Celebrity Truck Series - Stallone's 'The Expendables' 1955 F100 April 15, 2013
Today I wanted to start a post series that focuses on celebrity custom trucks. Custom shops like West Coast Customs make some amazing vehicles, and of course the nicest ones tend to go to some pretty famous people. Each post will center around one vehicle and go into what it is, who owns or owned it, and how it was created. I'm a sucker for classic trucks as much as I am for custom ones, so the first truck to talk about was a pretty easy decision for me. Today's celebrity truck is Sylvester Stallone's 1955 F-100. Let's check it out. The Details This truck was more than just a celebrity making an awesome ride, Stallone's F-100 was used in the epic action star movie "The Expendables" as well. So the truck is a star in of itself. This F-100 was built by West Coast Customs (WCC) from the ground up. What's pretty amazing here is that the truck is actually a 1956 F-100 that WCC fully customized to be a 1955! Along with the changes that happened for this year swap, all new guts were used as well. The truck now sports a 345 cubic-inch Edelbrock V-8 mated with a BGM-equipped AOD transmission. Moving past the engine and tranny, you'll find a Gibson tuned exhaust, Mustang II suspension and Heidts 4-link kit, with a Ford 9-inch rear axle finishing it off. This truck really was upgraded from head to toe. Speaking of feet, Stallone's F-100 got a set of Lexani wheels wrapped in continental tires. There are tons of other upgrades, including a Gennie Shifter Commander, Wilwood brakes, fire-breather Vintage Air system, and a kinetic battery. Just as you would expect, the details are what matter the most. Why Not 3? With all those upgrades, paired with the custom body, you'd think that one truck was enough work for the West Coast Customs team. You would be right, but for the movie, the WCC team built 3 of these! This is actually why they chose to make the '56 into a '55. The 1955 F-100 is very rare, so finding three that could be build up in time was nearly impossible. If you're a Stallone fan, you might recognize the grille on the front of the F-100. WCC made it to be reminiscent of the grille on Stallone's '50 Merc in his movie Cobra. It's little touches like this that make these super custom trucks a cut above the rest. There were some special customizations done specifically for the movie as well. A hidden compartment for Stallone's .45 ACP was added, as well as very carefully chosen gauges and seats. When designing for a movie, you need to make sure such internal aspects are not overpowering but still easy to see on the screen. West Coast Customs chose to go with Aurora gauges and Cerillo racing seats. Add to that a Flaming River steering wheel and the interior is pretty much perfect. Make It Real What's amazing about this build isn't that there were 3 identical trucks built, but that the F-100 was hilt to be a real truck. Even the cooling system was upgraded with a Ron Davis Radiator and dual Zirgo cooling fans. Movie vehicles tend to be all show and very little go. These mechanical stars of the movie are generally made to fit a specific role and movie magic is used to cover the rest. Stallone's F-100 was built from the ground up to be a solid, respectable custom truck that is as fast as it is beautiful. The truck not only showed up on the big screen, but was at the premier with the other stars as well. IT's flat-black exterior and squatted stance make this a very imposing vehicle; a perfect fit for Stallone as well as his character in the movie. A Little History The Ford F-100 here is a second generation F-Series truck. The second generation ran from 1953-1956. It was this generation that the "100" designation started. Before this, it was called the F1. The original 1955 F-100 came with your choice of a 223 CID Mileage Maker I6 for 115 HP or the 239 CID Y-Block V-8, known as the "Power King" for 130 HP. The original also started a new line of amenities including a dome light, lighter, arm rests, sun visors and a radio. Before the second generation, none of these came with the truck! The 1956 F-100 is structurally different from the other years in the second generation, as it has vertical windshield pillars and a wrap-around windshield. This is different from the '55 model that had sloped pillars and an angled windshield. You can see how this was a unique challenge for the WCC team to convert the '56 into a '55. The Truck Today Today Stallone doesn’t own this truck. In 2011 the F-100 sold at Barrett-Jackson for $132,000. That’s a far cry from it’s $1,580 base price in 1955-56! The winner got a signed picture from Sly, and even got to keep the hidden compartments for “movie weapons.” Hopefully today this truck is out there racking up the miles and making it’s owner smile ear to ear knowing he or she gets to spend all their drives with a real celebrity.