Growing up in Michoacan, Mexico, it was a rare sight to see clean classic cars. So when Guillermo Ruiz saw his first few putting around the city, it created a bond that couldn’t be broken. He was infatuated with the styling, mesmerized by the American appeal, and, as a kid, he would constantly ask his dad to buy different classics so he could ride in them. Baffled by his son’s constant requests, he asked, “Why would you want to buy old cars when you can buy new ones?”

Almost a decade had passed since his father asked that question and by now only a few things had changed. For starters, he now lived in Salt Lake City but his infatuation for classics was still present—but modified. Instead of wanting to ride in one, he wanted to own one; and instead of owning just a classic, he wanted to own a lowrider. It turns out the local lowrider community in Salt Lake City has altered his appreciation for traditional classics, and the low-slung stance and brilliance of the wire wheels had him hooked.

This time around, he didn’t have to try and convince his dad to buy an older car. He knew what he wanted and set out to purchase a 1946 Chevy truck. The truck was already in bad shape, but after letting it sit for an additional five years it got worse. Needless to say, a full revamp was performed, but his mission had only begun. He then set his sights on locating an old Chevy Suburban. He wanted to use it to pull his 1946, and after months of searching he started to lose steam until his friend contacted him. “My friend, Johnny, mentioned that he had a panel truck he was selling. I figured it would work for me since my intention was only to use it to tow.”

He shot down to take a look, and upon his arrival he came face to face with what seemed to be a bigger project than he could handle. After much contemplation, he realized a cleaner platform would probably be impossible to find—and also out of his price range—so he scooped it up and was able to finish it off in four years. In the end, the panel wound up a lot nicer than originally intended, so it went from being an intended tow truck to a cruiser he takes great pride in.

It’s now been almost 16 years since he made the move to Salt Lake City, and while the lowriding scene there is small, its impact is big. It’s also proof that lowriding has an influence and appeal that is uncontested, and just as some of those old-school classics influenced Guillermo to build his own, we’re sure that his rides are sure to do the same for next set of curious and inquiring minds.

1948 Chevy Panel

Nickname
La Margarita

Owner
Guillermo Rizo

City/State
Kearns, UT

Club
Firme Image

Engine
350 crate engine with electric fan, Summit Racing weather pump/intake/air cleaner, polished aluminum radiator, Demon four-barrel carb, MSD wires, Dynomax mufflers, and March Performance double serpentine kit

Body/Paint
Matrix lime green pearl

Suspension
Wrapped frame with Mustang II front end, shortened Ford 10-bolt axle, tubular A-arms, and Firestone airbags

Interior
Black and green vinyl with woodgrain dash and Billet Specialties steering wheel

Sound
Panasonic head unit with MTX amp with Hertz 6×9-inch speakers and Pioneer 10-inch subwoofers

Wheels/Tires
14-inch center gold Galaxy Wire Wheel with Milestar 175/R14 tires