Let’s start out by saying that Matt Farah (@thesmokingtire) probably has one of the coolest jobs out there. In this video of Tuned, he gets to drive Adam Auerbach’s GMC Syclone Hillclimber dubbed the Psycho Syclone for good reason.
The GMC Syclone is a sweet truck from the factory and most owners leave them stock [appearing -Ed.]. That’s not the case here with this nasty Syclone that’s built to put down 500 horsepower down to all four wheels. Everything on the Sy’ is custom-made because parts that turn a Syclone into a race car, err, truck aren’t exactly abundant.
“I wanted to keep the basic fundamental V6 concept. I wanted to keep it Syclone. I did not want to do the typical LS V8, even though its very encouraging to do so with the technology of the LS motor. I wanted to enhance it so it ran better than it did from the factory. I wanted to keep it to its roots,” Adam says.
Adam has been fascinated with the turbo six-cylinder ever since the ’80s when his friend introduced him to his Buick GN. After the GMC Syclones came out in ’91, he had to get his own. Now, this truck is downright insane.
The truck features a GM stroked-out aluminum 4.3 Bowtie V6 wet sump block with a 4.8L displacement with a 4″ bore and 3.75″ stroke, 9.5:1 compression, sheet metal intake, giant Precision CAE 6766 ball bearing ceramic turbo with billet wheel, full sequential ignition, 1100 cc Bosch Racing injectors, and the factory auto has been swapped to a manual transmission.
Also, the radiator has been moved to the back to make more room in the engine compartment as well as to shift more weight to the rear for better handling and balance. It also includes a Holley EFI engine management system with self tuning, Ohlins coilovers, Tokico springs, custom chromoly tubular A-arms, and runs on E85. Adam installed everything besides all of the major fabrication.
“It’s almost impossible to make this thing handle like a Corvette, but I’m trying to do it,” says Adam. Farah calls the truck “brilliant” and we concur.
The wing and front splitter are both removable for street use, but it doesn’t see much of that. It was built for racing. With massive torque, the truck competes in SCCA time trials and the Virginia City Hillclimbs. Adam also plans to run it in the Silver State Classic.
During the episode of /Tuned, Farah was vigorously testing the truck when it lost a bolt sending coolant everywhere. That’s a common thing during episodes as these cars are pushed to the limit, especially extreme builds. They weren’t able to finish the episode, but Tuned caught back up with Adam and the truck has been fixed. He also added new headers, a bigger wastegate, and fresh plugs for the coolant. Right after this video was shot the Syclone ran a 10.3 at 132 mph in the quarter-mile, and set up to run in the 2014 Spectre 341 Challenge. Here we are a year later, and the truck is just as impressive now as it was back then. We might just have to touch base with Adam for an update.
Amie became a fan of fine machinery as a kid thanks to her dad; a pilot and professional skydiver, and was always there to help tinker around on Cessnas and old Chevys. Amie has been writing in the automotive field for years on all makes and models.