Work-in-progress 2019 Pete 389 stands out from the crowd

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Updated Jun 26, 2021

Apple Valley, California-based Steve Johnson operates Smalls Express with his 2019 Peterbilt 389 that he leases on with Landstar. He showed the truck at the Kenly 95 East Coast Jamboree in Kenly, North Carolina in May, where he picked up the honor of the "Long Haul Award" for the furthest distance traveled by any competitor.

Johnson bought the rig new and took delivery of it on Jan. 1, 2019. He parked it for 10 months before putting it on the road to make some upgrades to it, all of which he did himself apart from the paint and pinstriping.

“Just your basic flattop,” he says. “I know I’m getting old, but I’m not dead. I gotta stay cool. I’m not giving into being an old man.”

Under the hood is a 565-hp Cummins with an 18-speed and 3:36 rears. It sits on a 295-inch wheelbase and features air ride all the way around.

Johnson goes by the mantra of “less is more” when it comes to the features of the rig. “Sometimes you can overkill a truck,” he says.

Some upgrades he made include the bumper, headlights off of a Peterbilt 379, the visor, and swapped all the lenses on the lights to glass.

Inside the truck, which he says is still in progress, he vinyl wrapped the dash to match the pinstriping.

He says he decided to go with the yellow and black paint scheme just out of personal preference and the he likes that it stands out.

Johnson hauls flatbed freight across the country with the standout truck.

custom 2019 peterbilt 389Steve Johnson bought this 2019 Peterbilt 389 new and parked it for 10 months to do numerous upgrades, including a new bumper, lights, visor and more.

custom 2019 peterbilt 389All of the lenses on the lights were swapped to glass.

2019 peterbilt 389Johnson stretched the frame to 295 inches. He also added a custom deck plate.

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