The proven reliability of the stock engine and transmission prompted AJ to not change much. In an effort to gain reliable horsepower, he bolted up a SuperTrapp exhaust pipe. He squeezed a few more ponies out of the stead by installing a K&N filtercharger and building a custom intake system for it. The manual five-speed transmission was left stock. The rearend remains stock except for the addition of the Precision Gear 4:86 ring-and-pinion to help push the big tires.
Inside the Green Hornet, AJ tried to keep some comforts in an effort to keep Lisa happy, but he would also include the necessary added off-road equipment. A Clarion six-disc CD changer combined with a Clarion receiver makes up the sound system. A Garman GPS was appropriately positioned in front of the navigator's seat. AJ had PRP build a set of custom green metal-flake seats. They were fitted into the cab with a set of Crow five-point seatbelts. A MOMO steering wheel and shift knob were installed for control. The combination of safety and comfort was just enough for AJ to keep Lisa sitting shotgun in the green machine.
The first impression is the most lasting. With that in mind, AJ went straight to the experts at Performance Sign Wurks in Orange, California. The staff began by shooting the Haneman fiberglass fenders and the cab white. The hood is also from Haneman, but is built from carbon-fiber. To display the natural beauty of the carbon-fiber, the hood was strategically taped off and only partially painted white. Once the basecoat was shot, the bright-green stripes were added for a final touch to the brilliant paint scheme.
Although his truck ended up nothing like his original intentions, it came out sweet. It is a balanced combination of safety, reliability, and fun. With the total cost of the additions to the truck less than $10,000, it provides an affordable option for people who don't have a $100,000 to put into a prerunner. With the way the rear cage is built and with some extra cash, the rear suspension could easily be upgraded to a 25-plus-inch travel four-link system. Only time will tell where AJ's obsession for fabrication will take him.
|Owner/hometown ||: ||AJ Rodriguez/Orange, California |
|Make/model ||: ||'98 Ford Ranger |
|Engine ||: ||Four-cylinder stock |
|Transmission ||: ||Stock five-speed |
|Tires ||: ||BFGoodrich 33x10.50 All-Terrain |
|Wheels ||: ||Ultra 15-inch |
|Shocks ||: ||King coilover 10-inch front; 14-inch rear |
|Air cleaner ||: ||K&N Filtercharger |
|Exhaust ||: ||SuperTrapp |
|Additional features ||: ||Paint by Performance Sign Wurks, Orange, |
|California; Haneman fiberglass fenders and |
|carbon-fiber hood; Hypertech chip; Garman |
|GPS; Clarion six-disc changer; Crow Enterprize |
|seatbelts; PRP custom seats; MOMO steering |
|wheel and shifter knob; JAZ fuel cell |