For a few years now, Destination Polaris has been highlighting custom builds across the country that show off Polaris vehicles being stretched to their limits. This is Project X. It is an exclusive club that we are very proud to be a part of, along with companies like Pro Armor and Rugged Radios.
If you remember, Destination Polaris is where we first unveiled Depth Finder two years ago. Our heavily-modified RZR 4 1000 was a big hit. The following year we unveiled Bad Blood, our custom RZR 1000 Rock Bouncer. We still bring these two monsters to every show we can and they always draw a crowd.
Cool stuff always comes out of DP’s Project X builds, no matter who’s making them. If you caught the most recent episode, you saw Rugged Radios’ first Project X build and it’s clear that they’ve got the expertise to make something truly remarkable.
Rugged Radios is well known for high-quality vehicle-to-vehicle communication solutions. They make radios for most high-noise vehicle applications, including emergency vehicles and aviation, but their focus is on off-road vehicles. They offer a full gamut of communication products, from handheld two-way radios to integrated helmet intercoms to top-of-the-line, quad-band, dash-mounted radios.
Rugged Radios is located in Pismo Beach, California, which means there are dunes, mountains, and rocks all around them—a rider’s paradise. They were featured on Destination Polaris last year and if you watched that episode, you know they wear their love of UTVs on their chest. It’s no wonder that they’ve been making custom vehicles for years now.
You’ve probably heard of their Baja RZR, which combines a VW Bug with a 2015 RZR XP 1000. It’s a cool and iconic buggy and should give you a good idea of what these guys who make radios can do with a UTV.
If you like this 2015 Baja RZR build, you’ll love what they did with this rig a couple years later! This Baja got a fresh new look in 2017 that boasts a classic all-blue exterior. Check it out!
This time, Destination Polaris came by for a Project X build aptly named The Rugged General. For this build, Rugged Radios’ affable owner, Greg Cottrell, explains that they started with a Polaris General 1000 and promptly removed the frame and bodywork to make way for the dramatic modifications they were adding. Their goal: to turn a General 1000 into a WWII-era Willys Jeep, combining the grandfather of off-roading with the best modern off-road vehicle available.
Since Rugged Radios doesn’t make aftermarket parts for Generals, they enlisted the help of some others in the industry. That’s where SuperATV came in. We sent over our Polaris General 3″ Lift Kit to help them get the suspension where it needed to be on the Rugged General. Our 3″ lift gave them the space they needed to fit their 32″ Ivan Stewart Edition GMZ wheels and their custom flat fender flares. They finished the whole thing off with a canvas roof, custom decals, and a custom hood, along with dozens of little touches to keep it authentic and unique.
The focal point of the whole vehicle, though, is that genuine flat-fender Willys Jeep front grille and windshield. It’s immediately identifiable as a Willys Jeep and will make you look twice before realizing it’s not actually a Jeep at all. And it all comes together really nicely—the boxy cage, the spare tire on the back, the ammo cans and flat fenders—they all give the impression of a heavy-duty retro work vehicle. It’s an awesome, total transformation of a General 1000. Your only clues that it ever was a General comes from the shape of the doors and the remaining plastic bodywork. It’s the perfect union of new and old.
Here’s the full rundown of the parts Rugged used to make their vision a reality:
This one-of-a-kind build represents the perfect union between old and new. After all, it’s not often you see that iconic Willys Jeep grille paired with top-of-the-line LED lights and audio accessories! Kudos to the Rugged Radios team and everyone else who played a role in bringing this build to life.
We can’t wait to see what Destination Polaris will showcase next. What kind of creative custom builds would you like to see next?