The Chevrolet Impala has always been a top seller for Chevrolet since its release in 1958. Year after year since its launch, the iconic model has been in high demand in the full size market. As the car matured in design over the years, it has seen a number of design changes. In the 1968 model year for example, the Impala received a face lift with a new front end, while the rear bumper was restyled and housed triple “horseshoe” shaped taillights. The 1968 model year also saw a new Impala model released by Chevrolet called the Custom Coupe. This two door hardtop featured the same roofline as the Caprice Coupe and was a huge success for Chevrolet. The car has also been a huge success in our culture too, as the Coupe’s body style has remained extremely popular in the world of Lowriding.
Growing up in Pomona California, Gustavo Garcia bore witness to many Lowriders during his childhood years. These rumbling machines made quite an impression on him, and he can remember seeing all of the Lowriders congregate at the Indian Hill Mall and at local car shows and cruise nights. He always wanted one from a young age and it would be this ’68 Custom Coupe model that stole his heart. He began his quest to build the perfect ’68; a quest that would become an obsession.
As time went by, Gustavo got married and had children; five boys to be exact. Yes, you read right; five boys! As a husband and father, Gustavo wanted to make sure his family had what they needed before he would build a Lowrider. When he finally felt that the time was right, Gustavo started his search for his beloved Impala.
He found one in good condition in Upland, California and purchased it without a second thought. Gustavo drove the car and attended car shows and cruise nights for a while before he decided to completely redo the Impala, to give it a makeover that would capture his childhood dreams. First, he teamed up with Flaco, from Flaco’s Customs to give the Impala a bold look, as Flaco prepped the car and doused it in a House of Kolor Starburst Orange and Pearl Orange combination. Pin Stripe master, Mike Lamberson of Draggin’ Lines was brought in to cap off the exterior with some of his legendary line work. The car was then taken to Robert from H&R Customs, in Montclair,CA., where he masterfully stitched together a black and tangerine interior that played the perfect complement to the car’s vivid exterior. Sounds came courtesy of a Kenwood head unit and Kicker components which were installed by Flaco. He also rebuilt the car’s 327 and added an RV cam for some added power, with a 700R4 tranny to keep this ’68 riding fast and smooth on Gustavo’s long cruises! An air bag set up was installed as well to keep this beauty on the pavement, where it belongs.
Finally, after a year of construction time and a nice amount of cash, Gustavo’s Impala is now up to par with the way he envisioned it as a child. Even more so, perhaps, as the ‘68 also proudly flies a Traffic Car Club plaque in the back window. Keep riding, Gustavo!
Owner: Gustavo Garcia
Vehicle: 1968 Chevy Impala
Club: Traffic Car Club Southern California
City/State: Fontana, California
Paint: Flaco, from Flaco’s Customs in Pomona, California, straightened the body and shaved the side moldings before he sprayed the House of Kolor Pearl Orange and Starbust Orange mixture on the Impala. Flaco also added fade away patterns on the roof. Mike Lamberson, from Draggin’ Lines in Riverside California added his pin stripe art to the sixty-eight as well.
Interior: Robert, from H&R Customs in Montclair, California, covered the interior in black and tangerine suede to compliment the exterior of the Impala. Gustavo added some additional billet accessories to the interior. Flaco, from Flaco’s Customs, installed the in-car entertainment system. The head unit is Kenwood and is powered by Kicker amps, pushing the sounds through Pioneer & Kicker components.
Engine: The Chevy 327 engine has been rebuilt by Flaco’s Customs and an RV cam was added for some extra power. Flaco also added chrome and paint to the engine bay and rebuilt the 700R4 transmission. Exhaust gasses are expelled through a custom dual exhaust system.
Suspension: Flaco, from Flaco’s Customs, freshened up the Chevy’s frame and made sure all components were updated to ensure a stable and comfortable ride. Once that was taken care of, Flaco added a custom airbag set up powered by two Via Air 480 compressors that allow the sixty eight to raise up the body, drop the front and back, lay low and ride smooth.
Wheels: 13×7 Galaxy Wire Wheels.
Tires: 13-inch white wall Cornell tires.