’67 Cougar “Max Effort”

By design, Max Effort tests the limits of a street-legal muscle car with a build focused on dominating a road course.

1967 Mercury Cougar “Max Effort”

Driver: Chris Campbell, CA.

Usage: Street Legal Road Racer

Featured Build of Popular Hot Rodding Magazine

The Name Says it All

How far can we push a street legal muscle car in road racing, while keeping a pure vintage vibe?

We wanted Max Effort to have a Trans-Am type look that would appeal to all generations, but with performance on-par with modern track machines. Result? A maximum effort build.

Max Effort Cougar Build

Max Effort makes use of CorteX Racing’s vintage front and rear competition suspension system including the SLA, Watts Link and Coilover set-up along with a complete swap over to a K-member much like modern muscle cars use. This opened up greater options for engine placement.

Xtreme-Grip™ Vintage Radial-X™ Front Suspension System, FSS-10-1000X

Optimized For Competition

Max is packed full of our best tricks and many one-off bits that are integrated so well that they’re often missed on the first pass. For starters, we kept the shape of the stock Cougar flares, but to get the stance where we needed it and fit 18×11 & 18×12 Forgeline GA3R wheels with 315 & 335 tires, custom larger arches were crafted and the whole wheelwell was shifted upward and outward.

The hood and the decklid are both honeycomb composite wrapped in carbon fiber, the bumpers are VFN race glass, and the grille is a single stainless-steel piece, all of which adds up for dramatic weight savings.

We also moved the drivetrain back 9-inches and down three inches to get better weight distribution and allow the GT40 style hood vents to swoop down and butt up to the radiator. That also allowed us to duct the air box directly into the cowl NASCAR style. [more on this, see Hot Rod link below]


Type: 438ci Ford Windsor, build by Ford Performance Solutions
Block: Dart aluminum
Rotating Assembly: Forged RPM International crank and rods, forged Ross Racing pistons
Cylinder Heads: Ford Performance Solutions Avenger XTC 351-C CNC
Camshaft: Custom solid roller by COMP Cams
Valvetrain: Custom T&D shaft rocker system, COMP Cams pushrods and roller lifters
Induction: Edelbrock intake retrofitted with EFI
Exhaust: Custom tuned length headers by RCI Headers (rest under construction)
Ignition: MSD billet distributor, FAST XFI 2.0, FAST crank trigger & coil
Oiling: Aviaid 3-stage dry sump

Transmission: Rockland Standard Gear T56 Tranzilla
Bellhousing: Lakewood Quicktime
Clutch: Centerforce DYAD
Flywheel: Centerforce steel

Clutch hydraulics: RAM
Clutch pedals: Wilwood hanging
Driveshaft: Custom Driveline Specialties 3.5-inch steel
Rearend: Custom CorteX Racing/Speedway Engineering Grand National Floater
Axles: Speedway Engineering crowned & gun drilled
Gears: Motive Gear 4.11
Differential: Eaton Detroit TrueTrac

Front Suspension: CorteX Racing SLA and removable tubular K-member with CorteX Severe Duty control arms, CorteX antiroll bar, CorteX Radial X spindles, and Koni/Eibach coilovers, rack and pinion
Rear Suspension: CorteX Racing extended lower control arms, watts link, and adjustable torque arm with Koni/Eibach coilovers
Brakes: Baer Brakes 6R 6-piston monoblock calipers and 14-inch two-piece rotors front & rear
Custom stainless-steel plumbing, Wilwood master cylinders
Custom 10-point rollcage by Kertz Fabrication


Wheels: 18×11 & 18×12 Forgeline GA3R with titanium hardware
Tires: 315/30 & 335/30

Spek gauges in modified stock cluster and dash
Flaming River motorsport steering column: Flaming River steering wheel

Custom honeycomb composite/carbon fiber hood and decklid
Custom steel fender flares
Custom mini-tubs
Custom firewall
Custom airbox with venting into cowl
Custom front floorpans & trans tunnel
Custom VFN fiberglass bumpers
Custom stainless-steel grille
Paint & Body: Wild Wes Paintworks

Featuring Xtreme-Grip™ Vintage Suspension

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