The long-standing tradition of the Caddy-clipped GM fullsize truck was given a rejuvenating shot in the arm with Benicio 'Benny' Botello's latest rendition of the trend. Bold and classy are both worthy adjectives for the Escalade front end, which has only seemed to get better with each and every generation since its conception. In the case of Benny's '07 GMC Sierra, we were stopped dead in our tracks by the wild and fluid tribal paint design and its graceful 24-inch wheel-tucking stance—the Escalade conversion just happened to be the icing on the cake. But being from Texas, a territory know for its dense population of some of the finest customs in our scene, Benny acknowledged the significance of executing on a grand scale.
Since Benny was looking to introduce his GMC's frame to the scorching hot, Texas pavement, a call to Ekstensive Metalworks was in order and in no time, Benny had his hands on a set of their custom lower control arms and a two-link wishbone rear kit. With parts in hand, Benny requested the assistance of Willie Rios of 522 Customs, in South Houston, Texas, to ensure proper installation of the quality suspension components. Firestone 'bags have taken up residence at each corner and so have a slick set of 24-inch TIS model 04 wheels and 275/30R24 front and 295/35R24 rear Hankook rubber. To combat the intruding wheel and tire combo underneath the hood, a custom set of wheel tubs needed to be fabbed and fitted. Relocating the battery was also a necessary modification, which didn't pose much of a problem for the more than competent 522 Customs crew.
The battery wasn't the only part to be relocated, however, as the first major exterior component to be pulled from its factory position and moved into Benny's garage was the Sierra's original front clip. The latest and greatest Cadillac Escalade front end was bolted into place, which dramatically changed the GMC's already attractive appearance. A Grant Kustoms steel roll pan has cleaned up the rear for the better and the door handles and gas door were wiped clean off the truck's surface. Wille Rios was again recruited to contribute to the build, but this time to handle the bodywork as well as to spray the Chip Foose Silver and Charcoal Gray colors atop the factory GM black hue. The tribal element of the paint scheme adds a layer of character we don't see all too often, which is definitely one of the truck's major attention-grabbing physical attributes.
Upon further inspection, we found that inside the cab of Benny's Sierra was just as appealing to the senses as the exterior. Pete Cortez, from DK Hypertek Sounds, in Houston, created a unique center console that has been stuffed with a 9-inch monitor, 'bag switches and gauges, and two 12-inch Kicker CVR subs. A Kenwood class D amplifier provides the juice to the dual thumpers and a Bose amp powers the like-branded speakers that have been dropped into the factory locations. Johnny Trevino of JT'z Creationz was brought in to paint and pinstripe the console as well as the smoothed door panels. The headrests and 21/2 inches of the actual seats were shaved off before being dipped in black leather and accented with gray-colored wild crocodile inserts for just the right amount of exotic styling.
In the land of custom trucks, Benny's Caddy-clipped GMC will surely be highly recognizable amidst its peers given its striking style and class. The truck's progress was considered final once Benny aired out his truck at the '09 Texas Showdown, but the road to that stage was long and tedious since the truck seemed to be a magnet for roll pan denting, paint scratching road debris. Benny would like to thank Willie Rios and 522 Customs, DK Hypertek Sounds, JT'Z Creationz, and the crew at Monument Chevrolet for their constant support.