Jeff Cunningham of Barrie, Ontario, wanted a cus-tom-built truck like the ones he sees in the pages of Truckin' but didn't often see them in his home province. Maybe Canadians have different tastes in vehicles or maybe they prefer a different medium to exercise their creative talent. Whatever the case, Jeff proved that our neighbors to the north definitely have the know-how to build show-quality trucks. He didn't have to look too far before he found several quality shops up to the task of building a top-quality truck.
Jeff started with a 1998 Dodge Dakota and handed his machine off to Xtreme Customs in Burlington, Ontario, for a laundry list of body mods. A Street Scene Generation II bumper cover started off the customization, followed by a shaved antenna, taillights, door handles, drip rails, tailgate handle, and gas door. With the body already much cleaner, the crew at Xtreme got to work installing IPCW headlights, Cadillac taillights, and a Watson's Street Works 15-inch LED third brake light to keep any gawkers from rear-ending Jeff's pride and joy. Next, the gas filler was relocated inside the bed, and the wheel openings were flared and moved up three inches to make room for the wheels that Jeff had in mind. Wrapping up the bodywork is a custom roll pan fabbed up by the guys at Xtreme Customs. What you can't see, and what allows this Dakota to lay so low, is the revised exhaust and the notch in the rear of the cab that allows for drivetrain clearance. With the body fully prepped by Xtreme Customs, the Dakota got a few coats of Spectra Blue Mica (a factory Toyota Celica color), the factory Dakota silver, and House of Kolor Tangelo Pearl, all applied by Ron Gibbs.
Once the truck had room for wheels, Jeff commissioned another Burlington, Ontario, shop (Underworld Customs) to bring the truck down to earth. Stock spindles combined with Firestone 2600-lb airbags allow the front to rest 9 inches lower, while the rear uses the same airbags and a custom triangulated four-link with a C-notched frame to get the same result. Now the truck finally had the right stance to fill the wheelwells up front with 18x8-inch Boze Twisted Fatal 6 wheels shod in 235/40ZR18 Kumho Ecsta Supras. The rear got 255/35ZR20s and matching Boze wheels.