News Culture

Which Car Subculture Do You Not Vibe With, But Respect Anyway?

Different strokes for different folks and all that jazz.

Across car culture at large, there’s enough divergence that one day, at a meet somewhere, you’ll inevitably run across something that doesn’t float your boat. It might ride too high or low, or roll on wheels that are too glitzy—or maybe not enough. Not loving the result of someone else’s hard work, however, doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate the work itself. So today, I turn it over to you.

Which car subculture do you not vibe with, but respect anyway?

Nissan 350Z donk, YouTube | Tremayne Sirmons

For me, answering this presents a tough choice between two types of cars I don’t often see along Colorado’s Front Range: Donks and lowriders. The car community is often so self-serious here that I can’t help but smile when I see Malaise-era GM machinery on 28s in an airbrushed Eggo livery—because you just know its driver makes better drinking or smoking company than anyone with a frowny Jeep. Bless the kinds of people that build donks, whether or not they race them.

Lowriders, on the other hand, I misunderstood until I read Top Gear‘s profile of the Los Angeles-area lowrider scene several years back. As anyone with a project car would know, our terrible car sons can eat up so much of our lives that other things fall by the wayside. L.A. lowrider clubs, however, weaponize their time sinks to lure kids away from gangs, and into car culture where they can build communities, maybe even careers.

So, though metal flake and airbrushed murals may not be my taste, I look at lowriders and see hours and hours of labor. Though lowriders aren’t built for the same purpose as, say, my 24 Hours of Lemons race car, they take blood, sweat, tears, and cash all the same.

Got a tip or question for the author? You can reach them here: