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2010 Lucas Oil Off Road Expo

Posted in Events on February 1, 2011 Comment (0)
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Each October, the off-road community gathers at the Fairplex in Pomona, California, for a showcase like no other. Hosted by Family Events, the Lucas Oil Off Road Expo reels in a diverse mix of desert racing, rockcrawling, and sand sport enthusiasts from every corner of California-and some from neighboring states too. For most, Off Road Expo is the annual happening you simply do not want to miss. For others, especially those with industry-related businesses, the Expo is like a yearly barometer, giving those with a stake in the community an indicator of where things are going. For 2010, show attendance was up considerably over years past. Check out our highlights.
Commander-in-Chief
Rebel Off Road showed off their latest JK build, the Command Vehicle. This rig is powered by a RIPP-supercharged 3.8L V-6 mated to a five-speed automatic and a 4:1 transfer case. The axles are both Currie RockJock Dana 60s with chrome-moly shafts and ARB Air Lockers. Exterior protection comes from Poison Spyder Customs front and rear Crusher Flares and corners, while a RockBrawler front bumper with a stinger guards the nose. RockHard 4x4 rockers and rear bumper round out the body protection package. Flex comes from Rebel's own bolt-on coilover conversion using King 2.0 coilovers and hydraulic bumpstops. The Jeep clears 40-inch Toyo Open Country M/T tires mounted to 20-inch KMC Spy wheels with TrailReady beadlock rings. Info: Rebel Offroad, 866/900-8841, www. rebeloffroad.com

Sweet Rides
Gibson Performance Exhaust's booth got our attention with two of the hottest sand supercars ever built. Both creations are by Buckshot Racing of La Habra, California. The vehicle on the left is known as the X2-R. It sports a 440ci LS-based engine with RH heads and twin turbos helping to produce a dyno-tested 1,400 horsepower. The car on the right is known as the X-4 and features a GM-based 600ci big block, supercharged by Whipple producing an outrageous 1,800 horsepower-yes, we said 1,800. Both vehicles are street-legal, plated in California and driven weekly by their respective owners. Gibson builds some of the slickest exhaust parts available for the sand sports industry. Additionally, Gibson showed us their new JK exhaust system featuring larger diameter tubing and a pair of high-flowing, smog-legal headers. Info: Gibson Performance Exhaust, 800/528-3044, www.gibsonperformance.com

Giving Back
The guardian angels of the FastAid organization, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing financial assistance to injured racers, hosted a very special ceremony to honor the victims of desert racing's darkest moment, the California 200 tragedy. Survivors of the eight who died in that race were present to express sorrow and light candles of remembrance as a focal point during a moment of silence. Additionally, a memorial sculpted from steel was debuted displaying the names of all eight victims. Info: FastAid, www.fastaid.com

Order Up
4-Wheel Parts had a small army of sales associates on hand to take orders and make deals on site with show attendees. They even had Rick Russell on hand to autograph DVDs at the point of purchase. Info: 4-Wheel Parts, 877/474-4821, www.4wheelparts.com

General Jeepspeed
General Tire held a press conference on Saturday to announce their involvement as the title sponsor of the Jeepspeed series for the next three years. Shown in conjunction with the announcement was this example of the next generation of Jeepspeed racers: a newly constructed WJ owed by Todd Jackson and built by T&J of Orange, California. According to the new Jeepspeed Class 1700 guidelines, any six-cylinder Jeep vehicle can race as long as it has an engine displacement of four liters or less and has a maximum of 10 inches of front wheel travel and 14 inches out back. All vehicles in this series race on DOT-legal General Grabber tires. Info: Jeepspeed, 714/538-7434, www.jeepspeed.com

Drool Factor
The most highly regarded vehicle of the show was this 2011 Stewart Race Works Chevy Silverado. This $600,000 luxury Baja prerunner was finished just two weeks prior to the show, and the unnamed client who commissioned its construction had not even seen it in its completed state. Featuring the latest powertrain package from Kroyer Racing Engines, this 750hp masterpiece is the latest of just a dozen or so that exist in the world today. Commonly known as super-runners, these one-off works of art represent the ultimate in go-fast technology blended with amenities that would make a queen envious. During a phone conversation with Race Works owner Craig Stewart, we were told that without such a highly skilled and dedicated crew of fabricators and mechanics, his company would not produce such awesome vehicles. Info: Stewart Race Works, 619/449-9728, www.stewartsraceworks.com

RC Heaven
For those of us with a soft spot for realistic toys, HPI Racing had a booth with an assortment of scale remote control cars. This booth was a huge hit with the kids. Info: HPI Racing, 949/753-1099, www.hpiracing.com

Titan Rearend
Currie Enterprises announced a new bolt-in replacement rear axle assembly for Nissan Titan pickups. The assembly features your choice of a Dana 60 or Ford 9-inch centersection. The housing features factory mounting locations for springs and shocks, and the assembly retains the factory ABS and wheelspeed sensors. Each is outfitted with 35-spline axleshafts and is designed to re-use the factory brake parts. These axle assemblies work with all '04-and-up Nissan Titan pickups. Info: Currie Enterprises, 714/528-6957, www.currie4x4rearends.com

Star-Power Signings
Pro Comp had a special guest appearance and autograph-signing by famed motocross legend Brian Deegan. This was a unique opportunity for fans to meet and interact with the man himself. Other booth attractions included the all-new 6-inch suspension system for the 2011 GM HD pickups. Info: Pro Comp, 800/776-0767, www.explorerprocomp.com

Kwik Jack
The newest gotta-have-gadget for the hardcore wheeler is the new pneumatic bottle jack from Baja Designs. Constructed from lightweight aluminum, the telescopic Kwik Jack HD is capable of lifting up to 2,500 pounds ten inches vertically. The unit weighs just 10 pounds and runs on your choice of compressed air or C02 as shown. Rollcage mounting systems are also available. Info: Baja Designs, 760/560-0383, www.bajadesigns.com

SAS for Tracker/Sidekick
Calmini debuted their new solid axle conversion for the '89-'98 Geo Tracker/Suzuki Sidekick. The conversion allows fitment of the abundant and affordable '86-'95 Suzuki Samurai front axle with your choice of coilover shock. The kit utilizes radius arms to locate the front axle and requires some welding. The system will accommodate 33-inch tires with no further modifications necessary. Info: Calmini, 800/345-3305, www.calmini.com

Better Boingers
The engineers at Radflo Shocks showed us their newest shock application for Jeep JKs. The remote-reservoir units feature velocity-sensitive valving that automatically adjusts to terrain for improved control, handling and comfort. We like the fact that these shocks are customizable for vehicle-specific compression and rebound characteristics. Completely rebuildable and serviceable, these dampers have an almost unlimited service life. Info: Radflo Suspension Technology, 714/965-7828, www.radflo.com

Play Safe
Mastercraft Safety displayed an impressive collection of gear designed to prevent injury should the worst-case scenario occur in the dirt. Items such as suspension seats, harness restraints, window netting, and driving suits were amongst the most popular of the display. The booth was so crowded on day one of the show, we had to sneak in early on day two to get a good picture of the booth. Info: Mastercraft Safety, 800/565-4042, www.mastercraftsafety.com

JK Speedster
The first thing attendees encountered as they entered the Fairplex was the booth of Pure Performance Group, and this Electric Lime Green two-door JK was the first vehicle patrons passed as they entered the show. With Mopar Underground-like styling, this Jeep attracted onlookers by the dozen. Sporting a Jeep Speed Shop 6.2L GM LS engine conversion, 1-ton axles and a unique assortment of one-off body modifications, many commented that it was the coolest Jeep they had ever seen. Keep your eyes peeled for this little jewel in an upcoming issue, as we plan to shoot a full-blown feature on it very soon. Info: Pure Performance Group, 518/270-9822, www.pureperformance.biz

Lighten Up
Savvy Off Road showcased their newest lightweight front bumper for Jeep Wrangler TJs and LJs. Made from aluminum, this is lighter than an OE unit and offers such options as steel recovery hooks, auxiliary light mounts, winch, and fairlead mounts. Grade-8 mounting hardware is included. Info: Savvy Offroad, 714/803-0909, www.saavyoffroad.com

Miss Off-Road Expo
No truck show is complete without a bikini contest, and no bikini contest goes without a First Place winner. The 2010 Lucas Oil Off-Road Expo bikini contest winner, Autumn Albin of Riverside, California, bumped into us shortly after securing her trophy. We asked her out for dinner, but she had other plans . . . Oh well, there's always next year.

Stout Seals
RCV Performance is a name that is synonymous with super stout CV axles. However, RCV is also manufacturing rebuildable axle tube seals for Jeep vehicles. These seals are made from billet aluminum and feature three O-rings and two flat rubber seals to help keep debris out and lube-oil in on your Dana 44 JK or TJ front axle. Info: RCV Performance, 815/877-7473, www.rcvperformance.com

Power to the People
Kodiak Industries impressed show-goers with an assortment of high-end electrical products such as Odyssey batteries, Premier Power Welders, model-specific dual battery kits, power management solutions, LED lighting, as well as Pull-Pals. Kodiak has been a steady vendor at Off Road Expo since the show's inception in 2003. Info: Kodiak Industries, 408/892-4684, www.kodiakinc.com

Sources

Off-Road Expo
Indianapolis, IN 46204
317-236-6515
http://www.offroadexpo.com

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