STRAPPED ONTHE ROLLERS TO TEST DRIVE ABILITY, EFFICIENCY, AND SKILL
AFTER BEING photographed, competitors grabbed a quick lunch (and a nap, if they were lucky) and headed toward ATS Diesel Performance in Arvada, Colorado. There, each truck was strapped onto the firm’s Mustang dynamometer, which was then loaded with a 20-minute drive program simulating the Department of Transportation’s emissions inspection. Every driver gave the program a go, but not all of them finished.
Unfortunately, rising engine temperatures on the slow, methodical test cycle were enough to sideline four competitors: Shayne Merriman
(’74 Ford F-250), Andrew Morrison (’94 Dodge Ram 2500), Kodi Koch (’01 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD), and Zach Scoles (’04 Ford F-250). In fact, Zach and Shayne’s trucks left a little blood on the dyno in the form of coolant, but their teams worked hard to get the rigs ready to battle in Day Three’s contest, the power dyno.
The process tests more than just fuel consumption—it also evaluates a truck’s driveability. Few trucks stood out for better or worse. Kody Pulliam’s ’04 Silverado 2500HD was a smooth operator, and the driver completed the entire fuel-
consumption course with just one penalty. On the other hand, Allan Burk’s ’07 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD was difficult to control on the slow-moving rollers, leading him to 13 unfortunate faults.
Most of us were duly impressed with Travis Richards’ performance, as he handled his ’07 Dodge Ram 2500’s six-speed manual transmission very well. He faulted several times, but that’s to be expected when wrangling massive power and modulating a clutch—and he never stayed in the penalty zone long.
Kody Pulliam came out on top in the fuel-consumption segment, thanks to his truck’s easy driveability and his smooth inputs.
Shayne Merriman and Andrew Morrison were two of the fuel consumption dyno’s casualties. Rising engine temperatures forced both drivers to shut down before the end of the test.
DPC and ATS Diesel Performance staffers precisely measured diesel fuel thanks to the speed shop’s auto-shutoff pump.
After seeing a stick shift sprouting from the center tunnel of Travis Richards’ truck, everyone was keen to see how he’d handle the difficult, precise test cycle. All things considered, Travis did OK.
The dyno’s fuel economy program mirrors that of Colorado’s emissions testing. Drivers must keep their wheel speed (green arrow) within test parameters (blue line). The test replicated idling, highway cruising, and the cut-and-thrust of city traffic.