Words: Kristie Real

Photos: Dale Martin

In 2018, Complete Customs celebrated their 10th year representing at SEMA, with a special edition Toyota Tundra to mark the momentous occasion (despite having more than 70 different customs debut at the show throughout the years). In 2008, owner Shaun Freilich, was attending college in Odessa, TX, and had been working with a local shop. They had done a few small projects for him in 2008 and with the release of the new Toyota Tundra, the shop owner asked Shaun if he wanted to build one for SEMA. “This was my first introduction to the show,” Shaun admits. From there, he learned the ins and outs of building a show-worthy vehicle, including reaching out to several companies to sponsor the build. His first call was to Roland Trudell, founder of RBP, who took Shaun under his wing and played a significant part in getting the Tundra going. The second call was to Thomas Fitcher of N-Fab, who also guided him in the right direction. Learning from two heavy-hitters in the industry fueled Shaun’s customizing addiction and the rest is history.
Once everything was complete, he made sure to personally track down both men to thank them for everything they had done for him throughout the process. Over the next few years, he kept in touch with both, and their inspiration was one of the driving forces behind Shaun’s decision to open his own custom shop in 2011. In the past seven years, Complete Customs has had a strong presence at the largest automotive aftermarket show in the world, which has helped put the shop on the customizing map.
So when planning began for the 2018 show, he knew he needed to build a 2018 Tundra as a reminder of how far he had come over the last 10 years. “Once I started the design phase of the build, I knew I had to work with all the same companies that I worked with 10 years ago,” he explains. “I got in contact with RBP, Bulletproof Suspension, KC HiLites, Nitto and a few others and was blown away how everyone quickly responded yes!” To give the build a fresh look, Shaun also reached out to a few top brands like Alea Leather, Linkswell, Retrax, Yakima, AMP Research and more.
Once he got the concept locked in with Innov8 Design Lab, he pledged to go above and beyond to really make the 10th Anniversary memorable. The original Tundra from 2008 had a matching speed boat, so Shaun needed to top that. His good friend Rob Wallach (owner of Excessive Carts in Prosper, TX) had been wanting to collaborate with him on a golf cart build, so Shaun thought it was time to follow through. “We both knew we wanted a custom lifted suspension, so I quickly involved another good friend of mine Chris Moos, the owner of Mooscraft. They built the air ride suspension using parts from Air Lift Performance.” Once the suspension on the golf cart was done, it was returned to Excessive Carts, where their team worked three days straight to complete the golf cart in time for its grand debut.
For the Toyota, they went old school and opted to use the original white with blue accents. While the first rendering did have blue graphics on it, Shaun later decided to remove the graphics for a simple and clean look that Complete Customs is known for. To give the Tundra a noticeable stance, Shaun was able to use the first Bulletproof rear cantilever suspension for a Tundra that’s perfect for daily driving while still being a head turner at shows. Because Complete Customs are pros when it comes to SEMA builds, they were able to complete the Tundra in just three weeks – with a lot of late nights, though. “I’m thankful to have an amazing team!” Unlike other builds that always have something go wrong right before the big debut, Shaun was also lucky enough to have everything run pretty smoothly during those three weeks, as if the customizing gods approved of his 10th SEMA Anniversary Tundra!
The finished duo has been a huge hit with the public. “The Tundra is obviously a head turner, but when I have the Tundra and the golf cart together, the public goes crazy!” Shaun details. “I couldn’t be happier with the final product and everything turned out just as planned.” Now, Shaun uses the Tundra and golf cart for marketing purposes and then he’ll soon be changing up the Tundra once more for the 2019 SEMA Show.