A 750HP ’02 DODGE COMMON-RAIL THAT’S WORTH EVERY PENNY
When you’re a second-gen connoisseur, chances are pretty good you’ll own a few of them. As for Kenneth Donkersgoed, he’s held the title of more than a dozen ’94-’02 Dodges in his time—but none of them have been like this. After obtaining a straight bodied ’02 Quad Cab as a roller from Jake Schlosser of SloshFab, Kenneth did something most second-gen owners never do: he treated his pride and joy to a show-quality, $20,000 paintjob. Then he broke the mold again, this time in ditching all thoughts of a P-pumped 24-valve for a common-rail 6.7L. “I wanted to have the nicest second-gen out there,” he told us. “Something that you can’t just go buy.” After a year of being under the knife at Fleece Performance Engineering, Kenneth’s $100,000 common-rail second-gen is alive—and it’s unlike any other ’94-’02 Cummins you’ll come across.
With the truck being purchased as a roller, there was no 5.9L to pull. However, a new power plant had to be sourced. Turning things over to Freedom Racing Engines, a Stage 2 6.7L-based Cummins was put together. The bored, honed, decked, and blue-printed block is furnished with a factory crankshaft, 9/16-inch main studs, Carrillo connecting rods, and Mahle replacement pistons. Freedom’s fire-ringed performance series 6.7L cylinder head, fitted with oversized valve seats, Manley Performance stainless steel valves and 103-lb Hamilton valve springs, anchors to the block via 14mm ARP head studs.
STROKER CP3 & 100-PERCENT OVER STICKS
To make the truck fun to drive, Fleece and S&S Diesel Motorsport teamed up on the fuel system. Things get started with a PowerFlo lift pump in the factory tank, with one of Fleece’s auxiliary fuel filter and line kits mounted between the lift pump and a single PowerFlo 750 CP3. To take advantage of their quick injection rate and also to provide room for future horsepower growth, a set of 5.9Lderived, 100-percent over injectors were obtained from S&S. Fine-tuning of the engine is made possible through the use of a 5.9L ECM.
SECOND-GEN TURBO SWAP
With the finished product destined to live in Kenneth’s native Wyoming, adequate airflow without sacrificing drivability was a key stipulation in the build. Sizing a turbocharger for a single turbo application that needs to be responsive at 7,500-feet of elevation but that can also support more than 700-rwhp can be a tall order. However, Fleece met Kenneth’s needs with an S463 that makes use of an 83mm turbine wheel and a non-wastegated .90 A/R exhaust housing. Accommodating the BorgWarner charger is Fleece’s popular second-gen turbo swap system, which (in addition to facilitating the use of an S400 on a 6.7L common-rail) includes a T4 Steed Speed exhaust manifold, 4-inch stainless downpipe, and the company’s 5-inch ManTake.
MANUAL VALVEBODY 48RE
The 48RE that’s forced to absorb the common-rail’s abuse is always up to the challenge thanks to being prepped with the baddest Sun Coast parts you can find. The top-shelf components list includes the infamous 1-3/16-inch diameter OM3GA input shaft, larger 300M intermediate and output shafts (along with an NP271 transfer case), a 27-spline, billet stator 2,200-rpm stall converter, and a manual valve body. Shifts are handled by way of a Precision Performance Products shifter. Downwind of the lively Cummins and the full-billet four-speed sits the front Dana 60 with Dynatrac Free-Spin hubs and a rear Dana 80 with 35-spline axleshafts and a spool to ensure all power makes it to the ground.
ONE OF A KIND COMMON-RAIL
As a pipeline welder by trade, Kenneth is around hundredthousand dollar trucks on a daily basis. However, his diesel addiction begins and ends with second-gens. He may have sunk a six-digit figure into his ’02, but between its perfect body panels, metallic red paint, and the common-rail Cummins under the hood it’s one of the cleanest and rarest second-gens you’ll ever see. For most old-school Dodges, the words drivability and 750hp don’t belong in the same sentence. For Kenneth’s seven-red special, it’s all in a day’s work.