On the fuel side, a high-flow Aeromotive fuel pump is teamed with huge 1600cc injectors. We're used to seeing 1600cc injectors on alcohol-burning cars but not on gasoline engines, and this 4G63 burns C-16 race gas. With such big injectors, the ability to precisely control the injectors are key to their success in this application. A tried-and-proven AEM EMS stand-alone engine management system is the go-to player. Switzer was able to dial-in the injectors at idle and light throttle and open them when the hammer fell.
When it comes to the ignition, the EMS fires a MSD DIS-2 capacitive discharge box that works in tandem with a Buschur coil-on-plug package, which was developed and installed by Switzer.
On the Buschur Racing Dynojet, the Talon was too tenacious to generate a consistent pass in FWD trim, so Switzer fabbed some dummy axles and the car was tuned as a RWD. With boost from the Buschur Racing T-72 "special recipe" turbo bumped up to a moderate 30 psi, the 4G63 dished out 826 whp. It should be noted the engine was pushing power through the transfer case and center diff, so there was most likely more driveline loss than if the car was tested in FWD trim.
An Achilles' heel for the all-wheel-drive DSMs is the drivetrain. When both the power and the intentions get serious, the clutch, tranny and transfer case suffer the consequences. Buschur Racing has amassed a great deal of knowledge (and broken a great deal of parts to get it) concerning the DSM drivetrain. Using this database, Switzer has developed a custom twin-disc clutch setup and a modified throw shifter to take some of the shock out of hard shifting.
Body roll at launch is curtailed by a set of custom coil-overs sprung specifically for drag racing. Stopping power is provided by Wilwood discs all around. Switzer used Wilwood calipers and rotors but constructed custom hats to position the assembly in just the right position. A Tilton pedal set and master cylinder round out the system.
Tires play a very important role when it comes to driveline problem children like the AWD DSMs. Wegman runs 28x8.5 Goodyears on 15-inch Volk TE-37 wheels. Wegman plans to move to a 26- or 24-inch tire in 2004.
The cockpit is all business; 1320 business. Wegman and Switzer together installed a Kirkley race bucket, stuffed the dash with Auto Meter hardware and added Simpson harnesses and a Simpson window net. Switzer spent a whopping 60 hours on the wiring harness. The custom harness saves weight and explains the super-sano condition under the hood. Jeff Johnson of Johnson Racing Chassis constructed an NHRA 7.50-second roll cage constructed of chrome-moly. To further save weight, the car runs a carbon-fiber hood and Lexan glass.
The car made a hasty debut at the 2003 Diamond Star Shootout, but made a beeline for the wall. Wegman saved the car with some good driving but engine gremlins forced the car to the sidelines. The Talon is now fully sorted and Wegman has high hopes. "I'm very happy with the car and can't wait to get it going again. It's making more power than many cars running the bottle and I'd love to break into the eights without nitrous."
Stay tuned as we plan to keep tabs on the progress of this crazy, streetable Diamond Star warrior.