One of the coolest things about the SEMA Show is that it’s not always the mainstream vehicles that have the biggest impact.
Sure, you expect to see the high-dollar muscle cars, customized exotics and huge trucks, but there are always some really cool oddball machines to find, and this year was no different.
How about an old Mazda B-series pickup truck? That’s exactly what Colorado’s Chris Gilder used to create one of the most unique and talked about builds on display at SEMA this year.
While they were once extremely popular among the aftermarket, minitrucks are not plentiful at SEMA these days. But then again, Chris’s Mazda isn’t your typical minitruck. Yes, it’s smoothed out and slammed to the floor, but that’s just the beginning.
First off, there’s the incredible fabrication on the custom-built chassis, complete with independent rear suspension. It’s an overload of fabrication eye candy, and it certainly doesn’t look like Chris will be using the Mazda to help his buddies haul stuff anytime soon.
The radical fabricaiton even extends into the cab and center console, which is just one part of a complete custom interior that features an FC3S RX-7-derived right-hand drive dash conversion. Don’t forget the Recaro buckets and Takata Racing harnesses either.
But that’s not where the RX-7 influence ends. Inside the engine bay sits a 13B rotary with a big Comp Turbo single that helps the Mazda cross over from custom minitruck into tuner car territory.
Combine all that with some retro Mazda graphics and a set of white mesh wheels, and you have the recipe for a whole lot of old school charm.
The SEMA Show is all about creativity, and it took tons of that to transform this lowly Mazda pickup truck into a true showstopper.