in ,

City To Coast Cruising In A Chelsea Truck Company Black Hawk

A Chelsea Truck Company Black Hawk New Project In Australia

Until recently here in Australia, if you were going to customise or modify your Jeep Wrangler chances are you’d turn it into the ultimate off-roader.

For certain fans of rugged, ready for anything machines, the Wrangler is a logical choice. Whether it’s covered in mud crawling through the bush, or sparkling clean cruising by the beach, for fans of the open-top 4WD it doesn’t get much better.

Now, there is a completely different option. Chelsea Truck Company Sydney is now open for business with a showroom in Brookvale that houses its first complete project, the Black Hawk Jeep.

Afzal Khan founded the Chelsea Truck Company in the UK. The British automotive designer is also the force behind Kahn Design and Project Kahn. Kahn’s car legacy began when he designed an alloy wheel in 1996, he then expanded into other custom designed accessories and by 2002 he was doing complete vehicle upgrades.

CTC turns Jeep Wrangler, Land Rover Defender and Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen vehicles into customised creations that combine glamorous finishes with bold body work – but you’d want to be ok with attracting attention to buy your own. The range will soon expand to include the Range Rover Sport and Range Rover Evoque.

Chelsea Truck Company Sydney is now open for business with a showroom in Brookvale that houses its first complete project, the Black Hawk Jeep
Chelsea Truck Company Sydney is now open for business with a showroom in Brookvale that houses its first complete project, the Black Hawk Jeep

We took the Black Hawk for a cruise around Sydney, from the Northern Beaches to urban areas around the Sydney Harbour Bridge. This is where the Black Hawk will be most commonly found. Despite the Wrangler’s predilection for off-road adventures, the CTC version isn’t geared for dirt, dust, mud or sand.

Based on the 2016 Jeep Wrangler Sport, the Black Hawk is just as capable as the standard offering, however the body panels and interior finishes are a little too pretty to want to put it through the wringer off the blacktop.

The paint is a special, custom design that is scratch resistant with a Chromax finish so that’s not the issue. Dents in the body panels or damage to the undercarriage however, are.

There have been no changes to what’s under the bonnet, no sense in voiding the new car warranty – unless of course you really want to then CTC Sydney can assist with further modifications. It retains its original 3.6-litre V6 petrol engine, teamed with a five-speed automatic transmission.

From the impressive finish to the paintwork, the body kit includes new bumpers, grille, chunky flares and a beautifully moulded bonnet
From the impressive finish to the paintwork, the body kit includes new bumpers, grille, chunky flares and a beautifully moulded bonnet

But essentially, the conversion doesn’t include an engine re-tune, a lift-kit or heavy-duty suspension upgrade, though the 20-inch wheels with Cooper tyres are certainly a lot bigger than the standard offering. The work is all superficial and therefore the vehicle isn’t any more powerful or capable.

In fact, it still drives like a Wrangler. Exactly like a Wrangler. Sure the bigger wheels with more rubber improve the ride quality and noise a fair bit, the exhaust sounds better now that the standard system has been replaced with a quad crosshair system, but that renowned Wrangler steering feel and wallow is still present and accounted for. It still steers like a barge and bobs about like a pontoon, but it’s full of character and that’s what so many fans love about the Wrangler.

In order to meet Australian regulations, the vehicle can’t be made any less safe than it already is which means that steering wheels with airbags can’t be swapped out, neither can seats with built-in side airbags. Custom parts that include airbags may be produced in the future, but for now the Wrangler’s seats can only be upgraded by being covered in beautiful, colourful leather with contrast stitching.

The same leather – in this case Burgundy – is also used to wrap the roll-bars and the colour is used on a few of the cabin trims on the dash and armrest. Among the other interior changes, there are drilled metal pedals, and the infotainment system has been upgraded and now includes satellite navigation.

The leather is used to wrap the roll-bars and the colour is used on a few of the cabin trims on the dash and armrest.
The leather is used to wrap the roll-bars and the colour is used on a few of the cabin trims on the dash and armrest.

The interior colour combinations are almost endless, as are the exterior paint colour options. Aside from the impressive finish to the paintwork, the body kit includes new bumpers, grille, chunky flares and a beautifully moulded bonnet.

It’s designed to create a shorter, wider profile and pay homage to Jeep’s military roots. If that wasn’t enough to set it apart from the crowd, the original headlights have been ripped out and replaced with shadow chrome headlamps and retro Tron ring lights.

Being the first project completed in Sydney, this Black Hawk took more than two months, but a normal build should take just a few weeks as the process becomes second nature for the new team here in Australia, headed up by director Evan Wilson.

It is quite a process; it takes a lot of time and attention to detail to ensure all of the pieces fit together perfectly. You’ll pay for perfection though; the two-door Black Hawk is $150,000 while the Limited four-door is $155,000. That price includes the new model Jeep Wrangler, but even if you were to bring your own vehicle you could still expect to pay around $100,000.

The Chelsea Truck Company Black Hawk Jeep is built for attracting attention around the city and would be best kept in urban environments. It is still a Jeep though, and more than capable of a little adventure should the need or desire arise.

The Carousel thanks Tegan Lawson from Car Advice for her latest review.

Written by Tegan Lawson

Tegan Lawson is the Lifestyle writer and Motoring Expert for The Carousel. Tegan produces in-depth interviews and reviews and helps readers make the best choice for their next car purchase.

Tegan got her first taste of motorsports journalism working for a regional newspaper. She was still a student at the University of Southern Queensland but was moonlighting patrolling the pits at the Leyburn sprints and heading to the drags, as well as working trackside at the Queensland Raceway V8 supercar rounds in the early 2000s. With petrol firmly in her blood, these early days spawned her love of all things automotive.

Her driving career as a 17 year-old began with the unique experience of a Suzuki Carry Van that was quickly upgraded to a more image-appropriate Holden Barina.

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Loading…

Loading…

0

Comments

Barbecue Octopus Salad Recipe From Sydney's Old City Restaurant

Barbecue Octopus Salad Recipe From Sydney’s Old City Restaurant

Few Easy Tips To Pick The Perfect Avocadoes

Don’t Believe the Avo-Hype: Here’s How To Pick The Perfect Avocados