Cool comes in multiple flavors. One one hand, we have the sophisticated attraction of svelte design and the efficient use of power. Of course, on the other hand there is the allure of being the bad boy and going against the grain. That is part of the appeal of rat rods. Ideally, they are built without rules to an owner's specific tastes, and this widened and heavily modified 1947 Chevrolet pickup rod is a perfect example of that spirit.
Coming down the highway with a bent grille, rusted body and pouring smoke, it looks like the pickup from hell. It backs up the looks with some very impressive mechanicals too. Owner Troy Gubser says that the truck packs a Ford Power Stroke diesel with to 42 pounds of boost that runs out of 8-inch exhaust stacks at the back. He claims it managed 505 horsepower and 885 pound-feet of torque on the dyno. To harness all that power, this hot rod has a ZF five-speed manual gearbox with a ceramic clutch and short-throw shifter. Plus, it has cool little features like a doorbell on the tailgate that operates an air horn.
You might not expect a truck like this to actually be useful, but it has a fifth wheel coupling to haul an RV around drag races and car shows. The air suspension also probably keeps the ride fairly comfy when Gubser wants it to be. Scroll down to check out this beastly rat rod pickup and watch it engage in some diesel drag racing. Warning, there is some NSFW language.Permalink | Email this | Comments
LeMons racing is a wonderful example that setting limits can actually breed creativity. The series mandates that all entries must cost $500, not counting safety equipment, and that cap forces teams to be ingenious in how they build a racecar. Take for example this diesel-powered Porsche 911, which its creators have dubbed Ferkel the Nein-11, that will be racing in the Sears Pointless race this weekend in Sonoma, California.
This Frankenstein combines a 911 chassis that was originally bought just for its European powertrain and a Volkswagen TDI diesel engine mounted in the rear. After deciding the shell could still be of some use, the team decided to go racing. "We began brainstorming what replacement drivetrain to use for maximum offense and there was really only one answer: a diesel," said Philipp von Weitershausen, one of the team captains, to Jalopnik. They bought a 1998 Jetta TDI on the cheap and started figuring out a way to hack the engine into the bay. To pay respect to the donor, the VW's trunk was highly modified (and drilled) and grafted onto the back of Ferkel.
This team isn't a newcomer to LeMons. Its last car was a classic VW Beetle with a Subaru engine and dual controls, named Ferdinand the Bug, which could be driven from the left or right side. It's quite a sight.
As Ferkel shows, LeMons offers a way for amateurs a relatively cheap way to go endurance racing. The restrictions force builders to do things far out of the norm and use what's around them to get things done. The team has chronicled the entire build with videos on Facebook. Bravo to the turbodiesel 911.Permalink | Email this | Comments
The Dodge Li'l Red Express is one awesome quandary of the late '70s. Back then, Dodge had taken to building all sorts of oddball trucks and vans with strange equipment packages, but the Li'l Red Express was something entirely different.
Engineers crammed a honkin' 360 V8 yanked from the company's police interceptor line and plopped the four-barrel-fed block between the fenders, inadvertently creating the world's first sport truck in the process. Bolted as it was to a 727 Torqueflight automatic transmission and a 3.55:1 rear axle, the truck was the quickest vehicle Car and Driver tested in the 0-100 sprint in 1978.
Dodge said the engine put out 225 horsepower. It lied.
Max Kirtley took one look at the Li'l Red Express, yanked that magical V8 from behind the grille and plopped one wild Cummins 6BT turbo diesel inline-six in its place. Sucking down 100-pounds-per-square-inch worth of boost, the 12-valve rocks a Hamilton cylinder head and cam as well as a water injection system and two nitrous injection systems. Kirtley says the truck now puts down closer to 1,000 horsepower and 1,500-1,700 pound-feet of torque.
We don't think he's lying. Check out a video of this Cummins Li'l Red Express hopping down the quarter mile during a few test runs below.Permalink | Email this | Comments
ICON has rolled out a slew of official photos of its D200 Pickup headed for this year's SEMA show. Built with some help from the diesel-fiends at Banks Power, this 1965 Dodge D200 Crew Cab uses a modern Dodge 3500 chassis. That means there's a 5.9-liter Cummins inline-six thrashing around under the hood, good for 975 pound-feet of torque. Much of that twist comes from the Banks toy box, including tricks like a Six-Gun Diesel Tuner, Banks iQ Man-Machine Interface, a Monster Ram Intake Manifold and Monster Diesel Dual Exhaust among others.
The chassis rides on a 4.5-inch Baja 1000 Chase lift kit that utilizes Fox 3.0 reservoir shocks to make room for the 37-inch BFGoodrich all-terrain tires at each corner. As always, the body and cabin will receive the trademark ICON attention to detail. Inside, this D200 offers up leather seating sourced from free-range American Indian Reservation bison, and custom tailgate latches, mirrors and other trim bits serve as the icing on the cake. You can check out the press release below for more information. The ICON D200 will bow at SEMA early next week.Permalink | Email this | Comments