There is a small automotive manufacturer called US Specialty Vehicles out in Rancho Cucamonga that is building some badass SUVs based off the Ford F450 commercial truck chassis. At first glance it appears to be very similar to the Knight XV armored vehicle that retails for almost $700,000, it was the vehicle the Rock drove in Fast and Furious 6 or whatever its called. But you’ll be happy to know that the Rhino GX is a steal starting around $200,000-$250,000.
But there is one major difference between these twin brothers separated at birth, while most of the bodywork on the Rhino is made out of 20 gauge steel its not armored like the might Knight. But that’s OK because that isn’t what the guys at US Specialty were shooting for. They wanted to build the most luxurious, rugged looking and extremely capable SUV on the market.
They start with the blank canvas of a stock Ford F450 commercial chassis that just has the cab, running gear and the frame. From there they build the rest of the vehicle from there. You have the choice of two Ford power plants, the 6.7L Powerstroke turbo diesel V8 and the 6.8L V10 gas engine. Considering the vehicle weighs roughly 5,500lbs most people will opt for the diesel where it produces 330hp and 760lb-ft of torque which is whats important when getting that much weight moving in one direction or the other. According to the video Smoking Tire released they are working on an engine that is said to increase the horsepower up into the 450+ range.
Inside looks pretty much like the interior of a limousine. High quality materials are used throughout with unlimited customization possibilities with the available options. For example the executive model package includes things like a 40″ TV with partition, exotic wood, premium leather, and the list goes on. Now I guess it could be argued that the only downside to the Executive package is that it only seats five people, versus eight in the Premium package.
They have designed this vehicles so it could potential be used as a daily driver, even with its massive size. It’s a diesel so towing your boat to the lake is no problem, it has a claimed tow capacity of around 12,000lbs. One of the unique things about the truck is the suspension system. First of all its an extremely sophisticated air bag system combined with a hydraulic system and they said something about having struts as well. I’ll be honest i’m fairly handy with a wrench but it went over my head a bit.
According to Matt Farrah after he had taken a test drive in the Rhino he said it was fantastic and rode like you were on air whether you were on the road or the dirt. Maybe we are a little biased towards the heavy duty off-road racing trucks or even the Raptor, but we thought it might have been cool to throw some massive 3.5 inch King long travel shocks or something like that. But that might be a little much I guess. It does run on 38 inch Toyo Mud tires so its got that going for it.
My overall take on the Rhino GX is that its designed for the guy that already has almost everything in his collection. I mean lets be real here, as badass as it might look, its essentially a modified Ford F450. For that kind of money you could buy a brand new truck, take it and get it and drop $40,000 in upgrades and still have $150,000 to buy a Raptor, Boat and still have money left over. Now don’t let that take anything away from the Rhino GX, it’s a badass rig. But it was built for a very specific buyer. At least that’s my two cents.