It was less than a month ago that we introduced you to Nelson Racing Engine’s absolutely bonkers 1600HP 572ci twin-turbo Hemi. Regardless of the 4-digit horsepower number, the NRE Hemi is surprisingly street-worthy thanks to tireless hours spent testing and tuning the twin-turbo, multi-point injection setup. Likewise, we also recently walked you through all of the various incarnations of Dom Torreto’s ’70 Dodge Charger, the last of which (featured in this summer’s seventh “Fast & Furious film) was a bare-naked ’68 Charger. So what’s the connection? That Charger’s name is “Maximus” and that all-aluminum 572 is sitting beneath its hood.
At first glance, the ’68 Charger doesn’t look terribly modified apart from clearly some expanded wheel tubs and a roll cage. But that’s where you’d be wrong. The whole car has been expanded 6-inches in total width. Of course the bumpers have been carefully trimmed and reshaped to fit the fenders better, the seamlines have all vanished, the rear valance flawlessly marries into the quarters and decklid, and so on. Inside the engine compartment is entirely unique to Maximus. Gone is the unibody front clip, K-member, torsion bar suspension, factory firewall and so forth. The hood forgoes the factory scallops and instead incorporates the familiar cowl bulge of a ’70 Road Runner.
The crew at NRE dedicated over 2,000-plus-hours to blend this seamless machine into one flawless piece. “I have to give credit to my crew,” Nelson said. “I have rounded up some of the very best metal craftsman in the country to work on this car.” With comically oversized 9.4L Hemi producing 2,000 horsepower, Maximus is (theoretically) capable of 0-60 in about 2-seconds flat and an 8-second ¼-mile pass. Although early NASCAR racers found the second-generation’s speed threshold at about 160mph, Nelson vows a potential 200mph in its current form (and up to 260mph with the planned aero package).
Until Nelson can prove it, we’ll just have to check out what we’ve got thus far.