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2006 Evolution Warthog - 2008 Top Truck Challenge Finalist

Posted in Project Vehicles on November 1, 2008
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The amount of custom fabrication on Clayton's rig is mind-boggling, from the custom spherical rod ends on all link bars, to the custom caging for the engine and transfer case, to the Clayton-fabbed 20-inch beadlocks holding the 54-inch (non-fabbed) TSL Boggers. When the big Intercos fail to keep moving, a trio of Warn winches are on call for extractions-a pair of M8000s and an 8274.

It's a good thing we stopped handing out an Engineering Trophy at Top Truck a few years back. After looking at Clayton Kraatz's all-original Evolution Warthog for the first time last year, we'd have probably had to retire the award for good afterwards. An alternate at Top Truck 2007, Clayton was voted in by our readers this year, and while much of his rig returns unchanged, he's embellished the drivetrain with a heavy-duty trick or two for TTC '08. Read on.

Owner name/city: Clayton Kraatz/Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Occupation: Owner/fabricator, Evolution Machine
Vehicle model: 2006 Evolution Warthog
Estimated value: $200,000
Engine/aspiration: 467ci Chevy stroker V-8, bored 0.060 over, Comp cam, Keith Black Hyper pistons, Manley valves, Comp Cams .540/232 flat-tappet cam, Pro Magnet valve springs, Impco 425x2 propane injection, Edelbrock intake manifold, custom headers; balanced and "sort of" blueprinted
Transmission(s): JW Transmissions Powerglide, Casale marine V-drive
Transfer case: STaK three-speed
Suspension (f/r): Four-link, 26-inch Knight Stalker shocks/Four-link, 26-inch Knight Stalker shocks
Axles (f/r): 7-ton ITL SD-70/5-ton ITL SD-50; 5:1 hub reduction gears; Wilwood calipers, custom rotors; full hydro steering
Axle ratio: 35:1
Wheels: Evolution beadlocks
Tires: 54-inch Super Swamper Boggers

The propane-injected 468ci Mark IV big-block sits high and dry behind the cockpit and connected to a JW Transmissions Powerglide two-speed via a Casale marine V-drive. The balanced and "sort of" blueprinted block sports a Comp 540/332 flat-tappet camshaft. Induction comes from a pair of Impco 425s and an Edelbrock Street Ram intake, and a custom exhaust handles spent gases. A Crane Hi-6 ignition control, Mallory high-fire backup, dual 140-amp alternators, and a Mopar six-pack battery all do their part to create and control spark. Clayton claims "dyno-proven" results of 504 hp and 524 lb-ft of torque for the assembly, and we have no reason to doubt it.

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