A Young Buck with a Rad Truck!

Getting your driver’s license is a rite of passage for us gearheads. While today’s youth, en masse, tend to prefer Lyft, Bird scooters, or even the back of their parents’ minivan, there is still hope.

CASE in point: Connor Crews and his ’98 Chevy C1500. At 16 years of age, Connor has built a truck that most adults would envy, and we’re sure he’s inspiring his fellow high school classmates to do the same!

Like Father …

It all began with the influence of his dad, Charles. Along with several hot rods, muscle cars, and street rods, Charles has built plenty of custom OBS GM trucks over the years, so it was natural for Connor to gravitate toward one of the best-looking trucks ever produced!

… it was natural for Connor to gravitate toward one of the best-looking trucks ever produced!  

After searching around for a suitable build candidate, Connor found a creampuff ’98 Chevy W/T that was just begging for the custom treatment. The only problem was that it was a 6-cylinder, but Connor would eventually remedy the situation by swapping in a Chevy Performance 350 crate engine with a mild Chevy Performance cam and Magnaflow exhaust to greatly improve the truck’s power and sound.

Always Better

From there, Connor continued the theme of “make it better” by restoring or modifying the truck from top to bottom. He got right to work, shaving the third brake light, stake pockets, antenna, and smoothing out the bumpers before spraying a custom-mixed BASF red basecoat/clearcoat with the help of Charles. The work truck front end wasn’t cutting it for Connor, so he swapped the grille out for a GMC unit with a billet insert—a smart choice, in our opinion!

The truck’s stance was handled with the most classic of OBS drops—the Belltech 4/6, with a C-notch installed out back for additional axle clearance. Rolling attire consists of a set of tasteful polished 20-inch Billet Specialties Speedway wheels with Pirelli tires.

… his perseverance eventually paid off when he located one at a local salvage yard. 

The interior, if you can believe it, is just as nice as the exterior, if not nicer! A set of Snowden buckets covered in red Relicate leather (by Laura Semaan) is the immediate standout, but then you quickly notice that almost every single thing in the cab is red! From the headliner down to the carpet, there’s no subtlety going on here! On paper, it seems as though this abundance of red would be too much, but one look at the finished product proves that it just plain works!

Of course, the polished billet accents, including the Billet Specialties steering wheel and shift lever, add a nice contrast, and the ’98 Escalade center console gives Connor somewhere to stash some snacks for the drive out to shows. As it turns out one of the biggest challenges for Connor was finding a dash that wasn’t cracked to replace the old one, but his perseverance eventually paid off when he located one at a local salvage yard.

More to Come!

Connor tells us that after hitting a few shows, he’s ready to dive back into the truck and add an air-ride suspension, big brakes, and move up to 22-inch wheels for the rear. Once those items have been checked off his list, he may be ready to move on to a new project!

We’d say that with the skills he’s picked up while building his truck and the end result you see here, he’s more than ready!

Truck Specs

Owner: Connor Crews

Lake St. Louis, MO

1998 Chevy C1500


  • C-notched frame
  • Belltech 4/6 lowering kit
  • Belltech shocks


  • Engine: 4.3L V-6 swapped to 5.7L Chevy Performance crate engine
  • Exhaust: Magnaflow 2.5-inch
  • Transmission: Chevy Performance 4L60E


  • Chevy W/T front end swapped to GMC Sierra front end
  • Billet grille insert
  • Shaved bumpers
  • Shaved third brake light
  • Shaved stake pockets
  • Shaved antenna
  • Custom mixed BASF basecoat/clearcoat

Interior & STEREO  

  • All interior plastic painted red
  • Upholstery work by Laura Semaan
  • Snowden bucket seats upholstered with red Relicate leather
  • Billet Specialties steering wheel
  • Billet Specialties shift lever
  • 1998 Cadillac Escalade center console
  • Kenwood/Kicker sound system

Wheels Tires 

  • Wheels: 20×8.5 and 20×10 Billet Specialties Speedway wheels
  • Tires: Pirelli