Tech: 2015 Mustang VMP Gen2 TVS

0 2015 Mustang VMP Gen2 TVS Featured

10-Pound Hammer

Lund Racing tunes a VMP Gen2 TVS-supercharged 2015 Mustang

By Steve Turner
Photos courtesy of Lund Racing

In the short time that the 2015 Mustangs have been on the streets, we have seen some impressive power gains from bolt-ons and power adders. We already know that a standard 2.3-liter TVS supercharger performs well on the latest Mustang, but we’ve been itching to see what one of VMP Tuning’s Gen2 TVS superchargers would do for the new-school Coyote.

Before the supercharger install, Ken had already upgraded his 2015 Mustang GT with American Racing Headers’ 1 7/8-inch long-tube headers an ARH 3-inch midpipe, a JLT Performance cold-air intake, and, of course, one of his custom Lund Racing calibrations. With that combo the car put down 438 horsepower and 409 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels on the Dynojet at Power by the Hour in Boynton Beach, Florida.
Before the supercharger install, Ken had already upgraded his 2015 Mustang GT with American Racing Headers’ 1 7/8-inch long-tube headers an ARH 3-inch midpipe, a JLT Performance cold-air intake, and, of course, one of his custom Lund Racing calibrations. With that combo the car put down 438 horsepower and 409 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels on the Dynojet at Power by the Hour in Boynton Beach, Florida.

If you aren’t familiar with VMP’s hot-rodded version of the 2.3-liter TVS supercharger, then do yourself a favor and read our intro story on this unit. In short, with the help of Roush, Justin Starkey of VMP Tuning re-engineered the inlet of the supercharger case and added numerous other detail improvements that result in a higher-flowing, more efficient supercharger

This blower has powered cars like Rebecca Starkey’s 2011 Mustang GT and Mat Brunette’s Shelby GT500 into the 8-second zone. Likewise, we know firsthand how well the unit works making big streetable power on our own Shelby GT500 project car.

“The 2015 engine loves to rev, it makes more horsepower and at a higher rpm than the previous-generation Coyotes,” Justin explained. “With the power increase on 2015 comes a slight loss in torque, and the torquiness of our Gen2 TVS blower makes up for that and complements the 2015 engine nicely.”

Before installing the supercharger, there are a few steps to prepping the car for its new power adder. Power by the Hour technician Donnie Renfrow got the ball moving by taking off the radiator support cover, induction, intake, front-end accessory drive belt, coolant hoses, coolant tank, and eventually the front fascia.
Before installing the supercharger, there are a few steps to prepping the car for its new power adder. Power by the Hour technician Donnie Renfrow got the ball moving by taking off the radiator support cover, induction, intake, front-end accessory drive belt, coolant hoses, coolant tank, and eventually the front fascia.

When we learned that Lund Racing’s Ken Bjonnes would be installing the VMP Gen2 blower on his personal S550, we jumped at the chance to cover it here on the front page. When it comes to modern Mustangs, there isn’t much you can do without tuning them, so having a tuner dialing in his personal car was sure to deliver some great results. It also marks the debut of an exciting new working relationship between VMP and Lund Racing.

If you are familiar with the installation of Roush or VMP TVS supercharger systems it has always been necessary to modify the timing cover to update the FEAD for the blower drive belt. With the 2015 Mustang there is another new wrinkle. You must also trim down a boss on the block to make room for the new lower intake. Donnie didn’t take any chances when it came to protecting Ken’s Coyote engine from contamination. He covered the engine in plastic and taped off all but the affected areas so he could make the prescribed cuts. If you have a Performance Pack car, it is also necessary to cut the strut-tower-to-cowl brace to make way for the blower inlet.
If you are familiar with the installation of Roush or VMP TVS supercharger systems, it has always been necessary to modify the timing cover to update the FEAD for the blower drive belt. With the 2015 Mustang there is another new wrinkle. You must also trim down a boss on the block to make room for the new lower intake. Donnie didn’t take any chances when it came to protecting Ken’s Coyote engine from contamination. He covered the engine in plastic and taped off all but the affected areas so he could make the prescribed cuts. If you have a Performance Pack car, it is also necessary to cut the strut-tower-to-cowl brace to make way for the blower inlet.

“For several reasons we partnered with Lund Racing on our 2015 Kits. Jon and Ken started tuning on my blowers early with great results on Kelly Aiken’s (from BMR Suspension) 2015 Mustang and a few others. From there, offering Lund remote tuning sessions with our 2015 Kits sounded like a no-brainer,” Justin explained. “This has allowed VMP to be first to market with a TVS blower solution for both automatic- and manual-trans 5.0-liters. It has freed up resources to allow us to work on the CARB certifications for our kits, we expect to have the highest-horsepower 2015 supercharger kits that will pass emissions anywhere in the country. As a power-adder manufacturer we are looking towards the future.”

Looking to the future is key, especially when it comes to calibrating supercharger systems.

Once the timing cover and block were modified, Donnie took great care cleaning off the metal bits generated from the block and cover mods. Then he could drop on the lower intake manifold and start installing the revised FEAD. With the lower intake in place, he torqued its fasteners to 8 lb-ft in a criss-cross pattern.
Once the timing cover and block were modified, Donnie took great care cleaning off the metal bits generated from the block and cover mods. Then he could drop on the lower intake manifold and start installing the revised FEAD. With the lower intake in place, he torqued its fasteners to 8 lb-ft in a criss-cross pattern.

“Although the 2015 powertrain is similar to the 2014 and earlier Mustangs, the computer is all new and introduces quite a few new curveballs under the guise of torque control,” Ken said. “It is similar to some of the EcoBoost stuff, which we have been working on for some time, so this gave us a nice head-start. We also have three cars with three tuners working on them nonstop, so we really went all-in on R&D for this platform.”

The new level of the programming inside the new TriCor PCM has made it more difficult for the aftermarket to make aggressive mods on these new Mustangs, but the crew at Lund Racing are having a lot of success calibrating S550s.

With the cooling system partially disassembled, it was an opportune time to install a Reische Performance 170-degree thermostat (PN RP-FORD-50; $65) from Lethal Performance. Reische recommends running a 60/40 mix of water and antifreeze and a dose of Redline Water Wetter to make the most of this ’stat. You’ll also need to adjust the cooling-fan activation temp in your tune, but doing so is obviously not an issue for Ken.
With the cooling system partially disassembled, it was an opportune time to install a Reische Performance 170-degree thermostat (PN RP-FORD-50; $65) from Lethal Performance. Reische recommends running a 60/40 mix of water and antifreeze and a dose of Redline Water Wetter to make the most of this ’stat. You’ll also need to adjust the cooling-fan activation temp in your tune, but doing so is obviously not an issue for Ken.

“The number one issue that tuners are having with the TVS is it uses the older style throttle body with the new computer. This is a fairly high hurdle and took us quite some time to work through,” Ken explained. “Once you get past that, the next biggest issue like I mentioned earlier is torque control. It is widespread in the 2015. The majority of our time goes into these issues. Once they are solved, then normal tuning is fairly straightforward.”

Before he could tune the car up, Ken brought his GT to Power by the Hour in Boynton Beach, Florida, to have the system installed by technician Donnie Renfrow, which freed Ken up to take a few pictures for us! To those familiar with the TVS installation on the earlier Coyotes, it is relatively similar, and we have hit the highlights here.

Knowing he would eventually step up the boost, Ken opted for the optional Brisk spark plugs which come in a colder range than the stockers. They are pre-gapped .0035-inch, but you can gap down as low as .0026-inch depending on how small you go on the blower pulley. VMP offers pulleys from 63 to 85mm for boost levels from 9 to 17 psi.
Knowing he would eventually step up the boost, Ken opted for the optional Brisk spark plugs which come in a colder range than the stockers. They are pre-gapped .0035-inch, but you can gap down as low as .0026-inch depending on how small you go on the blower pulley. VMP offers pulleys from 63 to 85mm for boost levels from 9 to 17 psi.

Of course, what’s most important is that the combination of Ken’s tuning and the VMP supercharger produced not only impressive results on the dyno, but behind the wheel of the car as well.

“This is the first stick-shift car I’ve owned in a while and now that the car is dialed-in nicely, I absolutely love the car,” Ken enthused. “It feels like it was meant to come this way. It has clean, crisp power as high as I’m willing to spin it. That happens to be 8,000 rpm—so far…”

“I was surprised Ken made that much power with only the 82mm/10-psi pulley and 93 octane fuel,” Justin added. “I can’t wait to see the dyno results from the other pulley combinations.”

With the lower intake in place and the new FEAD staged, Donnie could lower the VMP Gen2 TVS into place and bolt it down. As you know, VMP’s latest version of the 2.3-liter TVS supercharger features numerous upgrades that reduce inlet restriction and maximize airflow. This arrangement makes the blower more efficient, which ultimately leads to more power. As you can see, Donnie also installed the VMP TwinJet 67mm throttle body included in the kit. He torqued the blower’s nine fasteners to 18 lb-ft.
With the lower intake in place and the new FEAD staged, Donnie could lower the VMP Gen2 TVS into place and bolt it down. As you know, VMP’s latest version of the 2.3-liter TVS supercharger features numerous upgrades that reduce inlet restriction and maximize airflow. This arrangement makes the blower more efficient, which ultimately leads to more power. As you can see, Donnie also installed the VMP TwinJet 67mm throttle body included in the kit. He torqued the blower’s nine fasteners to 18 lb-ft.
Besides the more efficient Gen2 TVS supercharger, another benefit of the VMP 2015 Mustang kit is the inclusion of this massive twin-fan heat exchanger for the air-to-water intercooler system. Donnie mounted the new exchanger to the factory bumper using the new bolts supplied, then he mounted the coolant pump, plumbed the hoses, and wired the pump with the supplied harness.
Besides the more efficient Gen2 TVS supercharger, another benefit of the VMP 2015 Mustang kit is the inclusion of this massive twin-fan heat exchanger for the air-to-water intercooler system. Donnie mounted the new exchanger to the factory bumper using the new bolts supplied, then he mounted the coolant pump, plumbed the hoses, and wired the pump with the supplied harness.
Donnie wrapped up the install by installing the blower pulley, induction, intercooler fluid reservoir, and finishing the plumbing of the intercooler system. He could then fill the intercooler system with fluid and reinstall the front fascia. For this round, Ken selected a pulley to deliver 10 pounds of peak boost on his bolt-on 2015. However, we wouldn’t be surprised to see him step up the boost in the future.
Donnie wrapped up the install by installing the blower pulley, induction, intercooler fluid reservoir, and finishing the plumbing of the intercooler system. He could then fill the intercooler system with fluid and reinstall the front fascia. For this round, Ken selected a pulley to deliver 10 pounds of peak boost on his bolt-on 2015. However, we wouldn’t be surprised to see him step up the boost in the future.
With the installation completed it was time for Ken to work his magic behind the keyboard. He tweaked the factory TriCor PCM to accept the GT500-style throttle body, adjust its torque-control parameters to accept the newfound power, and, of course, dialed in the air/fuel and timing numbers to maximize the car’s power and driveability.
With the installation completed it was time for Ken to work his magic behind the keyboard. He tweaked the factory TriCor PCM to accept the GT500-style throttle body, adjust its torque-control parameters to accept the newfound power, and, of course, dialed in the air/fuel and timing numbers to maximize the car’s power and driveability.
With Ken’s custom Lund Racing tune uploaded to the factory PCM, his new-school Coyote engine and the VMP Gen2 TVS supercharger became fast friends—really fast friends. It rocked the rollers on the Dynojet at Power by the Hour to the tune of 651.35 horsepower and 537.74 lb-ft of torque. Ken’s previous progression was to add a JLT cold-air intake and a tune, followed by an American Racing Headers exhaust and a fresh tune. With the tune and CAI it peaked at 409.75 horsepower and 384.99 horsepower. Opening up the exhaust took the rear-wheel numbers over 452 horsepower and 418 lb-ft of torque. That makes the new supercharged combo picked up peak-to-peak gains of over 211.69 horsepower and 129.88 lb-ft of torque.
With Ken’s custom Lund Racing tune uploaded to the factory PCM, his new-school Coyote engine and the VMP Gen2 TVS supercharger became fast friends—really fast friends. It rocked the rollers on the Dynojet at Power by the Hour to the tune of 664.25 horsepower and 548.39 lb-ft of torque. Ken’s previous progression was to add a JLT cold-air intake and a tune, followed by an American Racing Headers exhaust and a fresh tune. With the tune and CAI it peaked at 409.75 horsepower and 384.99 horsepower. Opening up the exhaust took the rear-wheel numbers over 452 horsepower and 418 lb-ft of torque. That means the new supercharged combo picked up peak-to-peak gains of over 211.69 horsepower and 129.88 lb-ft of torque.
Taking a deeper look at a sampling of the data shows the VMP Gen2 TVS really pulls strong across the entire powerband. Once both combos are at full throttle you can see the combination of the VMP Gen2 TVS and the Lund Racing custom tune deliver solid three-digit gains throughout the pull. The torque gets really fan right around 5,000 rpm, and you can see that the Gen2 wants to keep pulling at the top of the tach for as long as you are willing to keep your foot in it.
Taking a deeper look at a sampling of the data shows the VMP Gen2 TVS really pulls strong across the entire powerband. Once both combos are at full throttle you can see the combination of the VMP Gen2 TVS and the Lund Racing custom tune deliver solid three-digit gains throughout the pull. The torque gets really fat right around 5,000 rpm, and you can see that the Gen2 wants to keep pulling at the top of the tach for as long as you are willing to keep your foot in it.

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3 thoughts on “Tech: 2015 Mustang VMP Gen2 TVS”

  1. If you’re looking at this setup, I would hold off. I had this installed on my 2015 auto back in May and Lund appears to not even be close to having my tune dialed in. Drivability sucks…unless you like the throttle sticking for a bit after you lift, or the car going WOT when the pedal is at 1/4 throttle. To Lund/VMPs defense, it sounds like the 2015 computer is a bear to tune, but I don’t think they should be marketing this package and their tunes YET.

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