Tow Truck
Can you still tow with a truck that has airbags?
Kevin A.
via e-mail

You can definitely tow a trailer or your boat with an air suspension. In a lot of cases, you can achieve the same load-carrying capability as a stock truck or increase it depending on what size airbag you install and where you position it in relation to the rear axle. For bolt-on applications, we suggest checking out the kits from any of the suspension manufacturers advertising in Sport Truck.

4-6-8 Detonate
The current high gas prices are killing me. I don't know where they're going to stop, but I'm sick of it. I want to keep driving my '91 Chevy S-10, but even the 4.3L V-6 isn't exactly a gas miser. I thought about swapping in a 2.2L inline-four from a similar truck, but I'd still like to have a little more power.

I remember that a neighbor had an '81 Cadillac with a variable-displacement engine. I think it was called the V-8-6-4 or the other way around. Could that technology be adapted to my truck so that it could run as a six-cylinder when I need power and a four-cylinder when I'm cruising the highway?

Would I have to find one of those Cadillacs and take everything related to the system and modify it to fit my truck? Could I adapt the Cadillac system so that I could manually control the number of cylinders firing from the cab? What do you think?
Al Parker
via e-mail

We think that if you're smart enough to figure out all the technology necessary to make a variable-displacement system work on an older truck then you probably have some incredibly high-paying job, so gas prices don't bother you.

Can you remember the last time you saw one of those early-'80s V8-6-4 fuel-injection Cadillacs on the road? We can't, and we don't think you would have much luck finding an intact, working system from one. That engine was a dud. It was rough running and quite unpopular. We think that engine probably set GM back two decades on the variable-displacement concept. The present Displacement on Demand GM engines are very nice, but the same can't be said for those old Caddies.

Even if you could find a Cadillac with all of the components, you'd need to be an electronics genius to make it work. It was a very complex system that had many subsystems involving buffer amplifiers, computer command controls, vehicle speed sensors, ECM programs, etc.

Our suggestion is to keep your V-6 in top tune and drive as smoothly as possible to obtain the optimum mileage your truck is capable of delivering. Don't bother swapping in the 2.2L four-cylinder engine from another S-10 because that is quite possibly the lamest motor on earth. Leaky head gaskets, freeze plugs, and other maladies are quite common with that powerplant. Your 4.3L V-6 is a keeper.

Cop's Ride
Hi Mike,
I wrote you a letter two years ago that you published. In the letter, I apologized to you because as a police officer I was embarrassed that you were targeted by another member of law enforcement and it forced you to sell a project. Well, you told me to keep you updated on my truck. I went on to two-tone the truck and body-drop it. Currently, it's being completely shaved, and a cali combo has been installed. A 56-inch LED is my new brake light, and new paint will be sprayed this month. Thanks!
Darryl Lee
via e-mail

Your truck looks great, Darryl. I have only one question: Have any of your law enforcement brethren pulled you over for those illegal LED taillights yet? -Mike

Got Something To Say?
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700, Anaheim, CA 92806.