah.

Speaker 1:

I've already had a quick look around the car and I couldn't help but notice that there's two blue bottles in the boot. What are you using nitrous for, and how is that nitrous being used? Is this sort of for drag racing or is it more around the roll racing for the boost response?

Speaker 2:

A bit of both. Obviously, roll racing is a bit challenging with getting on boosts coming onto the start line. They obviously change it sometimes, so there's different strategies you have to run. So at the moment the nitrous is set up, one bottle is for spool and we can leave it on throughout the rev range and then we've got a 400 shot of Nos through the other bottle.

Speaker 1:

So that 400 shot is just in case your 85psi on its own is not enough to keep you happy.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So if you want to line up next to someone that's making a lot of power and you just want to click the button, it's there. So you're not ready to start on the 400 shot, but it's there, set up, ready to go when we're ready to use it.

Speaker 1:

Okay, fair enough, let's talk about the drivetrain, because this tends to be kind of the weakness in factory four wheel drive cars when you start making this sort of power and try and run them down a sticky drag strip and I've had my own experience of breaking more than my fair share of transmission. So what are you running?

Speaker 2:

So the drive line part, honestly, is my favourite part. I probably speak to someone almost every day about drive line what clutch, what gearbox and all that because I've done so much testing in our car and I know what works in a big car like this. We just never were able to do it. So now that we're able to do it, you know we've got the green light. We went to a Hollinger sequential just because you know it's Australian, made Australian support. I love supporting Australian stuff.

Speaker 2:

We knew that we can go paddle shift in which I wanted to do in that car. We've got a triple plate carbon ATS clutch in it, which is, you know I love those clutches and we just want to test it in a big car because there's a bit of doubts with oh you know, it's more of a race clutch, it's not really a drag clutch. Carbon doesn't really work in drag cars. Well, we want to see what it does in this. I'm confident with it. All wheel drive system and Evo's. It takes a lot to understand them for a lot of people that you know haven't really worked with Evo's. But we kept ACD in this car active center diff. We've implemented that in our race car and I've sort of tried to put it into the drag scene because I could see something that works and if you can get it to work properly on a launch, then you're going to have traction.

Speaker 1:

For those who aren't aware of how that Mitsubishi ACD or active center differential works, can you give us a quick rundown on where you see that advantage in a drag application?

Speaker 2:

So in a drag application, a lot of people with Evo's have a viscous, you know, set up, so you know they're relying on the viscous to lock the front to rear wheel. You know, if it's 50-50, you know it starts spinning the front wheels too much on a launch, which you know you see a lot of Evo's in videos. You know they're burning the tires and smoke coming out of the front wheels. Well, that's obviously going to be slow launch and your 60 foot times are. You know all that you need. So active center diff. We can, through the ECU, through the hydraulic pump, we can lock it 100% lock and say, okay, all four wheels move at the same time. We're hoping that it will hold up, which I'm confident it will, and if it doesn't, well, we can mechanically lock it anyway through that transfer case.

Speaker 1:

What about the actual actuation of that gearbox? Obviously you've got the ability to shift a Hollinger sequential gearbox manually with a lever or paddles.

Speaker 2:

We stuck with paddles because obviously it's latest tech. You know it's something that we can control, you know what to shift and how to shift it and what RPM range we're trying to target. We can also go auto if we want to, which we'll probably do later. But yeah, man, like after driving paddle shift, it's a no brainer, just to go with it. It's better, it's faster and it's safer.

Speaker 1:

Now bringing all of us together is really going to rely heavily on the electronics package. So the ECU, the dash, et cetera, talk us through that, yeah.

Speaker 2:

So MTRON, obviously we work with them very well. They've supported the car and we hit them up and said, look, we want the best of everything and we might go to a 12 injector later. And we've got, men, you know, over 50 sensors in this car looking at everything. So MTRON got us a KV12 and it's controlling, you know, the ACD, it's controlling the paddle shift and obviously all the engine package stuff. So yeah, man, we can look at everything, wheel speeds and you know even the suspension, or we can log through the ECU.

Speaker 1:

Another element that we talked about off camera is you incorporated a GIBYY throttle on the intercooler plumbing as well. Can you talk us through how that works in conjunction with the MTRON?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So MTRON's, you know, talked us into putting a second throttle body for anti surge. You know it's good for spool launch, obviously keeping the turbo happy and the boost up, so we wanted to go with that. We trust that, mtron, you know all the tech and data and you know the development they've done with it. So, man, we said you know it's a no brainer.

Speaker 1:

Oh look, it is an amazing car and it's a credit to everyone who's been involved with building it. Shame, it isn't quite ready for a full power pass down the strip, but we certainly look forward to hearing the results when it does hit the strip. So thanks for showing us here on the car, jimmy.

Speaker 2:

Thank you very much. Thanks, guys, and thanks to everyone that's involved in the car. You know, obviously thanks to HP, academy, mtron, mix, motor Sports, prp, everyone that's involved in the car. Man, it was a long process. It's a big car. It's probably one of the best EVOs in the world at the moment. But, yeah, we've just got to do some times now.

Speaker 1:

And, as I say, good things do take time. That's it. Thank you very much. If you enjoyed this podcast, please feel free to leave a review on whatever platform you've chosen to listen to it on. It goes a long way to help us getting the word out there. All these conversations and much more are also available in full on our High Performance Academy YouTube channel, so make sure you subscribe. It's a one stop shop when it comes to going faster, stopping quicker and cornering better.

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