Ford Racing Performance Parts FR100
By: Michael LevinePosted: 11-07-02 03:00
© 2002 PickupTruck.com

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The Big Three are serious about creating high performance aftermarket crate engines for their customers and Ford's Racing Technology group has created a very special package to wrap its new 5.0-liter Cammer crate engine up in - the FR100. The FR100 is a race ready tribute to the best selling vehicles in Ford's fleet, the F-series pickups, based on the 1953 F-100 pickup.

The trucks pictured in this story are the only two FR100s in existence. Both were purchased by Ford Racing Technology after a search on the Internet. Tom Berkey, a parts marketing manager for FRT, figured two to three trucks would be needed to complete the project vehicles for SEMA.

The trucks were torn down and rebuilt from the ground up at McLaren Performance Technologies in Livonia, Michigan.

FRT wanted to preserve the exterior aesthetics of the original F-100 even though during the project almost every panel was modified. The only original, unaltered panels are the hood and doors. The cab was actually lengthened by 6-inches to provide more interior room and to fit a custom roll cage for driver protection.

Inside the truck is a brand new dash with retro-style gauges. Its bucket seats are from the Ford Ranger, reupholstered in leather and tweed cloth, and the steering wheel is shared with Ford Racing's Mustang. A Harman/Becker TrafficProII nav and audio unit is mounted in an overhead console with a Sirius radio receiver for entertainment.

The FRT team tried to keep the original frame but suspension concerns dictated building an entirely new chassis for the trucks. They wound up substituting a frame from an FR500 Mustang project car with similar rail spacings to the F100.

The front and rear independent suspension components also came from the Mustang. The front suspension is bolted to a set of frame tubes that serve as the front frame rails. The rear frame was modified to accommodate the rear suspension control arms.

After disassembly the F100 parts that stayed and the F100 parts that were kept stood almost equal in height on the floor of the garage.

The 5.0-liter Cammer Crate Engine that powers the FR100 is an all aluminum, overhead cam V8 that finds its roots in the 4.6-liter SVT Mustang's powerplant. The displacement difference comes from larger cylinders. The Cammer is rated at 425-horsepower and 370 lb-feet of torque with a high compression rating of 11.0:1.

To reduce the difficulty of installation, the Cammer uses a 4.6L-4V wiring harness that provides all of the electrical connectors needed, including terminals, a fuse box, power distribution box, switch connectors and fuel pump relays. Dan Davis, Director of Ford Racing Technology says, "for once (with a crate engine) you get the whole thing without the difficulty of trying to figure out where to mount to all of the electrical components."

The FR100's Cammer is mated to a 6-speed manual transmission to realize the engine's full potential. During test runs in the FR100 it ran a 2-mile, 10 turn road race course with an average time of only 2 seconds less than an FR500 Mustang. It pegged the 120-mph speedometer while only in fourth gear and FRT engineers still aren't sure about its top speed.

Depending on demand, Davis estimates the price for the Cammer to be over $10,000 when it comes to market in the springtime of 2003. You will be able to purchase a Cammer from a Ford dealer or warehouse distributor. Davis is hoping to initially sell at least 100-200 engines.

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