The 2017 5700XE was designed by fans and customers, who selected the truck model, application, engine, interior, and exterior options. 

The truck features a distinctive jet-black paint job with distinctive gold pinstripes. The hood features a big gold “W” on the hood is in homage to the famous Screaming Chicken Logo found on the hood of the movies iconic Trans Am.  The inside of the “Bandit” has a black dash with a prairie buckskin interior.  Here is a link to the video of when the winning design was announced by Andy Johnson

Some of the specs are an Integrated Detroit powertrain, DD15, 505hp, 1650 torque, Detroit DT12 automated transmission, with a rear axle ratio of 3.08.  The 5700XE features Western Star’s full Aero package with optimized roof fairings, back-of-sleeper extenders, and chassis fairings, all for efficiency and performance.

After the “Bandit” was shown around the country the Western Star went to work as a race car transporter for Dale Coyne Racing and now has about 42,000 miles on the odometer.  The full-time driver for the “Bandit” is Don Bentz who many of you know from Bolt Custom Trucks.

When getting inside the Western Star the first thing I noticed was the beautiful interior and roomy cab.  We started our adventure near Saint Louis, MO for the trip to Portland International Speedway and the next race for the Dale Coyne race team.  The speed limits vary on the interstate for this journey from 55mph to 75mph and the truck had no problem running the speed limit.  The truck and trailer weigh in at about 67,000 lbs. with very low ground clearance on the trailer.

The cab is extremely quiet making it easy to have a pleasant conversation.  Combining the DT12 with the DD15 makes for a smooth ride with easy acceleration up to cruising speed.  The “Bandit” was easy to handle which was great as other vehicles would get close to take pictures.  The gold on the black makes for a striking combination that is then followed by a race car transporter. As we would pull into rest area or truck stops we would watch as heads turned to watch us.  Not a good truck to be in if you want a low profile.

Once we reached the racetrack the trailers were unloaded, the garages set up, and the serious business began of getting the cars ready for time trials and race day.  You would have thought that the “Bandit” would sit quietly and not be noticed, but nope over and over people stopped to ask questions about the Western Star, to take pictures, and to remark about how beautiful the truck is.  It was fun to watch as spectators brought back their friends to show off the truck and tell them about it. 

Thank you to the Dale Coyne Racing & Don Bentz for asking us to help get the cars from Saint Louis, MO to Portland, OR and letting us be involved with the “Bandit”. The races were fantastic but the ride cross country in the “Bandit” made this a week I will not soon forget.  

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About Linda Caffee

Bob and Linda have been team drivers since 2005 as expediters. They are leased to Landstar Express America. Bob was a diesel mechanic for twenty years before doing over the road and Linda worked in the courthouse.

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