If you made it to the Mopar Nationals this year (and who didn’t?), chances are you caught at least some of the action at the AMSOIL/Mopar Muscle Dyno Showdown. Our contest drew quite a crowd, and we had a good variety of Mopars competing for prizes and bragging rights in four categories. Located at the head of the manufacturer’s midway, 24 Mopars spun the rollers of our chassis dyno during a rain-shortened competition.
When we came up with the rules for this year’s competition, we wanted to allow all types of Mopars into the contest. Last year our contest had categories for street cars with power adders or without, and this year we added an Outlaw class for full-blown street cars and racecars, and a Diesel class for Cummins-powered trucks. In the Diesel class, we used the highest peak torque to determine the winner, and in all other classes, peak horsepower determined who came out on top. If you were lucky enough to see the action in person this year, you got quite a show. If not, be sure to attend next year’s event and check out www.moparmuscle.com for photo and video footage of the 2013 contest.
This month, we’ll highlight eight of the cars that competed in our Dyno Showdown in random order. We appreciate all of the competitors, and enjoyed seeing all of the Mopars that attended our contest. Check out each of these Mopars and the power they made and maybe you’ll get some ideas for your next project.
Dean Darbee ’72 Swinger
Dean Darbee from Greensburg, Kentucky, brought a beautiful ’72 Dart Swinger to our contest, entering the Non Power Adder class. Dean’s Dart is powered by a 367-inch small-block, with Eagle H-bean connecting rods, a Mopar Performance crankshaft, and SRP forged pistons, for a compression ratio of 11.0:1. Dean chose an Ultradyne solid flat-tappet cam for this small-block, with .559 lift and 247 degrees of duration at .050-inch lift. This engine is topped with “Indybrock” aluminum cylinder heads, an Edelbrock Super Victor intake, and a Promax prepped 820-cfm carburetor.
Running through Hooker headers and 2½-inch exhaust, this Dart has run a best time of 11.21 seconds in the quarter-mile at 119 mph. Power is transferred to the T/A radial tires through an automatic transmission and 3.91 geared 8¾ rear with Moser axles. On the dyno, this Dart made 295 lb-ft of torque and over 360 horsepower at the rear wheels. This is a clean A-Body and we’re sure it’s fun to drive and race.
Larry Rose ’70 Challenger
The Dodge Challenger that Larry Rose brought to our contest looks like a classic Mopar, but it has the heart of a late-model SRT-8 Challenger. Several years ago Larry was on the HOT ROD Power Tour, and the 440 in his Challenger got outrun by a Corvette. Deciding he needed more power, Larry installed a 6.1 Hemi in the car, and topped it with fully ported heads from Arrington, and a Magnuson supercharger. He also installed a full interior from a ’10 Challenger in his ’70 model Dodge, adding a modern theme to the classic E-Body look.
Knowing he’d need a stout suspension with this powerful combination, Larry chose Reilly Motorsports suspension components, QA1 shocks for all four corners, a Dana 60 differential, and Boze wheels shod with Goodyear tires. Running through a Tremec T-56 Magnum transmission, tti headers, and Magnaflow mufflers, this car not only looks fantastic, but drives great as well. Running in our Power Adder class, Larry’s late-model powered Challenger made 460 lb-ft of torque, and a peak power number of more than 503 horsepower.
Chad Lee ’67 Dart
Our Outlaw class was open to any Mopar, including dedicated race cars or cars with multiple power adders. Chad Lee from Shade, Ohio, races his ’67 Dart in the foot-brake class of drag racing, where it has run a best time of 11.7 seconds at 112 mph in the quarter-mile. Equipped with a .030-inch over 340 with 12.5:1 compression, this small-block features forged pistons, a cast crankshaft, and is topped with cast iron heads. A Comp camshaft is installed in this 340, with double springs and roller rockers, and a Weiand intake and Holley 750 handle induction.
With a 904 transmission and 9-inch, 3,800-rpm converter, power is transferred to the rear tires through 4.86 gears and Weld wheels. There are some disadvantages to running a race car on a chassis dyno, as a loose stall converter and big, slick tires can have a negative affect power numbers. Even so, Chad’s Dart managed to make 296 lb-ft of torque and more than 317 horsepower at the rear wheels.
Charles Taylor ’10 Ram Sport
We had a variety of vehicles in this year’s showdown, including this Hemi-powered 2010 Ram 1500 entered by Charles Taylor of VanWert, Ohio. Competing in the Non Power Adder class, this Ram is Charles’ daily driver. The 5.7 in this Ram has been modified with an Arrington camshaft and cylinder heads. Charles also added a Predator electronic tune, and Mopar Performance cold-air intake system.
The Hemi engine runs through American Racing headers that dump into the stock exhaust and mufflers. The remainder of the drivetrain is as it came from the factory. The modifications to this truck are typical of what we see on many late-model Mopars, and resulted in a best dyno pull of 342 lb-ft of torque and 360 rear wheel horsepower.
Joseph Infantino ’10 Challenger R/T
Late-model Dodge Challengers are regarded as some of the best looking and performing cars on the market today, and this 2010 model entered by Joseph Infantino from Navarre, Florida, is no exception. Running in the Power Adder class, this Challenger is Joseph’s daily driver. He also enjoys attending car shows with his Dodge. After purchasing the Challenger, a ProCharger was added, but the original engine expired soon after. Joseph took advantage of this misfortune, having Arrington Performance build a new engine with forged internals. Southern Hotrod performed the necessary tuning, and the supercharger now pumps 10 psi of boost through the Hemi.
The suspension of this Challenger features Eibach parts on the front and rear, and a stock differential with 3.06 gears. The transmission and converter are stock, and the Hemi breaths through its factory exhaust manifolds and Magnaflow mufflers. On the dyno at The Nats, this combination was good for 471 lb-ft of torque and over 466 horsepower at the rear wheels, making this Challenger a fun ride.
Randy Holloway ’71 Demon
Randy Holloway from Salem, Virginia, took five years to build his exceptional looking ’71Demon, and enjoys driving the car on nice days and showing it as much as possible. Fed by an impressive looking 6-71 blower and dual quads, this .030-inch over 440 features a forged crankshaft, Eagle H-beam connecting rods, and Keith Black 8.2:1 compression forged pistons. A Mopar Performance Purple Shaft cam actuates the valves in the stock cast-iron cylinder heads, and a Milodon oil system keeps the engine lubricated.
Breathing through tti headers and Flowmaster mufflers, power is transferred to the rear wheels through an 833 four-speed with a Pistol Grip shifter. Looking impressive with the big blower, everyone was eager to see what kind of power this combination would make as it ran in our Power Adder class. Unfortunately, Randy’s car started missing on the dyno, due to apparent fuel starvation, and had to abort its only dyno pull early. Making 433 lb-ft of torque this engine showed potential, but didn’t make the two pulls required by our rules.