PRI 2016 – Look Inside The Massive Show


It’s cold. It’s spitting snow. It’s December in Indianapolis. Welcome to the Performance Racing Industry (PRI) trade show. For 2016, the 29th annual event was as lively as it’s ever been, with fresh technologies, new product unveilings, and some of the biggest names in the racing world on hand. For those of you not familiar with PRI, it was born from the need to have an industry trade show solely dedicated to the automotive racing market. Once the “S” in SEMA no longer stood for “Speed” but rather “Specialty” in the mid 1980s, it was clear that the automotive affair out in Vegas was evolving into a much broader venue. To stay true to the needs of hardcore race engine builders, chassis fabricators, retailers, and even warehouse distributors, the PRI Show was formed, and its exhibitors would consist of the world’s top race equipment manufacturers.
New on the scene from Carrillo is its Cummins Hybrid connecting rod and piston kit. The lightweight assemblies save two pounds per cylinder (12 pounds off the overall rotating assembly) by incorporating a Duramax wrist pin. The hybrid con-rod kits also feature a 0.856-inch longer rod with a 0.856-inch shorter piston, which allows engine builders to utilize a longer rod without the need for a deck plate.
Three separate product lines were being showcased in the BorgWarner booth: the company’s EFR (Engineered For Racing) series, proven SX series, and the latest SX-E turbochargers (the E standing for Enhanced). All SX-E turbos come standard with a 360-degree thrust bearing, forged milled compressor wheel (FMW), and optimized (new) compressor housing. In contrast, the older SX line of chargers came with 270-degree thrust bearings and cast compressor wheels.
The Scheid Diesel booth had a version of one of its triple-turbo Super Stock Cummins engines on display, complete with the company’s billet-aluminum block. Thanks to this new mega-horsepower, ultra-reliable engine program, Scheid laid claim to the top four finishers in the Pro Pulling League’s Super Stock diesel truck class in 2016 (Carl Atley, Josh Deeter, Kent Crowder, and Brad Deeter). And thanks to the billet aluminum block material being both stronger and lighter than traditional cast iron, no deck plate is required for reliability purposes and the block itself is roughly 130 pounds lighter.
When horsepower takes a turn toward extreme, increased oiling ability becomes vital to an engine’s survival. Luckily, there are a host of manufacturers offering dry sump oil pumps and supporting hardware in the race engine industry. Here, you can see one of Dailey Engineering’s SP series, billet, 8-stage oil pumps.
SunCoast timed the release of its all-new tripledisc torque converter for the Ford 6R140 TorqShift automatic just right, unveiling it at the show. After seeing the furnace-brazed turbine and billet stator shown here, we have a hunch this will be one tough converter for the 6.7L Power Stroke crowd.
Over at the Garrett booth, it was timely to find a GTX5018R being exhibited (bottom right), given it had just been involved in a turbo shootout (put on by Hardway Performance at Freedom Racing Engines) where it allowed a 6.7L Cummins to clear more than 1,750 hp on an engine dyno. This charger features an 11-blade, 88mm inducer compressor wheel, an 88/96mm turbine wheel, and a ceramic ball bearing center cartridge.
The life of the party over at the ARP booth was the engine that powers the Super Stock class GMC known as Cummins Killer: a DX460 Duramax from Wagler Competition Products. Wrapped in billet badass-ness, it makes use of a billet-steel bedplate, Winberg crankshaft, billet jugs, Darton cylinder sleeves, Wagler connecting rods, Ross pistons, billet heads with ARP Top Fuel head studs, and a 5-stage dry sump oiling system. With a massive 5.2-inch inducer Columbus Diesel Supply Pro Stock turbocharger and five CP3s onboard (not shown), the exotic Duramax sees more than 5,000 rpm and 130 psi of boost during the course of a pull.
Breaking news at the PRI Show was Wabtec’s acquisition of Precision Turbo & Engine, which had occurred just days before. Wabtec also owns Turbonetics (acquired in 2013) and Napier, a manufacturer of industrial turbochargers for marine, power generation, and rail applications.

Picture the SEMA Show in Vegas, but with functionality and utmost performance trumping any other aspect of a vehicle. There’s no bling unless it’s warranted, and the primary concerns are making horsepower and getting that horsepower down the track as fast as possible. The three-day event squeezes more than 3,000 booths (from over 1,200 different exhibitors) into the 500,000 square-foot Indiana Convention Center—hundreds of which are either directly or indirectly involved in the diesel performance industry.

Speaking of Darton sleeves, the company’s ductile iron sleeves have made their way into many an engine build in the upper echelon of the diesel world. Darton supplies industry-leading engine builders such as Haisley Machine, Riverside Engine, and Wagler Competition Products with the blank sleeves they need to put their 3,000hp competition power plants together.
Thanks to offering the most affordable aftermarket rods in the 7.3L segment, Manley Performance is slowly gaining recognition with ’94.5-03 Power Stroke owners. The company’s I-beam units are made from 4340 forged steel, can be had with 7/16-inch ARP 2000 or Custom Age 625+ cap bolts, and retail in the $2,300 range. So far, both the price point and performance of these rods has been second to none, and we’ve seen them in multiple 700+ hp trucks.
In addition to offering the Ultra Billet crankshaft for Duramax owners, Callies Performance Products offers two alternate fi ring order camshafts as well. Callies cams are machined from aircraft quality 8620 grade steel and are heat treated to Federal Aviation Administration standards for utmost durability.
It’s been a decade of dominance as far as EFI Live and Duramax performance are concerned, not to mention how far EFI Live tuning software has taken common-rail Cummins performance in recent years. Without the ingenuity and support of this company, the clean-burning, streetable 1,000hp trucks we’ve all grown to love might not exist.
Aeromotive’s diesel lift pump kit for ’01-10 Duramax and ’03-10 Power Strokes represents the ultimate fuel delivery system for your truck. It utilizes a pump with a brushless motor for optimum performance and longevity, and compact packaging of the pump, adjustable regulator, and popular Caterpillar 1R-0750, 2-micron fuel fi lter, which all share a common base. Other highlights include pre-assembled hoses with quick-connect fi ttings, Weather Pack connectors, and a baffl e kit that eliminates ¼-inch tank issues. While the price point may have hampered sales to date (at roughly $1,800), this is arguably the highest quality bolt-on fuel system you can buy in the diesel industry.
From transmission coolers to high-output electric fans to remote-mount fl uid coolers, Derale Performance had an auxiliary cooler on display for every type of build or application. Did you know Derale also offers extra capacity transmission pans? Currently, pans are available for Ford E4OD, 4R100, 5R110, GM 4L80, 4L80E, and Dodge A518 transmissions.
The Rudy’s Diesel Performance Pro Street Ford (unveiled for the fi rst time a month earlier at SEMA) garnered a lot of attention in the Vibrant Performance booth. We love seeing the Pro Street class grow, and this 2,000hp, triple-turbo’d 6.4L Power Stroke will be a very welcomed addition to the top tier of diesel drag racing this coming race season.
SCS Gearbox’s Quick Change drop transfer case is most commonly found in open driveline pulling classes and monster trucks. This style transfer case (also referred to as a “drop box”) allows competitors to maintain the desired driveshaft angles during competition. After stopping by SCS’s booth, we learned that they also offer a two-wheeldrive disconnect option.
Parked at the Fleece Performance Engineering booth was Ryan Milliken’s ’14 Ram 1500, the Hardway Performance/Fleece collaboration affectionately known as “Mini-Wheat.” Ditching the 47RE last fall, the truck is now graced with a Powerglide and a lockup converter. With more horsepower likely making its way into the truck over the winter, it will be interesting to see how quickly Mini-Wheat shuffl es down the track in 2017.
Take a look at this potential trend-setter. It’s the all-new R2.8 Cummins crate engine and it might just be the next big thing in the swap industry. The 2.8L inline-four puts out 160 hp at 3,200 rpm, produces 267 lb-ft of torque from 1,600 to 3,200 rpm, and tips the scales at a scant 503 pounds.
With several engines on display at various booths, it was clear that Wagler Competition Products is at the top of the Duramax game. From 850-1,000hp street engine packages to all-out competitionready 3,500hp setups, it was hard not to stumble upon a Wagler engine or component at this year’s show. The 6.6L shown here represents the Wagler street engine package, which comes with a new (externally balanced) GM crank, billet mains, girdle, Stage 2 street cam, steel connecting rods, forged-aluminum pistons, street series heads, ARP Custom Age 625+ head studs, and other select internals. It’s topped off with a Wagler street intake manifold, twisted turbo pedestal, and a 68mm Precision turbocharger.



The PRI Show is one of very few venues where a lot of the powertrain components used in championship-winning vehicles are on full display. Case in point: Scheid Diesel’s billet-aluminum Cummins block—which powered the top four finishing trucks in the PPL Super Stock class last year—was available for all to see. To get a closer look at this engine and a host of other First-Place caliber parts, check out our full coverage of the 2016 show in the pages that follow.DW

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