I feel confident saying that the Toyota Prius is the most universally disliked car among car enthusiasts and non-car enthusiasts alike. Fundamentally, the Prius does what it sets out to do but, like everything else, it’s not perfect. Earlier this year, a Prius found itself on a drag strip during Dodge’s Roadkill Nights in Michigan.
The Prius went head-to-head with a Dodge Demon and it was not laughed off the track as you would expect. Instead, the Prius left the Demon in the dust.
The American Racing Headers team out of Long Island, saw room for improvement when it came to the Prius power plant. Consequently, the Prius received a Hellcat engine tuned to make 1000 horsepower. The Prius’ factory transmission was swapped for a six-speed manual, and the car makes use of a custom double frame-rail chassis.
“So why on earth would we do this?” said ARH of the PriuSRT8, “Well because we can, and of course we thought we’d poke a little fun at what compels people to drive these turds in the first place.”
Underneath the most ironically decorated stock Prius body, ARH added a 4.5-liter Whipple supercharger to the Hellcat engine to receive a four-figure power output. Power is sent from the transmission through a carbon fiber driveshaft back to a custom Ford nine-inch rear axle. Additional highlights include a redesigned suspension, and the vehicle received bigger brakes from Wilwood.
Inside, the backseat has been ditched to make room for the full cage and fuel cell. The rest of the interior is surprisingly complete for a drag car; the custom dash is wrapped in leather, it has carpet on the floor, and the bucket seats look decent.
Since its SEMA 2017 debut, PriuSRT8 has been seen on Jay Leno’s Garage and dominating various drag strips where it has blasted through the quarter mile in 9.38 seconds at 147 mph. To add context, it’s a few tenths of a second faster than the Challenger Demon, Dodge’s purpose-designed drag racer it went head to head with, and more than a second faster than a bone-stock Challenger Hellcat from which the engine is derived from.