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Posted: February 26, 2017

Going For Gold

A.R.E’s Gold Standard F-150 Project Truck Melds Best Of The Best

By Ellen McKoy

Every show truck begins with a vision. A concept that should ultimately culminate in an over-the-top show-stopper. Which was what A.R.E. Accessories had in mind when it envisioned a customized 2016 Ford F-150 worthy of being dubbed the Gold Standard.

The modified vehicle isn’t just a collection of add-on components. It’s a carefully crafted creation that seamlessly melds accessories from top-tier suppliers with hand-crafted touches.

The detailed execution is the work of Trent’s Trick Upholstery, the Baltimore, Ohio, firm which has built several A.R.E. project vehicles. Given free rein to design the ultimate show truck, company owner Trent Van Arsdalen shifted into high gear.

He began by partnering with a select group of suppliers. For improved handling and higher ground clearance, he chose a six-inch Skyjacker Suspension lift. Air Lift’s LoadLifter rear airbags were added to level the truck, which rides on Fuel MT Gripper tires fitted to one-off Fuel Forged 35”x13.5” wheels. Improved fuel economy and power boost were achieved with Bully Dog’s performance tuner and Corsa’s cat-back exhaust and air intake systems.

Other add-ons include Bushwacker fender flares, Reflexxion hood, N-Fab front bumper and side steps, Hamsar LED lighting, Tint World window film, and Reikken performance battery cells to monitor battery charge and load demands. Trent’s custom-wrapped the grille guards in brushed aluminum vinyl and custom-designed spotlights mounted on the side-view mirrors.

To give the F-150 the golden glow befitting its name, Lynch Concepts applied a unique Axalta paint formulation. A.R.E.’s CX Series truck cap features an innovative urethane adhesion process for side and front windows, plus a tailgate-contoured all-glass rear door.

To customize the bed, there’s Lizard Skin spray-on insulation, professional-grade elevator carpet, and Redline Lumtronix lighting. The remote-controlled, actuator-activated TopperEZLift 12-volt cap lift system can lift 900 lbs. to a height of 17.5 inches. Not only allowing easy access, but also full viewing of a wide-screen TV with storage stand crafted by Van Arsdalen.

The same level of detail was applied to the interior. It sports theme-matching custom leather and trim from Alea Leather, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, Kicker sound system and Trent’s custom-machined aluminum pods to hold door-mounted Kicker speakers. Dash components were custom painted by Lynch Concepts.

The end result truly lives up to its name, a prime example of a standout show truck. And, most impressively, the Gold Standard was ready to make its SEMA Show debut in a mere eight weeks.  Grateful for the opportunity to work on a project of this magnitude, Van Arsdalen is quick to thank not only A.R.E., but also his team, including wife Tricia who fed the crew on many a late night, as well as the sponsors and local craftsmen who made the project such a resounding success.

Photography By Dan Sanchez

For added illumination, Van Arsdalen designed the spotlights mounted on side-view mirrors.










The truck rides on Fuel MT Gripper tires fitted to one-off Fuel Forged 35”x13.5” wheels, and sports a Skyjacker lift kit and Corsa cat-back exhaust.

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