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1995 Toyota Hilux Desert Race Truck - Vendetta

Interior View
Jordan May | Writer
Posted September 1, 2007

A Toyota Years In The Making

Not many of us at the age of 15 ask our parents to buy us a welder so we can build our first vehicle into a prerunner out in the garage. The history of this '95 Toyota Hilux truck goes back 10 years when Tyler Fain was 15 and the build process of this truck started with the help of a couple of friends. The original intention for the project was to fabricate a truck that would suffice Tyler's growing desire to get involved in the sport of desert racing. He began going to the races as soon as he was allowed behind the wheel of a automobile. That passion quickly turned into Tyler teaching himself how to weld, notch, cut, and bend steel. Having a buddy like Mike Clark of ESB Fabrications is a great way to assure you're going to end up with a quality build. Tyler and Mike grew up together and have been wrenching on this truck since its conception. As the build took form and Mike's business took off, crucial parts of the truck were rebuilt for additional strength.

"The stock Toyota powerplant eventually had to go," says Tyler.

He wanted to push more horsepower using an engine that had plenty of available aftermarket components.Tyler chose a Ford Racing 5.0L High Output engine that pushes over 250 hp. He's confident that his new Ford engine will produce efficient power for his truck. The internal components of the engine remain stock at this point; however, Tyler has added Ford Racing headers, a Ron David radiator, a Flowmaster exhaust system, and a Mallory fuel pump to keep things flowing properly. Holding enough fuel to keep that engine pumping is a 32-gallon JAZ fuel cell built to racing specifications. The transmission is a Tremec T-56 six-speed transmission which keeps all control with the driver. Some racers prefer the ease of an automatic transmission, but as Tyler tells us, "What fun is that? I want to be able to control the entire vehicle myself and tell it when to shift, stop, jump, and outrun my competitors."

In the rear is a Ford 9-inch axle, which is a very popular choice because of the enormous amount of available replacement parts and accessories. Not to mention, the design is simple yet extremely strong. The rearend is stuffed with 5.47-ratio gears, a full-time spool, and Currie 31-spline axleshafts. To complete the rear end, the truck was delivered to Oceanside Driveline in Oceanside, California, to receive custom-built driveshafts.

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