2005 Chevrolet Silverado SS - Wakeboard Wildness
Wakeboarder Tino Santori regularly climbs and drops 5,000 feet in elevation, but not while being towed behind a boat. The Denver native spends much of his time in Orlando, Florida, where he trains and competes in wakeboarding competitions. Of course, he does make the trek back to the Mile High City from time to time. He drives from a state with a max elevation of 345 feet to a city that reaches a lung-chilling 5,431 feet and races there in his 2005 Chevrolet Silverado SS. That truck comes out of the box big, black, and bold, but that wasn't good enough. We teamed with one of his sponsors, General Motors, to give his truck a makeover. Check it out.
A lot of companies and shops helped out on this project, and we want to give credit where credit is due. So, we've listed them all in a sidebar in this story with contact info for anybody interested in learning more about what's on this truck.
Ready for the grand tour of Tino's Silverado SS? Let's start with the suspension. The truck already comes with the slightly lowered Z60 high-performance package, so we left that alone. We tossed out the 20-inch factory wheels, however, and bolted on a new set of KMC Backseat 22-inch wheels colored black to match the truck. We got these fresh off the boat and onto the truck as soon as possible. Toyo offered up high-performance, Proxes S/T 305/45R22 tires that allow the 22s to fit without rubbing.
The stock Silverado SS is supposed to hint at a certain musclecar menace. But a GHG-117 Ram Air Good Hood and AG117 front bumper cover from Keystone Restyling give the Silverado a gaping mouth and nostrils that flare as they suck in air. Yeah, there's a gap in the bumper, because the Keystone grille we got made for it doesn't yet match the upper grille. (Oops.) It'll get on there, though. And there was the small incident of a fender bender that necessitated the replacement of the bumper cover and some extreme generosity on Keystone's part. In the engine compartment, the factory 6.0L V-8 is augmented by an air intake from AEM that features the company's new DryFlow air filter that doesn't require oiling. Add to that a Hypertech Power Programmer III that can tune the truck in minutes. A pair of GP500 exhaust headers from Gibson Performance Exhaust evacuate waste gases to the dual-port exhaust system that exits behind each rear wheel.
The interior of the stock Silverado SS has the LT trim level. We preserved the SS's charcoal gray color scheme but added some electronic brightwork. Flip down the visors and you'll see small video monitors. (Why, no, officer, that's not a TV; it's an electric mirror.) Two Directed Electronics headrest monitors beam video entertainment to anyone who feels like squishing onto the backseats. Underneath the rear bench is a grip of audio courtesy of Kicker's Livin' Loud install team. A custom fiberglass enclosure is straddled by two SX Series amplifiers that overlook three square-coned Solo-Baric L7 subwoofers mounted in the enclosure so that they fire toward the front row. In the doors are KS5 component speakers that pump the mid and high ranges. A Clarion DXZ955MC multimedia head unit with retractable touch screen and music-catch digital recorder sources the audio and video system.
On to the boat: Tagging along behind the pickup is a 2006 Tig 24V colored black, slashed by a storm gray swoop, and tattooed with gray and yellow tribal graphics. It's a 24-footer equipped with a wakeboard tower and seating for 16. A GM Vortec 380hp 6.0L powers the boat through the water at a rumbly, wake-rocking speed of 48 mph. That's an upgrade from the standard 5.7L motor. The hull is designed with a convex shape that displaces more water and therefore kicks up a more impressive wake and apparently makes the hull handle better and more fuel efficient. Kicker is an audio supplier for Tig and equipped the boat with the Tower of Power package plus a speaker and amp upgrade. All that includes a Clarion Marine head unit, which has AM/FM/CD/Sirius satellite radio, driving the Kicker RS component speakers, driver's remote, four tower speakers in custom cans, two KX amplifiers, and two square Solo-Baric L7 subwoofers.
We only got Tino started on this boat/truck combo. Luckily, cash and sponsors have a way of finding a successful competitor. No doubt this rig will be a work in progress for Tino as he continues to stomp his wakeboarding career.
Thanks to the following sponsors who committed to helping out but that we couldn't get into the project: En Fuego (vinyl graphics) and Autoloc (lambo doors, flamethrower, door handle shave kit). We'll get their products on another project.
Thanks to the following vendors and shops whose products and services did make it onto the truck and boat:
HypertechBartlett, TN 38133
ClarionCypress, CA 90630
KickerStillwater, OK 74076
Gibson Performance ExhaustCorona, CA 92879
KMC Wheel Co.Riverside, CA 92507
Hatch's Auto Body & Paint
Keystone Restyling Products
Rhodes Auto Works (RAW)