SEMA 2016

SEMA 2016: Meet “Bootlegger,” Daystar’s 720HP 1941 Dodge Power Wagon

Daystar Bootlegger 1941 Dodge Power Wagon with 720 horsepower

Daystar wanted to build a truck in short order to go “whiskey & wheeling” on an episode of Xtreme 4×4.

So what better theme than a “bootlegger” truck?

“Bootlegger,” a 1941 Dodge Power Wagon, is not your ordinary SEMA build. It was built entirely by Daystar employees over a 50-day period, and introduced this morning at the 2016 SEMA Show. Its outside is adorned in beautiful copper bodywork, and it’s powered by an Edelbrock GM LS 416-cubic-inch E-Force Supercharged Crate Engine that makes 720 horsepower.

Summit Racing helped with the build, providing the engine, wiring, fuel lines, and more (check out the unique vehicle sponsors list etched into the truck’s fender in the photo gallery below).

Bootlegger also features a Hughes 4L80E transmission, wooden bed provided by Bed Wood, a Dakota Digital dash, and three layers of Dynamat in the interior, among many other parts. But the copper tends to get most of the attention.

“It actually wasn’t that hard to roll,” said Kelly Herring, Daystar’s regional sales manager. “We have a good guy in our shop that’s great with fab work.

“But it wasn’t cheap.”

Bootlegger’s air intake is made up of 4-inch, 90-degree solid copper bends. Each cost $100.

The Daystar crew finished Bootlegger in August, and immediately took it wheeling in the back woods of Tennessee. It participated in Xtreme Offroad Adventure 48 hours after it was finished, then made a trip to Alaska to explore its natural habitat. Finally, Bootlegger arrived at SEMA, where the public got the chance to see it for the first time today.

See more pictures of Bootlegger in our photo gallery below, and check out the video introducing the Bootlegger project to the world.


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  1. Why on earth would anyone put a Chevrolet engine & trans in a Dodge when Mopar has so many great choices for a powerplant? I like both marks, and I like the truck, but this drivetrain has me puzzled…

  2. I agree with so many Mopar options why use other manufactures. The finish is lousy and the copper tubing and bending should be more authentic it looks like a prefab material. I wonder if it can 4×4 without falling apart it looks fragile.

  3. I just started the restoration of an old power wagon and this truck is the best looking I have seen, I would like to know the tire size?

  4. The tires are 42 inch I believe.Chevy power train is great lots of power watch the video that truck rocks. Could of went Cummings or hemi who cares it’s a very cool truck.look for a red wc 12 dodge power wagon on the web another bad ass truck all Chevy drive train and frame

  5. David vincent says:

    Can someone build me one and get to me here in Australia I just love the old girls with modern gear in them

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