Classic Cars 

The 1970 K5 Blazer We All Wish We Had

by Calvin Escobar

One of the sweetest K5 Blazers we’ve ever seen comes to us from TMI Products. We first laid eyes on the topless beauty at the 2016 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Nevada. This 1970 K5 Blazer was restored to have a “nostalgic feel with a modern twist” as desired by Larry Ashley, the head of TMI. 

Starting with a quick walk around, the first thing we notice about the Blazer is the fact that it’s basically slammed, and is likely a good couple of feet shorter than its factory counterparts. After your curiosity gets the best of you, you’ll approach the open cab where you’ll find a creamy interior with matching steering wheel, door panels, and seats. The custom paint job will likely make you drool a little bit, and we haven’t even gotten under the hood yet.

While competition is fierce every year, and while TMI brings a variety of customized treasures to the show every year, this two-wheel-drive truck is the ultimate cruiser. TMI, however, refuses to take credit for all of the work; RnG Customs, Classics, and Fabrications helped with a large percentage of the rebuild as well. From brakes to electronics, this K5 was perfected at every turn. Once the core components were covered, TMI was able to begin shaping their masterpiece even more artfully.

Finding the right Blazer to makeover was one of the hardest challenges. Months of searching paid off when the team was able to track down exactly what they wanted and from there, it was a simple process of making the Blazer the best it could be. Not only did the exterior get a new life, the interior was completely gutted and reupholstered as well.

Left stock on the vehicle:

  • Frame
  • Heads
  • Valve covers
  • Radiator
  • Fans
  • Fenders
  • Hood
  • Grill
  • Steering column

Everything else on the vehicle has been modified or replaced. RideTech front and rear suspension are responsible for supporting the 5.3L Chevy engine installed by the previous owner. The Magnaflow exhaust is tucked away so it is heard, but not overstated or in the way. The 4L60E automatic transmission is a heavy-duty model, capable of handling higher horsepower and higher torque truck applications. The tranny is perfectly matched to the 2-wheel drive set up, complete with the shifter on the column.

The paint job may grab your eye first; the creamy and smooth combination of “Root Beer Brown” and “Champagne” encompasses a combination of old-timey feel and the modern artistic style behind this type of restoration. Complete with a custom interior and HID projector headlights and taillights, this Blazer stands, very obviously, apart from the others.

Speaking of the interior, it’s difficult not to admire the work and attention to detail involved. The dashboard was designed and installed by the guys at TMI before being completed by Dakota Digital gauges. A custom steering wheel, custom seats, matching upholstery and contrasting brown carpet tie the color scheme back into the paint job, creating a smooth two-tone transition both inside and out.

The compilation of work from TMI and RnG Customs, Classics and Fabrications resulted in one badass K5 Blazer, so badass, in fact, that the original owner who sold it to Larry Ashley actually asked if he could purchase the vehicle back from TMI!

For the time being though, it looks as though TMI is going to hold onto it, and we totally understand why. We wouldn’t want to let her go just yet either.


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