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Knine racing – a hidden gem in the west of Ireland


Earlier this week I stumbled across a very unique and exciting business operating on our shores. So unique in fact, it’s the only one of its kind in Ireland.

The business is Knine racing, a Mayo-based manufacturer of high-performance super trucks with price tags akin to that of an Italian supercar.

Photo credit: Ben Shakal, founder, Knine racing

Operating out of a 5,500 square foot facility in Westport Industrial Park, Knine racing was founded in 2013 by Ben Shakal, who told Autotrade.ie a little bit about his niche enterprise.

“Our trucks are constructed to order,” said Mr Shakal. “Our seven-man team design and produce composite carbon fibre body parts for high-end off-road racing.

Photo credit: Ben Shakal, founder, Knine racing

“We build the super trucks on top of the chassis of a Can-Am X3. After striping everything back and replacing the suspension and vehicle body, we then fit a new sealed driving cabin with leather seats and climate control.”

Photo credit: Ben Shakal, founder, Knine racing

Mr Shakal highlighted that while there isn’t much of a demand for their trucks in Ireland itself, Knine racing still offers a service that is hard to find anywhere in the world, which is why they can operate out of the west of Ireland and continue to be a success.

“While the United States represents the biggest segment of our market, we still export our off-road trucks all over the world with buyers in the Middle East, Europe and South America,” Mr Shakal said.

Photo credit: Ben Shakal, founder, Knine racing

Knine racing’s trucks come in two or four door variants, with two different petrol engines, a one litre three cylinder turbo and a four litre V8 available.

Some of Knine’s trucks can weigh as little as just over a tonne, and reach 0-100 km/h in around four seconds.