Pearl Blue 2015 Dodge Charger SRT 392
Way back in the early 2000s, Rob Barkley co-started Vivid Racing straight out of college. What started as two guys selling wireless phones and accessories out of a fraternity house had morphed into pursuing their true love: fast custom cars. They started with Subaru upgrades and by 2002 their first project car, Subaru WRX I, brought them to fame that year. Print mag features ensued; with them came tremendous growth. By `05 Vivid Racing was making and selling their own parts, partnering with major media outlets, and just generally kicking ass and taking names. Success moved almost as fast as their cars and continues year after year.
Obviously, with so many aspects of Vivid Racing skyrocketing, they branched out beyond selling aftermarket parts for the Subaru crowd. Between all of their acquisitions and in-house manufacturing, they make or carry parts for all kinds of automotive conveyances. Like, say, Rob's 2015 Dodge Charger SRT 392 you're ogling right now.
After selling his 600hp Subaru, Rob took a little break from cars. When he decided to get back into it, though, he faced a wall that lots of us come up against when getting a new car or truck: indecision. "I couldn’t decide what I wanted next," he told us.
"I went back and forth between a Ford Raptor and a Mercedes C63 AMG. At the time I was co-owner of RaceWars Arizona and I wanted something fast that I could run down the runways at our events."
Neither of which is a Dodge Charger, however. As also often happens when car hunting, the path veered off when he least expected it and he ended up going off-plan instead. "My wife and I were on our way to look at a C63 when I saw a Charger and the exhaust notes just had me," Rob continued. "My wife said 'Why not a Charger? You’ve always liked them, and from there I set out to find the perfect one."
Finding just the right Dodge Charger didn't prove to be easy. Rob Barkley had a certain set of specs in mind. "I ended up ordering from Larry Miller Avondale to my specifications since I couldn’t find one in Arizona, New Mexico or Nevada on a lot." A month after Rob ordered it, he brought it home and immediately started the changes.
Hard Chargin' Charger
And oh what changes were made. Rob's Charger is a pretty far cry from the stocker he bought at the dealership. Open up the hood and you'll find a Magnuson Supercharger TVS2300 and MMX drop-in forged pistons, for starters. A Mopar cold air intake teamed with Fuel Injector Connection 1000cc injectors pulls in all the mixture he wants while American Racing 2x3-inch Long Tube Headers with 3-inch Catless mid-pipes and Thermal R&D Cat-Back exhaust expel the spent gasses. He even color matched with blue anodized parts like the Billet Technology oil catch can. HP Tuners and Arizona Elite Motorsports tuned the whole powerplant to perfection.
The Charger doesn't lack for handling, either. It packs an Airlift 3P management system that runs two 2 black Viair 480C compressors with a five-gallon tank. Rob brought Hotchkis front and rear performance sway bars into the mix, too. Voodoo13 billet front and rear upper control arms with adjustable end links round out the sweet new suspension package.
On the wheel side, Rob Barkley bolted up a set of Variant Wheels Sixty61 Series Corsa Collection MNZ-3P's (20×10-inch fronts, 20×11-inch rear). With centers finished in Satin Black, polished lips, and Blood Red hardware, they sexify an already hot car. All four are swathed in Nitto NT555 G2 tires (275/40/20 front with 315/35/20 rear).
"You can't beat the traction and handling on those Nitto NTT555 G2's," Rob tells us. "And I can run them on the street or the track knowing they'll handle whatever I throw at them." Up front the car relies on Brembo 6-piston calipers with slotted rotors and Powerstop Z23 pads to check all of that hot new power. A similar setup with Brembo 4-piston calipers reins in rear wheels as needed.
Speaking of control, the Charger's cockpit has its share of upgrades, too. Rob commands his Charger while cradled in black Napa leather. He's also swapped in a Speedlogix dual gauge pillar pod, Innovate Motorsports boost gauge and dual wideband air/fuel gauge, and a Vivid Racing custom forged carbon/suede steering wheel.
For as involved as all of the above is, perhaps the exterior gave Rob the most trouble. "The car has had four different wrap jobs over five years and six different sets of wheels," he says. Right now it rocks B5 Blue Pearl with Satin Black vinyl from front to back, with custom designed ghost stripes by Arnan Customs. Rob also added in a LED lit SRT Emblem by XLume to the grille. That front splitter and side skirts aren't stock issue, either. He gave Gorilla Splitter the nod for both. Out back, you'll find a carbon fiber rear diffuser by Black Ops Autoworks, too.
You could go on and on listing all of the details that went into a very elaborate Dodge Charger. But in the end Rob summed it up very simply: "I have finally found the perfect look and this will be the final look for the car before I start a new build."