Under the hood is pure, supercharged muscle. Whipple Superchargers, through Ford Racing, offers a complete bolt-on supercharger system that dramatically bumps up the horsepower and torque of the factory 5.4L V-8 by as much as 50-percent across the entire powerband. The company's 140ci supercharger is good for 475 hp at the crankshaft, and resulting in, 395 hp at the rear wheels. That power figure is without modifications, but we added a complete MagnaFlow aftercat polished, stainless-steel exhaust system to provide extra punch with rear-exiting stainless-steel exhaust tips. The new, dual 2-1/2-inch system added just the right finishing touch to the underside of our truck.

With the underside and performance aspects covered, it was time to deliver the F-150 to the paint specialists at L&G Enterprises in San Dimas, California. Lead artist, Theresa Contreras, took over and worked her magic to the topside of the Ford's stock, black sheetmetal. Also fit to the truck, were SSE's entire catalog of new polyurethane components including 3-inch fender flares, roll pan with a hidden trailer hitch, a tailgate handle relocator kit, smoothed bedrail caps, front fender vents, windshield wiper cowl, cowl induction hood, Cal-Vu Street Smart electric mirrors, Speed Grille lower front bumper valance, and Speed Grille shell-fit with black chrome inserts-and large, 5-inch round, off-road lights. The other major body modification that usually goes undetected to the untrained eye was the new Ford Explorer door handles. The factory F-150 handles were gaudy and didn't work with our graphic scheme. L&G Enterprises worked its magic by swapping out the factory door handles and accommodating our wishes. They also shaved all of the factory emblems and then went to work on adding the cool, red hues courtesy of House of Kolor (HOK). Over the factory black, Theresa applied HOK Blue-Blood Red for the bottom dark red, followed with HOK Kosmos Red with pearl, as the accent red, and HOK Black with red pearl for the additional graphic stripe that appears translucent in the sun. It simply has to be seen to capture its essence. All of the graphics and pinstripe lines were expertly wrapped through the doorjambs with precision. Sitting atop the trucks bed is a SnugTop SnugLid SL and the underside plays host to a carpeted Bedrug from Wise Industries.

While the truck was still drying, the interior was gutted and the seats were delivered to Classic Soft Trim, whose Roadwire aftermarket seat division transformed our stock, black-cloth seats into leather. The new black with red inserts are supple to the touch, and do an expert job of complementing the L&G Enterprises HOK Blue Blood Red painted dash inserts, center console, and door panel speakers. Numerous interior pieces-including the center dash pod inserts and door lock switch plates-were sent out to Phoenix Imaging for a bleached wood hydrographics accent. While awaiting their return, the truck was sent to the audio kings at Audio Innovations in Glendora, California. Once there, Joe Provenzano worked over the stock headliner with black vinyl and red accent stripes that added just the perfect finishing touches to the inside look. Also added was a complete Clarion double-din system MAX675VD MP3/CD/DVD/Navigation system that came with an Apple iPod hookup, which, was installed with a new 80-gig iPod. It was housed in a special, screwless billet aluminum iTector protective housing. In addition, four replacement Clarion SRC5796 5x7-inch plate speakers are powered by dual four-channel APX4360 amplifiers that were wired into the system. The coup de gras was the large custom subwoofer box, which was housed under the rear bench seat, and fit with dual PXW1251 12-inch Clarion subwoofers. For rear, movie-viewing pleasure, a pair of 7-inch color LCD headrest monitors were installed. Rounding out the audio and visuals, a Visualogic back-up camera was mounted to the rear license plate.

To see both of our F-150 and SSE's Expeditions rolling down the street, or sitting in the SSE booth during the SEMA Show, was a spectacle all of its own. The SSE booth won a special Ford Design award-primarily because of the unique L&G custom paint schemes, but it was the overall attention to detail that truly captivated peoples attention. Both vehicles were clean and not graphically gaudy. It was a timeless testament to two great combined resources, Truckin' magazine and SSE working together. Now, onto the next project.