Some cars are iconic to the Lowrider culture, while some others are also iconic to the masses. We decided to close out the year with a few vehicles that certainly fall into both categories with just about anyone who loves classic American cars. Now of course, when dealing with a Lowrider, there is a fair share of controversy that can emerge ― especially in the case of our December cover car. This 1963 Chevrolet Impala you see before you is not only incredible on the outside, it boasts the legendary and rare Chevrolet 409 engine on the inside ― a motor that has left a big footprint in the performance world. Here’s where the controversy kicks in. Most would believe this formerly numbers-matching 409 Impala to be a prime candidate to sit on the runway of a Barrett Jackson Collectors Car Auction, rather than in the driveway of a Lowrider. Aside from the multi-color Candy Flake paint design, the Lowrider-style leather interior and ultra rare 409 engine, it is the modification of the frame that causes purists’ hearts to drop. When you look above the chromed out suspension, you will see the frame on this bad boy has been cut to allow for hydraulics ― a cardinal sin amongst those who collect all-original cars, instantly devaluing this iconic Chevy. While we as Lowriders can really get into an amazing build like this, we all can see why some would frown upon such a modification. Many car enthusiasts will proclaim that the “never-happy-with-his-build” owner of the car, whose name is Brandon, has ruined the worth of this rare classic by lifting it. It’s an eccentric and bold move but at the end of the day, he can boast, “It is my car.” Not that long ago, this ride in original shape was worth at least a hundred and twenty thousand dollars on the market. The real value for a car, any car is for the one who sits behind the wheel to decide, and in this case, this owner reaches for a toggle switch to hit the floor when he parks it. Building a Lowrider requires no limits and if you have limitations; you have no glory. Lowriders are all one-off custom builds where we all can say the words, “It’s my car and I will do what I want!”

Another classic American car that we Lowriders have always had a soft spot for is the “Kennedy Car” ― the 1960s Lincoln Continental type with the suicide doors that rose to infamy on a fateful Dallas morning. As President Kennedy took his last ride in this convertible, millions around the world gasped in awe, at what would soon follow. Today, even though the car is infinitely associated with that tragedy, admirers still gasp in awe when they see a ‘60s Lincoln from an automotive standpoint, as the car’s design has really withstood the test of time. I think almost every man looks at having one or building one someday just to have it, cruise it, or just look at it. Simply put, no other car is as charismatic as this Icon. In our special section called “Roll Playerz,” we feature one for you to think about in your many builds to come. This one is your favorite, too, as it comes as a rag, black on black, and is laid out on the floor. It’s definitely the car that the guys on the hit series “Entourage” wished they had.

While visiting with the collectibles I mentioned above, we are called to mind about the Lowrider 35 Year celebration collage that began in our January issue. As this last collection of photos comes to a close, we at the Lowrider Group hope you enjoyed the flash back to the way we were, still are, and hopefully will always be. Our gratitude goes out to all those who shared their moments with us amongst the years of pages that have now become memorabilia; representing the way of life that we call Lowriding.

For all you Cadillac fans out there, let it be known that when you need anything or everything for any of your slammed coupes, give Mike Lopez, at Cadillac Connect, a holler. If he doesn’t have what you’re looking for, he will! Check out his annual luxury “Cad Fest” show on our Web Exclusive feature.

Congratulations goes out to the Socios car club for their 10th Annual car show held in Sacramento! The show was great, and anyone in our culture knows that it takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and money to properly promote and throw a great Lowrider show even one time, so to be able to do it consistently for a decade, you can see that Socios C.C., really knows how to do it right.

Our soldiers are still out there, and it seems sometimes like we forget that; unless we have a son, daughter, or a family member out there risking it all for the rest of us. I have a good friend named Art Avalos whose son, Orlando, is in Afghanistan right now. If you think that the soldiers have it rough out there, you should take a look at the toll it takes on their parents ― you’d think they were in fatigues too. Sometimes a prayer from all of us for our soldiers and their families goes a long way as they all try to survive the days until their loved ones come back home for good.

Till the next trip,
Joe Ray