When the question was asked, "Why climb Mt. Everest?" George Mallory's answer was simple: "Because it's there." Similarly, why would Dodge build a Viper V-10 truck? Because it can. And, in doing so, the V-10's 505 cubes have the fortitude to make the Ram SRT-10 the quickest, fastest production truck ever. Yet for some, like Hennessey Performance, a truck with just 525 pound-feet of torque isn't enough.
As a premier Dodge Viper tuner, Hennessey owns countless pages in the record books, and it appears as if he's just nabbed another entry. His latest creation, a Venom 650R Ram SRT-10, blasted out a 12.56-second run in a recent Truck Trend test, making it the quickest Ram SRT-10 on the globe--and that was with the rear tires wildly spinning on acceleration. What's the secret? Hennessey feels the factory-supplied 505 cubic inches are too small. Out came the stock V-10 for a full rework to "Venom" standards. The 650R V-10 has a longer stroke crank, Manley Pro Forged steel rods with ARP bolts, and bigger JE 11:1 forged pistons.
Supplying enough air/fuel mixture to satisfy the 522-cubic-inch engine is a pair of fully ported cylinder heads. A free-breathing cold-air-intake system gets the charge ready, while a special computer program takes care of spark and fuel management.
As the name indicates, the Venom 650R engine package delivers a healthy punch in the form of 670 engine-dyno-proven horsepower (565 measured at the rear tires), according to Hennessey. That calculates to a solid 170 horsepower increase with a 150 pound-foot increase in torque. Power is linear and strong throughout the rev range, but it comes at a healthy price: $34,500, which includes the professional installation, road and dyno testing, and a two-year warranty.