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Victor Hale’s 2017 XLT F-150 – Starting with Bolt-Ons
Sometimes our favorite trucks are not the ones with the most mods or the tallest ride heights. Such is the case with Victor Hale’s 2017 XLT. With simple bolt-ons, Victor has added utility and personality to his 4x4 F-150. He included a shorter antenna for a cleaner look, a set of black headlight housings to add to the sleekness and a set of blue coil covers to add some color in his V8 engine bay.
One excellent, bolt-on starter mod that adds some longevity to Victor’s F-150 is the Barricade Tailgate Assist. A tailgate assist is something newer trucks usually come with standard and you could argue Ford forgot this gem of an add-on. Victor wisely took the time to outfit his F-150 with the assist on his 2017. On a brand new truck, it hurts us all to hear a tailgate banging down and causing unnecessary stress on an otherwise work ready truck. A tailgate assist allows for a smoother, slower descent of the tailgate. It’s easy to install, figure about a half hour of your time, and doesn’t require any permanent modification of your truck’s tailgate. The Barricade offering comes powdercoated so Victor won’t have to worry about his upgrade rusting out on him.
Swapping an air filter doesn’t sound exciting, but it is when you consider adding power and fuel efficiency to a V8 F-150. Victor elected to refrain from replacing his truck’s filter with a standard paper element. Instead, he upgraded to an oiled and washable mesh filter from Airaid. Their SynthaFlow filter is designed to be direct fit replacement that features a hybrid material of cotton gauze and a synthetic nano-fiber. This combination filters down to two microns, keeping Victor’s engine breathing clean air despite conditions outside and allows his V8 to breathe more efficiently for a bump in horsepower and MPGs. Victor can simply wash, re-oil and reuse this SynthaFlow filter when it gets dirty. This saves both time and money by not having to purchase a new element every time maintenance is needed.
Classic V8 Rumble
Swapping out a stock exhaust system is a classic, go-to modification for F-150 owners as well as many other auto enthusiasts. This is especially true on newer, quieter vehicles. Most of us associate Ford’s 5.0L V8 with a distinct rumble, but in the case of the 2015+ F-150s, the stock exhaust system is infamous for choking a beloved sound. Victor opted for the MBRP Middle Side Exit system to help showcase his truck’s voice. For those of you who enjoy the sound of straight pipes, but prefer something slightly subdued in volume on the street, the MBRP 3 in. Installer Series exhaust is a perfect choice. This system exits in front of the passenger rear tire and sports two 4-inch polished stainless steel tips; think SVT Lightning in appearance. Victor did have to cut the MBRP system to fit his regular cab, but MBRP provides detailed instructions on where to cut depending on cab and bed sizes.
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