Grant Willbanks Third Gen Tacoma Build

Let's kick off 2021 with a build feature we've been really excited about! Grant Willbanks with Arkansas Offroad/Backwoods Adventure Mods shares his built to the bones third gen! We recommend checking out Backwoods Adventure Mods, especially if you're in the market for a really slick looking bumper for your third gen! Without further ado, let's get on to the build!


  • Suspension:
    • King 2.5 Remote Reservoir's front & rear
    • Camburg UCA's
    • Dobinson L59-112-R heavy duty leaf springs
    • Wheeler's offroad U-bolt flip kit
    • Wheeler's super bumps

  • Wheels & Tires:
    • 17" AEV Dualsport Crestones with silver protection ring (5)
    • 285/75/17 BFG KM3's (5)
  • Exterior:
    • Pathfinder 2" amber pod lights
    • Pathfinder rear flush mount lights
    • TRD Pro front grill
    • Raptor lights
    • ARB Safari Snorkel w/ SyKlone Precleaner
    • Front Runner camper shell rack (low)
    • Front Runner slimline II roof rack (low)
    • Backwoods Adventure Mods prototype hardshell RTT
    • 2 gal water RotoPax
    • 2 gal fuel RotoPax
    • NB Expeditions GARB bag
  • Armor:

  • Recovery:
    • Warn VR-12s winch
    • Warn shackles
    • Factor 55 Fairlead and Ultrahook
    • Maxtrax
  • Interior & Bed:
    • Color matched ARE Classic camper shell
    • Full Decked drawer system
    • Full LED canopy lighting
    • Alucab tilting fridge slide
    • Dometic CFX 45 fridge
    • DIY portable 500w battery system
    • 100 w portable solar panels
    • Plano storage bins
    • Clazzio full leather seat covers
    • Chrome delete kit
    • Midland MXT275 GMRS radio
    • Midland handheld walkies w/ custom mounts

  • Performance:
    • Nitro 4:88 gears
    • Pedalbox throttle controller
  • Future Plans:
    • Sliders
    • Pelican storage case on roof rack

What is the most unique or surprising mod you have done to your Tacoma?:

  • Honestly, the most surprising mod on this whole truck (besides re-gearing - duh), is the camper shell. Having a water tight bed is a game changer. All of your gear is out of the dust, rain, and mud. Plus it's not visible to any thieves. ESPECIALLY having the ARE windoors makes things so accessible. Lifting doors on both sides of the shell with the combination of the drawer system make accessing every square inch of the bed a total breeze. Camper shells are so cool for accessibility and has made camping so much easier (and cleaner).

More importantly than the truck, is the person behind the wheel! Give us some insight on where you're from and what pulled you into the wheeling community!

  • My name is Grant Willbanks and I'm from Northwest Arkansas. I've always been into vehicles, getting my hands dirty, designing and customizing things, and tinkering. I'm a professional graphic designer and also do a great deal of marketing. I also have my own YouTube channel called Arkansas Offroad that I do very regularly. I sort of got into Overlanding by accident. I had a 1984 Toyota Pickup that I sort of built up and sold, which led to me purchasing a hardly running 1977 International Scout II. I built that up in college and fell in love with 4x4's and making vehicles your own. After that, I bought a 2000 Jeep TJ, started my YouTube channel, and things exploded from there. My following grew like crazy and I eventually had one of the most famous TJ's out there. Recently, I sold the TJ and moved to Toyota and am absolutely loving it. Besides overlanding, my other hobbies include mountain biking, scale crawler rc's, and dirtbiking. Pretty much anything with wheels and dirt. I used to be a really good skateboarder growing up and moved into mountain biking. Northwest Arkansas has grown to be the mecca of mountain biking over the last few years, so it's hard not to get into it. I was a very serious rider until overlanding took all of my time. I still ride when I can though.


Where has your truck been? What awesome stories do you have from being on the trails?:

  • Mainly, the Ozark National Forest in Arkansas is my stomping ground. It's got some of the most diverse terrain and views anywhere around the U.S., which is why I love it so much. Plus, it's only about an hour and a half from my house. We have rocks, mud holes, tons of awesome water crossings, and beautiful views. It's hard for me to even want to get out of Arkansas sometimes. I have a few trail stories that involve breaking down in the middle of nowhere in my Jeep TJ a few times. Good times, but I'd rather not revisit them, haha.

In your words, what is the best thing about being apart of the Tacoma community?:

  • The best part about being in the Tacoma community is seeing the diversity of builds and the support people have. These things are like the Honda Civic of the import world. You can build them 10,000 different ways. People are constantly pushing each other and pushing manufactures to make innovative stuff. I think the reliability of Tacoma and Toyota as a whole has contributed to making these trucks so popular.

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