The Need for Speed

After passing a lazy Malibu, a short stretch of interstate opens up. A teasing token from the Gods of Gridlock and Crowded Highways.

I switch open the active exhaust. The beast takes the cue and growls dauntingly. A deep monstrous rumble, she’s impatient. It’s been too slow for too long. For her. For me.

My skin crawls with trepid elation, like the high-octane snake running through her veins.

At 70 MPH, I drop into third gear, increasing RPM to match her speed.

In appreciation of anticipation, I hesitate before punching it; a moment to relish the roar and reverberations of 526 horses snarling menacingly and ready to bust all-ass loose.


It’s game on.

Like a cat on the prowl, she hunkers down and blasts off with an explosive roar—all teeth and claws.

The creature’s alive with punishing Gs as she forces me firmly against the seat. My upper lip curls into a devious grin, 100 MPH and accelerating like the proverbial bat.

Vision narrows with a predator’s instinct.

Heart pounding to the pulse of her eight pistons spinning a flat-plane crank, and I’m giddy as all fucking hell.

A daring glance at the speedometer shows 120 MPH and climbing, swiftly.

8,250 RPM sees a quick stab into fourth gear.

Up ahead, the span closes rapidly.

Too rapidly.

But she’s hungry: 130, 135, 140 MPH (225 KPH), twice the legal speed limit, and still the rate of acceleration seems yet to diminish.

But, just that quick, in less time than it takes to read this post, she’s devoured the road. It’s over. I have to back her off.

Until another day.

Another day and maybe the Gods will shower their gratuity once more—but with a slightly longer stretch of the open road, and like this day, one without the highway patrol.

One can only pray.

NOCO Genius 2D

NOCO Genius 2D Onboard Battery Charger

She stables in the garage, wild and untamed, ready to bust out. But rarely allowed to flex her muscles, and never in wet or wintery weather. And because there’s a slight (but normal) parasitic draw of her electronics (somewhere around 25-40-milliamp), I installed the NOCO Genius 2D onboard, direct mount battery charger, and maintainer under her feather-weight aluminum hood.

The NOCO Genius 2D is a 115 Volt x 12 Volt 2 Amp fused and completely automatic tender that “features an integrated thermal sensor that automatically monitors and adjusts the charging cycle based on fluctuations of ambient temperature.” Advanced diagnostics keep you informed about your battery’s condition: temperature, reverse polarity, bad battery, battery short, and high voltage. That’s a bunch in a little package for less than forty-bucks.

Noco Genius 2D Onboard Battery ChargerIts black compact design fits well in the surrounding décor of the 5.2L beast and withstands the grueling heat of the engine compartment while GT Vudo unleashes her 526 horses and 429 lb/ft torque.

Using 8×1/2″ flathead countersunk screws, I secured the included mounting bracket to an L-bracket and wrapped the bracket assembly in black electrical tape to match the underhood blackness, then bolted it to a spare mounting hole on the under-hood fuse box with a self-locking nut.

The positive lead I fastened to the aft terminal on the terminal block that runs directly to the battery’s positive terminal. The negative lead I secured to an existing ground on the strut housing. You can, if you prefer, connect the Genius 2D directly to the battery. For aesthetic and routing reasons, I opted not to.

With the Genius 2D in place, I used black wire loom and wire ties to complete the professional look.

Noco Genius 2D Onboard Battery ChargerThe NOCO pulses red when the battery is under 75% charge. Green pulses indicate the bulk charge is complete as it continues to optimize the battery. Solid green shows the battery at 100%. And slow pulsing green indicates an ongoing optimization. It all works to extend battery life without the risk of overcharging your battery. Like the innovative folks at NOCO say, it’s a more powerful, compact, and incredibly smart device.

It’s backed by a 3-year hassle-free warranty.