Most of the prerunners and race trucks we feature in this fine publication are of the form-follows-function mindset; that is, design and build for function, and if the finished product also looks killer, well, that's OK. However, some builders of prerunners march to the beat of a different drum. Case in point: Shawn Bennett and his fab 4Runner. What makes Bennett's Toyota different from most prerunners lies in the form-as-well-as-function concept. This '98 2WD SUV is highly detailed and stuffed to the gills with high-end electronics, verifying its status as a show truck. To counter the claims of all show, no go, Bennett's toy sports a Camburg long-travel front suspension and King coilovers in front and rear, along with a TRD supercharger for the DOHC V-6 engine.
Power of an altogether different type is found within the cockpit: a Panasonic head unit signals multiple Audiobahn amplifiers, which power Audiobahn component speakers in the doors. The 4Runner's cargo area is stunning, stuffed with a quartet of Audiobahn subwoofers and the aforementioned amps displayed on scratch-built brackets.
The buildup of almost any vehicle will cause compromise to its overall function and usability, but certain vehicles - and select enthusiasts - seem to be able to overcome the bane of compromise, creating a machine that is adept at multiple tasks. In the case of Shawn Bennett's 4Runner, we see a vehicle that's quick and composed on the pavement, is a bona fide show winner, and is more than capable on the dirt - a true multipurpose, go anywhere, do anything kind of machine that's an inspiration to truck enthusiasts who want it all.
|Year/make/model ||'98/Toyota/4Runner |
|Owner/hometown ||Shawn Bennett/Orange, California |
|Suspension ||Camburg long-travel control arms, King Technologies |
|coilover shocks, Sway-A-Way air bumpstops, |
|15 inches of wheel travel (front); custom multilinks, |
|King Technologies coilover shocks, Sway-A-Way air |
|bumpstops, 14 inches of wheel travel (rear) |
|Engine ||3.4L V-6 with TRD supercharger, Nitrous Express |
| ||N2O system, Downey headers, Gibson exhaust, |
|K&N air filter |
|Wheels/tires ||16x9-inch Axis Regulator/35x12.50R16 Pro Comp |
|Xterrain Radials |