As we said in a previous tech article about hopping a Hemi Ram with a performance suspension, trucks are not just work vehicles anymore. Trucks have taken on a performance status over the last couple of years. just think SRT-10 and you'll understand what we mean. Heck, if you think back a little, there was a time when dodge had the fastest production vehicle- the Li'l Red Express. yep, a truck.
we feel that doing a little "performance"-geared tech is a good fit for us, after all, we are a performance-minded group around here. Sure, adding a cold-air kit and a free-flowing exhaust definitely perks up any late-model engine, but we decided to get a little more in-depth. we are working on a Ram that was ordered from the dealership with the trailer-tow package. This provided a 3.91 gearset, but no limited-slip differential. The 3.91 gears made towing easy, and launches from a red light were always impressive if you only saw the driver's side, but the peg-leg center section needed help in the performance area. Since we had a decent gear, replacing the factory ring-and-pinion was unnecessary. But if we ever wanted to launch our Ram and actually leave the stoplight, the center section would need some help.
We contacted Auburn Gear and ordered just their limited-slip center section since we didn't need gears. used in plenty of street and strip cars that we've abused over the years, Auburn Gear's differential offers not only Sure-Grip-style traction, but also a smooth torque transfer, meaning it senses and distributes torque evenly.
If you have a 1500 Hemi Ram, you also have the 9-1/4 Dana that has been in Dodge trucks since the mid-'90s.
Trucks are trucks, and many shops out there specialize in making them a sportier counterpart to the family minivan. So we contacted Tod Struck at Inline Performance. Tod not only does diesel work as his business name implies, but he has been known to work on race and street cars.