Before heading to the track to test this beast, let’s walk around the truck and inspect all the Roush modifications. Our truck started out as a 2-wheel-drive SuperCab XLT. From the ground up, the truck sports 20-inch chrome 6-spoke wheels and P285/55R20 BFGoodrich G-Force T/A tires. The suspension is lowered two inches in the front and three inches in the rear and tightened up with stiffer springs, a larger front stabilizer bar and specially valved Bilstein shock absorbers. The body kit is tasteful and appealing with subtle ground effects and a more imposing lower grille opening. The side exhaust with chrome tips adds a little bling. The most curious piece of body work is the rear spoiler. This one pops right off the tailgate: no need for a tonneau.
Interior features include striking black-and-red leather seating, carbon fiber center binnacle cover, white-faced gauges, billet pedals, embroidered floor mats and plenty of Roush signatures.
The ride to Los Angeles County Raceway was firm and responsive. Roush literature says the Stage 2 F-150 can cut corners at .89g with the suspension improvements. The downside is a much harsher road shock over uneven surfaces; a shame considering how much praise the stock F-150 has received for its smooth ride. The interior is comfortable and inviting, but we wish the truck would have had bucket seats and the center console shifter available on Lariat models.
There’s no mistaking the supercharged engine. It whines loud and proud as you wind up through the canyon roads. It’s a perfect duet partner with the opened-up exhaust system. And at the track, the harmony did attract quite a crowd.
I hit LACR on a test ‘n’ tune night. It was extremely cold and many vehicles were having a tough time hooking up on the drag strip. The first run was wasted in a ball of smoke at the starting line with just a medium stab at the pedal. Two runs later we recorded a best of the evening: 15.32 seconds at 89.55 mph (corrected for 2700-foot elevation). I ran four more times in the 15.4-second range, trying to get more aggressive on the launch, but the track just wouldn’t hold the tires. By comparison, I saw a Hemi-powered Ram Rumble Bee running about six-tenths slower than the Roush.
With a little warmer track and playing with the tire pressure, I probably could have recorded a high 14-second time. But my biggest handicap was the shift point. Even though the peak horsepower comes in at 5400 rpm, the truck was shifting at about 5000 rpm. I tried to shift manually but the fuel cutoff came in at 5100 rpm. Perhaps if the engine management computer would allow the truck to stretch its legs a little more, mid-14-second times would be easier.
However, the Roush truck is still lugging a lot of weight. Exact specs on our truck were not available, but a stock 4x2 SuperCab with the 6.5-foot bed starts at 5169 pounds. Tack on body parts, a supercharger, dual exhaust and bigger wheels and tires, and you can see how the heft will hold back performance. On a slightly different subject, this truck has outstanding brakes from the factory. I easily slowed down in time to make the first turnout at LACR and didn’t notice any brake fade from run to run. The stops were controlled, smooth and stable.