Sealy, Texas - They don’t do anything small in Texas, and few take that philosophy to heart quite as well as Hennessey Performance.
Known for working its magic on muscle cars and Raptor trucks, the Texan tuner recently turned its attention to Jeep’s Gladiator double cab bakkie and the result, as you might well have expected, is a Hellcat heart - and more.
Meet the Maximus 1000.
Yes, that’s 1000 horsepower, which translates to 745kW in metric speak, as well as maximum twisting force of 1265Nm, from a modified version of the 6.2-litre supercharged V8 engine otherwise found in the Dodge Challenger Hellcat.
Hennessey hasn’t gone into a great deal of detail about the engine tinkering, but the tuner does mention mods to the fuel and cooling systems as well as exhaust, wiring harness and ECU.
The tuner also threw in an upgraded off-road suspension system with 15cm lift kit as well as Hennessey 20-inch wheels with KD Off-Road tyres.
Just so folk don’t mistake it for an ordinary Gladiator, the Maximus 1000 gets unique front and rear bumpers too, as well as LED lights.
Cabin glamour comes in the form of custom leather upholstery with Hennessey and Maximus embroidery on the seats.
Of course, this one is for the US only, and a certain measure of exclusivity is ensured for Billy Bob and friends, with production limited to just 24 units at a cost of $200 000 (R2.9 million), which includes the base vehicle.
But what about that name?
As company founder (and self-confessed “horsepower evangelist”) John Hennessey puts it: “MAXIMUS 1000 - the name says exactly what it is: Badassery on 4-wheels.”