It's a simple case of give and take. Compromising is something custom truck owners know too much about, but for Theresa Contreras of San Dimas, California, she wanted a show-quality Raptor that could withstand a weekend-long beating at the dunes. Yes, you read that right. This Baja-ready beast doesn't belong to some 4x4-loving dude, and yes, unless you're in a trophy truck, she'll probably walk the dog on you in the sand, dirt, or mud. Humility is a beautiful thing.
Starting with a new Raptor, Theresa used the resources at her disposal to create an off-road rocket. Thankfully, those resources are rich in experience, skill, and talent. As one of the owners of L&G Enterprises in San Dimas, she's surrounded by more than 30 years of custom truck and custom paint experience. Unlike most projects where the suspension is immediately dismantled, Theresa began with what she knows best, the paint and body. Rather than bolt on ready-made bumpers for the truck, L&G partnered with their sister company, the Custom Truck Shop, to create an entire line of Raptor parts. Up front, the tube bumper gives the frontend a wider look, while accommodating a 30-inch Rigid LED lightbar and a sheetmetal skidplate from R&I Industries. Fabricated side bars can be used to step up into the truck and also provide a protective barrier against rocks and rough debris. Out back, a Street Scene steel roll pan is used to clean up the body lines and capped off with a matching tubular bumper from the Custom Truck Shop. The overall look is custom, functional, and doesn't detract from the factory Ford body lines. Anticipating desert off-road excursions, the bed was equipped with a Custom Truck Shop bed cage with full-size spare tire holder, and bedside mounts for a gas can and Rampage Products toolbox that mimics a traditional five-gallon jerrycan.
Inside L&G's down-draft paint booth, Luis Acosta applied PPG Envirobase Platinum Grey Mica to the body, and Theresa and her sister, Sarah, masked off the graphics and sprayed a Tungsten Metallic fade over the top. Theresa then airbrushed the street and off-road tire tread to showcase the dual purpose of this 4WD monster. A stark contrast to the grey hues, Theresa taped off two accent lines in her trademark Bright Yellow, which instantly brought a sense of motion to the F-150. Subtle touches, such as custom-painted emblems, smoked lights, and door handles lend a truly unique look to the overall aesthetics. A not-so-subtle mod, Theresa airbrushed the Raptor logo on the bedsides, helping to instantly identify the truck (as if there were any confusion).
Icon Vehicle Dynamics full line of suspension upgrades for the Raptor are bolted in place
Airbrushed all over the Raptor, Theresa added street and off-road tire tread patterns to s
Thanks to the 2.9L Whipple supercharger, the 6.2L makes a whopping 508 rwhp.
A paint-matched sub enclosure houses a 10-inch Realm subwoofer and Scosche amp.
With the form handled, Theresa switched her focus to function. Long time Lead Tech Luis Figeroua at Custom Truck Shop was enlisted to bolt on the very best Raptor suspension components from Icon Vehicle Dynamics. As the official pace truck of the Lucas Oil Regional Off-Road Racing Series, Theresa is happy to report her Raptor handles the dirt track course's jumps and high-speed turns with ease. After minor trimming, the F-150 was able to clear 37-inch Toyo Mud Terrain tires wrapped around 20-inch BMF M-80 wheels with modified Raceline beadlocks. Smoking those 37-inch muds is a 6.2L boosted to well over 630 flywheel horsepower via a 2.9L Whipple supercharger. Exhaust is routed through a CGS Motorsports after-cat system, and Whipple handled the custom ECU tune. Out of the hole in loose sand, packed dirt, and pavement, we haven't seen a faster Raptor (to see a side-by-side drag racing video down in Mexico, check out www.truckinweb.com and search "Mexico").
Inside the Raptor's SuperCrew doors, the theme of form meeting function was once again paramount. Rogelio's Auto Upholstery in Baldwin Park, California, took care of wrapping the seats in a textured grey vinyl with brushed aluminum border featuring silver grommets. The look perfectly matches the rough and rugged grey exterior yet isn't over-the-top enough to make Theresa feel bad for hopping into the truck after a long day of off-roading. L&G and the Custom Truck Shop fabricated and painted custom door panel inserts, smoothed and painted many of the interior plastics, and Theresa airbrushed the Raptor logo on the passenger-side dash. SSV Works in Agoura Hills, California, installed a Pioneer head unit, Scosche EFX components in each door, and built a box under the rear seat housing two Scosche EFX amps and a 10-inch Realm sub. Leaving no stone unturned, Theresa custom painted the hidden enclosure to match the rest of the Raptor.
For our photo shoot, Theresa drove the Raptor from Southern California to Cabo San Lucas. Getting there several hours faster than the GPS indicated, she then proceeded to jump it, flog it, and then turn around and drive it back—all without incident. As an everyday driver, this Baja-ready Raptor can kick up a trail of dust at a moment's notice. She was quick to thank her team at L&G, the Custom Truck Shop, her family, Whipple, Street Scene, Toyo, CGS, and PPG for the support.
Inside the Build
Year Make Model: 2011 Ford SVT Raptor
Owner and City/State: Theresa Contreras • San Dimas, California
Type: 6.2L SOHC V-8
Induction: Whipple 2.9L supercharger, 172mm Crusher throttle body, high-flow filter
Exhaust: CGS Motorsports after-cat
Fuel System: High-flow 63-pound injectors
Engine Management: Whipple Superchargers ECU tune
Output: 508 rwhp and 492 lb-ft
Built by: Whipple Superchargers
Transmission: SelectShift six-speed Auto
Rearend: Electronic locker with 4.10 gears
Front suspension: Icon Vehicle Dynamics Stage 3 2-inch lift kit, with new Uniball upper A-arms, 3.0 remote-reservoir coilover
Rear suspension: Atlas leaf springs, Icon Vehicle Dynamics 3.0 PiggyBack reservoir bypass shock
Brakes: Factory Raptor
Wheels & Tires:
Wheels: 20x9 BMF M-80 Stealth finish with custom-machined Raceline beadlocks
Tires: 37x13.50R20 Toyo Open Country M/T