When you run trails for a long time, you come to a better comprehension of the exact vehicle you’d like to tackle your favorite terrain with. Symon DeVries cut his teeth wheeling the forests in the state of Washington 25 years ago, but now calls the desert and mountain trails of Arizona his stomping grounds. Over the years he has refined the Toyota truck you see here to help him negotiate the kinds of rock trails he enjoys.
What he has ended up with is a slightly stretched 1985 Toyota pickup with an Xtra Cab sitting on a modified standard-cab frame. He wanted to achieve a 105-inch wheelbase, a length that settles right in the sweet spot for Southwestern rock wheeling. The extended cab gives him comfortable inside space, and he has a shortened bed still capable of supporting a 37-inch spare tire, spare parts, and tools, plus room to carry weekend camping items.
The factory drivetrain is no longer intact. Now, a Chevy 6.0L V-8 feeds a 700R4 four-speed automatic and GM 203/Dana 300 combination transfer case. The resulting setup provides speed, torque, and go-slow gearing to a pair of fully built Dana 60 axles. Wrap it all together with linked suspensions front and rear and you’ve got a highly capable wheeling rig. Possibly the perfect Toylet?
1985 Toyota Shortbed PU
Engine: 2003 GM 6.0L V-8
Transmission: GM 700R4
Transfer case: GM NP203 crawl box, Jeep Dana 300
Front Axle: Narrowed Dodge Dana 60, 5.38 gears, Detroit Locker, Yukon shafts, Longfield Super Joints, Yukon hubs
Rear Axle: Currie RockJock Dana 60, 5.38 gears, Detroit Locker, 35-spline shafts, disc brakes
Springs & Such: Custom 3-link, Jeep TJ Rubicon Express lift coils, Fox 4-inch bumpstops, Rancho 9000 shocks (front); homebrew double-triangulated 4-link, Jeep TJ Rubicon Express lift coils, Rancho 9000 shocks (rear)
Tires & Wheels: 37x12.50R17LT Pitbull Rocker Radials mounted on 17x9 Robbie Gordon beadlocks
Steering: Saginaw steering box with PSC hydro-assist
Other Stuff: Xtra Cab swap, dove-nosed front and tail with tubular fender structures, custom bumpers and cage work, tube doors, hidden spares storage, Warn M8000 winch, rock lights