BRING on the boost! Last episode in the Carnage Turbo Taxi series we left everyone on a cliff-hanger as we drove our FG Falcon taxi with its turbo for the very first time. However, we did so without boost as the charge pipe was disconnected. It was making all the mad whooshy turbo noises, but was no quicker than when it was a dead stock 580,000km old taxi.
In this episode we fix that. We’re connecting all the pipes, getting the tune dialled in with the help of Jason from Tunnel Vision, and going racing! Without knowing the flow ratings of our LPG injectors, we were cautious to begin with to ensure we didn’t lean out our Garrett-boosted bone stock Barra, so we stuck to just 9psi of boost.
I won’t tell you what it ran with that setup – you can see it in the video – but all involved were a little disappointed. Partly it was down to Scott ‘accidentally’ lifting his foot off the accelerator (sorry mate), but regardless we were lightyears away from our ten-second goal with the power we were making. It was also sluggish out of the hole with our standard four-speed auto.
It was time for redemption. Despite being crook as a dog, Scott found a cheapy high-stall converter to suit our gearbox on Facebook and installed it in the car. Jason turned up the wick and then Scotty was on his own driving 800km up to Sydney Dragway in search of a more respectable time slip. He got it, running over a second quicker than our previous outing at Calder Park.
But it doesn’t end there. After its abuse up in Sydney the valve springs in our standard Barra motor were going soft so it was time to replace them with a set of freshies from the guys at Plazmaman, with help from MPW Performance in Dandenong. While we had workshop space we also replaced our factory single-spinner rear end with a Falcon XR8 setup which has a limited slip diff.
With those changes made we were off to Heathcote Park Raceway to run some more numbers at the Ford Forum Nationals. During the cool Friday night test session the taxi was faster than ever! With a 12.0 @ 121mph followed by a wheel-spinning 12.3 @ 119 done by me in my first ever drive in the turbo taxi, we left confident that either myself or Scott would bust into the elevens on the Saturday.
However, for some reason the taxi was significantly slower despite us not changing anything with the car other than a fresh tank of LPG. We noticed after a couple of runs that we’d blown an intercooler pipe, but connecting it back up didn’t resolve the issue. After a few more runs, the problem revealed itself – our standard four-speed auto was cooked and overheating badly.
Good news is we’re rectifying the problem right now with a built XR6 Turbo gearbox, and while we’re at it, we will be upgrading our converter to a brand new item from the guys at TCE Converters with a higher stall speed as we still have more time to take out of our 60-foots.
The bad news is this is the final episode in the Carnage Turbo Taxi series for now. We’ve got a new project car that is even more insane than the taxi, and it will blow everyone’s mind. But don’t worry, we’ll keep you updated on the taxi’s progress as we continue our march toward the tens.
A big shout out to everyone involved in the build, including Tunnel Vision Turbocharging, Haltech, Turbosmart, Speed Pro, MPW Performance & Race Fab, Plazmaman, TCE Torque Converters, Preston Automatics and Extracted Performance Exhausts.