In The Fate of the Furious, Dom Toretto finds himself cut off from his crew and working alone. The master mechanic returns to what he knows and builds the gnarliest custom Charger ever seen on film. He must race against a nuclear submarine, across a frozen Icelandic fjord, carrying a huge electromagnetic pulse device. The Ice Charger proves just the tool for the job.
California-based Dennis McCarthy is the owner of the Vehicle Effects custom car shop. He is also the Fast and Furious picture car coordinator, having been the driving force behind the franchise’s vehicles since Tokyo Drift. With each new film in the Fast franchise, Universal Studios gives McCarthy a list of stunt-ready custom cars for the movie, and he builds them. His shop creates multiple versions of most hero cars, each with a different purpose. McCarthy estimates that half the cars he builds are destroyed during filming. The Ice Charger built for the Iceland chase scenes is one aggressive muscle car. It is held together with a fully tubular open frame. The composite second-generation Charger body is defined by one of the widest body kits available. The fenders are riveted to the body, and a row of rivets line the windshield and all the window openings. The engine rumbles and shoots flames through a gaping side-exit exhaust.
We all know that Dom has to have the best rides in the film and this one is definitely right there at the top, when it comes to full on custom. The bodywork was all custom made in-house at Vehicle Effects, with the aim to keep the original look of the Charger but with added toughness. The Vehicle Effects team also must balance building engines with enough power to perform stunts yet enough reliability to operate in adverse environments around the world.They settled upon a standard drivetrain for most Fast and Furious movie cars. The Ice Chargers built for filming Fate of the Furious are powered by Vehicle Effects’ standard 400+ horsepower built LS3 V8 mated to a Turbo 400 transmission. A sidewinder shifter perches atop the blocky transmission tunnel. A series of dashboard toggle switches operate visual effects and the drivetrain. Though the Ice Charger shares its power plant with other Fast and Furious cars, its drivetrain is entirely new. The Ice Charger boasts four-wheel-drive and three locking differentials. For the Iceland scenes, its traction was enhanced with over one-thousand spikes in each tire. For a hot rod stance, the Ice Charger features much larger rear wheels than front wheels. As Picture Car Coordinator for the Fast & Furious Franchise, many of Dennis McCarthy’s creations are destroyed while filming Fast and Furious movies. McCarthy cannibalizes most of the remaining vehicles, installing their drivetrains in the next installment’s vehicles. But occasionally, a very unique, like the Ice Charger vehicle survives.