This past weekend, I drove from Minneapolis, Minnesota to Fayetteville, Arkansas, where I spotted the most “Texas” truck I’ve ever laid eyes upon. Sitting in the parking lot of the most Texas fast-food joint I know of, Whataburger, was a red Ram 3500 diesel armored with what I assume are standard automobile accessories sold at every AutoZone in The Lone Star State. Except this truck may have gone a little overboard.
If I had to describe the most “Texas” truck in the world, I wouldn’t talk about SEMA-esque, lifted, chromed-out pickups with huge wheels and wacky paint jobs. No, you can find those ostentatiously-modified pickups all over the place. What makes a truck a “Texas” truck is a specific blend of ostentatious mods with—and this is the critical piece—Texas pride. And this Ram 3500 really nails that recipe.
Start with a base of a huge Ram 3500, making sure it’s a dually (more wheels means it’s tougher—this is a proven fact) Laramie Long Horn edition, and be sure to have a set of literal long horns (with a lone star mounted to them) to block airflow from entering the front of the Long Horn. Then choose the CUMMINS diesel motor so you can brag to your buddies about how a truck’s torque output is all that matters in this world, sprinkle on a set of knobby tires wrapped around black aftermarket wheels, and then cover-up/replace as much of the chrome on the front and rear of the truck as possible with huge, black steel aftermarket bumpers (with well-integrated park sensors!), and throw on a front-end leveling kit.
Be sure to keep the towing mirrors flipped up even though you’re not towing a load, add a Texas license plate upfront and a “REDBULL” one out back (at least, that’s what I assume it reads based on the photo below), and then top it all off with the pièce de résistance: a set of truck nuts.
Literal truck nuts:
The result is the most Texas truck I’ve ever seen, and one whose quirks I actually don’t mind. The nuts dangling off the back are silly and could be considered offensive for a number of reasons that I don’t have to get into. But the rest of this beast is so brazenly truckish and hilarious, with just the right amount of Texas pride, that I’m completely on board with it.
It’s unnecessarily huge, unnecessarily torquey, unnecessarily brash, but its trucks like these that help define American car culture, for better or for worse. I think it’s for the better, but I could see the argument both ways.