It has been a few months since Mopar Connection Magazine familiarized the readers to Boosted Motorsport’s John O’Malley and his 6.2-liter Hellcat-powered Dakota build project. In our last installment, we followed along as O’Malley started the Hemi with the aid of an unlocked PCM from HP Tuners.
However, rather than just watching the build videos and emailing O’Malley about the project, MCM had the opportunity to meet O’Malley and see the HellKota in person at the 2021 Carlisle Chrysler Nationals.
Above: HellKota is a Boosted Motorsports project that combines a supercharged 6.2-liter with a Dodge Dakota pickup. No matter the angle, the HellKota looks good. From the beginning, Holley and HP Tuners have been involved with the build.
The HellKota was located on the manufacturer’s midway at the Holley tent. Holley has made excellent progress in helping Mopar devotees swap a late-model Hemi into earlier Mopar chassis. The HellKota was no exception. O’Malley installed the supercharged Hemi into the Dakota with assistance from Hooker Blackheart, Flowmaster, and an assortment of additional Holley/MSD components, including a set of recently installed MSD coils.
At Carlisle, the Pennsylvania mid-summer sun showed off all the work O’Malley has put into the Hemi truck. The fit of the Hemi in the engine bay looks factory. The layout of the PCM, coolant bottles, wiring harness, and brake lines add to the clean, well-thought-out engine bay. Although some components are a snug fit, everything appears to be accessible if service happens to be necessary.
Above Left: The HellKota sports Toyo TQ race tires on all four corners. The Toyo tires wrap Viper wheels. All four wheels are the size of a Viper front wheel. Above Right: Just before the Carlisle event, John O’Malley installed graphics on the doors, the tailgate, and the front and rear glass.
Since our last installment about the project, the HellKota has received a complete brake upgrade. The rear disc brakes are from SSBC, and O’Malley painted them red to match the front Brembo Viper calipers. On the front, O’Malley fabricated a 90° steel bracket to locate the calipers properly. The Viper emblems on the calipers were removed, and Brembo graphics were installed.
Above Left: The Hellcat 6.2-liter Hemi looks like it was factory installed in the engine bay. O’Malley took a great deal of time planning the layout of the engine bay. Above Right: For now, a Hellcat emblem (one per side) is affixed to the front fender between the side marker and the fender flare. On the passenger side, the emblem covered holes from the original V8 insignia. The driver-side fender was a replacement, and it did not have holes.
A set of Viper SRT 18×10.5” five-spoke wheels were selected to clear the calipers. The wheels fit correctly and without the requirement of any wheel spacers. The front upper and lower control arms needed some minor fabrication to clear the wheel lips, but the clearance was only necessary for the extreme ends of the jounce and rebound cycle. O’Malley chose super sticky Toy0 TQ street drag radial tires, and the installation of a pair of CalTrac bars will help plant the rear tires to the track.
Except for the door panels, the interior is nearly complete. The headliner was modified to accommodate the Charger’s overhead console. After the mods, the headliner was covered with new black fabric. Each sun visor and the a-pillar trim were dyed in black as well. Finally, the sound system’s speakers were installed in the dash and the doors. The DSL8 door speakers provided a quality bass sound comparable to the factory. While they may not win a sound-off event, the speakers will efficiently pump out the tunes over the screaming Hemi.
Above Left: The Hooker Blackheart headers are a tight fit, but each header snugs into place without interfering with the chassis or suspension components. With the Hemi head design, the headers are not a problem when the spark plugs need to be removed. Above Right: The interior of the HellKota is all Charger. Recently, O’Malley got the Hellcat factory radio operating. He installed dash and door speakers. The door panels are one of the few interior components that still need attention.
Just before the Chrysler Nationals, O’Malley installed a Moroso master battery cutoff switch on the B+ cable to break the charging circuit and cut the power to the electrical system during storage or if an emergency should occur. Additionally, O’Malley installed a 300-amp fuse in the B+ cable to protect the charge wire from the battery (located at the rear of the truck) to the engine bay.
Due to an aged appearance, a new LED 3rd brake/cargo light was installed. In addition, a shark fin was fitted and sealed to the roof of the HellKota, providing access to the SRT Pages software. The 3rd brake light and shark fin were wired into the wiring harness from the donor Charger. Lastly, HellKota badging was added to each door, and a Hellcat emblem was placed in front of each front-wheel opening.
Above Left: The HellKota has a Moroso master cutoff push/pull switch installed (right of license plate). The cutoff and a 300-amp fuse in the B+ wire were added for safety. Above Right: The HellKota still needs a rear differential update, a few interior and engine bay additions, but the project is close to completion.
We had a brief opportunity to speak with O’Malley, and we found he was down to earth and easy-going (just like his YouTube videos). He is talented, and when he does not know how to do something, he does extensive research. He also has a quality network to tap into when he needs assistance.
As far as the HellKota, it needs door panels, and a resolution is necessary for the inoperative speedometer. The stock rear end will also need attention before any severe thrashing can begin. To keep up with the latest updates and planned appearances of the HellKota, check out the Boosted Motorsports YouTube page.