2016 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD: Compound Turbo Creation
Zach Kurth of Zimmerman, Minnesota, is a truck fan. He has owned a lot of vehicles with beds—everything from rat rods to mega-dollar show trucks. “I have a ’93 Chevy that has a ProCharger supercharger and runs on E85 fuel,” Zach says. “It’s fun for about the first few miles, but that’s it, and filling up every 40 miles gets old, too.” He needed a truck that could be fun as well as useful, so he made the natural switch—from gas to diesel power!
The ride Zach selected for his build is a standard-cab ’16 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD. Zach liked the rig’s exterior styling but not the interior, so his first modification was replacing the stock cloth bench seat with a full front interior from a Silverado LTZ. “I decided every modification needed to make the truck better but also have utility,” he explains.
With a sold theory for the build, Zach upgraded the suspension with ride quality in mind. The front end is lifted by a set of torsion keys and control arms from Cognito Motorsports, as well as shocks from Fox Factory. The rear features soft Fox shocks, complemented by a Kelderman air-suspension kit. The result is a leveled truck that sits about 3 inches higher than stock and rides like a dream.
Considering Zach’s stable of powerful vehicles, there was no way his ’16 was going to be stock in the engine department. Again, he took the reliable-yet-better approach to building the 6.6L Duramax LML, relying on the skills of buddy Dillon Johnson at Northern Diesel Performance for assembling the powerplant. Zach put airflow first, installing a compound-turbocharger kit from Wehrli Custom Fabrication that features 80mm and 64.5mm BorgWarner turbos. The fueling side is also upgraded, with 40-percent-over injectors, a Wehrli 10mm CP3 injection-pump conversion (replacing the problematic stock CP4.2), and a FASS Fuel Systems 165-gph lift pump. NDP also rebuilt the Allison 1000 six-speed automatic transmission using a Goerend transmission kit and torque converter, which is upgraded to an X-spec triple disc.
When Zach finished his build, he only had one reaction: This is great! “The truck can keep up with my Corvette, and I don’t have to fill up literally every 40 miles. I can now go hundreds at the same power level—with a trailer,” Zach says. “You always hear about how diesels are the best of both worlds, but you never realize how useful they are until you own one.” Despite making 700 hp, the truck isn’t all fun and games. “We’ve gone to Canada in it, towed huge trailers, taken 5,000-mile road trips, you name it,” he adds. “One thing is for sure, when you build a modified diesel, you’ll never look back.”
We couldn’t have said it better.
Fast Facts:Year/Make/Model: ’16 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD
Owner: Zach Kurth
Hometown: Zimmerman, Minnesota
Odometer: 20,000 miles
Engine: 6.6L Duramax LML V-8
Fuel: FASS Fuel Systems 165-gph lift pump, 40-percent-over injectors, Wehrli Custom Fabrication CP3 injection-pump conversion with 10mm pump
Air: Wehrli Custom Fabrication compound-turbocharger kit, BorgWarner 64.5mm and 80mm turbos, intake piping, Mishimoto air-to-air intercooler
Exhaust: Jamo Performance Exhaust 4-inch tubing, 5-inch tip
Programming: Tuning by Northern Diesel Performance
Transmission: Allison 1000 six-speed automatic by Northern Diesel Performance, Goerend Transmissions rebuild kit, Goerend X triple-disc torque converter
Horsepower: 700 hp
Torque: 1,304 lb-ft
Tires: 33x12.50R22 Fuel Off-Road M/T
Wheels: 22x10 Fuel Off-Road Forged FF19
Suspension: Cognito Motorsports control arms, torsion keys, Fox Factory shocks (front and rear), Kelderman air springs, Ride Rite compressor
Axles: 3.55 gears
Interior: Edge Products Insight CTS2 monitor, leather bucket seats and center console
Fun Fact: Zach has what he calls an “extremely safe tune” in the ECM, enough so that he’s actually held the hammer down long enough to hit 166 mph as measured by a GPS—on a closed course, obviously.