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· Registered
1 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Good day,

New guy here and need some advice. I hope this is the correct forum for my questions. Skip to the last paragraph for the meat and potatoes of my question. The rest is more or less me talking it through, lol.

I'm swapping a 5.7 from a 2017 ram into an 85 D150 short bed. I intend to use an 8 speed trans as well, and will be using Sound German Automotive to control the trans.

I'm having one helluva time deciding on engine management for this thing. Russell with SGA builds a strong case for using a Mopar crate kit with his trans kit. Reading the interwebs tells me the Holley kit is just so much more capable, especially once you start throwing boost, nitrous, etc at the engine. Most everything I read is LS related though so I thought I would join here and get opinions from Hemi people! I'm currently reading through the HPtuners thread here but wanted to get opinions specific to my scenario.

I can't afford to buy things twice so it's important I make the right choice the first time for this build ( which will eventually get a turbo and cam ). Some things to consider. Cost of the Holley kit with DBW and VVT / SRV control with appropriate harnesses is about $2K. Will probably have another $500 of parts needed such as throttle pedal, and possibly a different alternator setup ( not sure on the alternator but sounds like OEM unit doesn't play nice with Holley harness, still researching ). So all in I'll probably be looking close to $2500 with the Holley setup.

Cost of the Mopar kit is roughly $1650 + $250 for some tuning to make the 8 speed play nice = $1900. I could buy an HPtuners unit for about $400 + $100 for credits for tuning the engine side of things. So I'll be roughly $2400 in going this direction.

So now to the actual question for you guys now that I've done the red neck math for the components to get my truck running and driving... Would you prefer to use Holley or HP Tuners for future tuning needs as you add cam, boost, or whatever else?

Thanks in advance

· Administrator
18,195 Posts
Hp tuners works very well for a factory type configuration. Being that it’s going to be a swapped truck motor and trans I would think the full standalone would be the way to go. I am in the middle of a drag truck build and going full stand alone and holly myself.

· Registered
2004 GTX
109 Posts
I've had great success with Holley, OEM , Haltech and AEM Infinity ... I'm almost out on an Island with my preference of the 05(06-08) oem ECU with HPtuners,.......all have their advantages,...but If you know right here and right now that BIG boost #s and "daily driving" is your go to addiction .... Holley is your better choice, since you are working with an 85ram, Emissions will most likely never be an issue( I know you can't trust the feds not to screw with things)

The Mopar Crate is very friendly with SGE's system, the only people I've heard of having an issue are usually the pre 09 ECU people , and it's 90% communication
Mopar's Crate set up is based on the 2014 engine management program and algorithms, and the 8sp programing is in there....deep,deep,deep in there. We did a few 2014 RFE to 8sp swaps back in 2014/2016 and all we did was crack in to the code(my 2nd oldest kid worked for DCX/FCA and was one of the programmers who worked on the engine management side.)

If your end goal is Cruise night, Na a little N.O.S here and there go for broke , or maybe 10-14lbs boost, week end toy.....Go Mopar Crate system, less communication issues, plenty of tuning experience out there for the Mopar setup...Anyone who has a good 2014 tune with your future choice of cam is a 90% shoe in.....the phrase Every tune is different every vehicle is different takes on a new meaning with Holley and AEM , while Mopar crate/HPtuners is more on point with 90% of what's on the "road"......that's not to say as more people use the Holley set up the "free tunes/help me I can't get it going" will be more common gearhead friendly.

I run my 700+HP NA 468 on the 04 ECU with HPtuners, My 426CI G3 in my 66 dart runs an AEM infinity, I've run both on the Holley , the 04 didn't run any better, the 66 picked up .25 in the quarter with the AEM over the Holley.

Now My opinion and a lot of it is based on Boost or lack of, under 14(highside16) go mopar crate if you plan on driving more than "racing", now 14(lowside16)lbs Boost , Holley is easier to tame, especially if you want to use a 3bar Map and lock out the Cam.

now the option you haven't mentioned is a ECU out of a 2011-2014 Challenger/Charger/Jeep/anything with a Hemi.......advantage there is, if you get a good grasp on how the NNtuning part of the ECU works, you will not beat the fuel mileage/HP with the Holley setup, Benny's 82 Mirada with a SRT392 Crate engine and a 2013 Gpec controller gets 18-20 around town, 24-28 on the turn pike, lays down close to high 490 rwhp, with the Holley, his best around town was 16, turnpike was 19-20.

If (God forbid) here in the lower 48 states the EPA gets it's way and EVEYTHING post 1975 needs emissions now mater the yearly mileage , the Mopar Crate will qualify, Holley, Haltach, AEM never will.
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