Here at Mopar Muscle, we’ve always had the opinion that when it comes to performance, numbers don’t lie. And while we’ve all been to car shows, cruise nights, or even the racetrack and heard car owners making claims about how much power their Mopar makes or how quick it will go in the quarter-mile, the proof is only realized when that car is strapped to a dyno or makes a pass down the track. So when it was time to come up with a contest to replace the annual engine dyno challenge held at Comp Cams for the past seven years, we felt a chassis dyno competition would be a great way to let our readers not only experience the event, but participate as well. This year marked the First Annual AMSOIL/Mopar Muscle Numbers Don’t Lie Dyno Showdown, held at the largest Mopar-only event in the country, the Mopar Nationals, and the response has been better than we ever expected.
For this year’s contest, we accepted applications from our readers and chose 20 Mopars to compete in two classes on the chassis dyno. The normally aspirated class featured only cars that had no extra help from superchargers, turbos, or nitrous-oxide, and the power adder class allowed one of the above aids to help spin the dyno rollers. We had a variety of early- and late-model Mopars in this year’s competition, and even some Ram trucks and Dodge Dakotas in each of the two classes. All of the cars were street legal and had to wear license plates to be eligible to compete. And if you were at the Nats this year, we’re sure you were just as impressed as we were with the power these Mopars made.
Because one of our competitors had to decline due to a mechanical issue but then made a quick repair, we actually ended up with 21 vehicles competing in the Dyno Showdown since we had already allowed our first alternate vehicle to make dyno pulls. In previous issues, we featured 12 of the contest Mopars in random order, and in this issue we’ll show you the remaining seven and the combinations they used to make their power numbers. As for the winners, they’ll each get their own feature article in Mopar Muscle. If you missed the AMSOIL/Mopar Muscle Numbers Don’t Lie Dyno Showdown at this year’s Mopar Nationals, you won’t want to make that mistake twice. This event drew a huge crowd and will only get better as we expand the classes for future contests.
This year’s competition featured early- and late-model Mopars, and even Dodge Ram trucks. If you think your Mopar has the power to compete, be sure to enter next year’s Dyno Showdown for the chance to win prizes and have your car featured in Mopar Muscle.
1970 Dodge Charger R/T
Ben Leonard: Ben Leonard built this Charger to drive, with features like a Gear Vendors ov
Having grown up watching the Dukes of Hazzard, Ben Leonard of Addison, Michigan, always loved second-generation Chargers. Ben brought a beautifully restored ’70 R/T model to our contest, which he has owned for more than ten years. As a red car with a white interior, black vinyl top, and black R/T stripe, this Charger is nothing less than stunning and features a 440hp engine and 727 transmission. During the rebuild, Ben had Muscle Motors modify the factory big-block with Ross forged-pistons, a Comp Extreme Energy camshaft, and ported and polished 906 cylinder heads. The engine is topped with an Edelbrock Performer intake manifold and Demon four-barrel carburetor, with TTI headers to expel the gasses through three-inch exhaust and Flowmaster mufflers. The transmission is a 727 short version built by SMR and features a Gear Vendors over/underdrive unit. On the dyno, Ben’s B-Body spun the rollers to the tune of 262 rear wheel horsepower.
2011 Dodge Challenger SRT8
Bill Cherry: Late-model Mopars were out in force at this year’s Mopar Nationals, and sever
Liking the looks and performance of the new Dodge Challenger, Bill Cherry of Brownsburg, Indiana, purchased an SRT8 model as soon as the 2011 versions hit the local dealer’s lot. Bill’s Challenger features the factory white paint and is nicely accented with blue stripes. To optimize the power of the factory 392-inch Hemi, Bill added a cat-aft exhaust system from Zoomers, a cold-air induction system, and a Paramount 3,000-rpm stall converter for the NAG1 automatic transmission. At 4,250 pounds and equipped with a 3.06:1 rear gear ratio, Bill’s Challenger has run a best elapsed time of 12.12 seconds in the quarter-mile at a speed of 111.80 mph. On the dyno at the AMSOIL/Mopar Muscle Numbers Don’t Lie Dyno Showdown, Bill’s normally aspirated Challenger posted a very respectable 409 horsepower at the rear wheels.
1967 Dodge Coronet
Lonnie Jefferson: Lonnie Jefferson entered his big-block equipped ’67 Dodge Coronet 440 in
We love the boxy look of the ’66 and ’67 B-Bodies, and Lonnie Jefferson brought a nice example to our contest. Lonnie’s ’67 Polar White Dodge Coronet is equipped with a .030 over 440 big-block, featuring Six-Pack rods, a factory steel crankshaft, and JE forged pistons. The cylinder heads on this big-block are factory 452 castings with 2.14 intake valves and 1.81 exhaust valves and the engine is equipped with a Mopar Performance hydraulic flat-tappet camshaft with .509 lift and 292 degrees of advertised duration. Topped with a Victor 440 intake and 850 Holley carb, this big-block features headers and exhaust from TTI, MSD ignition, and Crane rocker arms. The automatic transmission is equipped with a shift kit and TCI 3,500-rpm stall converter, pushing the power through a Dana 60 rear end with Super Stock springs and Strange axles. On the Dynotune chassis dyno, Lonnie’s Coronet made 369 horsepower at the rear wheels in our normally aspirated class.
2005 Dodge Ram 1500 Rumble Bee
Running in our nonpower adder class, Aaron Nolan from Macomb, Michigan, brought one of many Dodge Ram trucks to the 2012 AMSOIL/Mopar Muscle Numbers Don’t Lie Dyno Showdown. As the owner of an auto detailing business, Aaron’s Rumble Bee truck looked great and ran great as well. The 5.7 Hemi in Aaron’s Ram is mostly stock, featuring a cat-aft exhaust system, cold air intake, and electronic programmer. Running through the factory 3.92:1 ratio gears, this limited edition Ram made a best pull on the chassis dyno of 266 horsepower at the rear wheels. Vehicles in our contest weren’t all highly modified, as exemplified by Aaron Nolan’s mostly stock ’05 Rumble Bee. With only a few bolt-on modifications, this Ram managed 266 horsepower.
2000 Dodge Dakota R/T
Chas Hoffner: Chas Hoffner’s ’00 Dodge Dakota is a nice blend of stylish looks and perform
Hailing from Perkasie, Pennsylvania, Chas Hoffner entered one of several Dodge Dakotas in our chassis dyno competition, this one in our power-adder class. Chas has owned this ’00 Dakota since it was new, and has modified it nicely over the years with front and rear Hotchkis drop springs, sway bars, and Bilstein shock absorbers. Equipped with a Magnum 360 engine, Chas modified the factory powerplant with Harland Sharp 1.7 ratio rocker arms, a Mopar M-1 intake, and Mopar Performance exhaust headers. To boost the power of his small-block, an STS 68mm rear-mounted turbocharger was added with homebuilt exhaust piping and an air-to-air intercooler. This Dakota features an automatic transmission built by Chuck’s transmission in Philadelphia, with a 2,800-rpm stall converter. This Dakota’s best quarter-mile time was 12.20 seconds at 111.06 mph, and the turbo-powered truck made 368 horsepower during our dyno contest.
1999 Dodge Dakota R/T
Tim Almasy: When’s the last time you’ve seen a big-block shoehorned into a Dodge Dakota? T
We had a good variety of Mopars in the contest, including this ’99 Dodge Dakota R/T entered by Tim Almasy of Massillon, Ohio. Wearing its original Flame Red paint, Tim blew up the factory 360 with a shot of nitrous oxide and then decided to ditch the Dakota’s original powertrain to make his truck into something Chrysler never made, a big-block Dakota. Using a factory 440 block, Tim had the engine bored .030 over to accommodate a set of forged TRW pistons along with a factory forged crankshaft and Six-Pack connecting rods. Tim chose Edelbrock aluminum cylinder heads for his big-block, and a Hughes camshaft with .579 inch lift and 256 degrees of duration at .050 inch lift. Other modifications to this 440 include an Edelbrock intake, 850-cfm Holley carburetor, Schumacher headers, and MSD ignition. A TCI TorqueFlite combined with a Coan 5,600-rpm 10-inch converter get power to the back wheels, and this big-block Dakota made 360 rear-wheel horsepower during our dyno contest.
2007 Chrysler 300C SRT8
Eddie Streeter: Chrysler 300s may be recognized as luxury cars, but Eddie Streeter’s modif
Another late-model entry in our showdown was Eddie Streeter’s ’07 Chrysler 300C SRT8. The 300C is a great blend of style, luxury, and performance and as a retired Fortune 500 executive, Eddie enjoys driving his SRT8 version as well as attending car shows like the Mopar Nationals. We’re sure this 300 was a fun ride from Eddie’s home in Crestwood, Kentucky, thanks to modifications like an 87mm CNC-ported throttle body, cold air intake, SLP long-tube headers, underdrive pulley, and Diablosport tune. Exterior modifications like ASA GTS wheels, powdercoated calipers, fender trim, a custom grille, and subtle pinstriping make this 300 look just as good as it runs. On our chassis dyno at the Mopar Nationals, Eddie’s 300 SRT8 sleeper impressed the crowd by making a stout 364 horsepower at the rear tires. mm
The Mopar Nationals is the biggest Mopar-only show and race in the country, and we were proud to host the first annual AMSOIL/Mopar Muscle Numbers Don’t Lie Dyno Showdown in the Midway of this great event. We’d like to thank all of the competitors in our inaugural dyno competition, as well as the sponsors who helped make it happen. And while we’ve highlighted the combinations the competitors used to make big Mopar power in this and other Mopar Muscle articles covering the contest, don’t think that we’ve forgotten about the winners. We’d especially like to congratulate Darren Tedder of Canton, Georgia, for winning the normally aspirated class with his ’71 Hemi ’Cuda, and Rick Trunkett for winning the power-adder class with his small-block powered ’72 Plymouth Duster. Be sure to check out full features on each of these powerful Mopars right here in Mopar Muscle.
Darren Tedder won our first annual Dyno Showdown, as the 654-cubic-inch Hemi in his ’71 Pl
Rick Trunkett entered our contest as an alternate, but got to run his car in the competiti