MSD spark plugs

MSD’s entrance into spark plug manufacturing felt a little bit to us like Nike’s decision to start making socks to complement its shoe business.

What took so long!?

MSD has been a leader in ignition performance for more than 40 years, and now the company has taken all that knowledge from years of research and parts development and applied it to spark plugs.

The result: MSD iridium spark plugs.

“With over four decades of experience in engineering and manufacturing high output ignition systems, coils, distributors, and plug wires MSD felt it was time to complete the ignition cycle with spark plugs,” said Silver Gomez, MSD’s spark plug product manager. “We had several goals when developing the spark plugs that came from our experience working with top race teams in different forms of motorsports. The result is long lasting, efficient plug designed for performance street cars.”

These MSD spark plugs provide what every buyer craves, the company says: More power and a long life.

The iridium is the key.

“The center tip of the plug is made from iridium to promote the best spark and increase resilience. A proprietary ceramic material enhances the dielectric strength of the plug housing forcing the spark, even under extreme cylinder pressures, to jump across the plug gap to the ground electrode,” MSD says. “The electrode is machined to expose more spark to the incoming gases to promote the most effective combustion event possible.”

MSD also incorporated a lower resistance seal into its new plugs.

“We developed a lower resistance seal with high suppression against Electro Magnetic Interference compared to others on the field for the street, muscle car and late model applications,” Gomez said. “Our plugs also use a proprietary ceramic blend for the outer housing of the plug for increased spark isolation and strength against flashover. The plugs lessen the chances of pre-ignition thanks to a yttrium enhanced ground electrode for reduction in temperatures and the 1mm iridium tip promotes longer life.”

You can hear more about what sets MSD’s new spark plugs apart from the competition in this video:

The new MSD high performance iridium spark plugs are available for a variety of applications, including:

  • Muscle Cars
  • Street Rods
  • Late Models
  • Truck/SUV
  • Sport Compact

“Our next step is to develop a racing plug for high-end performance and extreme racing applications,” Gomez said. “We know the importance of delivering spark energy reliably into the cylinder to ignite the air/fuel mixture. Working with top fuel teams for years helped identify weak points and materials in the ceramic housing of spark plugs. In NASCAR and off-road racing, we understand the importance of reliability and endurance. We took this experience from the tracks and used it to develop what we feel is the best street performance plugs available.

Gomez talked about the various factors that go into choosing the right MSD spark plug for your particular application.

“If you own an OE vehicle, knowing the year, make, model and engine size will determine what plug it uses,” he said. “If you have a modified vehicle with different heads and engine combinations, you will need to know if it is a gasket or taper seat, thread reach and diameter, insulator nose projection, and hex size.

“The hardest factor to determine would be the proper heat range, and this would normally be acquired by cross-referencing the current plug brand you are currently using to an MSD plug.”

We’ll look more in-depth at factors that go into choosing the right spark plug in a later post.

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Author: Matt Griswold

After a 10-year newspaper journalism career, Matt Griswold spent another decade writing about the automotive aftermarket and motorsports. He was part of the original OnAllCylinders editorial team when it launched in 2012.