The power potential built into each and every late-model LS-powered Pontiac is widely known. With their exceptional cylinder-head flow, compact dimensions, great strength, and hunger for nitrous, the Gen-III and IVs have proven to be great foundations for street/strip combos.
In 2005, the 5.7-liter LS1 was replaced with the 6.0-liter LS2 in the GTO, giving it a 50 hp increase. The Goat flexed its muscles in a big way and lured Bill MacKenn into a Pontiac showroom in February 2006 for a little spice.
The engine bay is home to...
The engine bay is home to a muscular LS2 that benefits from a Futral Motorsports F-14 camshaft, ported and polished Dart heads, and a dry nitrous system. The careful selection of parts has rewarded owner Bill MacKenn with 657 hp to the rear wheels.
Knowing that the GTO wouldn't see production for 2007, he wanted his to be special. Pontiac releases a handful of new colors each year, which makes certain hues extremely rare. For the final production year, the new colors were Brazen Orange Metallic (66U) and Spice Red Metallic (71U). After seeing the 71U color sample, Bill checked it off along with a Tremec T56 manual and the optional 18-inch wheels.
Engine modifications began by improving induction and exhaust flow with a K&N cold air intake and Dynotech 1.75-inch stainless headers and high-flow cats. Bill was looking for a unique sound and an exhaust his GTO could grow into, so he had Rainbow Muffler in Largo, Florida, make him an emissions-legal custom 3-inch system all the way back with 3-inch Flowmaster 40-series mufflers, and using the stock tips. The sound can only be described as "GTO" since it sounds like every Goat should.
Bill had previously sprayed...
Bill had previously sprayed the nitrous through the conical K&N filter but ended up freezing the MAF. Since then, he's moved it behind the MAF, altered his tune accordingly, and hasn't experienced any issues.
Hunting for more power, Bill had Tiberio Performance of Tampa install a custom 224/228-degree duration, 0.595/0.595-inch lift, 112-degree LSA cam with Comp Cams 918 springs and hardened pushrods. He then went to Nitrous Dave's website to order one of his dry kits for an additional 125 horses. The system was installed with a window switch and bottle heater. To increase the fuel flow, an in-tank Walbro 255 lph pump, Siemens 60-lb/hr injectors, and Aeromotive fuel rails were added.
When strapped down to the dyno, the spicy GTO generated 516 hp and 512 lb-ft of torque at the wheels with nitrous.
To reliably put the power to the pavement, the transmission and 3.45-geared rearend were upgraded. Bill toasted a handful of clutches before finally settling on a Monster stage 4, which he feels holds the power and is very smooth to actuate. He didn't want to miss any gears so a GMM Ripshift shifter was installed, which dramatically reduced the knife-in-a-mayonnaise-jar feel of the factory piece.
Out back, the notoriously weak factory differential was strengthened with a Harrop cover and BMR axles and stubs. Bill briefly used a stronger driveshaft but has gone back to the factory setup. To date, he hasn't had any issues beyond a few failed clutches. A pair of BMR drag bags, filled to 14 psi, inside the rear springs reduce wheel hop. They help to preserve the drivetrain and a BMR driveshaft safety loop is there, just in case.
There were only 1,794 GTOs...
There were only 1,794 GTOs painted in Spice Red Metallic (71U) and the color was only offered in 2006, making this Goat extremely rare.
After finding great success with his old setup, Bill was enticed to push the combo to the next level. A Futral Motorsports F-14 camshaft with 232/234-degrees duration and 0.598/0.598-inch lift on a 112 LSA was installed by Tiberio Performance. When Comp Cams' 918 springs initially had a problem in this combo, Comp stood behind its product and sent Bill a set of 921 springs at no charge. These new springs are rated for 0.650-inch lift.
The Goat was taken over to Precision Motorsports of Florida in Odessa, where Bob Morreale ported a new FAST intake manifold and mated it with a Fasterproms-ported factory throttle body. This was installed along with a pair of Dart LS1 PRO1 cylinder heads that he hand-ported. They now flow 315cfm intake and 245cfm exhaust at 0.600-inch lift and use 2.08/1.60 stainless valves. The compression ratio is 10.9:1 with the new heads.