Sport-Tuned Suspension
I just got the June '03 issue. You're doing a great job; keep it up. My question is about the sport-tuned suspension article on page 80. I see you used a set of Tokico Trek Master shocks. Are they the same length shock as you would use on a stock-height truck, or are they shorter since the truck was dropped 2/4? I have an '01 Silverado and plan on dropping it the same way, so any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
Jodie Rhodes, Bossier City, Louisiana

Because the ride height adjustment on this particular truck was relatively minor, we were able to use the stock-length shock on this application. When you lower your truck, be sure to use appropriately sized bumpstops, such as the ones supplied in the Hotchkis Performance suspension kit. Bumpstops that don't provide enough suspension travel will destroy the shock valves as well as the vehicle's ride quality.

First Truck
I'm a 15-year-old sport truck enthusiast and I want to buy my first truck soon. I am wondering what would be a good base truck for my sport truck project. I only have $3,500 to spend on the truck itself (not including aftermarket products). I also don't want to have to replace the engine or anything big immediately. I mostly want to use this truck for cruisin' and light drag racing.
Adam, via e-mail

Most entry-level truck buyers look at either a Chevy S-10 or Ford Ranger for their first ride. Some of the import models are affordable as well. Try and get one with a V-6 if you want to drag race it on Friday or Saturday night. More than likely, however, depending upon what part of the country you're from, that $3,500 will end up buying you a high-mile standard cab four-cylinder stick shift. If you play your cards right, you can get the truck for around $2,500 and have a grand left for upgrades. These trucks are great platforms for building a killer custom, but they won't turn any heads at the dragstrip. If you're looking for something with a little more power, you might also look into buying an American classic, such as a '67-'72 Chevy. Most are V-8-powered, and there are a lot of parts available for them in both salvage yards and on the custom market.

Best-Looking Model - Ever
Congratulations on the best-looking model (Haley Campbell, Feb. '04 issue) to date. I never did think they were a necessary part of ST, but If you're gonna have them, she's the one to have. Some of them are, uh, should we say, a little rough around the edges - or at the least, overly made up.
John Parker, Member, Chevy Avalanche Fan Club of North America

All the credit for the choice of model - good, bad, or ugly - goes to Feature Editor John O'Neill. For the most part, he's had pretty good taste. But in a lot of cases, you don't know exactly what some girls will look like on film until they show up for the photo shoot. Thanks for the kudos. What, no comment about our lifted Avalanche in October, since you're a member of the Chevy Avalanche Fan Club? What gives?

Regular Cab Ss Silverado?
Is Chevrolet ever going to produce the regular cab SS 6.0L engine pickup it debuted at the SEMA show last year? If the company isn't going to produce it and sell to the general public, then I will have to rebuild my old '90 SS454. I have no intention of purchasing the extended cab, totally loaded, all-wheel-drive SS. I want a truck that will go out and run with, if not beat, the Ford Lightning.
Bob Smith, via e-mail

According to the folks at GM, there are no immediate plans to release a standard cab version of the Silverado SS. In fact, the company did a lot of market research when developing the Silverado SS, which indicated most folks wanted an extended cab model. That was also one of the criticisms of the original Lightning when it debuted. We agree with you, however, in that a performance pickup should be based on a standard cab model. Apparently, the folks at Dodge seem to agree, as the SRT-10 Viper-powered Ram is a standard cab pickup. However, Joe Gibbs, three-time Super Bowl-winning coach and NASCAR Winston Cup Team owner, has come up with his own version of a standard cab SS Silverado, which we got to road-test. Check out the full story on page 42. By the way, these truck are for sale through selected GM dealers with full warranties. And when you buy the truck, let us know how much you want for the '90 SS 454.