STUART Reimann is a perfectionist and all-round good bloke whose upbringing had equal doses of hot roddin’ and truckin’. That’s left Stu with a healthy love of both disciplines, culminating in his current build – a blown and turboed Detroit Diesel-powered ’40 Ford pick-up.

This sure isn’t your usual combo, what inspired you to do it?

Dad had an 8V92 Detroit Diesel-powered Kenworth truck when I was young. I always loved it, especially the sound of the motor.

When I started driving trucks myself that really cemented it, so I looked up forums in the States where people were doing this sort of thing.

What’s the motor?

It’s a 4-53T Detroit Diesel, which is a four-cylinder two-stroke. The air goes into the turbo, then the supercharger before entering the motor. They’re known as a Screaming Jimmy [Jimmy is trucker talk for GM] as they sound like they’re revving really high, but they’re not. Mine is governed to only 2600rpm. I reckon it’s one of the bestsounding engines and it’s really unique.

What sort of power does it make?

Originally they were 180hp, but we’ve added bigger injectors and got it to 200hp at 450ft-lb of torque. At 212ci that means it’s about one horsepower per cube, which is pretty cool.

Was it easy to come by?

Nah, it took over a year to find one and when I did it was sitting in the weather, waterlogged.

Dad and I refurbished the parts, and then Mark at Havelberg Diesel Services replaced everything that was missing and got it all running. Overall it took about three years.

Will it fit in the engine bay?

Yeah, with a bit of modification, but we’ll get there. It’s got a C&W Components chassis and a Rod-Tech independent front end, which will help with the 500kg motor. A big part was the gearing given its low top end, so I’m going with a Tremec T56, and a modified nine-inch with 3.73 gears and 31-spline axles to take the torque.

Had the ’40 for long?

I bought it when I was 15 for $700 as just a cab – that was 15 years ago. Through a bit of hunting I found most of the other panels in the Barossa, with only a couple of aftermarket parts.

I then picked up a genuine XB GS four-door for $500 just to wreck it and rob its 351ci and nine-inch to put in the ’40. It wasn’t until a little later I decided to go with the 4-53T instead.

My brother Matty reckons the 351 is now his after helping me for about 10 minutes on my car – it’s a sore point, ha ha!

How will the pick-up be finished off?

It’ll have a traditional vibe, with cream steelies and whitewalls with 500s up front and 700s at the back. I’ll finish it in a dark metallic blue duco. To keep it clean and simple the body will be unmodified, and bumper-less, with the only chrome being the grille and headlight surrounds.

What does the family think?

My dad, mum and brother all have hot rods, and my beautiful wife Lexi can’t wait for me to finish the ’40 so we can build her a traditional A-model sedan. s TO WATCH (and hear!) Stuart’s Screaming Jimmy fire up, visit and search ‘Detroit Diesel.’