Making America Great Again

Did America ever stop being great? Let’s examine that for a second. This is the land which pretty much trademarked opportunity. This is the home of the free! This, dear friends, is unmitigated adventure around every turn.

We don’t need politicians to make America great, we don’t need banners and slogans; border control certainly isn’t going to deliver this fabled greatness. No. All we need is a vacant desert and four wheels attached to something daft and fast.

Some of the most fun you can have in a vehicle is off the road. This is a scientific fact. Sure, we are all about pushing our cars to their limit at the track, but there is simply nothing quite like opening up into unpaved madness of an unmapped desert canyon.


The best part about it? Many vehicles available for off-road use are a huge amount of fun right out of the box, even the Prius-equivalent ones. Take Yamaha’s YXZ1000R for example. For those of you who don’t know, this is currently the world’s only 5-speed manual transmission equipped UTV, and because it’s made by Yamaha, the 3-cylinder engine also revs past 10,000rpm and sounds like a finely-tuned orchestra. Seriously, we challenge you to not fall in love with that.

The sheer amount of thrills that become available to you once you’re sat inside this hardware is staggering.


In this respect, you could argue that the YXZ1000R is the perfect platform to build upon. And this is exactly what our friends over at Fuel Off-Road decided to do with this beast.


Fuel Off-Road specializes in wheels, tires and grilles for trucks and off-road vehicles, and our very own Louis Yio was recently invited out to Barstow, CA, to check out this modified UTV while the MHT Wheels TV guys put together this awesome film in the San Bernardino desert.

The search for good times is over.

All In The Details

It should come as no surprise that Fuel Off-Road fitted the Yamaha with its newest wheel and tire designs. The Anza D557 is a matte black UTV-specific wheel that comes in 14- and 15-inch sizes, and here they measure 15×7-inch front and rear with custom Tiger-Lack Green rings.


The Gripper UTV tire is also quite nice. You may not have noticed, but the tread pattern is actually the ‘F’ in the Fuel Off-Road logo, which is a subtle way to marry form and function. For this build, the YXZ1000R is sitting on 30×10-15Rs.


The Fuel Off-Road guys partnered with Desert Works and fabricated a complete custom rollcage to replace the original offered by Yamaha. A Bulldog Lighting light bar was also added for night driving. The interior now features custom Simpson seats as opposed to the originals, with Crow Enterprizes harnesses holding the passengers down. Because it’s ultimately meant for desert mobbing, Fuel also added a PCI race radio along with a Lowrance GPS system.

The guys powder-coated the car Crushed Silver and the cage is Tiger-Lack Green. If you’ve seen the stock YXZ1000R, then you know how much more aggressive this one is.


As mentioned earlier, the Yamaha runs a 3-cylinder engine (a 998cc 12-valve DOHC unit to be precise), and revs out to a glorious 10,500rpm. Are we having fun yet?


There is nothing better than a stick shift, three pedals, and you the driver’s seat, so the sequentially-shifted manual 5-speed in the YXZ1000R is a welcome addition. Sure, there are some advantages having an automatic transmission in a UTV, but for the hardcore enthusiasts out there, this one’s for you.


In the suspension department, Yamaha partnered with Fox to offer its 2.5 Podium RC2 shocks all around.


Up front you’ll find 26-inch units, and in the back massive 32-inch shocks. Not only that, but they’re all fully adjustable.


Both 2WD and 4WD can be toggled between, and it also comes with differential lockers to really help out in sticky situations.

In the Desert

Meticulous planning goes into a shoot like this which allowed us to cherry pick the best spots and await the action to blast in front of our lenses.


This route was filled with some incredible corners where the UTV would be able to really kick up some dirt.

It’s always fun to shoot something new like a UTV. We photograph road cars 99 per cent of the time, so when the opportunity to play around with a something different, like a brand new Yamaha UTV that is unfortunately not street legal in the state of California (along with all UTVs), our heart rates begin to escalate fairly rapidly.

California laws… It’s tough being a car enthusiast here – no UTV, no R34, no Rover Mini. Sigh…


Getting back on topic, we shot right throughout the day and into the evening.

Watching Fuel Off-Road’s UTV powering down the trail at sunset was truly exhilarating. This is the California desert, that is a wild animal being driven by a guy having the time of his life. What’s not to love?


We finished the day off properly by asking our driver, Andy Rodman, to manji down a trail, resulting in magical lols from everyone present. Nobody wanted this to end. This was us doing our own little bit to shine – to bask in the vast expanse of thrill-seeking, freedom-loving good times that makes America, deserts and daft little dirt-crates like this the greatest thing on earth!

The Speedhunters

Images: Louis Yio
Instagram: lusciousy

More Off-Road related stories on Speedhunters
Fuel Off-Road

Cutting Room Floor


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TRUMP! U0001f1faU0001f1f8


I'd drive to Barstow to rent it,I'm sure it's better than the raggedy one I rented in pismo beach


USA - Land of fences and "No trespassing" -signs


nice title...


This looks like so much fun!


Way to completely detract from an awesome vehicle with a stupid title.


johnbezt by that I mean stupid fuckin title


Jordan_Butters Plus one for that. I'd like to take this UTV for a mega blast over the Brecon Beacons. Don't think that would go down too well with the ramblers!


DerpyToast A fun title and a fun vehicle. What could possibly go wron... Oh wait. The irony must have clearly got lost somewhere in the desert!


johnbezt stfu


Vittorio Jano It's true. We have strong property rights, but we also have a high proportion of land ownership by the middle class. In many countries I've lived or visited you can hike wherever you want as long as you don't damage the land.... but the majority of land is owned by a few wealthy land owners. As far as the article is concerned, out west we have large tracts of land owned by the federal government (ourselves) and we're allowed to drive off-road vehicles on them. It is a right but we need to protect it.


milkplus Vittorio Jano In the UK we have 'green lanes'. These are an incredible way to get from a to b, that almost makes you feel like the freedom is too much fun. Definitely an experience that should be had more often. Driving them in a good off road vehicle seems like it shouldn't be legal.


Do you know America is a continent , not a country. Cool car , stupid title.


Ugh. I come to speedhunters to escape politics...


I cannot believe that you can get paid $7499 in one month on the internet


LOL thanks
As for the article, great shots. It looks this was a fun shoot. I love this shot with the suspension loaded up.


The car was amazing. With so much doom & gloom rhetoric lately, it seemed timely to remind ourselves just how great things are already. Can't argue with your geography chops tho ;)


LMAO at all the butthurt about the title. Laugh and move on and not be so salty about it.


my step-mom got an awesome blue Toyota Prius just by part time work from a laptop...


Papo swing  North America is a continent. America (United states of America) is a country.


Dirty69 Papo swing America is not USA , Canada is in North America , did you know that


Papo swing Dirty69 You're absolutely right, America isn't just the US. Generally speaking though, people refer to the United States as America and its people as Americans. But if you want someone to blame, I guess you can blame Trump because his whole United States presidential campaign slogan is "Make America Great Again"


Well, "GREAT" is pretty vague and impossible to quantify.
Americans by and large have become less healthy and overweight (both quantifiable). In addition, the country has become WAAAAAAY more *CONFORMIST. It's difficult to imagine a time when your thoughts and opinions weren't groomed and/or validated by society and peers in the form of Facebook "likes". Yet, that era did exist.
It's also amazing how current society embraces public figures like ignorant, billionaire "politicians" and a thin, pretty, lip-synching Barbie girl named Taylor...quintessential, clichéd icons of the privileged establishment. (Ouch, that's an opinion, remember those?)
So, now if The USA is so "great"...what was it before?
Certainly, since things have changed so immensely, it presents quite the contradiction.
*Conformity statistics based on 2002 Facebook data: 0 registered users, 0 likes.


@Hank Moody Deep stuff there Hank. Thanks for sharing


Papo swing 

North America = Continent

United States of America = Country

You can't correct a vague title by being vague in your argument. This title is an allusion to the words of a presidential candidate who refers to the Country, not the Continent.


90nissanS13@my350z Papo swing dude America is considered a whole continent , which includes north , south and central.


90nissanS13@my350z Papo swing North America is not only the USA , it includes Mexico, USA , Canada even Greenland.


90nissanS13@my350z Papo swing I was only implying the use of "America" as a country, when is not that's all.


Papo swing 

Oh, you are referring to "The Americas"?


Having just experienced a SxS/UTV for the first time on mountain trails, it's borderline life changing. Well, priority changing maybe. These things are a gift from the car gods.


Great pics.
I get that you guys aren't journalists but good narrative can really lift the images too!
Sorry for the armchair critique but I like to read a well.


Make America "Great"...."Again"....
When was America ever "Great"? Correction, if you are not white and not male, when was America great? My first stab at that question would be "before Colimbus got his dumb ass lost"
Land of the Free? Again, maybe before Columbus. Since then, nothing about America is "free". The "freedoms" which most Americans enjoy are merely the illusion of Republican or Democrate. Make your "choice", red or blue....doesn't matter, the Federal Reserve controls your country.
Let's bring back what made America great!! Bring back slavery, Jim Crow, share-cropping, Japanese Interment, abuse of Chinese and Irisg migrant workers, genocide of the native population, gentrification, destruction of natural habitats like the Colorado River (to water golf courses...) or Columbia River, or Mississippi River, or...., the propping up of dictators in Banana Republics, or Petrol Republics, uprooting the population of Diago Garcia do that thr Navy had a plush vacation island to park their boats or so B2 bomber crews can relax on the beach after a long day of dropping bombs on people's heads.
When in the sweet fuck was America ever great? When was any country great? They're all assholes!!
Nothing against individual Americans. But as a whole, that country is, and always has been, complete dog shit.
As for the article...make America great again...,with a Japanese toy. The Japanese don't even do off-road like we do, yet no American company can seem to make any kind of off road vehicle. Bikes, quads, and side by sides....all Japanese, Euro, or Canadian. Only exception is Polaris, and while their sleds have ok years, their quads are straight garbage. Spend more time getting fixed than on the trail.
A side by side is a tool for work, or support for a pursuit like hunting. Unless you're 60, do yourself a favour and buy a bike for half the cost and have twice the fun.
Rant over lol


Actually it does take politicians to make America great again - some of the very best land for offroading like you are doing right now was taken away earlier this year with a stroke of a pen = 1.8 million acres of nothing, gone forever - the only reason it wasnt double, triple or even quadruple that is becuase gun owners would have litterally rioted in the streets over yet "another" massive swath of open BLM gone to mythical desert turtles that can only survive protected on a military base kept from the other protected animal the desert wolf that eats them (not a joke)


Speedhunters publishing an offroad article and hopping on the Trump Train?! I love this please don't ever stop. #MAGA 


@Hank Moody this is all true. fads, groupthink, and vapid self-interest never existed before facebook. these are new ideas for humanity.


Weatherize this, and I'd commute in it


my step-mom recently bought Chrysler 300 Sedan by working part-time online. more tips here
❥ ❥ ❥ ❥ ➥ ➥  ➥


I'm in shock that a person can make $6798 in four weeks on the internet


Canada is America's hat. Mexico is America's beard. All the other stuff you mentioned is fictional.


My Uncle Evan recently got Mercedes CLS-Class Sedan only from working part-time off a pc


@Hank Moody Don't talk about Tay Tay like that!


my Aunty Madison got a nearly new cream Honda Civic Coupe by working part-time online...See it here====ᴵᴵᴵᴵᴵᴵ


my Aunty Annabelle recently got a twelve month old Buick Encore SUV only from working parttime off a laptop...


Great article bring the political subject in to the car culture and cause division.#Sarcasm
Because that what the car culture needs right to get into stupid politics.
And by the way asa USA citizen we need to correct once and


Great article bring the political subject in to the car culture and cause division.#Sarcasm
Because that what the car culture needs right to get into stupid politics.
And by the way as USA citizen we need to correct once and for all the stupid comment to refer to USA as America. Is really dumb & stupid cause America is not USA alone. Every country on this side of the pond is America. Is wrong and it denotes the ignorance and lack of knowledge in simple geography and history.


Vittorio Jano And still more room to do this than any other country.


Tracks at the back and skids up front would make for a perfect vehicle for the winters here in Wisconsin


My Uncle Ryder just got a stunning yellow Cadillac CTS Wagon by working parttime at home...


my Aunty Hannah got a real cool Volkswagen Beetle Convertible try here


my mum recently bought a 9 month old Mercedes CLS-Class Sedan by working from a macbook air...




my Aunty Violet got green Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Sedan from only workin part-time on a pc at home.


as Howard responded I didn't even know that some people able to get paid $7650 in 1 month on the internet . see it here========


Well, this is home of the free ... until Trump gets to run it.


Love is when the other person's happiness is more important
than your own.

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my Aunty Layla got MINI Cooper Coupe by working part-time online from home...


I'm sure for the desert guys, and those of you out there with desert access, this is the hands-down bar none absolute thing to have. Unfortunately, as an experienced Rancher here in The wooded Texas region I have to ask the question, have you ever driven a 5-speed manual and worked a clutch going down miles of fence?
I will probably still get one though... And it would actually make an absolutely fantastic starting point for a road race vehicle!


Ether option will be the end.


Haha...America?... When was southern Mexico land of the Free!?


Typo is like salt in the dish we see before us...


Dump the atv's and make them ride horses...that will fix everything!! *chuckles*