Everyone wants a toy, whether you are a five-year-old in the toy store or an adult hunting for the perfect automobile. For off-roaders, a toy can be anything from a pit bike to a sand rail, but for Steve Monarrez, it is on a whole new level.
We first saw Monarrez’s blue prerunner on our Facebook feed. To us, the truck looked like it belonged on the grass during a Concours d’Elegance; and did we mention that it’s California street-legal?
How It All Began
It’s no easy feat crafting a vehicle at home both in a show ‘n shine and the open desert. Monarrez’s prerunner started on a 2015 Desert Dynamics Class 1 chassis. “I wanted to build the best truck out there,” Monarrez said. “One thing led to another, and I ended up with the truck as it sits.”
The vehicle started as a bare frame. It was purchased for $17,000 and took three years to get it to the point to its final form. The number of hours that have been put into the truck are unknown (and better to not be thought about).
Seeing the truck in action was incredible. It looked amazing sitting still, but it looked even better in action.
“I have always been into anything automotive,” Monarrez explained. “I have owned Famous Tire Co. for 15 years, have five kids, and an awesome wife, but the love for the automobile started at a young age with going way too fast!”
Off-roading is a family affair for the Monarrezes. It only made sense to build a four-seat prerunner, one which the entire family could enjoy. “I have always loved going fast with friends and family where there’s no speed limit,” Monarrez said.
The truck looked at home in the dirt, going around tight turns with ease.
Monarrez owns such cars as a BMW M6 and 1,200-horsepower C7 Corvette, but there is something special about a prerunner with a supercharger sticking out of the back. The attention to detail on the truck was definitely worth a closer look.
Pretty In Blue
In a truck that has over $200,000 in it, you can imagine the time and labor that went into creating it. It is more than just buying parts; it is also the people that pieced the truck together. R3 Fabrication, Eversen Performance, Famous Tire Co., Off Road Dynamics, Steven Stafford, New Image, and Pass Auto Center all had a hand in building the prerunner.
How could this view not catch your eye?
The first part of the truck we had to check out was the back. Here, the chrome glistening in the sun like a trophy on a mantle, but it could have been the big blower sitting on top of the motor.
Monarrez equipped with a built LS2, L92 worked heads, 618 lift cam, and a 3.8-liter Whipple Supercharger that was put together by The Blower Shop. The roar of the beast can be heard through a ceramic coated exhaust with electric cutouts. The motor attaches to a Fortin four-speed transmission and uses 934 CV axles. Inside, the Pro-Am shifter gets the vehicle up and going.
A blower and electric cutouts – does it get any better? The sound of the truck was noticeably different with them open. Having them closed just wasn't as good.
Keeping the motor and supercharger cooled are big intercoolers, fans, and plenty of custom mounting. You will not see another one like this out there.
The outside of the prerunner was something in itself. The truck had custom fiberglass with 2016 BMW blue paint. The fiberglass was worked to incorporate two different kits. At one point the vehicle did have an older one-piece, but the change to convert to the 2015 Silverado made the need for custom work. It is now a one-off Fiberwerx kit, with some heavy modifications by Steven Stafford.
The Desert Dynamics chassis is TIG welded and the Off Road Dynamics control arms give the truck one heck of a stance. Sway-A-Way coilovers and triple-bypass shocks sit in all four corners.
Raceline Monster wheels wrapped in 37-inch Toyo RT put the power to the ground. Stopping a truck with this much power could be difficult in the desert, but with 14-inch vented rotors and six-piston calipers on all corners, the task becomes easier.
The truck came with control arms, but the redesigned Off Road Dynamics arms suit the build much better.
The outside of the truck may look good, but the interior is just as nice. It features full-custom double-stitched door panels, headliner, dash, and center console. Keeping passengers comfortable while driving are PRP carbon fiber seats and a killer Alpine sound system to get the party going no matter the adventure.
Everywhere we looked, the detail was there. The truck may be out of many people’s price range, but the truck gave us all something to strive for.
The interior on this desert toy seemed like something seen in a sports car.
For someone getting into off-road, Monarrez had some input. “It doesn’t matter how it’s built, it will break,” he said. “Go out with friends, learn, learn some more, and then build your vehicle.”
The vehicle is up for sale currently, but if no one picks it up, Monarrez says that he will enjoy another desert season with it. If you are out in any of the Southern California deserts and you see this one-of-a-kind prerunner, be sure to check it out.