Drag racing is an American tradition. Every weekend, drag racing enthusiasts hit the track to watch their favorite trucks try and outdo each other. The drag racing arena is full of diesel fumes and testosterone, but aficionados love it.
When it comes to drag racing, any vehicle will do, but trucks and pickup trucks are a popular choice. To be fast, a truck needs to be lightweight with most of the weight towards the rear. Rear-wheel drive trucks are your best bet if you want to build a modified drag racing truck. You also need a decent turbo powered engine – Cummins customized engines are a safe bet, as they have excellent torque. Blacksmokemedia.com has some great videos of drag trucks if you want to see how powerful a Cummins engine is in action.
The cheapest way to get into truck drag racing is by investing in a cheap truck and doing the modifications yourself. Here is our list of the top three drag trucks available to buy for less than $15k. The extra mods will cost you, but if you can do most of the work yourself, it should save you a packet.
Chevy S-10 Ranger
The compact S-10 pickup truck is a popular choice for drag racing. It is lightweight and easy to customize thanks to unlimited spare parts. There is also plenty of room under the hood if you want to do some engine mods. The only major disadvantage with an S-10 is that the weight distribution is less than ideal. However, you can soon sort this out by extending the wheelbase and creating a better 50:50 weight distribution.
Ford Lightning V-10
Ford pickup trucks are readily available and there are millions of them for sale on the second-hand market. You can also pick up spare parts without too much bother. A Ford Lightning with a V-10 engine is a great place to start if you want to try track racing. Some minor modifications such as street drag tires and a new transmission that can withstand up to 1,000HP will make the truck more robust on the track. As long as you don’t make your mods too extreme, you can carry on using your Ford pickup truck in everyday life.
Dodge RAM SRT-10
Dodge RAM SRT-10 pickup trucks are very common on drag racing circuits. Chances are, if you are new to drag racing, you will come across a lot of trusty Dodges over time. Get rid of the excess weight by removing the tailgate, jack, spare tire, etc. Stick some aluminum wheels and drag racing tires on to gain a few seconds. A new exhaust and nitro kit will also help your Dodge pickup truck gain valuable speed on the drag racing track. A nitrous express kit 150hp should help you crack the 12-second quarter-mile mark.
If you’re new to drag racing and you want some advice, hang out on a few drag racing forums and ask the experts for advice. Most drag racing enthusiasts are always happy to help out newbies.