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Commander Turbo Kits Journey of Development

Below are the cumulative updates on the HMMWV turbo upgrade/retrofit kit. We started work on the kit back in mid-2017 with a full 24 months spent in engineering the (now patent pending) exhaust manifold. Progress was very slow for the first couple years and at times we weren’t even sure if it could be done with the tight space constraints under the hood of the HMMWV. At the end of the development stage (October 2019), once we finally had a running prototype that we knew worked, we started sending out updates on our progress. The updates were emailed to people who had expressed interest in the kit during development, then we posted each successive update to the website to keep the growing list of interested parties up to date on progress of the kit, and to assure everyone of our continued dedication in bringing this challenging project to fruition.

Our 3+ years in development and testing has produced a durable, powerful and easy to install turbo kit for the Military spec HMMWV.

Performance, longevity & increased drivability are the primary focus/s of this kit.

Thursday, October 31, 2019 – Update
6.2 & 6.5 Diesel HMMWV Turbo Upgrade Kit – BMI: November Update

We are (finally) very close to the final design of the most difficult component for this kit,… the exhaust manifold. This manifold will be at the heart of this system and the main piece that makes the rest of the kit possible. The manifold will be made of high quality cast iron.
Over the last couple months, we have made many changes to improve the exhaust manifold design:

  • Increasing gas flow velocity to the turbo by modifying the shape of the manifold “log” and contributing port runners
  • Strengthening the casting to support the heavy turbo during rough and jarring off-road use
  • Verify & maximize clearance of manifold and related components to various other under-hood components
  • Rugged and proven all mechanical turbo design with self-contained wastegate control
  • Build-in tolerances to accommodate for gasket inconsistencies allowing proper sealing on all mating surfaces
  • Re-shaping the manifold so it puts the turbo at the optimum position within engine compartment

10/31/2019 Current status: finalization of exhaust manifold design, patent application and beginning development of components that connects to the turbo.

While the front mounts are offset, the transmission mount is (mostly) centered between the frame rails, so that makes the engine “crooked” in the engine compartment.

It is amazing how a minor angle like that can complicate engineering things to bolt-on to this application!


Monday, February 17, 2020 – Update
6.2 & 6.5 Diesel HMMWV Turbo Retrofit Kit – BMI: February 2020 Update

Below is the February 2020 update on the HMMWV turbo upgrade/retrofit kit.
I am sending this message to keep everyone (who has expressed interest) up to date on progress of the kit, and to assure every one of our continued dedication in bringing this project to fruition.

We are working diligently to develop a durable, powerful and easy to install turbo kit for the Military spec HMMWV. Performance, Longevity & Durability are the primary focus/s of this kit.

The prototype exhaust manifolds arrived late last week and have been trial-fitted to the truck. The fit was very good this time and it looks like we are ready to give the go-ahead on manifold production this week. Patent applications have now been submitted for this unique manifold that we have so much engineering time and money into getting right.

The air intake / filter housing setup is going to be really great on this kit with a built-in cold air intake utilizing the OEM HMMWV air stack for air intake. A re-usable K&N style air filter will be utilized in an enclosed aluminum box to protect it from dirt/mud, mated directly to the water separator portion of the air intake stack on the body of the HMMWV.

We will be getting the test truck on a lift to get the exhaust parts prototyped in the next couple weeks.

We really want to get this project finished this spring and I am pushing everyone to that end.

Thank You for your patience while we build a world-class turbo kit for your Military HMMWV!


Monday, April 20, 2020 – Update
6.2 & 6.5 Diesel HMMWV Turbo Upgrade Kit – BMI: April Update

We continue to work on the turbo kit development even though the whole world seems to be on lockdown….

Here is a picture from this morning as I welded up a prototype for the intake plenum tube to the turbo…

This was just for fitment verification before we finalize the engineering drawings for production on that part. The finished product will look allot better!

I think 2-3 more months and we will have a finished product to be proud of, that is… if I can get some dyno time soon….

Hang in there… when the world open back up we will be ready to give more power to your HMMWV!


Wednesday, August 20, 2020 – Update
6.2 & 6.5 Diesel HMMWV Turbo Upgrade Kit – BMI: August Update

Well, we were aiming for a late July 2020 release,… but COVID had other plans,… most of our fabricator shops shut down in July and the dyno we use was also closed, so we were forced into a 5 week break from the project. It’s mid-August now and 2 of our fabricator shops are re-opened as well as the dyno. We are set to start hot-run testing on the dyno in the next couple weeks.

The intake plenum prototype has been completed and now we are just waiting on the exhaust pipe prototypes to be finished and sent to us for test fitting.

Once the exhaust parts arrive, we will make the initial injection pump adjustments and get the first test truck (a 6.2 powered M998) on the dyno to see where we are at with power and EGT’s, then we can turn up the pump until it reaches its power potential (without over-fueling).

Can’t wait to fire it up for the first time!


Friday, October 16, 2020 – Update
6.2 & 6.5 Diesel HMMWV Turbo Upgrade Kit – BMI: August Update

We now have functioning turbo kits doing actual road testing! We are working on the installation instructions and awaiting the local fabrication shop to complete some of the remaining production components.

Roll-out to the public is scheduled for late next month!

We are anxiously awaiting the local chassis dyno to get the necessary parts to run our 2 test HMMWV’s on their dynamometer machine so we can get our final power increase numbers. They need to obtain a manual tachometer pickup for use on the HMMWV engine, as there is no tach signal on these trucks that their dyno computer can use….. So frustrating, we want to see the numbers!!

The “by the seat of our pants” guestimate is that we are (conservatively) in the +60-65 HP range, but the dyno will confirm. We are running 10-11psi boost with a proportionate amount of fuel added to keep the EGT’s in check, so all the power will be very “usable” for towing or pushing an overdrive transmission.

Our 6.2 test truck can just about “catch a wheel” when pulling left out of our parking lot and it keeps pulling all the way to the upper reaches of the RPM’s,…. unlike the stock slug that lurches satisfyingly for the first 20 feet, then seems to stand still, despite your foot to the floor……., so this is a definite improvement!

Pricing for both (6.2 & 6.5) kits will be $4,499 + $25 shipping, with discounts available to bring the cost down to $4,299 with free shipping.

Next update as soon as we have the dyno numbers!!


Thursday, January 7th, 2021 – Update
6.2 & 6.5 Diesel HMMWV Turbo Upgrade Kit – BMI: January ‘21 Update

Dyno numbers are in for all test trucks and they are right in line with expectations:
6.2 truck/s…. 54-60% hp & 100-110 ft/lbs torque increase over stock!
6.5 truck/s…. 58-65% hp & 112-120 ft/lbs torque increase over stock!

EGT’s are very good at the recommended boost levels (10-11psi) and the drivability and responsiveness of the upgraded trucks is like “night and day”. Most guys say it drives like a different truck!
Roll the throttle and the power keeps coming until you run out of gear….. an overdrive upgrade to the 3 speed trucks makes more sense now with the newfound power to push the taller gear.

The turbo kits should be available before the end of this month. We are just waiting on the intake plenums and gaskets to arrive, and then we will be ready to rock and roll!

Big thanks to Peirce at The Vintage Garage in Stowe, Vermont for helping Beta test the installation and operation of the BMI kit in a cold weather environment! He and his crew took a little time away from their usual passion of restoring classic Rolls-Royce & Bentleys to spend some time on a more rudimentary machine… the Military HMMWV. His meticulous attention to detail continues to be a great help in ironing out the details of the installation manual and tool kit that will be made available to install the kits most efficiently.
See pictures below of his beast aptly nicknamed “SMAUG”. Reid says his shop would welcome the opportunity to install these kits on other customer’s HMMWV’s. So once you get your kit, hit him up if you are in the New England area for a meticulous and efficient installation.

It’s been a long road….. God willing, our next update will be to announce the full availability of the turbo kits to the public in just a couple weeks.