Running A ProCharger On A Top Fuel Nitromethane Engine

Running A ProCharger On A Top Fuel Nitromethane Engine

When it comes to the pinnacle of drag racing, there is one thing that separates the top two classes from the rest (Top Fuel Dragster and Funny Car), and it’s right in the name of those classes — the fuel. Nitromethane is the fuel of legends. Not only because it has powered some of the quickest and fastest humans on the planet (legends in and of themselves), but because of its dangerous and storied history, which is an article all its own. One thing that might surprise you, is that over the past sixty years, the engine combinations powering these insanely fast vehicles have remained largely unchanged. However, the team at ProCharger is exploring the opportunity to change.

Now, let’s start this off with the current reality up front: this article is largely a “what if” look at allowing a new power-adder in a pair of classes steeped in history. However, the team at ProCharger has put more than just a few hours of brainstorming and back-of-napkin calculations into the idea. A centrifugally supercharged Top Fuel entry is something they genuinely want to see happen. After reading this article, hopefully, you’ll agree that it certainly seems like a feasible idea.

The ProCharger F-4X-series of centrifugal superchargers are able to move enough air to match, if not exceed the airflow needs of a current nitro Hemi engine.

“This is as much of an engineering exercise as anything,” says Kyle Fickler, ProCharger’s Director of Business Development. “We have done a lot of work on the engineering and airflow side of it. We’ve had discussions with some NHRA parties and Nitro Chaos parties about their interest in the concept, and then there are the mad scientists, who are really interested in it.”

A ProCharger on a Top Fuel car isn’t as out-in-left-field of an idea as you might be thinking, as ProCharger has record-holding experience in Nitro classes already, explains Walt Sipp, Director of Service and Motorsports at ProCharger. “It’s not exactly the same, but we’ve done some work with mechanical injection on the Top Fuel Harley side,” Sipp says. “There are a couple of guys who run a ProCharger in the Nitro Harley world, and no one has been quicker than a ProCharger. So, we have had some success with Nitromethane, holding the record in NHRA Top Fuel Harley and the overall record in the Top Fuel Harley world.”

Can A ProCharger Keep Up In Top Fuel?

The first real question we had when discussing all of this with the ProCharger team was…

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