Truck Tech Builds

Parts Used In This Episode

Matco Tools
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NCM Motorsports Park
505 Kimberlee A. Fast Drive, Bowling Green, KY 42103
The Industrial Depot
Tools, Hardware, Shop Supplies

Episode Transcript

(LT)>> A Viper and an Ecoboost will be transformed into ultimate muscle trucks. Which one has the edge?

(Austin)>> We'll shake them down for power, braking, handling, and speed. [ Music ] [ engine revving ]

(LT)>> Yeah baby, woo hoo! [ Music ]

(Austin)>> When it comes to trucks it's no doubt that the pickup is the workhorse of America, but that don't mean we can't have a little fun with it too.

(LT)>> Every now and again the factories will release a special high performance edition of a regular truck, and some time ago we did a shootout between two of them. The Chevy 454 SS and a first gen Ford Lightning, and they were each built in two totally different styles.

(Austin)>> I mean one's a small block, one's a big block. You've got naturally aspirated and one with a turbo. I'd say they're pretty different.

(LT)>> So we decided it was time for a little shootout of our own. We were each given the same exact amount of money and told to go out and purchase whatever kind of truck we could dream up.

(Austin)>> Not to mention the same budget for the build, and user's choice on where you want to spend that money. You can throw it at performance, handling, even styling and appearance. Totally up to you buddy.

(LT)>> And when we're done we're gonna compete in a series of tests to determine which truck is superior. The pickups are waiting and we can't wait to show you guys what we have picked out.

(Austin)>> Let's kick it off.

(LT)>> When it comes to muscle trucks well there are only a few choices. You've got the early '90's Cyclones and Typhoons, first gen Ford Lightnings, and the 454 SS', and then you have the second gen of Lightnings and the Silverado SS, but all of those pale in comparison to what I chose. That's right, I found a Viper truck, and today this still holds the record for the world's fastest production truck, and it gets there with a massive V-10 underneath the hood, an automatic transmission, 4.56 gears out back and a posi-track. Now all that's pretty awesome and I don't know what Austin's gonna choose but I can guaranteed you this one thing. It's not gonna be anywhere near as cool as this. [ Music ]

(Austin)>> You're a fool dude.

(LT)>> How's that?

(Austin)>> Red truck, so predictable.

(LT)>> It's a muscle trucks shootout. I figured why not go big or go home and pick the fastest truck they ever made.

(Austin)>> I thought it was about us getting trucks and building a muscle truck. It's like the big guys at the gym, no, the small guy goes to the gym to get big.

(LT)>> Well speaking of small guy I see you picked about the smallest one you could, and F-150, and I'm guessing, yep you've got the little cute flower on the door. So that means you've got the V-6 underneath the hood.

(Austin)>> I'll bet you ain't rockin' turbos. Plus what are you trying to prove anyway?

(LT)>> I don't need turbos when I have 8.3 liters and 10 cylinders.

(Austin)>> Ridiculous.

(LT)>> Well I hope you have some serious upgrades planned for this thing but we'll get to those later on. How about we start by just seeing how these trucks do bone stock.

(Austin)>> Let's roll buddy.

(LT)>> Keep up if you can.

(Austin)>> Yeah, funny guy. [ Music ]

(LT)>> So the truck that I picked for the muscle truck shootout is about as good as you can buy. A 2005 Dodge Ram SRT 10. Now underneath the hood is an 8.3 liter V-10. The very same one that was found underneath the hood of the Dodge Viper, which was one of America's greatest sports cars.

(Austin)>> Yeah partner I've very away this is the muscle truck build off slash quasi-shootout, but I'm not one to be told what to do. I don't really like listening to rules and staying inside the lines, and that's why I chose the 2015 Ford F-150 Supercrew Platinum. Four wheel drive I might add. Yeah I'm crazy. I did pick the V-6 3.5 liter Ecoboost. It's not about what you start with, it's about where you go and the journey it takes to get there. That's where the fun's at.

(LT)>> Now right away you can tell that this truck does not mess around, and it was built before the electronic nanny came on board most of the vehicles that you'll find today. My right foot is directly connected with a cable to the throttle body on the front of this engine. So whenever I put my foot down you're going. There's no delay, no traction control, none of that other stuff that's gonna interfere between you and a good time.

(Austin)>> This bad dude's putting out 365ish horsepower, and about 420 pounds of torque, and that's not too bad considering it's got two turbos and a V-6. I mean I wouldn't really expect much more than that.

(LT)>> The V-10 is backed up by the 48-RE, which is a four speed automatic that's normally only reserved behind the Cummins turbo diesel. So you know this is a strong transmission, and in the back we've got a Dana 60 axle. One of the strongest ones that Chrysler makes, and it has a 4.56 ring and pinion gear in it. So you want to talk about peppy, this truck fits the bill.

(Austin)>> This truck is comfortable, not gonna lie. Nice leather seats. It's got the platinum trim, the wood grain, heated seats, and probably massage you, dual split a/c. I mean all the benefits and features you could ask for in a late model vehicle such as this. It's just nice.

(LT)>> Now you want to talk about a decked out truck this is it right here. Every single option imaginable in 2005 can be found in this luxurious interior. I mean you've got a c-d player with f-m radio, six presets, two cup holders in the front, two cup holders in the back, four speed automatic transmission, nice little computer up top that tells you how poor fuel mileage you are getting, and it has a red push button starter. Oh power seats too. So yeah, just about as nice as you want it this truck has it. I can guarantee you that we have some pretty big plans for these trucks. As far as I'm concerned the Ram, well it's getting more of everything. More horsepower, less suspension, it's getting lower, more sound. You know just about everything you'd want in a muscle truck. Yeah we'll tweak the looks a little bit but for me that's not important. What's important is what happens when you put your right foot down to the floor. [ engine revving ]

(Austin)>> As far as kind of improving it well, more power obviously. Hello, that's a given. With that comes more torque hopefully cause we're gonna need it. The stance, put some nice tires and wheels on it. That's a no brainer. Let's have fun with it. If you can't have fun what can you have. Next the dyno gives us a baseline.

(LT)>> Then off to the track where the Ram flexes its muscles.

(LT)>> Alright let's do this.

(Austin)>> Let's see what she's gonna do.

(LT)>> Is it on?

(Austin)>> Yeah, you don't hear it?

(LT)>> Sounds like you're sewing a blanket.

(Austin)>> I know right.

(LT)>> The only way to gauge the performance enhancements of our muscle truck build off is by getting a baseline first. As far as we know both the Dodge Viper truck and Austin's F-150 Ecoboost are completely stock. [ engine revving ]

(LT)>> It's only 350 horsepower, 396 pounds of torque.

(Austin)>> 350, that's more than what I thought.

(LT)>> Well the crazy thing is these are only rated at 360 at the flywheel.

(Austin)>> Figure that one out.

(LT)>> You sure you ain't got any tuning loaded up already or something?

(Austin)>> Nah man. No for real I was thinking if we broke 300 that would be good. 350!

(LT)>> Let's do another one to back it up and make sure it's doing what it's doing. See if we can repeat that. [ engine revving ]

(LT)>> Alright so 346 horsepower and 409 pounds of torque.

(Austin)>> Okay that's kinda hard to believe considering the baseline specs on these trucks go 365 at the crank and 420 of torque.

(LT)>> And normally you expect a little bit of drivetrain loss. Sometimes around 10 to 15 percent depending on the transmission and the rear axle. So I would expect a number in the low 300's. Now I kinda looked online and there's a few people getting dyno numbers a little bit all over the place but here's the thing. This is a used truck. We don't know the history on it. The only thing I can think of is maybe it has a tune on it. I don't know.

(Austin)>> Yeah we didn't plug anything in to find out, but for our purposes this is a good baseline pull for what the truck is right now as it sits before we do anything to it.

(LT)>> Alright let's swap them out and see what the little red wagon will do.

So I don't know what this is gonna make but I guess as long as it makes more than 350 I'll be okay.

(Austin)>> Pretty much guaranteed it will. [ engine revving ]

(Austin)>> 434 on the horse and 485.

(LT)>> Not bad, 434, 485. Beautiful! [ engine revving ]

(Austin)>> 436 on the horse and 477 on the torque. So we dropped a little on the torque but very consistent on horsepower.

(LT)>> I like the sound of that.

(Austin)>> With two consistent runs each we can move on to more baseline testing.

(LT)>> Whatever you got.

(Austin)>> Not bad for a little red wagon huh? Let's go baby. We're at NCM Motorsports Park to get a feel for the speed, handling, and braking before we tear these trucks down for the buildup. Alright we're gonna start this off with a little slalom run. Not really scientific here. We just kinda paced out the cones.

(LT)>> Maybe he's thinking to himself what have I got myself into?

(Austin)>> Not really good. I think we hit one cone but hey.

(LT)>> We'll see what he thinks. It looked like it kinda rolled a little bit. What do you think suspension wise? It kinda looked like it was leaning over.

(Austin)>> Well I mean obviously the driver's full of skill but the truck could use some handling help.

(LT)>> You were operating this finely tuned machine at its limits of performance. Alright that's enough, let's switch. [ Music ] It's hard to see the far side of the truck. That steering is stiff! [ engine revving ] [ Music ]

(Austin)>> Nice squeaky brakes you got there.

(LT)>> Hey that's just a sign of high performance right?

(Austin)>> Good clean run. Looks like it's handling pretty well. I mean you've still got some body roll but you're pretty tight to the cones. We don't really have them spaced out far enough to get on throttle too much but.

(LT)>> I would say rough comparison wise just by looking. I mean this is not scientific or measured. It looks like this truck is handling a little bit better than the F-150.

(Austin)>> Yes I would agree.

(LT)>> That being said you've still got to work it like this. I think the hydraulic power steering pump's a little low or something cause I've got to hustle that wheel back and forth. This thing is spunky.

(Austin)>> Automatically though you're lower. You've got wider tires. I figured it would have handled better. It's not really a surprise you know?

(LT)>> Well what's next? Maybe a braking test?

(Austin)>> Yeah let's do brakes.

(LT)>> Let's rearrange the cones.

(Austin)>> Next I believe LT truly wants a set of slicks on this thing.

(Austin)>> Now LT came clean that he stacked the deck in his favor with what some call the most powerful factory truck ever, but it's not about what you start with it's about where you end up.

(LT)>> I guess that's true but today is about establishing a baseline for our muscle trucks build off so we can rate and score our improvements.

(Austin)>> Our only rule is that we're tied to a $15,000 budget.

(LT)>> Here we go.

(Austin)>> Right now we're testing braking from a 60 mile an hour running start. [ tires squealing ]

(LT)>> So there's one thing you may not know but I probably have a pretty good advantage here because this truck actually comes from the factory with 15 inch rotors up front.

(Austin)>> No they're quite large. I saw that. We'll go ahead and record the best of two runs.

(LT)>> Woo hoo, yeah! Not bad almost the same, just a couple of feet shorter. Well I don't really know how the truck did at first because we've got nothing to compare it to, but we'll find out here in a second, but what I do know is when you throw the anchor out it actually stops in a hurry. It kinda throws you ahead. So I'm impressed, I'm impressed with my truck. I don't know about this one. [ Music ] [ tires squealing ]

(LT)>> Ah, no way! Uh uh, no, that was not 60.

(Austin)>> Dude the last time I looked down it was at 59 miles an hour, 59.

(LT)>> That's actually really good. Alright so here's the problem with my truck. It's wearing a 245/50 22, which is a taller tire than it came with from the factory.

(Austin)>> You're already making excuses. I just did one run.

(LT)>> This is math. Just hold on, hear me out for a second okay. It's supposed to have a 245/40 on it. Now because the tire's bigger the speedometer actually gonna be reading slower. So when I'm 60 on the speedometer it's actually going much faster. So why don't you ramp it up to about 65 if you can get there and see if it evens things out.

(Austin)>> Yeah physics, math, I don't even get it. [ Music ] [ tires squealing ]

(LT)>> Austin's second run was pretty consistent. A tape measure will record stopping distance both that we'll reference later on. So this next test is not exactly scientific but it's something we like to do to rate all the project trucks that we do, and that is burning out for distance.

(Austin)>> The rolling burnout. Rules are simple. Roll the truck up, put the back tires on the white line. Sit there, power brake it, get'em spinning as fast as you can as long as you want to. As soon as you let off the brake see how far you go until the wheels stop turning.

(LT)>> Alright well you've got the newer truck. So why don't you go first. Oh and by the way, if you don't spin both tires you get half the points.

(Austin)>> That's not fair, that is not fair. [ engine revving ]

(LT)>> There. The way a man does a burnout tells a lot about the character of that man. If he just sits there and spins, and spins, and spins, and tries to make a smoke show, that's how you can tell he's compensating for something, but the real truth lies with how long those marks are. And his, I don't think they're gonna measure up. [ Music ] It's not bad.

(Austin)>> Hey we got two tires turning.

(LT)>> I'm actually impressed because I'm pretty sure that's an open differential, but let's figure out where these stop. Now normally for our official burnout distance we kinda go by where you start to see the individual parts of the tread.

(Austin)>> I think we're over here buddy.

(LT)>> You think you're over here.

(Austin)>> I mean you've got to give me some credit.

(LT)>> Well yeah.

(Austin)>> You can't see it from here on out.

(LT)>> That's Austin mark.

(Austin)>> Dude two tires turning. It took me a while for it to settle into gear it liked and get those tires spinning fast. But hey it doesn't suck.

(LT)>> Let me tell you this, and this is me being honest. That did a lot better than I thought it would. I don't think it's gonna beat the SRT but it did pretty good. [ tires squealing ] [ engine revving ]

(LT)>> It's to the floor. That's all she's got. Oh we got this in the bag, yeah! Steer it out. [ Music ]

(Austin)>> It's kinda not really fair. I'm not giving you any more than this though. Not surprised by the results I'm just not please.

(LT)>> Okay just judging based off of an estimate here. That's like one, two, that's four times what you did.

(Austin)>>> But hang on dude. I caught another gear. I've got at least another 15 feet. I'm just seeing that. Look it stopped, it shifted, more burnouts. So I've got 15 more feet easy.

(LT)>> That's fair, I'll give you that.

(Austin)>> Yeah.

(LT)>> That's why you want a muscle truck, not a grandpa truck. It's for doing this kind of stuff right here.

(Austin)>> Let me remind you it's not about what we start out with. It's about where we end up.

(LT)>> What's next? Let's find something else to do. That was fun.

(Austin)>> Look at this.

(LT)>> Next over to the technical course for speed laps.

(Austin)>> Alright we finally got this dude out on the track, and it's obviously not where it belongs. After all it's a four wheel drive F-150 and it's a pickup truck.

(LT)>> For a stock truck I'm actually impressed with my first little bit out on the track. I'm certainly not pushing it to the limit yet but it feels pretty flat. It's not body rolling too much. You just have to put light pressure on the brakes and it'll slow dyno.

(Austin)>> I've got to say even though it don't sound cool, you know it handles quite well. It really does.

(LT)>> The tires, kinda hearing screaming a little bit. They give you plenty of warning before they're about to let go. Just all about having fun. So I guess we can't come to a road course without actually doing a couple of timed laps. So let's kinda let it all hang out.

(Austin)>> Have some fun see what our lap time is. On you baby.

(LT)>> Three, two, one, go!

(Austin)>> Good luck buddy. [ Music ]

(LT)>> So Austin's truck, I'm actually kind of impressed with it so far. It seems like it's doing pretty good for having a small turbocharged V-6 engine. I know people give him a hard time for having such a little engine but those two turbos on there, they're very responsive and they're very torquey. I honestly can't wait to see what he pulls out to modify this truck to make it a little bit better. Now he is at a clear horsepower disadvantage now but that's okay because knowing what I know about trucks is you can easily make up that difference in power. Handling I guess we'll have to see what he comes up with. He may decide to lower it. I don't know. He may decide to lift it, it's hard to say. Well time's ticking away. Let's see how he does. [ engine revving ]

(LT)>> And time. [ Music ] So I told you ahead of time what was kind of a good range of some of the other trucks we've brought up here right? What did I say?

(Austin)>> I don't know, like 2 minutes.

(LT)>> Some of the last trucks we've had here anywhere between a minute and 11 and a minute 19.

(Austin)>> You're killing me smalls. What'd I get?

(LT)>> Pretty good, one 16.

(Austin)>> Ah dude that's average.

(LT)>> So you're doing pretty good. So that means I've got my work cut out for me in that Ram. I don't know, maybe I match this time.

(Austin)>> A few corners were a little loose but we kept it in there.

(LT)>> So I know this truck's got the muscle to beat that F-150 but I'll be honest I don't know if I have the skills to do it.

(Austin)>> Me either. I know the truck definitely has the skills. So we'll see what happens.

(LT)>> There's a lot of power to wrangle here.

(Austin)>> Alright three, two, one, go! [ tires squealing ] [ Music ]

(Austin)>> Well he started off right. Threshold braking. That means you run that car or that truck right up to the apex as far as you can, get on those brakes as hard as you can right before you lose traction, and that's threshold braking. Throttle out, hammer down to the next turn. The truck, way better setup than what I've got in the F-150. It's got bigger brakes, bigger tires that are wider. That means he's got more traction. Those front tires are gonna bite when he turns. It's not gonna wanna slide out. It might want to push just a little but not too much, and he's lower, and I don't think his truck has near the body role that mine got. So probably do better overall. What's he gonna have? Ah man! I think he got me.

(LT)>> Man I couldn't tell you if that was fast or slow.

(Austin)>> Fast truck huh?

(LT)>> Not a fast driver. How'd I do, come on.

(Austin)>> 1:09.

(LT)>> 1:09 dang!

(Austin)>> 500 horse dude, what do you expect?

(LT)>> Well here's the thing. I know this truck if you put a pro driver behind the seat could be a lot faster.

(Austin)>> But you hit that apex in that second turn right on I bet cause that's where the biggest time gap is.

(LT)>> Yeah there's a lot there.

(Austin)>> I was way off when I got into that.

(LT)>> There's only one way to officially close out the day. Burnouts.

(Austin)>> I'm down. [ tires squealing ]

(Austin)>> Woo hoo!

(LT)>> Yeah! [ tires squealing ]
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