There are lots of big things happening for 2017 at UTVUnderground.com but none is bigger than the addition of Sunrise Ford to our long list of corporate sponsors. We have built our site on the frame-rails of our 1999 Ford F250 Lariat. The truck that features the famed 7.3 Powerstroke Diesel has been nothing short of perfect as we have traveled the United States with our UTVs in tow. We have put almost 300K hard miles on our old 7.3 and it has never missed a beat. But like all vehicles, as they work load increases along with the miles, the need for a fresh work horse was in order.
With a full schedule lined up for 2017 and a new massive 5th wheel from Attitude & Giant RV (you can read our feature on that rig here) we knew we needed to upgrade our truck. After a lot of research we had decided that the ultimate truck would be a new long bed 2017 F350 and thanks to our good friends at Sunrise Ford our dreams became a reality.
We met the Sunrise Ford fleet manager, Bobby Williams, through mutual friends. Bobby, like many at Sunrise Ford, is an avid off-road enthusiast and a fan of UTVUnderground.com. Amongst other toys, Bobby also owns a 2016 Polaris RZR XP Turbo so we shared a common interest both in our love of Ford trucks and RZRs. As we met up to discuss our new truck options we found ourselves drifting into conversations about our love of off-road riding in Glamis and our favorite mods to our RZRs. Soon thereafter Bobby and his right hand man Matt Charland, who is a walking Ford diesel encyclopedia, began to school me on the new 2017 Super Duty platform. With each new feature explained I began to get more and more excited.
Before I get too far ahead on the truck itself, let me bring you up to speed on Sunrise Ford. Sunrise Ford is a family owned business, founded by Bob Bruncati in 1981. In 1990 he opened up the Sunrise Ford Fontana dealership and within a short amount of time was one of Southern California’s top performing dealerships. The daily operations today are ran by Bob’s sons, brothers James, Dan and Tony Bruncati. All three play an active role in the dealership. All three also happen to be motorsports enthusiasts and share a passion for racing. In my second meeting with the Bruncati’s I found myself immersed in fascinating stories about the history of the company, their family and of course their racing history. It was easy to see just why this company has benefitted from success as the competitive nature between the brothers was clearly obvious. They are driven as professionals and individuals, yet seem to carry a humbleness usually reserved for those much less fortunate then guys like them. I knew I liked this family when they began to tell old childhood stories of running a muck around their dads dealership and neighborhood. Bob didn’t talk once about the truck or our partnership, rather he indulged in the family’s race team which he has moved on to run and operate. While the brothers tend to the daily dealership business, Bob travels the United States with his NASCAR K&N Pro Series race program in which he breeds the talent of the future. From that moment on, I knew this relationship would be a long lasting one, now I just need to figure out how to get Sunrise Ford hooked on UTV racing, that will be a good day!
With the blessing of the Bruncati’s, Bobby, Matt and I began to work out the details of our new truck. They settled on setting us up with the top of the line 2017 Ford F350 4×4 Lariat that sports a long-bed frame and just under 500hp and 1000 ft. lbs. of torque. When I laid eyes on the silver beauty I was instantly in love. Its 20″ factory wheels, leather interior and massive stance gave me a sensation usually reserved for those times alone with my wife, but I will spare you those details. Bobby & Matt walked me through the truck and their years of experience gave me a schooling that was almost overwhelming. It was easy to see why these guys make up one of the largest grossing Ford dealerships in the nation and it was clear that these two were a huge asset to their company.
I know a lot of people who know Bobby Williams, they all sing the same praise. He is a down to earth guy, the furthest thing from what you picture a car salesman to be. Bobby and Matt are not the guys you see on the dealership lot hunting down their next customer, and not that there is anything wrong with that, but the two have built up a reputation that allows them to remain extremely busy from the customers who contact them directly to purchase new vehicles. While it may seem self serving that we built this partnership so that we could get a smoking deal on a truck that was sticker priced at just under $75K, it wasn’t entirely just about us. The deal we struck was also to pay it forward to our members and extend our relationship and deals to our readers, members, friends and followers! I will elaborate more on that shortly.
After my introduction to the vehicle I was put behind the wheel of this new beast of a truck. I quickly tethered my phone to the Ford SYNC system & Apple Play and hit the road. It was like traveling in time going from my old 99 F250 to this new 2017. As I hit the freeway I pressed the voice activated button on the steering wheel and asked SIRI to give me directions to my next destination, whats funny is I knew exactly where I was going but I just wanted to try it out. It promptly loaded the map and directions on the large 7″ digital screen and away I went. Then I passed a cop doing 80mph… I was so caught up in excitement and because of how silent the truck is and the gobs of power it has I had no idea how fast I was traveling. Lucky for me the cop must have been gawking at this beauty blowing by him that he decided not to light me up.
After almost getting a ticket not even 5 miles from Sunrise Ford, I slapped the truck into its adaptive cruise control and rolled on down the freeway. The new truck is equipped with on board radar that allows you to set the distance for which you want to keep between the vehicles in front of you. Its badass how it works and whether you have a full load in tow or not it performs the same. How it works is, you set your speed just like you do anytime you set cruise control, then you set your distance you want to keep between you and the vehicle in front of you. From there, you never have to touch the gas or brake for as long as you leave it engaged. Should the vehicle in front reduce its speed, the truck will automatically reduce its speed keeping the same preset distance between you and that vehicle. Once the vehicle in front increases its speed the truck will then accelerate and should the vehicle move over freeing the lane up or you decide to shift lanes the truck will then respond by accelerating back up to your set speed. I did a full test on this during our first pull with our Attitude RV, I didn’t touch the gas or brake from the time we got on HWY60 to the time we exited the 10FWY at desert center. Thats almost 100 miles of cruise control and that was in traffic with a few really good uphill pulls and downhill descents.
Speaking of towing, did I mention that this truck has almost 1000 ft. lbs. of torque!? 925 to be exact! Its a towing monster and even with our fully loaded 43ft Attitude RV weighing over 16K (loaded up) the truck never once struggled. Matter of fact, you have to be careful because you can find yourself moving way over the determined speed limit. I am not talking the lame 55mph California speed limit, I am talking Texas sized speed limits! This truck can move, and never once did I feel like the tail was wagging the dog. Its built in trailer brake controller, automatic tow mirrors, and digital towing system allow you to pull safe and with more information on your truck then you will ever need to know. The truck will tell you when you are hooked to the trailer and allows you to program the trailer you are towing so that the truck will instantly set your brake controller and more.
Now I can go on and on about how great this truck is and touch on all the features and accessories but at already around 1500 words, this story is probably already starting to make you ask if there is anything I don’t like about it. The answer is NO. There isn’t a thing I don’t like about it. Well, maybe one thing, it didn’t come with the massaging seats, and yes that is an option. But it did come with a center console locking safe which can be used to securely lock up valuable belongings or guns… if you were into that sort of thing. The seven cameras make backing up or hooking up to your trailer a breeze, the crash detection system keeps you and your family safe and the full size overhead sunroof allows you to cruise down the road while enjoying the day or nighttime sky above. Oh, and the heated and air conditioned seats don’t suck either. In short, Ford did a good job disguising a Mercedes Benz in the form of a truck, and ask anyone who has ridden in one or been in our truck and they will tell you, you will be hard pressed to find a more loaded or luxurious pick up.
So now that I got you all excited, here is how you too can benefit from this killer new relationship. What Sunrise Ford is offering is a full VIP buying experience to all of our members, followers, readers and friends. What I mean by a buying experience is that you have the ability to work directly with Bobby & Matt. No need to go through a lot salesman, you get to go strait to the juice, and as members of our site you get not only the best pricing they can offer but the best service any dealership can offer. Bobby & Matt only answer to the owners, that means you don’t have to deal with the back & forth usually reserved for new customers walking into a dealership. Together the two can get you a solid price and answers in a speedy time and can do it with knowledge and experience. They won’t bullshit you with brochure type information, but rather real world experience as both have owned numerous Ford vehicles. They literally walk-the-walk and talk-the-talk.
Even if you aren’t looking to buy, but rather are trying to diagnose a problem with your current Ford truck, Matt Charland is your guy! He has committed to helping our members with their technical questions and trust me, if you can stump this guy I would be shocked! He has forgotten more about Ford trucks then you or I will ever know and we all know how important it is to have a guy like that on our side.
Take it from me, you want to take advantage of this opportunity. If you are in the hunt for a new Ford vehicle or simply looking to learn more about your own vehicle then hit up Bobby & Matt at Sunrise Ford Fontana. I personally guarantee you won’t be disappointed. And with that said, these guys aren’t magicians. If you are trying to eat surf & turf on a cheeseburger budget then realize these guys aren’t miracle workers. With that said, they will find a way to work with your budget and if they can make it happen they will!!
Take advantage of the UTVUnderground deal at Sunrise Ford. Whether you need service at their service department which is open 7 days a week and has same day diagnostic services, or you want to purchase a new or used truck or car, contact Bobby and/or Matt at Sunrise Ford and give them a shot, we promise you won’t be disappointed!
Stay tuned to UTVUnderground.com for a complete build up of this truck!