Growing up in Union City, California, Jose Hernandez was able to see his older brother Jesse own and paint a fair share of lowriders. “I used to go to his house to see some of the cars that he was working on. He painted a lot of the local lowriders and most of them in pearls,” Jesse says. His older brother and his father used to work for General Motors, so his brother Jesse bought this Monte Carlo being featured here, brand new.
A few years passed and he gave the Monte to their parents as a Christmas present. The car would end up being their mother’s favorite car. Jose fell in love with the Monte Carlo and its sexy bodylines. “To me, it’s always been about the ’70s style of lowriders, so Monte Carlos and Caprice Classics have always been my favorite styles,” he says. At 17 years old, and with the help of his father, he bought himself his first car, a 1976 Monte Carlo just like the one his parents had. He added some rims and sounds to cruise around. Three years later he blew the motor and ended up getting rid of it.
In 2002, his mother Ofelia Hernandez passed away and the Monte Carlo she loved so much, wound up in the backyard on jackstands under a carport for years. “The car sat like that for seven years. I told my dad that if he ever planned on getting rid of it to let me get first dibs on it because I wanted to keep it in the family.” Once his dad decided it was time to let go of it, he called Jose and told him. Jose and his wife went over and purchased the Monte Carlo.
The first thing Jose did was to take care of the mechanical work and get the car right back on the road again. Once that was taken care of, he drove it around for three months to get all the kinks worked out. He decided that it was ready for paint and took it to a local shop. Unfortunately for Jose, the shop closed down and he had to go pick up his unfinished car. He put it in storage for a year until he was able to get someone else to finish it off. The build ended up taking Jose five years to finish and only because of his will to finish it, even though he lost his job. With the car finally complete, all that was left to do was put a name to it. With the help from his brother Sal Alvarez, Jose named his car La Herencia (Spanish for “inheritance”).
Jose would like to thank his wife Tamra and his family for their support during the build. He also wishes thanks to Jason Martinez and Matthew Blasko. He would like to dedicate this feature in honor of his mother Ofelia Hernandez .
Vehicle Year/Make/Model: 1976 Chevrolet Monte Carlo
Vehicle Nickname: La Herencia
Owner: Jose Hernandez
City/State: Modesto, CA
Body/Paint: Mitchell Auto Body in Ceres, CA, Impala Restorations also in Ceres, CA, Rico’s Pinstriping in Merced, CA, added the graphics, while Corbett Graphics in Modesto, CA, added the striping
Engine: Stock 350
Suspension: Ed Chavez in Manteca, CA, installed the Two Showtime pumps and cylinders
Chrome: Engraving by Rudy Pena from Castro Valley Chrome by New Age in Fresno, CA
Upholstery: Fine Design in Stockton, CA, and Motown Upholstery in Modesto, CA
Sound System: Audio Pros in Modesto, CA, Rockford Fosgate amps, subwoofers, Memphis Audio with a Kenwood deck
Wheels/Tires: 13×7 Zenith wire wheels and Cooper Radial Tires