Todd & Natasha Collins’ Kruzin Kustoms–Built 1971 C10

By the CTP Staff   –   Photography by Aaron Mai

Bought here … built there … brought back here … made an epic impression while visiting its homeland before “Mac Daddy,” the Collins’ ’71 C10 built by Kruzin Kustoms, headed back to its new home in Palmerston North, New Zealand.

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01 1971 Chevrolet C10 Custom Lowered Pickup Front Angle

Read More: This 1971 Chevy C10 Comes Back to Life

“The truck was bought at the Pomona Swap meet after completing the build on Natasha’s ’55 Nomad,” husband Todd Collins tells us. “We wanted to build a slammed C10 truck. The truck was found as a Stepside longbed, as we couldn’t find a nice shortbed at the time. Working with Kruzin Kustoms on the build process made it easy: we came up with a plan on how we wanted it to look and then got onto ordering a front- and rearend that would comply with New Zealand safety laws … the rest is history!”

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04 Classic 1971 C10 Chevrolet Aerial View Bed

From the builder Dylan Smith’s perspective: “As Todd mentioned, the truck was bought in Pomona off the second owner who had owned it for 24 years. The truck was then shipped to New Zealand and straight to us at Kruzin Kustoms. The worn-out old GM hauler was shipped Down Under, a concept that was developed between builder and customer, then fully stripped down (body-off chassis). Todd & Tash Collins worked closely with the team at Kruzin Kustoms, constantly discussing the build.

10 Modified 1971 Chevrolet C10 Pickup Industrial Background

“The concept was to build a high-performance, ground-scraping showstopper with the best components available. Forget any restoration—this was a one-off custom build; the vision was brought to life by the dedicated team and took just three years to complete. Every nut and bolt were ceramic coated and untold hours went into the custom fabrication work, let alone the countless hours spent getting the worn-out body back into shape. Collaborating with amazing clients has produced an award-winning show truck that clocks up plenty of street miles.

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11 1971 Chevy C10 Tailgate Close Up

Read More: Ken’s Tribute C10 Truck Was Worth The Wait

“Mac Daddy made its debut at the Beach Hop 2022, New Zealand’s largest hot rodding event, where it was bestowed a coveted Best in Show award as well as a sought-after Top Five trophy. The mammoth undertaking brings to life a swap meet–purchased Chevy that was born in the USA and proudly built in New Zealand.”

12 1971 Chevrolet C10 Custom Engine Bay

What Smith neglected to mention was, shortly after its arrival in the Mother Land, they entered Todd and Natasha’s C10 in the inaugural Grand National Truck Show’s first-ever World’s Most Beautiful Truck competition, followed by a week on display at the SEMA Show, then wrapping up with a crowd-stopping exhibit at Dino’s Git Down!

20 Chevrolet C10 Custom Truck Bed Cooler

What’s beneath the exterior of Mac Daddy, you may ask? Well, for starters, the chassis was reconfigured using a PorterBuilt drop member fitted with a Heidts Superide, Ridetech ShockWaves, and a Ridetech E5 leveling control system. Behind the U.S. Mags 24/20-inch Rio Grande wheels are 13/14-inch Wilwood discs. Underhood and between all the custom sheetmetal is a 6.2L supercharged LSA equipped with a Billet Specialties Tru Trac and Holley Terminator EFI, all backed by a TCI 4L80 and a Bous Performance Posi 9-inch. The once long-wheelbase stepper now wears a clean coat of Baslac Porsche Chalk White (gray to the casual observer) over all Kruzin Kustoms’ laborious custom work, while the interior was done in a nicely contrasting green leather by Elite Motor Trimmer and features Dakota Digital RTX instrumentation, Vintage Air, and a JVC sound system (all wired in via an American Autowire harness).

22 Chevrolet C10 1971 Cruising Night City Streets

Read More: Next Level Pro Touring Truck

We’re hoping Todd and Natasha are racking up even more miles back home in Palmerston, New Zealand, and Smith and crew are hustling on their next Kruzin Kustoms’ build!

Click on this issue’s cover to see the enhanced digital version of Todd & Natasha Collins’ Kruzin Kustoms–Built 1971 C10.ctp february 2024

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