— A UTV in disguise custom build —
Rugged Radios has come up with some really wild builds to showcase Rugged’s products, including the Baja Bug RZR (September 2016), Willy’s Jeep Polaris General (July 2017), Manx Beach Buggy RZR Turbo (January 2017) and the Warrior Maverick X3. Rugged’s latest rolling billboard is this wild Milner ’32 Coupe from the cult classic American Graffiti. At first glance the build looks like a Ford 1932 Coupe street rod, but it’s actually a stretched 2018 Polaris RZR XP Turbo with a fiberglass body, complete with a trunk lid by County Line Rods and installed on the stretched and chopped XP chassis (with a six-point cage) by NVFab’s Nick Valentine, who also did the other Rugged builds.
The XP Turbo was stretched a foot and retains its rear-engine 925cc ProStar with an aftermarket Boondocker Turbo, which produces 200 horsepower at 20 pounds of boost (Boondocker also powered the Baja Bug). For a totally realistic build, the ’32 Coupe sports a plastic display 350-cubic-inch engine up front, complete with headers, valve covers, and an intake manifold with carburetors. Remove the right-front velocity stack to fill the gas tank, which is actually the oil pan converted into an 8-gallon fuel cell. The fiberglass radiator cowling hides the radiator and intercooler, and KC Hilites 8-inch Rally lights really add to the off-road hot-rod. The bright yellow paint by Grossini’s Auto Body and Paint and antique-distressed Rugged Radios garage decals by Wolf Designs keep the ’60s replica real. The build even has a retractable soft top by Legacy Products.
INSIDE THE RETRO INTERIOR
The dash blends the retro ’32 look with state-of-the-art electronics, including Rugged Radios’ waterproof 25-watt UHF/VHF radio and RRP660 Plus intercom, XP Turbo digital instrument cluster and switches, XTC turn-signal kit and toggle switches for the KC Hilites lights. The steering wheel is by Assault Industries with a quick-connect kit, and the bench seat is a custom PRP with PRP four-point harnesses. The panel behind the seat got tuck-n-roll upholstery, and the plastic console was replaced by a sectional metal tunnel with a custom piston shifter for the Polaris dual-range CVT. Leather panels inside the ’32 Coupe doors have leather, elastic-top storage compartments.
SUSPENSION AND ROLLING STOCK
The sand-surfing ’32 had to have trick suspension that could pass as a classic hot rod, so Rugged owner Greg Cottrell called on Hammer King Shannon Campbell’s RuffStuff to supply trailing and dual front A-arms, which got a healthy chrome coating. The ZP1K and Turbo kit is $3500 and is constructed of 4130 chromoly 0.120-wall tubing and 0.188-inch plates, 7075 aluminum and 300M materials. Hardware includes 3/4- and 5/8-inch heat-treated chromoly heim joints, stainless steel, heat-treated 5/8- and 7/8-inch Uniballs housed in chromoly cups, and both 3/4- and 7/8-inch knuckle and steering pins. The RuffStuff suspension kit also includes Grade 8 and 10.9 bolts. This kit won the King of the Hammers UTV race, so you know it can handle the dunes!
Walker Evans Racing’s 2.5 needle shocks with true dual-rate springs, cross-over adjusters and performance upgrades work with the RuffStuff RZR XP long-travel suspension kit, which also has chromed high-clearance lower front arms and link rods for an extra 3 inches of ground clearance. Sandcraft supplied the custom driveline, which is required because of the 12-inch stretch. Sandcraft’s Turbo Upgrade driveline combo includes a Sandcraft carrier bearing, larger U-joints, yokes and tubing starting at $1100. Brakes are upgraded with a Hayes master cylinder and hubs with a Chevy six-bolt pattern are by Zollinger Race Products.
For the UTV Takeover, the ’32 Coupe sported 15-inch Raceline Chrome Smoothies fitted with GMZ 30×13-15 front and 16-paddle 30×15-15 Sand Strippers. For general off-road use and street burn-outs, Cottrell fits his ’32 Turbo with 31-inch BFG KR2 rubber.
STATE-OF-THE-ART DUNE LIGHTING
Cruising the dunes has to be done in the dark much of the year, so the Rugged Coupe has a KC Hilites Gravity Pro-6 light bar with seven Pro-6 LED pods. KC’s 45-inch universal combo LED light bar (#91314) throws 16,100 raw lumens out 1,562 meters with a 140-watt output. This combination also fits the Maverick X3 (#91334) and retails for $1,922.99. Headlights are custom 8-inch halogens in vintage housings.
951 E. Grand Ave.
Arroyo Grande, CA 93420
3237 Rippey Rd.
Loomis, CA 95650
Grover Beach, CA
2843 W. Avenida De Luces
Williams, AZ 86046
(928) 635-2607, ext. 1020
2379 Heyrend Way
Idaho Falls, ID 83402