HOW TO LAUNCH A VR4

The AWD Launch

ntroduction

The 3000/Stealth Twin Turbo (3S) is about 400-500 pounds heavier than other cars in its class such as the 300ZX, Corvette LT-1 and the Supra Turbo. So the horsepower doesn’t go as far with our cars as the others. Off the line, though, the 3S is much quicker due to its all-wheel drive. Here’s how to exploit this feature to the fullest.

Setup

Remove your spare tire from the trunk as well as any cinder blocks or cadavers you may have been carrying around. Fold your side-view mirrors in and close the sunroof. Once the engine is running, set the ECS to sport mode. The tighter springs will reduce the amount of weight transferring to the rear in 1st gear and during the 1st-2nd shift. Turn the Active Aero switch to the off position. Otherwise, the rear wing induces enough drag to slow the car down 2-3 MPH through the traps.

At the Strip

When rolling up to the line, use the clutch decisively. Babying it will heat it up prematurely. Pull into the staging beams and, keeping the transmission in neutral with the clutch out, sharply race the motor to 4000 RPMs a half dozen times. By this point, your rival is beginning to stage. Put the transmission in gear and slowly tach up to 4800 RPM (5500 if using an RPS clutch). Concentrate on holding the RPMs steady. When the lights come down the tree, slip the clutch on the last yellow light. Quickly apply more throttle, increasing RPMs and easing the clutch out the rest of the way. The accelerator should be on the floor at the same instant the clutch is fully out. You should be at full throttle at the 60′ mark. Don’t worry about red-lighting – you didn’t. Just be prepared to shift into 2nd gear, since you’ll be accelerating so hard you’ll reach 7000 RPMs (42 MPH) in just over 2 seconds. A hard launch will generate enough G-forces to pull the parking brake back, causing a red light to flicker on the dashboard. At 6800 RPMs, stomp the clutch all the way in, and, while lifting to 1/3 throttle and bang 2nd gear. Let the clutch snap out. A good shift into second should feel like the rear bumper is coming off. Forget your bumper and mash the throttle back to the floor. If you got this far without smoking the clutch or grinding 2nd, you’re in for a hell of a ride.

On the Street

On the street, all-wheel-drive rules. The technique used at the strip is overkill since your opponent won’t have traction off the line. Instead, rev the motor up to 2000 RPMs while the light is still red. When the light changes, quickly bring the motor up to 3500 RPMs and slip the clutch. Roll out smoothly for no more than 1 second and floor it. You won’t have the velocity of a hard launch at the track, but there’s still nothing on the road that’ll beat you from zero to sixty.