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Rarely do we come across a truck imbued with so much mystery and uncertainty. Here is a snapshot of a dually that’s especially popular among custom Dodge truck fanatics—hell, anyone with a palate for slammed pickups in general couldn’t argue how unbelievably wicked this particular ’04 Ram is. It has been dubbed the SRT-666 for obvious reasons, and while the truck has been around the scene for some time now, we believe it was in its prime as it’s depicted here on these pages. 

The truck first started to gain notoriety in the late 2000s, but it had a completely different look back then. It was built in Texas by Chris Dybala. It was mostly gray with orange and yellow flames on the frontend and had a unique appeal to it. It was still a pretty sweet truck, as it was freshly ‘bagged on 24-inch Alcoa wheels and had the SRT-10 frontend swap and reworked rear bumper. After it was painted black though, it didn’t register to a lot of truck enthusiasts that it was, indeed, the same exact truck. The Dodge just had a sinister appearance, and had begun to carry a certain air of mysticism to it.

A notable drift racing New Zealander by the name of “Mad” Mike Whiddett came to the States for a two-season tour and was looking for a custom tow pig to haul essential goods as he made his rounds across America. Nobody is sure how he found the truck, but this is when he picked up the flame-adorned Ram and changed the paint to pure black, as well as adding a few of his own custom personal touches to it. Long story short, Mike did his thing with the Dodge, and when it came time for him to return back home, his killer Ram truck was denied entry into New Zealand due to the country’s vehicle import codes. This is when things started to get interesting.

Mike listed the truck for sale in the States while he was in back home in New Zealand. Many tried to contact him with inquiries about taking a look at the truck, but they had no luck. There were so many eyes on the Dodge, and online forums were abuzz with mounting questions about any info on who the heck the guy from New Zealand was and where in the States was the truck actually located. Rick Lamberti of Bloomington, Illinois, was just one of those in hot pursuit for any leads as to the whereabouts of the Ram. He must have been one of the most persistent potential buyers in the crowd, too, because once he got his foot in the door with “Mad” Mike, he didn’t let the door of opportunity slam closed in his face.

The 24-inch Alcoa wheels completes the heavy-duty appeal of the SRT-666.

“At first, I thought the whole deal was sketchy,” Rick admits. “When I was given an international number to call in order to speak to the owner, I had to check to see if my phone service even included access to making out-of-country calls. I ended up having to get a pre-paid calling card to dial Mike just to get more info on his truck.”

With making the call being only half of the battle, Rick was then faced the time zone problem. Not sure what time of day to call, phone tag and voice messages became the norm as Rick pieced information together, bit by bit, to figure out if this whole ordeal was worth sticking out to see whether it was even legit.

The 5-inch exhaust system and the customized SRT-10 rear bumper make for a factory-looking personalization.

“I had found out from Mike that the truck was parked in his friend’s backyard in Riverside, California, and that I was not to contact that person directly for some reason,” Rick adds. “After four and half months of going back and forth with Mike and making a few trips to the bank to see if I could qualify for the loan on the truck, I was finally given the OK to talk directly to the guy in California who was holding the truck. I had to wait until the deal sounded real enough for me to want to book the flight to somewhere I’ve never been to trust someone I’ve never met with a deal I was almost certain would turn out bad—but there was enough hope of it working out to take the chance.”

Rick gambled big on the transaction and finally found himself standing in front of the mythical object of his desire that he had been chasing for so long. Now, the truck didn’t look as great as he had hoped based on the photos he had seen online. It had been left outdoors since the last time it ran—nearly a year or so before this point.

“My friend who made the trip with me was in my ear telling me that he thought buying the truck might be a bad idea after all, especially since the plan was to rely on it to drive us all the way back home to Illinois,” Rick says.

Now might be a good time to note that Rick had never driven a ‘bagged vehicle before and was also feeling unsure about how reliable the truck would be on the long drive back. Buying the truck would leave him little financial cushion left to use in case a breakdown or other emergency during the return journey. Having come this far to see the truck in person, Rick rolled the dice and made the purchase. He familiarized himself with his new truck and all its quirks (it had a nitrogen tank air-ride setup back then), and he and his buddy made the long trek back without issue.

“Aside from running out of nitrogen on the Vegas strip and taking a little longer to get back than expected due to the out-of-calibration speedometer that locked our cruise control speed at 58mph instead of what we thought was 70, I had no complaints,” Rick says. “It really was the truck I was wanting it to be.”

Rick made the truck his own by first ditching the nitrogen tank and changing over to a more traditional air-ride system, replacing some suspension parts and fine tuning the twin turbo to spit out 630 rear wheel horsepower with 999 lb-ft of torque. He had his fun with the truck he had coveted so intensely for that period of time, but after the truck sat idle in his garage for a while, the time had come for Rick to release this big fish back into the pond for someone else to catch. The truck has since changed hands at least a couple more times, and the style of it has been altered to meet the taste of its subsequent owners, but here it is, captured for all time as the sinister looking SRT-666.

“I was tired of babying the truck and protecting it from getting damaged while parked at my house or out on the road,” Rick admits. “I enjoyed the time I had with the Ram, and my eyes were opened to just how large the custom truck scene is. It was great to be a part of, and I have the experience of buying this truck to always look back on.”

TRUCK SPECS

 Owner 

Rick Lamberti
’04 Dodge Ram 3500 SRT 666
Bloomington, Illinois 

Chassis & Suspensio

  • Slam Specialties RE8 ‘bags
  • ½-inch lines, ½-inch valves
  • Dual Viair air compressors
  • Custom control arms
  • New two-link bars built for the back
  • Custom notch

Wheels & Tires 

  • 24-inch Alcoa classic wheels

Engine & Performance 

  • 2004 Cummins 5.9L 6-cylinder
  • 600+hp, 999 lb-ft torque
  • Stock NV 5600 transmission
  • Stock rearend narrowed 6 inches
  • BD Super B twin turbo
  • 74 pounds boost
  • Banks intercooler
  • BD exhaust brake
  • South Bend dual disc clutch
  • TST programmer
  • EFI live
  • 5-inch exhaust system

Exterior & Paint

  • Factory black paint
  • SRT front clip, hood and reworked rear bumper
  • LazerLite low-profile aluminum tonneau cover

Interior & Sound 

  • Factory seats, black leather with gray suede
  • Suede headliner
  • Custom center console
  • Pioneer head unit
  • DD Audio 8-inch subwoofer
  • Merlin Series amp for highs and mids and subwoofer
  • Two 7-inch monitors in the headrests

 

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