I had the opportunity to drive the NuKaiser on the trail and on the road and found the truck a pleasure to drive. Certainly the unique nature and fantastic appearance of the vehicle provided a influence on my perspective, but it was surprising how well the J8 chassis handled the 38" tires and heavy beadlocks. Typically a heavy Dana 60 front axle also impacts suspension and road feel, but overall the ride and drive felt appropriate and secure given the prototype nature of the vehicle. Acceleration from the VM Motori diesel was strong and once full boost came in, the truck surged forward like an angry bull. It is shocking the performance available in a 4cyl with sufficient boost and proper tuning. The only real functional complaint of the Nukaizer is the visibility and headroom, both sacrificed for style. Not sure I would change the looks to gain any comfort back. In the dunes, the NuKaiser easily traversed the steepest leeward face and permitted some high-speed play in the bowls and outlining washes. The most difficult part of driving the NuKaiser is keeping the sand out of your mouth from smiling so much. Well done Mark - Well done Jeep. . .
Hold down brackets:
Warn Winch and MasterPull Line
Hutchinson Beadlocks and 38" BFG MT KM2s
Rear bumper with pintle receiver and the J8 recovery/airlift points
Great attention to detail
The design team utilized an AEV Brute bed for the project
What a great looking truck!
As a fun coincidence, one of the other journalists had an original M-37 as a project vehicle. It was thoughtfully modified and had a great blend of classic (with perfect patina) exterior and modern suspension / drive train modifications
I love it.