Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep news from Allpar

Pete Hagenbuch, Chrysler engineer

Charles “Pete” Hagenbuch, who once headed Chrysler’s production engine performance tuning and has worked on many of the company’s most famous engines, died this morning.

Pete graduated from West Virginia University in 1956, and earned an MAE degree from the Chrysler Institute of Engineering in 1958. He worked on the  the 426 Hemi, the B/RB-series big blocks, the LA small blocks, the 2.2 turbos, and even the Australian Hemi Six.

In retirement, Pete was friendly and approachable, and volunteered a good deal of his time at the Walter P. Chrysler Museum in Auburn Hills. He participated in a two part interview with Allpar, and answered more questions by email later. He is survived by his wife, Ann, by his children, Cathy, Peter, and Daniel, and by nine grand-children and one great-grandchild.

Services will be held on Saturday at 3:30 pm at the University Presbyterian Church in Rochester Hills, Michigan. In lieu of flowers, Ann Hagenbuch requested that people donate to the Walter P. Chrysler Museum.

Dyno operator Ed Poplawski wrote, “Pete was a great guy to work for…Pete was very hands on involved in all phases of the testing. He always had a plan in place and you knew where you stood with him. He made a point to make sure all our equipment was running and backed me up if any problems came up.”

Burke Brown, who was in charge of the original LX cars’ development, wrote, “I would call him the consummate absolute role model of the dyno development performance engineer. He was all about running the dyno, getting really good data, sitting down and looking at that data, he understood all that stuff really well.”

While with Chrysler, he gained some fame as a slot car builder, and is to be featured soon in a book on the subject.

With the Detroit Auto Show over, it may be worth some time to look at one of the men who made yesterday’s and today’s Mopars possible.

Does Enders-Stevens strategy open the door for Johnson?

NHRA-Johnson-Enders-Web

NHRA Pro Stock points leader Erica Enders-Stevens didn’t race at Sonoma and she won’t be competing at the Northwest Nationals in Seattle. Elite Motorsports owner Richard Freeman two-event “holiday” at the Mile-High Nationals in Denver. Despite her very impressive racing resume, Enders-Stevens lacks a real sponsor and it’s likely this was a major consideration, especially since she had built up a 241-point lead over Allen Johnson, who is second in the point standings, at the end of the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio....

Coughlin clinches Countdown berth in Sonoma

NHRA-Johnson-Coughlin-Countdown-Web

Jeg Coughlin Jr. became the second Mopar driver to clinch a spot in the six-race Countdown to the Championship that will determine the Mello Yello NHRA Pro Stock world championship. Coughlin joined teammate Allen Johnson in the Countdown after making it to the Pro Stock semifinals in the NHRA Sonoma Nationals that ran this weekend at Sonoma Raceway....

Johnson Clinches Countdown berth in Sonoma

NHRA-Beckman-Sonoma-Web

Allen Johnson has secured his place in the Pro Stock Countdown to the Championship, the six-event series the determines the World Championships of drag racing. Johnson joins Erica Enders-Stevens, who clinched her spot last weekend. Participation is limited to the top ten drivers in each pro class. There were three different top qualifiers in Pro Stock: Johnson had the No....

Steckly scores in National 250

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Three-time series champion Scott Steckly earned his first win of the 2014 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series season Saturday in the National 250 at the Autodrome St. Eustache in St. Eustache, Quebec. Starting from the No. 2 spot, Steckly dominated the race in the No. 22 Canadian Tire/Sylvania Dodge, leading for 202 of the 250 laps and beating Alex Guenette and the No....

Categories: Chrysler, Technology.


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