The Long Way
SCT Performance tunes up an S550 with a JLT CAI and Kooks long-tubes
By Steve Turner
Photos by Steve Turner and courtesy of Kooks Headers & Exhaust
The more things change, the more they say the same. That’s how the saying goes. In the case of the 2015 Mustang, the truism is definitely true. As modern as the latest Mustang is, its Twin Independent Variable Cam Timing-equipped Coyote 5.0-liter engine still responds to traditional hot-rodding techniques, like opening up the intake and exhaust.
However, what’s necessary to make those modifications work on a modern Mustang is tuning. That’s how we found ourselves back at SCT Performance to watch the company’s head calibrator, Matt Alderman, create a new preload calibration for his new GT’s latest addition—a set of Kooks Headers & Exhaust 1 7/8-inch, stainless-steel long-tube headers (PN 1151H420; $1,830.21).
It didn’t take long for Matt to dial in a new calibration for the JLT Performance CAI and Kooks exhaust combo, and the results were quite good. Keep in mind that this is just with the CAI, headers, and catted mid-pipes.
“I changed some of the temp loss for the O2 sensors,” Matt explained. “I also adjusted the variable cam timing.”
Matt had the cat-back to test out next, but then he got the call to install a supercharger. That’s a test story for another day, but for this round the car was significantly improved.
“The car felt strong with more torque and horsepower while maintaining drivability,” Matt said.
It also sounds pretty good with the new exhaust. For the sights and sounds of Matt’s combo, you can watch this vid…
Of course, the best news is that the same calibration that produced these results will be one of the available preload tunes that you can select from your own SCT handheld device. So, you can install these parts in your garage like Matt did, upload this tune, and you are set.