photos by: the author
We Head to Risingsun, Ohio for a Day at the Dyno
It’s no secret that we love Pontiacs around here. Like, we really love Pontiacs. We have several of them in our AutoCentric Media stable, and there’s been two Pontiac project cars since GMEFI Magazine’s inception. While both have been Firebirds, we hope to land a G8 or a GTO someday.
In the meantime, we’ll have to settle for surrounding ourselves with other rare Arrowheads, like the selection of cars we got to play with at Injector Experts last summer. Although several other stories and plenty of other media obligations got in our way, prolonging this awesome story, we’re happy to finally have the opportunity to bring it to you now.
You see, we’ve been working with Keith Brewer and Injector Experts for a number of years. First, with our Grand National injector rebuild, and now, with this awesome All-Pontiac dyno shootout that was put on in conjunction with Injector Experts, as well as Lucas Hartsel of Hartsel Performance.
Keith, known for rebuilding fuel injectors for some of the fastest EFI cars in the country, wanted to put his brand new Mustang dyno to the test. Hartsel has been making the name for himself here in Ohio, as an LS tuning expert. He’s quite popular, especially among the Pontiac G8 an GTO contingent.
With these two working together out of the same facility in Risingsun, Ohio, we expect to see a lot of killer builds going out of this shop.
Now before we get to the car owners and thiner vehicles we should point out that that not everyone ended up with dyno numbers. Between a few mechanical issues with some of the cars, or other issues, we simply can’t provide that info. If a dyno sheet isn’t depicted, we simply couldn’t provide the proper numbers to do the cars justice.
Frank Weldon — 2000 Trans Am WS6
Starting with the sole Trans Am of the lot, a 2000 WS6 owned by Frank Weldon, boost was immediately apparent. At the time of our dyno shoot-out, Frank’s T/A was equipped with a stock LS1 and a Sloppy Stage 2 camshaft.
An On3 turbo kit with a 78/75 turbo, cranking out a modest 6-lbs. of boost and utilizing 93-octane pump gas certainly does its part to produce double the car’s original output. Of course, 1000cc FIC injectors help keep the air/fuel ratio in check. It’s backed by a 4l60E with 3600-stall torque converter and a Moser 12-bolt rearend.
Ricky Sanchez — 2006 GTO
Ricky’s ’06 GTO was pretty mild on the day of our shoot. Showing up to the party with only a set of long-tube headers, 3-inch diameter dual exhaust and a dyno tune, he was certainly on the more mild end of things. Cosmetic updates include tinted windows, Maverick Man coil-overs and American Racing 18×9 Torque Thrst II wheels at all four corners.
Although Ricky is rolling with only a couple of bolt-ons as of this writing, he has much more planned for his car in the future.
Joel Winget — 2008 G8 GT
Joel may have been the quietest person of the bunch, but his car was equally docile… on the face of it. What looked to be a pretty much bone stock G8 GT, in silver, on the outside it was anything but.
Under the hood was a forged 6-liter LS2 with an LSA crankshaft, Molnar turbo LS1 connecting rods, and Wiseco forged pistons. A Livernois 1C cam was squeezed into the block with a set of stock, unported heads sitting on top. A Magnuson TVS1900 supercharger was also bolted on.
An ACE built 6L80E gearbox with a stock converter set behind the alloy mill, with a set of stock 2.92 gears out back. With a 6-speed automatic and such tall gears, this car should have an impressive top speed. Widened rear factory wheels (10.5-inch, on 305s) are the only outside clue that something may be amiss.
Matt Bradner — 2009 G8 GT
The second G8 in attendance was owned by Matt Bradner. Matt’s car is a 2009 example with a healthy dose of upgrades. Included in the recipe is a Brian Tooley Stage 3 LS3 cam, a 3.45 Camaro differential, Circle D single 3800 torque converter. The stock heads have been milled .02, and also has a ported throttle body and intake manifold.
On the exhaust side of things, a set of 1-7/8 OBX long-tube headers that feed into 3-inch diameter exhaust. There are plenty of subtle cosmetic upgrades as well.
Steve Maess — 2009 G8 GT
Steve’s ’09 G8 GT was packing some serious upgrades, including an F1 ProCharger. Helping the G8 create power in addition to the blower, is a COMP Cams 230/242/116* bumpstick, DW 1000cc injectors, and Fore Innovations dual fuel pumps. An ATI dampener, was thrown on for good measure, and the entire exhaust has been replaced for increased sound and performance
A front splitter, tinted windows and CCW Classic wheels give the car a much improved aesthetic. Steve’s G8 also turned out to be the highest producing horsepower car of the day, with a 610hp/545 ft-lb to the rear tires, without the correction factor.
Jay Sopher/ Tabbitha Spellman — 2009 G8 GT/ 2006 GTO
Jay and his fiancé, Tabbitha, brought out a pair of collectible Pontiacs to the dyno day. Both were black, and both were Aussie built, but the similarities end there.
The G8 has a full DOD delete, as well as all supporting mods. A Bronze trunion kit is part of the recipe, as is a set of milled stock heads (0.30). A Lunati cam with a low lift was slid into the factory block. An FTI triple-disc, 3200-stall torque converter shaves a few tenths off of the 1/4-mile E.T., while getting the car into its power band a little bit quicker.
Rounding out the details include a set of Driveshaft Shop 1200 hp axles, RotoFab cold-air intake, and an Elite catch can. The GTO was a little more tame; only equipped with a K&N cold-air intake, Texas Speed headers and SLP Loudmouth 2 catback exhaust system.
While there were a few technical hiccups along the way, it was great to see a nice selection of LS-powered Ponchos
Until next time!
Rick Seitz is the owner and founder of GMEFI Magazine, and has a true love and passion for all vehicles. When he isn’t tuning, testing, or competing with the brand’s current crop of project vehicles, he’s busy tinkering and planning the next modifications for his own cars.