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  • Diesel Power Challenge 2018 Competitor Trae Hutton – #DPC2018

Diesel Power Challenge 2018 Competitor Trae Hutton – #DPC2018

Daily Driven for Diesel Supremacy?

Jul 9, 2018
Photographers: Diesel Power Staff, Ben Cooper
When people imagine commuter vehicles, they probably conjure up some sort of efficient, boring little econobox dawdling down the freeway in bumper-to-bumper traffic. But for Trae Hutton of Conrad, Montana, his daily driver is this machine you see here, an ’03 GMC Sierra 2500HD he hopes will take home top honors at Diesel Power Challenge 2018 Presented by XDP.
Trae—whose job and hobby interests include farming, ranching, hunting, and driving a concrete truck—relies on diesel-powered vehicles every day, so it makes sense that he would want to own the best oil-burner possible from the get-go, right? Wrong.
Photo 2/19   |   A homemade bed stack vents exhaust gases, and if you think Trae’s ’03 GMC is a garage queen, think again. Check out that frequently used gooseneck hitch sitting there in the middle of the bed.
Photo 3/19   |   Blacked-out badges, sinister headlights, and dark-finished wheels make the otherwise-stock GMC look a bit like a vehicular Stormtrooper: ready to fight at a moment’s notice.
“I bought this GMC in 2016 from Illinois,” Trae says. “The truck came with a built engine and a transmission that ended up causing more troubles than it did good. The winter after buying the truck, I changed the pistons and had the engine inspected to make sure everything else was decent.”
Photo 4/19   |   Trae Hutton and his teammates are ready to bring the fight to the other trucks at Diesel Power Challenge 2018 Presented by XDP, using an ’03 GMC Sierra 2500HD as ammunition.
With the engine sorted, everything else should fall into place, right? Wrong. “The transmission made one pass down a Montana dragstrip before deleting the P2 and C2 halfway down the track!” Trae exclaims.
Photo 5/19   |   There’s no denying what mill powers Trae’s pickup. Everywhere you look, “DURAMAX” is plastered all over the GMC.
Photo 6/19   |   Military-spec desert paint is a welcome departure from the eye-melting colors found under the hoods of some trucks. Combined with the mean, understated exterior appearance, the engine bay shows this GMC is all business.
Enter the new Allison 1000 five-speed automatic, which was built by Diesel Power Challenge alumnus Dmitri Millard. Finally, the GMC had the components to become a real contender for diesel honors. Since receiving the call notifying him that he and his truck were selected to compete in DPC, Trae has updated the 6.6L Duramax engine with a bigger atmospheric turbocharger, now sized at 84mm, along with bigger injectors.
“Overall, I feel confident about finishing the event,” Trae says. “We are going for reliability instead of a ‘glass cannon.’ As for winning, the event is going to be packed with a bunch of tough competitors I know will push my pickup and me to the limit. We’ll have to see what happens.”
Photo 7/19   |   Mostly stock, the interior has a few clues that betray the beast that lurks beneath. A-pillar gauges help Trae monitor the Duramax’s vital signs.
But Trae knows his truck has one edge over all the others, since it’s his daily driver and it sees everything from 100-degree heat in the summer to subzero temperatures in the winter. “I’ve invested a lot of time driving this truck and getting to know its sweet spots,” Trae says.
Trae adds he wouldn’t be able to participate without the help of folks from No Zone Diesel, Dooley’s Diabolical Diesel, and God Speed Turbo Innovations. He is excited to “put Montana on the map” in the diesel-performance industry.

Build Sheet

Year/Make/Model: ’03 GMC Sierra 2500HD
Owner: Trae Hutton
Hometown: Conrad, Montana
Odometer: 210,000 miles
Engine: 6.6L Duramax V-8
ECM Tuning: H&S Performance Mini-Maxx programmer, EFILive tuning by Dmitri Millard
Fuel: PureFlow AirDog II 200-gph lift pump, dual CP3 injection pumps (LBZ over LB7), 100-percent-over injectors, Beans Diesel Performance fuel-tank sump
Air: Compound turbochargers (84mm over 66mm) prepared by God Speed Turbo Innovations, Banks Power air-to-air intercooler
Exhaust: 5-inch custom bed stack, Pacific Performance Engineering manifolds
Transmission: Allison 1000 five-speed automatic by No Zone Diesel, Goerend torque converter
Lubricants: Schaeffer 15W-40 synthetic engine oil, gear oil, Dexron III transmission fluid
Horsepower: 1,100 hp
Torque: 1,700 lb-ft
Tires: 305/50R20 Kumho Ecsta STX
Wheels: KMC Wheels XD-Series Hoss
Suspension: Calvert Racing CalTracs traction bars, Bilstein 5100 shocks, Cognito Motorsports pitman-support kit, Rare Parts tie rods
Axles: Factory

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