1998 Ford Escort 2.0L SPI Tests

These were the test runs of one of our cars over a period of over 3 years of tinkering. The 50 lbs of insulation was added to make the interior more quiet, plus the driver in these test is over 270lbs. That's one reason the times are a bit slow. A bone stock (except for the silencer removed from the bottom of the air box and a performance air filter) 1991 SEFI car with an automatic ran 17.68 at 77 mph. This car at the time had well over 100,000 miles on it and was rated at only 88hp. Makes you wonder about the 110 horse rating of the stock 1998 SPI?

The car below has had a lot of fine tuning and de-bugging to run this well. Sometimes modifications that should work well don't. Then you have to figure out why. The main reason is the computer and sensors aren't giving the engine what it wants to make power. Sometimes, the sensors can be tricked to fool the computer and gain some performance, but in the end, an add-on chip is necessary to extract the most power and driveability from the engine.

The stock throttle body only opened a little over 3/4 of the way open. Then it was also offset with the opening in the intake manifold. Also, the stock transmission shifts extremely slow, especially from 1st to second. It shifts at about 4200 rpm instead of 5500 like it should for the powerband of the stock engine. It is next to impossible to hold it back in 1st gear.

The cam picked up a lot of power. If you put it in a stock engine, the gains would be a lot less. In this case, the rest of the engine was capable of flowing a lot of air and the stock cam was a major restriction holding it back, therfore, a larger gain was seen.

This particular car is still a daily driver and is usually driven by the wife. It was never intended on being any kind of race car. It gets better mileage than when it was stock, idles smooth, is quiet, and runs like a scalded dog when you put your foot down. The car doesn't get off the line very well with the best 60 foot time being a 2.19. It usually doesn't hookup that well with times in the 2.40 - 2.60 range.

Higher compression, a more radical cam, a racing torque converter, a locking differential, a lower final drive ratio, and slicks would easily drop time times into the mid to upper 13 second range but the driveability would go away and the wife would want a new car.

This car is no longer with us as it was involved in an accident.

  Performance Tests - 1998 Escort 2.0 SPI / Automatic
Standard shift cars run an average of 3/10 - 4/10 quicker with the same modifications.
The MPH figures are rounded off to the nearest full number. Premium fuel was used in every test.

* Stock
18.53 at 73mph, 0-60mph @ 12.71.
* Modified spark plugs, dual gap, Spiral-core wires, Performance coil pac, Adjusted throttle body to open fully, Hi-Flo air filter and cold air induction through lower grill, Added 50lbs insulation to interior, Synthetic oil and ATF.
17.90 at 74mph, 0 to 60mph @ 11.89.
* Performance 180 degree thermostat, Fuel Controller , SPI Controller.
17.66 at 76mph, 0 to 60mph @ 11.24.
* Performance muffler on stock exhaust.
17.53 at 77mph, 0 to 60mph @ 11.17.
* 55% Underdrive Crankshaft pulley
17.25 at 80mph,  0 to 60mph @ 10.72.
* Trans Controller/shift improver,  hold 1st gear to 5,500 rpm
17.11 at 81mph,  0 to 60mph @ 10.57.
*Stock 2000 Focus ZX3 Automatic ........................16.81 at 82mph, 0 to 60mph = 10.52.
* Header after modifications and new mandrel bent exhaust system to 2" I.D.. with a free flowing race muffler, and resonator.
16.69 at 83mph,  0 to 60mph @ 10.55.
* Tires (205x40x16) /wheels/lowering springs/alignment (alignment set for minimum rolling resistance)
16.41 at 84mph,  0 to 60mph @ 10.20.
* Port throttle body and air flow meter (removed the divider)
16.20 at 85mph
* Stage 2 cylinder head porting/cleanup milling and ported intake manifold
16.04 at 88mph,  0 to 60mph @ 9.41
* Reprogrammed computer to work with modifications, adj timing/fuel curves, allow higher rpm shifts from the trans, and eliminate
 rev limiter, 24 lb. injectors.  Shifts @6000rpm.
15.52 at 90mph,  0 to 60mph @ 8.34.
* 50mm modified throttle body & oil pan evacuation system
15.27 at 91mph
* 276/284 Hydraulic cam & roller rocker arm kit, short tires in front for better gearing/traction, (hard to launch without wheel spin). Shifts @ 6,500 rpm
14.74 at 93mph,  0 to 60mph @ 6.90.

* NOTE: Most timed runs were measured using a Vericom VC2000. These were run on the same stretch of road and in the same direction on days when the wind wouldn't influence the test. Test temperatures did vary and would have some effect on the results.

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