If you own a late-model Mustang and are serious about increasing power without sacrificing reliability or emissions legality, watching The Supercharged Experience video is the first step to forced induction fun. It’s all about improving performance with Edelbrock’s CARB-legal supercharger systems for the Ford 5.0L Coyote engine. In this video you’ll meet Richie Galaviz, owner of a tire-smoking Magnetic Silver Mustang GT. Richie needed more power but he also wanted to keep his car smog-legal. “A few Hellcats whooped on me… I needed more,” said Richie. Now, after adding boost with an Edelbrock Supercharger System, he says, “When I rip on it, it’s crazy…instant power!” Watch the video to see and hear Richie’s Mustang. Once you’ve finished watching, we’ve got another great story about a Mustang GT350 owner who runs a Stage 3 kit on the 5.2L Voodoo engine. If you’re ready for boost, read on!
Those of us with a genuine passion for cars can probably recall the exact moment when it all began. Attending that first race, walking up and down the aisles of a custom car show, seeing a picture of a particular car in Hot Rod magazine…or in the case of Anastasia Chernyavskaya, a 29-year-old Principal Software Engineer residing in Wilmington, DE, watching a good old fashioned car movie.
As you might’ve guessed by her name, Anastasia comes to us from a city on the other side of the world in Russia. Her hometown of Tomsk is one of the oldest in the Siberian region, known for its rich population of students who attend one of the six state universities in the city. It’s also one of the unlikeliest of places where you’d expect a young girl to grow up and get hooked on fast street machines.
The winters in Tomsk are severe and lengthy, and the region barely escapes a sub-arctic classification. With a year-round temperature that averages a bone-chilling 33 degrees Fahrenheit with about 140 snow days per year, it’s not surprising that a girl with a growing fondness for American muscle cars made her way to the US.
“I never knew that adding a supercharger would change the car so much. Nice and comfortable when cruising, an animal when you push it!”
We first became acquainted with Anastasia on social media back in January 2020 when she posted a photo of an Edelbrock TVS R2650 supercharger sitting on a workbench with a short somewhat cryptic caption that read, “So Akela isn’t home right now…” We’ve come to learn that Akela is the name of Anastasia’s 2017 Mustang GT350, and the Edelbrock supercharger sitting on the bench about to be installed on Akela’s 5.2L Voodoo V8 engine is one of the main performance upgrades that she’s made in the quest for more power.
Anastasia’s Instagram page @Akela_theGT350 is mostly about her dream car and all of the modifications that makes it such a feature-worthy machine. With a displacement of 315 cubic-inches (that’s 5,163cc in metric speak), the normally aspirated engine has a factory rating (measured at the crank) of 526 horsepower at 7,500 RPM with 429 ft-lbs of torque at 4,750 RPM. With an 8,250-RPM redline, the flat-plane-crank Voodoo engine is a screamer capable of 0-60s in the low 4s and 12-second quarter-mile times, all in factory trim.
For Mustang owners looking to supercharge their 4.6L 3V or 5.0L Coyote, Edelbrock makes CARB-legal systems in both Stage 1 and Stage 2 levels with a Stage 3 Pro-Tuner kit for competition use. Although the 5.2L Voodoo engine that was developed for the GT350 shares much of the same architecture as the 5.0L Coyote, the only supercharger system available from Edelbrock is a Stage 3 Pro-Tuner kit. According to Tony Avina, Edelbrock’s Technical Support expert who answers most supercharger-related questions on our Tech Line, the reasoning is simple. “Mustangs equipped with the 5.2L engine are such a limited production model that the market would not support the R&D for calibration and emissions testing,” said Tony. “It wouldn’t be cost-effective.” Tony also added that throttle body and cold-air intake fitment on the 5.2L might require some customizing or fabrication work, which is another reason why the Voodoo is Stage 3 only.
When Anastasia posted her first impression of her Edelbrock-supercharged GT350, she said, “I never knew that adding a supercharger would change the car so much. Nice and comfortable when cruising, an animal when you push it!” Now that she’s had more than a year with the supercharged Mustang on the street and at the track, we reached out to see how Akela was doing and to find out a little bit more about how a girl from Russia got into American performance cars. Here’s what she had to say…
“My passion for cars started when I was a kid growing up in Russia. I had a huge love and respect for cars in general but the first time I saw Eleanor in “Gone in 60 Seconds” (the 2000 movie), I fell in love with the style, body lines and sound of pure American V8. Since then, I’ve read, watched, and explored everything about Mustangs. Unfortunately, my hometown didn’t have a lot of Mustangs due to huge import taxes. Recently people have started to import them more often and there is a big Mustang club in Moscow. As for other American cars, probably the first muscle car that became popular in Russia was the Camaro, right after the “Transformers” movies, but the price tag on those was just unbelievable.
“Growing up in Russia might be challenging but I kept love and appreciation for Eleanor, great driving and beautiful cars forever in my heart. I spent all my available time racing and building cars in Need For Speed video games and dreaming about someday owning one. I learned how to drive a car in a Lada (a tough, indestructible Russian car) in all possible weather and road conditions.
“Fast forward 15 years, I had the opportunity to buy my first car in the United States. It was a 2011 Mazda 6, a beautiful sedan that was needed at the moment. It was a great car but I always felt a need for something sporty and fast…so I got my first Mustang, a 2015 with a V6, automatic, Guard Metallic, cloth seats. That car was everything to me. I tried everything I liked amongst available visual mods and ended up with a custom vinyl wrap featuring Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, 20-inch Rohana wheels, MB Quart sound system with two 12-inch subwoofers, Eibach lowering springs, GT brakes conversion, Cervini spoiler and side scoops, and JLT CAI. I loved that car to death but I was hungry for more – more power, better handling, more aggressive looks.
“In 2018, I wasn’t able to afford an Eleanor so I turned my attention to GT350s and after one look at an Avalanche Gray GT350, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Hunting for the perfect car for several months, sleepless nights, saving up money for the down payment, unstoppable calls to dealerships and I was finally able to secure a 2017 Avalanche Gray GT350 with Convenience and Tech packs (bigger radio screen and heated/cooled leather seats) and get it delivered all the way from Arlington, TX, to Arlington, VA, where I lived at the time.
“I named the car Akela after the Alpha wolf in Jungle Book. The car stands out with its looks but stays humble. It’s one of a kind (at least for me) and it treats me well. I have been on many adventures and trips with it, and it never failed or disappointed me. You probably want to ask me, ‘So if it was so perfect, why did you supercharge it?’ It’s a fair question and the answer is simple for me. I felt that the car has so much potential and can really shine in all possible ways (roll racing, track events, spirited driving, etc.) if I do one simple thing: add boost.
“I intentionally didn’t go for turbos because I didn’t trust the Gen 1 Voodoo enough. I didn’t want to deal with tuning (that was pretty much unavailable) and all extra components that could break. I turned to superchargers and having options between Edelbrock, VMP, Procharger and Whipple, I decided to go for the Edelbrock TVS R2650 Supercharger kit with 8-rib pulley upgrade. I can’t express how happy I am with my decision and here is my reasoning behind it: My car looks stock and sounds stock till you are ready to let it sing; supercharger fitment is immaculate, and it looks like it should have been done like that from the factory.
“Akela was modified by C&D Autotech in Wilmington, DE. They installed the Edelbrock Supercharger with 8-rib upgrade, 3.75 pulley and 103mm throttle body. The installation took about a week and was pretty straightforward. Akela now makes 720 horsepower and 569 ft-lbs of torque at the wheels on 93 octane and octane booster with a Lund Racing tune.
The list of other upgrades that Anastasia has made is a long one that includes a billet OPG and timing gear, twin-disc Mantic clutch, MGW short-throw shifter, UPR no-wheel-hop suspension kit and oil separators, Archetype racing aero components (carbon fiber front splitter and racing canards), full carbon fiber interior, 305Forged wheels and a resonator-delete X-pipe from Lethal Performance.
“I have had my car supercharged for more than a year now and I fall in love with it more and more,” said Anastasia. “It’s fast, beautiful and reliable. It looks innocent and cute but when that supercharger kicks in at 3500 RPM, you’d better hold on to something, because it’s going to be an amazing ride!”
Brian Hatano is a veteran automotive journalist and former editor of Car Craft, Petersen’s Drag Racing, Sport Compact Car and Motorcyclist magazines.