New Late Model HEMI Series: Into the Nines!

Our long term project car-cum-race car, the Maulin’ Magnum, ended the 2015 season solidly in the low ten second range at the drag strip. At our year ending race, Street Car Super Nationals in Las Vegas in November, the car ran passes in the 10.2 second range. That’s very respectable for a car that weighs over 4,000 pounds.

The Magnum has been documented in these pages since 2011 when it was absolutely stock and running 13.5 ETs. Once the rear axles were upgraded with durable parts from the Driveshaft Shop, the stock engine was upgraded with a 50 shot of nitrous spraying the whole way, then an advanced 150 shot with a window switch, etc., and then a Magnuson supercharger. Along the way we also had the factory NAG1 beefed up by Westminster Performance Transmission. With the factory engine, and a fully C.A.R.B certified smog-legal Magnuson supercharger kit by the end of 2012 the car was right at the lower edge of legal ET for NHRA Summit Series Sportsman cars running 12.0.

By then the car’s factory engine had over 60,000 miles on it and many of those were racked up towing its own trailer with pit and race gear to tracks around the southwest. Some 600 quarter-mile passes were on the clock as well. It was time to step it up. So the car went to Arrington Performance in Martinsville, Virginia for a new engine. Out went the 6.1L and in went a 6.4L with forged Manley rods, MAHLE pistons and Arrington did their full CNC porting on the heads. You can read about all of these changes, from the first nitrous kit installed to the first Arrington built engine in our magazine (Google and Bing are your friend).

When we went from having about 600 horsepower with the original engine to about 750 with the new Arrington Engine, we learned a lot about the LX/LC platform…the hard way. We broke everything that could be broken, most of them twice. Again, you can search and find our stories on installing the Driveshaft Shop’s 9” IRS conversion kit and their one-piece carbon fiber driveshaft, which we needed after breaking three other driveshafts along the way. We even managed to break the rear suspension, whereupon we got the hint and took the car to Mountain Performance where they threw away all of our factory suspension arms and bushings and replaced them with chromoly rods with Heim joints.