If you were to ask Keith Thompson why he built his '83 Nissan King Cab 720 mini, without hesitation he would tell you he did if for the love of the sport. Of course, a shot in the magazine that does his creation justice wouldn't hurt either. Right, Keith? Keith is a 15-year veteran of the disease that prompted him to build an S-10, another '83 Nissan, and a '73 Chevy. This particular Nissan mini has been in his family the same amount of time that Keith has been a mini-trucker, but he has only worked on it for the last four years. Previously, the 720 belonged to Keith's brother who purchased it back in the day when Keith had his first 720. After suffering a blown head gasket, the venerable custom sat dormant in a field on the family property until Keith decided it was time to rescue it. The first mild round of customization came about four years ago. At the end of 1998, though, Keith enlisted the help of his family and friends, tearing the truck down to the frame and going off on his mini. Soon it was a 'bagged, body dropped, graphic-adorned, trophy-taking monster that terrorized the show circuit. These days, when the back door of the trailer opens and Keith rolls out his 720, you can hear a pin drop as the show stops in its tracks, waiting to catch a glimpse of his ride. Old-skool customs just don't get much cleaner than this one.

Owner's Box

Owner: Keith Thompson Hometown: Jackson, Mississippi Model: '83 Nissan King Cab 720

the lowdown

Suspension
Wicked Kustoms of Jackson, Mississippi, body dropped the 720 2-1/2 inches. JF Motorsports installed Belltech 2-inch drop spindles, then coupled them with Firestone 2500 air springs to bring the front of the Nissan down to the pavement. Then, the staff three-linked the rearend and fabricated a custom center mount for a single Firestone 2500 'bag that raises and lowers the rear. Then, the stock gas tank was scrapped in favor of a 10-gallon fuel cell. Manual valves direct the air for the suspension. When the suspension work was completed, the custom 2x3-inch squared tubing frame was painted and airbrushed. Moore's Metal Plating of Shreveport, Louisiana, chromed the suspension components.

Wheels/tires
Keith's rollers are 17x7-inch Center Line Galaxy 2s with P205/40R17 Falken low-profile tires.

Interior
Juan's Auto Upholstery in Jackson re-covered the seats in gray tweed. Keith re-covered the rest of the interior in the same grey tweed. He added white-face gauges to the cluster, billet handles to the door panels, and a billet shifter.

Paint/graphics
John Foster sprayed the PPG/Sherwin Williams base colors, and Yellow, Blue, White, and Orange graphics were airbrushed by Hot Rod.

Body mods
Keith replaced the '83 Nissan bed with an '85 720 replacement. JF Motorsports shaved the hood, the cowl door handles, the taillights, the key locks, and the gas filler door. They also replaced the tailgate with a Cal combo.

Engine
The stock '83 four-cylinder powerplant was rebuilt and treated to a painted air intake, starter, engine block, and transmission. A Honda Civic battery replaced the bulky factory one. Owner's quote "If it weren't for all those late nights and my friends' hard work, the truck never would have been completed and this never would have happened. Thanks, guys!"