There are many kinds of show cars. Some are all show and no go. Others could go but are too expensive or too pretty to scratch and get dirty. And lastly, the best kind of show cars are those that are ready to be raced, crawled, rallied, and railed on. Here are eight off-road rigs we saw at SEMA 2018 that fit in to the latter category. At the very least they are well built enough to actually see some dirt; that is, if they haven’t already.
Here in part 2 of our mini features from SEMA 2018 we have an FSJ Cherokee ready for almost any trail built by Ken Farley Jr. We first saw this rig in Moab, and since then idol hands have not rested near this Jeep. Next come a few pictures of a solid-axle Isuzu Trooper with some cool parts. Then there’s a different kind of rig and an example of what we sure wish we would see more of at SEMA. A Roxor built to race from Jesse Haines Fabrication. Last but not least, one go-fast Willys truck that we would love to race in NORRA next year.
We bumped into Ken Farley Jr. in Moab last year and totally dug his 1979 FSJ Cherokee. Since then he has done nothing but make improvements.
The AMC 360 has turned into a 6.0L GM engine, and the old three-speed auto became a four-speed GM transmission.
KC Daylighters look period correct on this well-preserved East Coast Jeep. How it’s not an iron-rich mineral deposit in Michigan we don’t know
The interior is original and clean, with a few well-made additions.
That is a nicely trimmed aluminum factory rear bumper. The rear axle is a GM 14-bolt.
Under the front lives a Dodge kingpin Dana 60. The patina may be alive on this truck. We’re not sure if it’s coated in lichen, but we like it.
This Trooper was hidden in plain sight between SEMA’s South and Central halls. We’re digging the cleanly trimmed fenders, the well-executed solid axle swap, and that winch bumper.
An educated guess is that the RuffStuff Specialties axlehousing holds Toyota-based guts to match the front axle. The rear bumper is clean, and we like the extra fuel and the Hi-Lift jack.
Functional rock sliders are a definite plus on anything that will see action like this Isuzu could.
We saw this Roxor come together fast in the days before SEMA. Fabricator Jesse Haines is building it to race in King of the Hammers. The turbodiesel engine is turned up to about double the power output, and Haines’ signature portals adorn the axles. Unfortunately we only got to see the car in person right as the show was closing.
Luckily our friend, freelance photographer and writer Harry Wagner, lives close to Jesse Haines and was able to send us a few pics of the “Jeep” coming together just before SEMA.
The portals allow the axles to be run spring-under and still provide gobs of clearance. For more pics and details on the build have a look at http://www.fourwheeler.com/events/1811-mtsema18-race-roxor/. Keep your eyes peeled because we’re sure you and we will see more of this cool rig on the Four Wheeler Network as February approaches.
This wicked Willys truck from Colorado Sand Cars isn’t quite right to be a ’48. That’s what CSC claims, but some of the sheetmetal (hood, fenders, and grille) are from a later V-nose Willys truck. Either way it is sick! Probably the coolest 2WD truck at SEMA 2018 in our humble opinion.
The front fender lift is a bit exaggerated, but heck, it may be necessary to clear those 37-inch Coopers on Method beadlocks.
Power comes from a GM 454 LSX. That should do.