The SEMA Show is a place for manufacturers, builders, and parts peddlers to show off their wares. Many of them choose to showcase their newest and most popular offerings installed in a car. The prolific purveyors of PSI, Procharger, sought to do just that by bringing with them, a beast of a build. Unfortunately, a would-be Randall Raines had other plans for the 6.4-liter Procharged Challenger.
By now you might’ve heard the Quintin Brothers-built Challenger was stolen, taken on a high-speed pursuit, and then used as a battering ram. But, so far it has all been third-party accounts of what happened, and we wanted to get to the bottom of it for ourselves.
It was rough, but we managed to squeeze between the droves of people crowding to see the smashed-up Dodge and grab an interview with Procharger CEO, Ken Jones. Ken shed some light on just what happened and how they were able to recover the Challenger in time for the show.
In Ken’s own words, “It’s an incredible story. We’re just fortunate the timing worked out and we were able to keep it in the booth. It was stolen last Wednesday and recovered on Thursday, but we didn’t know when it was going to be released from police custody, or if it was even going to be an option to have it at the show. We didn’t even know how bad the damage was. So, to have it where the damage tells a story, but in good enough shape that it could be shown, was fortunate.”
“The biggest thing for us was nobody got hurt. You know, if you add 200 horsepower to a stock Challenger, making 700 horsepower, it’s going to be tough for the police to run down, but they did a heck of a job catching the guy, and ensuring nobody got hurt.”
It really is incredible the car was in good enough shape to be shown. It had one of the biggest responses of the entire show. As Ken mentioned to us, they were able to make lemonade out of lemons, because from a poor situation arose a great response. We seriously had a tough time getting through the crowd of people just to speak with Ken.
There’s no wondering why, either. The Challenger carried a striking presence in the booth, with the smashed frontend and caution tape draped around it. We asked Ken what the plans are as far as restoring the car, and he told us “The owner had planned on attending the show and seeing the car for the first time, but when he got the news, he canceled his trip.”
“Before the show, the Quintin Brothers were ready to load it on the trailer and take it back to Vermont when we said, ‘hey listen, not so fast.’ And the Las Vegas Police were promoting this too. Like, they [The Quintin Brothers] worked hard to build this car, and yeah, it’s wrecked, but it’s not totaled, can we still show this thing?”
“I’m glad we decided to bring it. The owner said with the story behind it, he really wants to have it restored, but he doesn’t want to see it before it’s done.”
After all, the whole reason the Quintin Brothers Challenger was scheduled to be in the booth, to begin with, was to showcase a whole bevy of serious upgrades, including Procharger’s 50-state legal kit. The kit, as the name describes, is 50-state emissions legal and available for a wide array of vehicles.
“The dash showed a top speed of 153mph, I’m told.” -Ken Jones (Procharger CEO)
The kit can be had in a few variations, but the one the Challenger is sporting happens to include an HO-intercooler, taking Dodge’s pony car above the 700hp mark. It sounds like it was more than enough to get the thief into trouble because according to Ken, he had no problem opening it up on the streets of Las Vegas.
“The thief initially stole the trailer, but when he opened up the back, he decided the Challenger would be more fun to drive than the dually pulling it. I guess he was right because the dash showed a top speed of 153mph, I’m told.”
If that has you wondering more about the 50-state legal kit, you can find out more information on Procharger’s website, here.