We're willing to admit it: A lot of our features are show-only vehicles. There's nothing wrong with that. But we always like to see a double-duty truck that's just as much at home on the showgrounds as it is on the road as a daily driver. Cory Lyons built his '99 Tahoe as a driver first and a show truck second. In fact, he wasn't afraid to drag it the day everything was completed.
While he's just 21 years old, Cory has been a fan of hot rods and custom trucks for quite a while, so he wanted to build a truck that was inspired by classic custom styling. With plenty of experience building head-turning and show-winning trucks, Hill's Hot Rods in Lubbock, Texas, was chosen to drop the Tahoe using Belltech 2-inch spindles and Firestone 'bags in the front, and more bags and trailing arms in the back. Cory controls ride height in the cab thanks to switches in the center console, with GC450 valves sending air via 1/2-inch lines. To make room for the 10-inch-wide Bonspeed Clutch wheels, the guys at Hill's tubbed the rear wheelwells. In the search for more clearance and a lower stance, they also raised the factory gas tank 1-1/2 inches and threw in a super C-notch to get the Tahoe laying frame.
The Tahoe wouldn't be much of a custom without some body mods, so Hill's Hot Rods smoothed the body for paint by shaving all of the door handles, the antenna, taillights, roof rack, third brake light, and the gas door. Of course, you can't have an ugly old bumper on a custom, so a Sir Michael's roll pan was welded and smoothed into the body. That just leaves the Escalade clip that was grafted onto the Tahoe body and equipped with a Trenz billet grille and finished up with an '02 GMC bumper that was sectioned three inches. With all of the pieces in place, smoothed and prepped for the grand finale, Jason Hill sprayed the truck with PPG black and champagne, with PPG Passion Purple and Auto Air Rockstar Red graphics.
Keeping things local, Cory called upon Fisher Trim and Vision Audio (both in Lubbock, Texas) to give his Tahoe an interior befitting its custom exterior. Fisher Trim removed the headrests from the factory seats, both front and rear, and installed Katzkin leather all around. To match the exterior paint scheme, adobe leather was accented with black ostrich inserts. Vision Audio finished things off with a fiberglass sub enclosure built around the wheeltub that holds two 10-inch Total Mobile Audio subs and two TMA T5001 amps. Four 6-1/2-inch TMA separates are powered by TMA T360-2 amps, and everything is controlled by a Pioneer CD/DVD head unit.
Cory's Tahoe is the perfect example of a good-looking truck that is wild enough to turn heads wherever it goes without sacrificing, dare we say it, practicality. Cory would like to thank his mom and the rest of his family for all the help he received during the Tahoe's build. He's also grateful for all of the hard work that everyone put into building his latest ride, including Jason Hill, Randall Tharpe, Curtis Miller, Mark Spencer from Hill's Hot Rods, and Jimmy Davis and the rest of the crew at Vision Audio, as well as Fisher Trim. We suppose he thanked the guys at Hill's Hot Rods on the day he picked up his Tahoe and took them dragging in it. Hey, it beats leaving it in the garage.
Bonspeed Clutch wheels, all 22 inches of them, make a modern hot-rod statement with help f
The stock seats got the Katzkin treatment, while the stock center console features a gauge