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March 2011 RPM: Off-Road Truck News

Posted in News on March 1, 2011
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Rod Hall Racing Rally Truck Makes Debut
Our friends at Rod Hall Racing debuted their new rally truck at the 2010 Tecate Score Baja 1000. The rally truck, which looks similar to a Trophy Truck, was designed to be smaller and lighter in order to compete internationally in rally races, but also has a feature no other Trophy Truck has: four-wheel drive. The truck, built by Samco Fabrication out of Nevada, uses a 600hp L92 GM small-block and Fox Racing shocks. After completing the grueling 1,061-mile Baja 1000 shakedown in 32 hours, 51 minutes and without any race-ending problems, the team says that the truck is very close to being competitive. In addition to running in the Baja 1000, the Hall rally truck is scheduled to compete in the 2011 Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge and the Australasian Safari Rally. We'll have a feature on this truck in a future issue of Four Wheeler. For more information, log onto

King Expands Distribution
King Shocks has announced that its line of shocks will now be sold through 4 Wheel Parts Wholesalers, and Transamerican Wholesale. King Shocks built a solid reputation manufacturing state of the art custom shock absorbers for top off-road racers. They've taken all the quality construction and race bred technology from their race shocks and packaged it into vehicle specific, bolt-on OEM and UTV applications. You can order online, over the phone, or through one of over 60 4 Wheel Parts retail performance centers nationwide. From Trophy Truck to your truck, King Shocks are the highest quality and best performing shocks available.

Torture-Tested EcoBoost
Anyone concerned about the durability of Ford's new EcoBoost twin turbo V-6 can rest a little easier after the results Ford's hellacious durability campaign. A 2011 Ford F-150 EcoBoost race truck with the torture-tested "hero" engine finished one of the most grueling desert endurance races in the world in 38 hours, 20 minutes. The 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine used to power the race truck was randomly selected off the line from the Cleveland Engine Plant to be put through a series of rugged exercises to test its long-term durability. It was installed in a 2011 F-150 at the Kansas City Assembly Plant, then traveled to Oregon, where it worked as a log skidder. Next, the truck towed 11,300 pounds at high speeds around a NASCAR track in Florida before towing up steep grades in Arizona against competitive trucks. The EcoBoost engine entered the race with the equivalent of 10 years' worth of rugged use, and the Baja 1000 represented the culmination of the F-150 EcoBoost torture test program. The engine that powered the race truck goes next to Ford's powertrain laboratory for a teardown and inspection.

Falken Returns to JK Experience
Falken Tire has announced that it will return as Presenting Sponsor of Off Road Evolution's JK Experience, a weeklong extreme event that promotes and showcases the on- and off-road capabilities of the Jeep Wrangler JK. By being a part of the JK Experience, Falken is able to get real-world exposure in extreme environments for its WildPeak A/T tire. WildPeak is currently available in 44 sizes, up to 37 inches tall, and for 15- to 20-inch wheel diameters in metric and LT metric sizes with many plus-sized applications. In addition to the three-day event in January, called the JK Experience Challenge, the series will expand with a "family-friendly" three-day trip in June along with the traditional week long JK Experience in September. For more information, visit To learn more about the WildPeak A/T, log onto

Quick Hits
BFGoodrich Tires took 17 of the 23 classes in the 43rd Annual Baja 1000 last November, including its 70th overall four-wheel title.

Competing for its third year in a row, General Tire finished strong in the Baja 1000 with a First-Place finish in class 7-2 , a Fourth-Place finish by "Ballistic" B.J. Baldwin in the Trophy Truck class, and a Second-Place finish by Kent Kroeker in Class 8.

The Border Patrol is now utilizing marked Ford F-150 Raptors along the U.S.-Mexico Border-without leather seats.

Legislative Notes
5 Best and Worst Bills of 2010
As the state legislatures closed down their legislative sessions last December, SEMA highlighed the best and worst automotive bills of 2010. While some of these bills were enacted into law, most did not make it through this year and could be reintroduced in future sessions. Keep an eye out, and get ready to help support the best and oppose the worst in 2011!

5 Best
California S.B. 232/A.B. 1740: Seek to remove the 500 per year vehicle limitation and allow for an unlimited number of specially constructed vehicle registrations. Bills were not enacted into law.

Ohio H.B. 199, New York A.B. 2429/S.B. 3547, New Jersey A.B. 448/S.B. 687 and Massachusetts H.B. 4557: Aim to create vehicle registration and titling classifications for street rods and custom vehicles, including kit cars and replicas, and provides for special license plates. The Massachusetts bill was enacted into law. The other three bills were not enacted into law.

Iowa S.F. 2035: Allow an antique vehicle to be registered as a limited-use (1,000 miles annually) antique vehicle for a low $5 fee. Bill was not enacted into law.

Vermont S.B. 237: For the purpose of regulation, includes a provision stipulating that hobbyists maintaining inoperable vehicles on private property are not to be confused with the owners of automobile graveyards. Bill was enacted into law.

Louisiana H.B. 118: Exempts all antique vehicles, defined as 25 years old and older, from the motor vehicle inspection requirements, which include equipment inspections and emissions inspections in certain areas. Bill was enacted into law.

5 Worst
California A.B. 859: Require an annual smog-check inspections for all cars 15 years old and older. Bill was not enacted into law.

Nebraska L.B. 688: Expand the definition of "abandoned motor vehicle" to include project cars and trucks that are left unattended for only six hours on private property without valid plates, title or permit, or that are inoperable, partially dismantled, wrecked, junked or discarded. Bill was not enacted into law.

New York A.B. 1235: Provides that no automotive refinish material labeled "for professional use only" can be sold unless the purchaser demonstrates and meets all local ordinances for the use and application of the material, denying amateur hobbyists the opportunity to paint their own hobby cars. Bill was not enacted into law.

Virginia H.B. 462: Bans the sale of "any aftermarket exhaust system component" that would cause the vehicle to produce undefined "excessive or unusual noise." Bill was not enacted into law.

Washington H.B. 2059: Implement a vehicle scrappage program and provides sales-tax incentives for trade-in vehicles more than 15 years old that do not comply with emissions standards. All trade-in vehicles would be destroyed, regardless of their historical value or collector interest. Bill was not enacted into law.

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