Life is Great with a 6.0-liter V8
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  • 2011 Mustang (305HP v6)

    Posted on August 28th, 2010 tcorzett No comments

    I was able to get a Saturday away from work so decided to head-out with the 2011 Ford Mustang rental car to shoot some video. This is the road that I drive to/from work each day:

    The Mustang has a 3.7L 4V Ti-VCT V6 producing 305 horsepower and 280 lb.-ft. of torque. The balance and handling of the car is very predictable (or maybe it’s because I’ve been driving this road every day for three months). In the twisties I really wished there was some more torque to get the rear-end to rotate through the exits of the corners, as it is the ‘Stang tends to push a little more than I would like (the 225 all season tires I’m sure don’t help). I know the car is down on power being between 5226ft and 6535ft over this pass, so having the V8 from the GT would make the drive really interesting.

    Video was shot over multiple runs using a pair of GoPro HD cameras and then clipped together using Final Cut Pro video editing software.

  • Road Trip!

    Posted on August 14th, 2010 tcorzett No comments

    I’ve spent the past two months working in the deserts of Utah without much time away from work. I was lucky to get this weekend off… so decided to take a road trip!

    For the last month I have had a paycheck sitting on my desk, but with no bank branches in Utah that can accept deposits… the closest place is in Pocatello, ID (Yes, I will say it again… Bank of America doesn’t have an ATM/branch that can accept deposits in Utah!?!). I’m always down for a fun drive, so decided to plan-out a route that would take me through the back roads of Northern Utah into Idaho.

    First off… a little warning for the G8 and GTO folks… my vehicle while I’ve been on travel has been a rental 2011 Mustang (v6) and that is what I went on the road trip in.

    With 305HP the v6 is no slouch, but it’s definitely not a v8… and has only 280 lb-ft of torque. The inside of the Mustang is a little small for me (the parking brake is always cramping my leg), but it is much better than the alternative… a Kia!

    Day 1: 388 miles (8hr 1min)

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    I headed out from Tooele, UT after filling-up with gas and checking the tire pressures (40psi in the 225 tires… yes, 225 tires!?!). I wanted to wash the Mustang so it would be ready for the inevitable photos, but the car wash was broken. First piece of interesting road I came to turned-out to be my favorite. Just East of Salt Lake City off of I-80. There is a road that leads up into the Wasatch National Forest.

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    Hwy 65 is a ribbon of asphalt (freshly paved in almost all of the corners) that was so much fun that I had to drive it twice! Friday morning the road was almost empty of traffic (except for a few cyclists) and it made for a thrilling drive. The posted speed limit is a little low for my tastes, but the “safe speed for current road conditions” was fun enough. The up-hill climb is quite steep and the series of hairpin turns are a blast… they are just wide enough radius to allow for some fun (which is apparent by the number of tire marks from people drifting up there). At the summit there is a nice little lot to pull-off (and even a restroom). The view was definitely enjoyable!

    The decent off the backside is a little more gentle (if you consider -9% grade gentle) and and has some great sweeping turns through forests of birch trees.

    Utah really has some beautiful scenery along its roads… Not that California doesn’t, but sometimes the typical “brown grass” gets a little old. One of the really cool features of the area I drove through mid-day Friday was the red rock hills/cliffs that run along the road.

    Once into Idaho there was also great scenery to enjoy. I really liked the rolling hills that, despite being August, were green. The blue skies with fluffy clouds were so picturesque… I had to take a photo.

    I arrived in Pocatello, ID and headed to the bank to deposit my paycheck… then headed to the hotel to check-in. One perk of spending so much time on the road is that I have more free hotel rooms than I will ever be able to use (seriously, I have about a month worth right now). Just how much time have I been spending in hotels? I stayed in the hotel for free (used points) and still received a free gift when checking-in (yummy Ben & Jerry’s Tripple Caramel Chunk ice cream).

    Day 2: 239 miles (4hr 32min)

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    After the many hours of driving on Friday, I decided to make Saturday a little more relaxed. The route I had planned for Saturday was longer, but didn’t have many exciting roads. Rather than spending almost 7 hours driving on (comparatively) straight roads, I took the more direct (and 2 hour shorter) route back to Tooele… with a detour back to Hwy 65.

    The Hwy 65 ends at a small reservoir, so Saturday had all sorts of traffic on it (even a better reason I didn’t take the previously planned route… as there would have been more traffic there as well). There is also a bike (bicycle) race next weekend… so was crawling with cyclists. I was traveling the opposite direction (North to South) Saturday and was able to experience the hairpin turns with a -10% grade! Fortunately, I was able to get a clear stretch of road from the summit down… and boy was I glad this road was freshly paved!

    The rest of the drive to Tooele was mundane freeway driving, but I did stop-off at the Sugarhouse Barbecue Company for a great lunch (yummy pulled pork sandwich).

    The weekend was a total blast… some people might think driving over 600 miles just for the heck of it is kinda crazy (I did deposit a pay check right?)… but I found it very relaxing. After nearly two months without a break, it was great to just loose myself in the drive. The roads of Utah and Idaho were very welcoming… I know I will be back out there again soon (and next time with the G8)!