The West Coast Wheeler Emporium
Each October Southern California's Off-Road Expo show detonates inside the confines of Pomona Fairplex like a volcanic emporium, bursting with an array of eye candy designed to benefit corporations and enthusiasts alike. Nobody leaves empty-handed and all share the opportunity to absorb a piece of California dirt subculture. Since the show's inception some nine years ago, the event has drawn hordes of desert junkies, extreme rockcrawlers, mud boggers, and sand addicts out to an absolute drool-fest under the hot California sun, or as in the case of this year's exhibition, light drizzle. That's right, the Expo is here to stay, and for some companies the event triggers a who's who showdown that some claim rivals SEMA, minus the frivolous electronic gizmos and over-the-top gold-flake paint schemes. Fortunately we had our staff on hand to evaluate the event and document the best-in-show for your viewing pleasure.
Although General Tire does not yet offer the new desert-race-inspired Grabber tire to the non-desert-racing public, this mildly built '08 Tundra was sporting a set. Lacking DOT approval, these race-only answers to BFGs Baja Project tires are the hottest thing going in off-road racing. Rumor has it the new tires were used during the filming of the much-anticipated Hollywood blockbuster Fast and Furious 4. Sources tell us these new tires will be seen on Reese Millen's newly constructed Trophy Truck as part of a stunt sequence featured in the film. The film is set to debut June 5, 2009.
Bestop surprised us with this unique-looking JK soft top called Trektop. This product is made with the same premium fabric that maintains its shape in any temperature, like the O.E. soft top, yet it features a removable rear curtain that provides more of that open-air experience for passengers. The front portion still maintains our favorite feature that exposes the front of the cab on two-doors. However, both the front and rear can be exposed using this top in a four-door model. Info: 800/845-3567, www.bestop.com