Over the past several years, businesses and people alike have become aware of the value of building or assembling a high-profile vehicle. These vehicles are not built for the purpose of enjoyment; they are built for the purpose of promotion. More often than not, promotional vehicles are an assemblage of parts from many different manufacturers, with visual impact being the highest priority and function falling further down the list.
Hy Jessup, the owner of Extreme 4 Wheel and Off Road in Murray, Utah, has been involved in the marketing business for most of his professional life, but he's been involved with four-wheel-drive trucks since he can remember. When the time arrived for Hy to assemble his own promotional piece, form and function occupied the number one and two spots on his list. Not only was his truck going to promote his business, it was going to have a suspension that worked, an interior that was comfortable, and an engine that could provide the machine with plenty of power.
In October of 1998, Jessup purchased this Chevy 1-ton Crew Cab 4x4 with the intention of using it to haul parts and his ever-growing family. Immediately, Bushwacker fender flares, a 2-inch body lift, and a 6-inch Tuff Country suspension lift found their way onto the truck. Weld wheels and 38-inch tires replaced the stock rolling package. The factory stereo system was also replaced to provide some additional entertainment. The truck worked great and did everything it was asked to do - from taking the kids to soccer practice to running the trails on Saturday morning. Then Hy got a couple of ideas.
He not only decided that he wanted to show his truck at the largest automotive trade show in the world, Hy also wanted an 8-inch suspension lift. How are these two ideas related, you're wondering? The first one (SEMA) gave Hy a deadline to meet, while the second one meant a lot of work had to be done in a short period of time.
Living and working just minutes away from Tuff Country's headquarters and having already established a good working relationship with the crew, Hy had an in with the company's engineering and fabrication departments. The modification process began with a 6-inch Chevy lift kit before Hy decided to build an 8-inch IFS lift from scratch instead. Tuff Country also built the ladder bars and the dual front shock hoops that were installed on the truck. For the rear suspension, Tuff Country built a new set of leaf springs with an additional 2 inches of lift and dual shock mounts on the axle. The suspension works exactly like it should, and there are no problems with alignment, ball joint angles, or bumpsteer.
With the suspension dialed in and Hy keeping close track of the days before the SEMA Show, the truck was hurried over to Innovative Car Audio in Salt Lake City for another round of stereo modifications. A subwoofer enclosure was built behind the rear seat to house two 12-inch JL Audio subwoofers, a Rockford Fosgate Punch 600 amplifier, and two Phoenix Gold 500-watt amplifiers. The front and rear doors received Focal mid-ranges and tweeters. An Alpine stereo and six-disc CD changer provide the signals that the speakers reproduce.
Upon leaving Innovative, the truck arrived at Schmidt Paint & Body where the factory-applied paint was quickly stripped off in preparation for a complete color change. The truck was coated in light pewter gray as the base color, with yellow and purple graphics running the length of the truck. A new hood and Bushwacker fender flares found their way onto the freshly re-colored creation, as did a new Stull billet grille insert, Go Rhino! nerf steps, a front pushbar, and taillight covers.