When it comes to husband and wife projects, the natural thought process would lead us to picture something fairly domesticated. After all, men and women seem to only do “together” projects when the subject matter turns to the family domicile. It usually starts out as a nice Saturday going to Home Depot to buy some wallpaper, maybe some flooring, and stuff like that. Then, if there is enough time, maybe Bed Bath & Beyond.
For Jordan and Samantha McManus of Spring, Texas, quality time together has a whole different meaning. If you believe the old adage about families that play together stay together, then the McManus clan has a bright future. Jordan leads the charge with his '03 Chevy Silverado 1500HD. It probably would have been easier to start with a standard 1500, but Jordan wanted to keep the heavy-duty appearance of the 8-lugs. Chaotic Rods & Customs in Conroe, Texas, is credited with getting this heavy hauler down in the dirt by building one-off upper and lower control arms, raising the front K-member, and installing the ever popular Texas two-link. Firestone 2500 and 2600 airbags set the truck down on the frame, but that wasn't enough. To really make the Intro Vista wheels and Nitto tires tuck hard, a 2½-inch body drop was added for that perfect stance.
Plenty of custom bodywork was performed by Chaotic Rods to make this truck a standout at any show. As a start to the truck's new look, a Cadillac Escalade nose was combined with shaved door handles, and the rear doors were converted to swing suicide fashion. Under normal circumstances, those modifications would be deemed plenty, but major emphasis on the sheetmetal work was placed rearward. Chaotic's talented crew basically turned the tail end of the Silverado into a Cadillac CTS. Blending the lines between custom and crazy, the Chevy's taillights were ditched in favor of 2011 Cadillac CTS sedan versions, while the fully functional tailgate now draws its appearance from the same car's trunk. A completely original roll pan was grafted on and sports the ultra-cool exhaust tip from a Cadillac CTS coupe. Bringing the look together is a sea of glossy black paint brought to life by negative-over-positive silver flame licks.
Black paint across the smoothed dash allows the inside and outside to match. Four buckets make cruising a pleasure, while the leather and suede add a touch of class. A custom center console runs the length of the interior and houses the Kicker 10-inch subwoofer components. Additional Kicker speakers inhabit the crew cab's four doors. Kenwood screens are housed in the dash and front headrests should the McManus crew desire a mobile movie show in full surround sound. The whole shebang is detailed for style and topped off with a flamed Intro steering wheel and matching flamed pedals.
Jordan didn't slack in the power department either. The 6.0L LQ4 under the hood sports solid performance numbers. Inside the block, a high lift Texas Speed cam opens and closes the valves residing in the Stage 2.5 Patriot heads from a GM 5.3L. The smaller chambers allowed a bump in compression and power. A Trailblazer SS gave up its intake and throttle body, while long-tube Pacesetter headers and a stainless Borla exhaust allow the engine to breathe properly. A Circle D 3200-stall converter gets the power down to the narrowed 12-bolt axle fit with 3.73 gears and an Auburn limited slip.
Jordan originally built the truck to pull the fully tricked-out '09 Suzuki Hayabusa designed to pay tribute to the passing of his younger brother, Patrick McManus. With a 330mm rear tire, stretched swing arm, and its own air suspension, the Hayabusa matches the truck in every way—and that includes the laying low trailer the Suzuki rides on. What's with the Cadillac you ask? Well, that belongs to Jordan's better half, Samantha McManus. Not one to shy away from the spotlight, Samantha's build on her '09 CTS-V sedan mimics everything we come across in the truck world. After sustaining some damage due to an errant valet driver, it was decided that Chaotic Rods should add a V-Power hood and air suspension. When the 20-inch Vossen wheels were found to be too wide to fit under the 'bagged fenders, Chaotic was again chosen to make things fit by creating widebody rear quarter panels. The Cadillac is supercharged, but that didn't mean Samantha was happy with the power. To make driving the four-door more fun, a D3 heat exchanger, Airaid cold-air intake, and full Stainless Works exhaust system combine to allow Samantha to blast past the other moms transporting their offspring around town. The Cadillac's black exterior received a silver stripe to add a racier appearance and allow the car to match the Silverado and Hayabusa. After all, the family that plays together stays together.
Inside the Build
Year Make Model:
2003 Chevy Silverado 1500HD
Owner and City/State:
Jordan McManus • Spring, Texas
Type: 6.0L LQ4
Heads: Patriot 5.3L Stage 2.5
Cam: Texas Speed MS3
Induction: Trailblazer SS 90mm throttle body
Exhaust: Pacesetter headers, Borla 3-inch exhaust
Fuel System: Trailblazer SS 32-pound injectors
Ignition: Taylor plug wires
Built By: Vette Tech • Katy, Texas
Transmission: 4L80E with Circle D 3200 RPM converter
Rearend: Narrowed 12-bolt with 3.73 gears
Front Suspension: Chaotic Rods control arms, Firestone 2500 airbags
Rear Suspension: Chaotic Rods Texas two-link, Firestone 2600 airbags
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: Intro Twisted Vista 22x9-inch (F) and 22x10½-inch (R)
Tires: Nitto NT420S 265/35R22 (F) and 285/30R22 (R)