- Skip Peterson
What do you get when you pit two truck modifiers against each other for a build-off? Well, it’s the Main Event; at least that’s what Germian Ford of Beavercreek called their recent online competition.
“We wanted to do something fun, and pick-up truck build-offs are kind of popular right now,” explained John Martin, sales manager for the Beavercreek dealership. “But you don’t need to go to a national shop. We have great shops right here, so we decided to pit Fisher’s Shop Inc. in Xenia against XTP Diesel & Offroad of Beavercreek against each other, and use social media to determine a winner.”
Germain provided each shop with a 2017 Ford F350 Powerstroke diesel crew cab, 4-wheel drive truck. The MSRP for each truck, which were heavily optioned, was about $70,000 and Germain then provided a budget they could work with. The only caveat was that there could be no engine modifications to void the warranty, since each truck will be sold with the factory warranty intact.
Troy Shepherd of XTP Diesel & Offroad has been around trucks all his life.
“I grew up in the country. I’ve always loved muscle cars, but I always had a truck,” he explained. “I started XTP in 2010 as an online-only parts company selling truck modifications parts. It grew so quickly that by 2013 we opened a retail store in Xenia – still just selling parts, but that grew and in June of 2015 we opened our Beavercreek shop, a full-service shop with five fulltime employees,” he said.
Shepherd’s goal for his truck: “I wanted to build a great truck to be appreciated by the average blue collar worker who loves and drives trucks, and would be proud of it but still not be afraid to drive and use it.”
Shepherd knew that the redesigned 2017 F350 would limit what he could use, but he used parts from companies that have a warranty, thereby ensuring the customer would have no future issues.
“I used 6-inch lift kits from FabTech, Fox shocks, color-matched bumpers front and rear from Fab Fours and capped it with 24-by-14-inch wheels from Fuel Forged and 375/40 R 24 tires from Nitto. We finished it off with a light bar from Rigid that has a nice blue glow behind it, the same blue color as the Ford logo,’’ he said.
Josh Fisher of Fisher’s Shop built the other truck. Fisher has been building trucks for the last dozen years, and his shop has been open for five years.
“I have six full-time employees: four who are mechanics, and we can do literally anything you want,” the 33-year-old said.
“I wanted to build a show-quality truck, one that really stands out, and it’s fun when someone else pays for it. We started by taking both front and rear axles, and either powder coating or painting them to match the color of truck,” he said.
“Everything we did was cosmetic. We used a Rough Country 6-inch lift kit with Bilstein reservoir shocks. We fabricated some suspension pieces, added American Force 24x12 wheels and Mile King 10-ply tires; we even polished the cat-back exhaust so it looks like chrome,” Fisher added. “I like to think of it as a free-range build; we just kept adding to it and I called in some favors from some local shops who I work with. In the interior we also added a beefed-up stereo system, but we didn’t touch anything under the hood. “
The whole process was posted on Facebook and Martin said it appears they reached over 300,000 people across the country in the process. About 20,000 people voted on the trucks and the winner was declared at the dealership Christmas week where the two trucks were unveiled. “These trucks are so big; we couldn’t find a cover so we had to buy huge tarps to cover them,” Martin said.
Fisher’s Shop edged out the XTP Diesel & Offroad truck buy only about 100 votes, and both shops congratulated each other on the page.
Mike Lowe of Texas followed the progress online, and when it was all said and done, he bought the XTP truck and it has already been shipped to him. The Fisher’s truck was still available for sale at the time of this writing.
Martin said customers should “stay tuned” for Germain’s next “Main Event.”
To learn more about Germain: www.germainfordofbeavercreek.com or www.facebook.com/germainfordbeavercreek
To learn more Fisher’s Shop: www.fishersshopinc.com/ or www.facebook.com/fishersshop/
To learn more about XTP Diesel & Offroad: www.xtpdieselperformanceohio.com or www.facebook.com/xtpdiesel