Looking at the photos of this month's Jet Green cover truck instantly reminded us of a truck that forever left its mark on the custom truck world. Appearing on our cover in May of 2002, "First Strike," as it was called by owner and builder Mitch Diamond, had everyone with an '88-'98 Chevy or GMC scrambling to buy the futuristic front end he designed. Painting the '95 Chevy House of Kolor Lime Time Green was brilliant because Mitch's front grille and bumper made the fullsize truck look more like a fullsize alien than a pickup. The First Strike Designs grille shell gave the custom headlight covers a canted, almost pissed-off appearance, and the Trenz billet grille filled the open voids with style. OE-style front end conversions were popular back then, and still are as this month’s cover truck can attest, but this front end treatment really got people buzzing.
Out back, more sheetmetal wizardry was performed with a custom roll pan, softened body edges, and Mitch even went as far as widening the bed 6 inches to easily stuff the 20x10-inch Intro Pentia wheels with a deep lip. Can you see trends coming full circle? Airbags and a 2½-inch body drop brought the bright green monster on terra firma and keeping with the aggressive theme, he installed a tuned-port–injected 350ci V-8 out of a '92 Camaro. The engine received Gibson headers and tons of Street and Performance billet and chrome accessories. Inside the standard cab, leather-covered Recaro seats were split by a painted fiberglass center console. Behind the seats, a Kicker sub was mounted in a custom enclosure.
Of course, we'd be remiss not to mention the paint-matched '96 Honda CBR900RR motorcycle that perfectly fit in the diamond-plated bed length-wise thanks to a notch cutout in the bulkhead of the bed. Some guys try really hard to build a truck that reminds them of a former cover truck, but First Strike stands in a league of its own—no carbon copies need apply. Even though nearly 10 years have passed since it graced our cover, First Strike is still on the show circuit, as it was sold to a new owner who’s goal is to restore the Chevy back to its original glory. We can’t wait to check out all of those crazy details in person all over again.