SpaceX has dominated news cycles for the past few months with dramatic explosions while sorting out landing procedures for its fleet of Starship test vehicles. We would never, ever think that SpaceX and an old Dodge pickup would have something common, but the video featured above clearly shows otherwise. And we're not saying that just because of the crazy explosion.
Anyone who tinkers in the realm of high-performance engines knows such detonations are part of the process. In this case, the project vehicle is an older Dodge Ram pickup truck packing a mighty Cummins I6 turbo diesel, and whoa Nellie is this thing turbocharged. It's a project from Utah-based Power Driven Diesel, and while we don't have all the specifics, the above video does tell us they were pushing 250 pounds of boost. Those not familiar with the aftermarket diesel scene might find that figure unbelievable, but yes, diesel design does allow for some positively insane levels of boost.
Obviously, this Cummins was already deep into insane territory as the engine previously made 2,700 horsepower (2,013 kilowatts). But when you're at a diesel-specific event titled Ultimate Callout Challenge, insane may not be enough to garner attention. As such, this engine also had a 100-hp (76-kW) shot of nitrous oxide hooked up and ready, with a target of 3,000 hp (2,237 kW) in mind.
We have no idea if that goal was reached, but we do know what happened when that nawzz button was pushed. The old 12-valve let loose in dramatic fashion, and not unlike SpaceX with its Starship testing, all kinds of engine internals were launched well into the atmosphere. We're not talking 30,000 feet obviously, but parts literally rained down on spectators in the stands. Beyond that, at least one piston sailed all the way to the billboards at the top of the grandstands, bouncing off the sign and landing in the bleachers. Folks, that's an engine detonation to remember right there.
Thankfully, nobody was hurt and the crew from Power Driven Diesel were in good spirits after all was said and done. Suffice it to say, it's back to the drawing board for this truck called The Godfather.