C-10R: The Chevy With A Hint Of Zonda
The Joy Of Technology

What are some of the most impressive things you can do with an automobile? You can bring a rusting hulk back from the dead with a full factory restoration. You can take a car that was already great from the factory and make it even better with aftermarket parts. You can go all-out and build a racecar capable of setting records at any track it goes to. All impressive feats for sure, but I’m not sure if any of those things will get people excited as much as the Chevrolet pickup truck you see here.


That’s because this truck represents one of the most challenging things you can do with a vehicle – building it do something its original designers could have never imagined. Say hello to the PCHRODS C-10R.


But before we get into what exactly makes this pro touring monster tick, let’s take a quick trip back in time.

These days pickup trucks are everywhere in the USA. They usually top the best-selling vehicle lists and can be had with all of the comforts, conveniences and performance of traditional automobiles.


But it wasn’t always like that. For decades, pickups were used first and foremost as work vehicles. If you bought one, it was most likely because you needed to haul stuff and do it often. Their designers never really intended for them to do a whole lot more than that, and combined with the antiquated technology of the time, it’s safe to say that an old pickup is hardly an ideal base vehicle for a performance project.


But Brandy Phillips and her husband Rob are no strangers to making ordinary old vehicles do extraordinary things. Brandy raced for Spectre Performance, driving cars like their carbon ’70 Camaro, while Rob became one of the first to build a Chevy C10 pickup for autocross racing with his well known ’69 C10 project.


The pair actually met through the pro touring and autocross hobby, and after getting married and starting a family the Phillips’ decided to build a new project vehicle so Brandy could get back to racing.


They spent nearly a year searching for the right vehicle, and entertained the idea of building a Chevy Vega before deciding on another C10 pickup. Not only did Rob have plenty of parts lying around from his ’69 project, they liked the thought of a female driving an old pickup at autocross and track events – and then there’s the whole WTF factor. A pickup might be much heavier and a lot less aerodynamic than a traditional sportscar, but that only added to the fun and challenge of the build.

The Transformation Begins

Rob actually had a 4×4 ’72 C10 chassis sitting around, and he was able to trade a friend for a ’72 2WD C10 that became the base for the C-10R project. The Phillips acquired the truck in August of 2012, with the build being completed in time for the 2014 SEMA Show.


In addition to their small shop, PCHRODS, Rob and Brandy both have regular jobs and the C-10R would not be one of the those no-expense-spared projects. They reused old parts whenever they could, made their own brackets when possible and wanted the finished product to be something that everyday enthusiasts like themselves could relate to.


So how do you transform a 40-plus-year-old pickup truck into a track monster capable of out-handling sportscars? You start with a whole lot of chassis and suspension work. The problem is that there still aren’t a whole lot of off-the-shelf suspension upgrades for a C10, so Rob and Brandy had do a lot of it on their own.


The front end for example, is equipped with a Detroit Speed Engineering 595X subframe modified from a Camaro application. The complete setup includes coilover shocks, tubular control arms and optimized geometry.


For the rear suspension, Rob applied his experience building the ’69 C10 and came up with a custom setup that uses AFCO double-adjustable coilovers, custom Early Classic Enterprises trailing arms and a Hotchkis rear sway bar. The rear end is a Currie Pro Fab 9-inch with Yukon 3.89 gears.


As for the truck’s powerplant, it’s hard to argue with a lightweight, compact and powerful LS series V8. This one displaces 5.7 liters and is equipped with upgrades like Trick Flow heads and cam, Holley EFI and intake manifold, Hooker headers and a three-inch NASCAR-style side-exit exhaust system. With tuning handled by Norris Motorsports, the motor is dialed in to make 585 horsepower and 575 pound-feet of torque.


You’ll also notice that the engine sits quite far back in the chassis – 10 inches to be precise. This front-mid engine layout is another key to making the C10 handle so well.


The gearbox is a Viper GTS-spec T56 6-speed with a Centerforce twin-disc clutch and an Inland Empire custom aluminum driveshaft twisting back to the aforementioned 9-inch diff.

When A Pickup Truck Goes Exotic

As for the exterior of the truck, there’s a whole heap of functional upgrades, but through it all the C10’s classic lines have been keep intact. The front end uses Goodmark ’67-’68 C10 panels, and Munssey Speed & Design handled the trick carbon fiber extractor hood as well as the cowl panel and headlight bezels.


The headlights themselves are LED units from JW Speaker and in the front view you can also spot the custom PCHRODS front splitter and air dam.


Brandy’s brother Ryan had access to wind tunnel simulation software, so he drew the truck in CAD and not surprisingly found that the biggest deficiency would be the lack of downforce in the rear. A wing would help stabilize the truck at high speeds, and Ryan experimented with a few different designs before adding the current Ciro Racing & Design carbon fiber wing and aluminum tonneau cover. Brandy says she’s received a few negative comments about the wing’s look, but it – like everything else on the truck – is there for a reason.


Rob handled the exterior theme for the C-10R and considered several different designs before choosing a look that was inspired by the Pagani Zonda R. The carbon accents, matte gray wrap and gold-finished wheels were all done as a nod to Horatio Pagani’s iconic supercar.


The mesh-type wheels come from Boze Alloys and measure 18×12-inch at each corner. The tires are BF Goodrich KDWS sized 335/30R18 all around.


Also visible behind the spokes of the wheels is the truck’s impressive brake setup consisting of 6-piston Baer calipers with 14-inch rotors in both the front and rear.


Inside the C-10R, the feeling is much more racecar than it is pickup truck. There’s a 10-point rollcage, a NASCAR-type steering column from Woodward Steering, and custom-built dash and center console setups.


The seats are carbon-Kevlar Cobra Suzukas with custom embroidering, and the harnesses come from Schroth Racing.


Other details in the cockpit include things like the Auto Meter Pro-Comp dash display, Wilwood aluminum pedals, an ARC stereo system, and carbon fiber paneling throughout.


Immediately after debuting the C-10R at SEMA last year, Rob and Brandy took the truck to the Optima Ultimate Street Car Inviational for a shakedown run. They weren’t quite sure what to expect, but Brandy says the truck performed great, easily outhandling the fully-built Camaro she had driven before.


And performance really is what the whole project has been about. While the truck is easily capable of doing road trips, it wasn’t designed to be a long distance tourer. For the Phillips family, the C-10R is all about showing what an old pickup has the potential for in terms of handling and track capability. They already have a full schedule of autocross and track events lined up for the year ahead.


More than that, Brandy and Rob have started a campaign called Automotivation where they will visit SoCal schools to help promote auto industry careers to the next generation. And what better way to help get young people interested in the industry than with an incredible project like the C-10R.

Here’s wishing them the best in their efforts to keep our hobby going strong.

Mike Garrett
Instagram: speedhunters_mike

Photos by Larry Chen
Instagram: larry_chen_foto

Cutting Room Floor


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Very very cool


cool truck.
The writer of this article has to go back to school though.


I forgot this article was coming. One of my favourite builds at SEMA last year.


beautiful truck. i'm going to need a towel.


I've always wanted to do something like this to my C10, and this article only makes me want to do it even more! Great photos, great feature!



Giving you guys the raspberries sincerely for the first time in the years I've been coming here. 
I understand every reason why these builds are 'cool', and they might be, but they're boring when its ls ls ls ls ls ls ls ls ls ls ls ls ls. Oh another ls? I'm supposed to think that's different? eh, whatever shoot me.


The chevrolet small block is the most popular v8 in history, of course there are going to be a lot of cars with them. SH does a good job of balancing them with 4, 6, 10, and 12 cylinders, as well as rotaries. I don't see what the problem is here. :/


There is only one word for this truck: BADASS!!!!


Dilly Pickles The volume is increasing. It's becoming very boring to read about.  I read most of the articles on this site, so I know they write about a wide array of different builds.


Its look like something ouy of that rare hot wheels set and thats badass its puts a smile on my face just looking at it awesome truck




gotta pick my jaw up off the floor.


Hotwheels introduced me to the Chevy C10. This one makes me want a real C10!





乙未年(羊)二月初一 2015-3-20

Nicholas J OGara

There is many true statements here.
As for the article, it's no wonder why he married her!


Damn! Now that's a badass truck! 
Front to back, just mental.


Weird that the fuel cell is so far back, it could have been moved to the center

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner

Sweet man! This thing is all kinds of serious cool. If there was kudos given for being different, you'll need to build another C10 to carry it all. Absolutely the best truck for a long time.


Absolutely awesome project, but those stickers on the rockers...


i can't stop thinking of this truck vying the last honda powers lotus at button willow... Larry please hook it up!!!


johnbezt Thanks for your feedback John. You're more than welcome to have that opinion, but if you look through some of the other comments on this story, you'll see there are plenty of other people here who enjoy this build. We always aim to feature a wide variety of cars on Speedhunters, but we really do think that the C-10R is much more than just another LSV8-powered car. Cheers!


johnbezt  I think this one is more about the C10 than the LS. It pops up a lot because it's relatively affordable and makes good power. What are you bringing to the table?


johnbezt At least its an LS in a Chevy. When was the last LS article before this one anyway? Also, what do you actually like? Like, what would be acceptable to you?


I went back and counted the number of v8 swaps in the last 20 or so features, and I only counted 4; this was the only LS. And they were all cars that had v8s from the factory. That seems like a pretty low number to me, considering their popularity.


Very nice build. I actually rode with Brandy in the Spectre Carbon Camaro about 3 years ago. Also a very badass car


For the purpose of weight distribution i suppose.


There isn't a single thing about this car I don't like. Pure perfection!


Speedhunters johnbezt Hey guys, cheers to you as well. I know there's a wide variety of car features, or i wouldn't be here. I frequently comment on the vehicles that I like. All i'm saying is that coverage of v8 swapped (GM in particular) vehicles has greatly increased. It's not like gm v8's just randomly began used in builds recently; theyre being covered by the blogs. Not just speedhunters either.  I cannot be denied that!


dpbrown225 johnbezt I don't really have to bring anything to the table. All I have to do is click links and enjoy, and speedhunters has another reader. Self righteous internet heros are just as bad as the trolls bud.


I think I just.... fell in love with a car


67-72 chevys are probably the most handsome pickups ever built.


i loved watching this truck perform on Optima's Ultimate Street Car Challenge. Nice to see the thought process behind the build, and a six speed to boot!


Best feature in months!


I'm hoping it still retains the "truck arm" style rear suspension. It's been hinted at but not stated outright.
This truck is really cool. The 68-72 C10s are just so classy looking.


68 is the best year.  It's identical to the 67 except it has a larger rear window opening.  The 69-72 had a different face and don't look near as menacing.


Mh quite a beauty! What's the misterious line in the first and 3rd last picture?

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner

Street lamp


I didn't expect this article! Awesome find!


I wish my parents were Mr. and Ms. Phillips!


my God, that looks so good!


Race truck,yes,Zonda no


I seen her drive this at the good guys car show in Scottsdale. I was blown away by her driving and the way that truck moved! I was there to watch the camaro's and then out comes that truck! I was like damn!


Hint of Zonda....hmm. For a minute, a small part of me somehow expected to see a built Mercedes M120 under the hood. Or a 572 big block. No such luck. Mr. and Mrs. Phillips have a great truck here nonetheless.

Just out of curiosity; does anyone know the specs of the Trick Flow cam? I'm really curious what kind of cam one would need to get almost 600HP and 800Nm out of a 5.7l V8.

Also, I've asked this question before, do these LED headlights actually work at night?


Just saw this masterpiece. Makes me wonder if I were to make mine a homage jeep of an homage truck of a homage car, would that be too much homage? What I am def doing is paint this beast and hang it over my bay through mechanic school - I have my own twists to this but the Phillips have become one of my heroes.

Glad you people are out there


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