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Michael Hawes/Kenny Hubbard | 2,136 WHP | Nitrous Big-Block Chevy

June 16, 2022

The X275 category is highly competitive and it requires a lot of testing and tuning to ensure the combination is running in tip-top shape. For Michael Nawes and Kenny Hubbard, it made sense to book a trip to the FuelTech USA headquarters and utilize the Mainline Hub Dyno to accomplish such a task. The goal was to learn more about the FuelTech ECU, work on the tune-up for the large displacement big-block Chevy, and test a variety of changes as they aim to push Nawes’ Fox Mustang into the front of the field.

The FuelTech team worked with Hubbard and Nawes to complete 15 pulls in a two-day period, testing dramatic timing and fuel adjustments and various blends of gasoline for optimum performance. In a hardcore move, the Texans swapped a new set of pistons in their efforts to maximize output of the Naiser Racing Components beastly big-block Chevy combination. The results were nothing less than staggering with a stout 2,136 WHP, impressive for conventional-headed big-block Chevy with a cast intake and a single throttle body induction system.

Working with the FuelTech technical group, the team chose an FT550 engine management system for this X275-bound Fox Mustang. One of the highlights that nitrous-powered racers prefer in their PowerFT engine management system are the PRO-Nitrous controls that come standard in all FuelTech ECUs, which includes the FT550 on this racecar, as well as the FT600, FT550 LITE, and FT450.

The PRO-Nitrous function has the ability to control up to 6 stages of nitrous injection, set operation thresholds, offer custom timers and delays, complete ignition timing and fuel control, nitrous bottle pressure compensation, and individual cylinder trim. It is quickly becoming a popular item in the PDRA Pro Nitrous category—that is the eliminator where the quickest and fastest nitrous door slammers in the world throw down.

The PowerFT ECUs are more than just the reliable PRO Nitrous functions, the FT550 engine management system has standard features like sequential injection and ignition, O2 closed loop, Data Logger, Delay Box, Boost Controller, and Nitrous Controller. The FT450, FT550, and FT600 ECU units also come with an LCD display and touchscreen, showing real-time data and allowing the user to make adjustments without a PC connection. Additionally, all the PowerFT control units feature AMP SUPERSEAL automotive connectors, accelerometer and gyroscope, and 2 CAN networks.

The FT600, FT550, and FT550 LITE are capable of transmission controls with its built-in GearControl. As seen in this video, Nawes’ Mustang uses the GearControl function with the M&M Transmissions three-speed TH400 drivetrain. If that isn’t enough, the FuelTech Input Expander is available, providing 24 additional inputs, including 20 analog inputs and 4 VR sensors.