Many of us remember the moment we fell in love with lowriding and most can even recall the exact car that grabbed our attention and changed the way we looked at automobiles forever, the way that a Chevrolet Impala convertible did for Alfonso Contreras back in 1985. It was at that moment that his passion for lowriding was sparked. Over the years, he’s built many rides, but one specific make and model kept tugging at his heart. Finally, after years of working in the custom automobile industry, Alfonso, who owns The Truck Shop in Las Vegas, NV, decided that it was time for his dream car to be built. That dream came by way of this 1961 Impala rag top.

Alfonso set out on this build and called in the help of a local Las Vegas custom car shop. The crew at Switch Hitters assembled the 350 small block crate engine with GM Performance valve covers, air cleaner and intake manifold, and they dressed up the engine with March Serpentine equipment as well. They also installed the full frame along with a two-pump hydraulic set up, complimented by Black Magic Hydraulics.

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To show off the shapely body of this ‘61 Impala, Switch Hitters laid down a layer of GMC White paint and adorned it with a gold engraved grill guard and rear bumper guards. Krazy Kutting provided the signature engraving that offers contrast against the sublime white body.

The engraving is also repeated on the Zenith 13” wheels that carry a set of Coker tires to keep this work of art rolling. Finished off with a chromed undercarriage, Alfonso’s dream car had finally come to fruition.

25 years after first falling in love with lowriding, Alfonso has his dream car. Jokingly, he says his biggest challenge was keeping it from overheating while cruising it…a struggle we are all familiar with. But the payoff for him is the pure enjoyment of driving his lifelong dream along the world famous streets of Las Vegas.

1961 Chevrolet Impala Convertible

  • Owner: Alfonso Contreras
  • City: Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Engine: Crate small block 350 with chrome and billet accents along with a serpentine kit.
  • Body/Paint: GMC White paint with gold accenting pearl.
  • Suspension: Complete chrome under carriage powered by a Black Magic Hydraulic set up.
  • Wheels/Tires: Engraved Zenith 13’ wire wheel wrapped with Coker Premium Sport tires.