Tandem-axle, wide-body 1965 Chev C10

DeBerti Design’s totally nuts, tandem-axle ‘C10 Slayer’ has been wowing onlookers at SEMA 2021

Photographers: Phillip Thomas

Likely the most outlandish machine on the SEMA show floor this year is DeBerti Design’s ‘C10 Slayer’, a 1965 Chev C10 that’s been transformed into a six-wheeled monster packing more than enough punch to spin those rear meats – which, all told, represent about a metre-and-a-half of total tread width between all four.

If you haven’t heard of DeBerti Design before, the shop is led by Doug DeBerti and his son Brad. “My pops has been building since as long as I can remember,” Brad told us. “I grew up in the shop, and the only two ways I could have things was if I had worked for it or if I could build it. So I took the building route. So fast-forward to now, I’ve been building for about 25 years, and we just like building crazy, unique things.”

While DeBerti Design has always been turning out custom builds, it was the shop’s 2017 Ford F150 Raptor ‘pre-runner’ that put the father-and-son duo on the map, with Brad winning a Young Gun award and making it into the Top 10 Battle of the Builders at SEMA 2016.

This year, they decided to leave a bit of a wild calling card on the show floor in the form of the C10 Slayer.

The chassis was built between the DeBertis and Scott’s Hotrods ’n Customs, stretching the C10 to fit the double rear axles while also moving away from the original C-channel frame rails, which would’ve had the rigidity of a wet cardboard tube when faced with the the hefty grunt of the Whipple-blown LSX376-B15 that lives up front.

The axles are custom nine-inchers built by DeBerti, hung with a parallel four-link and located laterally by a Watt’s link. They are proper tandem axles just like on a big rig. Mittler Brothers hydraulic-over-spring HydroShox support the C10; unlike airbags, the HydroShox can maintain a constant spring rate at any given ride height by effectively tying the spring perch to a hydraulic cylinder.

One-off, 20-inch Govad wheels maintain that wild Hot Wheels look tucked under the Advanced Fiberglass Concepts flares and bodywork.

“I just wanted to have a vehicle that people remember,” Brad said of this bonkers C10. “When you have a show with a few thousand vehicles, the question is: what do you walk away remembering? It looks kinda like a Hot Wheels car, and I wanted something that had all forms of design in it.”

Indeed, a diverse range of influences are apparent in the DeBertis’ creation, from the JDM-inspired wide-body kit and Time Attack-style aero package to the brutal American muscle under the hood.

“Everything we build is wild, and I think of it this way: 50 per cent of people can like it, 50 per cent of people can hate it, but 100 per cent of people are talking about it because it’s just off-the-wall,” Brad said. “That’s how we like building our projects.

“This build took us nine months,” he continued. “This truck was rusted out, so we had to rebuild everything. Long nights – long, long nights – but it’s finally here and done. And when we get home, we’re gonna throw it on the dyno and and it’s going to live its life shredding tyres.”