In drag racing, freaky and different usually mean fun but they also usually mean slow. Well, this Cummins powered Nova was the freakiest car at Lights Out 9 and it was anything but slow. In fact this thing scored what may be the most important single round of racing a diesel powered vehicle may have ever won. Seriously.
The Hardway Performance machine features a billet Cummins style engine of 414ci. Using a single turbocharger and nitrous, the thing beastly car went a best of a 4.55 in qualifying and then when eliminations came, it stunned the world. Driver Dan Pierce left with an identical reaction as the car next to him and the diesel simply out worked the gas engine in the next lane, recording a blazing speed of 163mph. We’d call that a watershed moment for diesel performance enthusiasts.
Having witnessed this car go from underivable mess to 4.80s machine last year and then from an .80s to a .60s, and then to a .50s car at Lights Out 9, there was palpable excitement every time the green machine came to the starting line.
How these guys manage all of that torque though that little tire is beyond me. While we bet they are down outright horsepower numbers to the gas competitors, we’d be willing to bet the farm that their torque numbers are stronger by a lot. The big speed is a tell to us that there’s a pretty tall gear in the back of the car and that the engine can pull it.
Fast and different are not usually terms we throw together at the drags but in this case they fit like a glove. This thing is beyond awesome and the best part is that the guys who own the car are now the operators of Emerald Coast drag strip in Florida. They’ve got their own test track. Look for this thing to be even more competitive in the future.