Sister publication Diesel Power magazine just wrapped up its annual Diesel Power Challenge, a competition that puts oil-burning
custom trucks to the test. Ten trucks competed in this year's challenge, doing battle at the drag strip, on the highway, and in the mud for a shot at the trophy.
The competition begins at the dyno to find out which truck earns horsepower and torque bragging rights. Trucks from Ford and Dodge are well represented, leaving the two GM models severely outnumbered. The entries range in model year from 1999 to 2011, and all are heavily modified for performance. It's no surprise then that every truck put down torque figures in the quadruple digits and power numbers north of 600 hp. The best dyno run of the day, laid down by a Cummins-equipped 2005 Dodge Ram 2500, was 1255 hp and 2063 lb-ft of torque at the wheels.
Next, the trucks head to the drag strip to compete in the eighth-mile, quarter-mile, and eighth-mile towing categories. Despite being heavy-duty vehicles not built for speed, the competitors record impressive acceleration results. While at the track, the trucks are also tasked with completing an obstacle course while towing a trailer. The next challenge tests the trucks' fuel economy and ride quality on a 150-mile route plotted through the Colorado Mountains. The top three competitors post numbers in the 20s, with the winner averaging a solid 22.49 mpg.
The final challenge requires the competitors to drag a professional pulling sled as far as they can through a course made primarily of packed mud. Our friends at Diesel Power were right to place the most punishing test at the end of the competition, as many trucks are left steaming, spewing coolant, or in flames by the time their run is finished. Check out all four videos below to see the competition in its entirety, and head to Diesel Power to read the story.