Wekfest LA: Showin’ Off In The LBC

Let’s return now to the sun-drenched shores of Long Beach harbor for the second volume of my coverage from Wekfest LA 2013. Based on the reaction to my first post, these events will always bring out a lot of reaction – whether it’s from those that admire the style and attention to detail these cars have, or those that can’t imagine a car being built to do anything but go as fast as possible. Whatever your thoughts on the matter, it sure makes for some interesting conversation! Let’s get to it…

Then again, it would be a huge misconception to say that all the cars at Wekfest LA were built for function over form. Among the Hondas in particular it seemed there were lots of aesthetically pleasing vehicles that had also been built with the track in mind. It’s a direction I see more and more cars going in lately.

Another one of my personal favorites from the VIP selection was this blue and pinstriped LS400, dumped low on SSR Professor MS1 wheels. I just like seeing these cars done in what you might consider non-traditional colors.

On the other hand, I also really liked this LS which is still proudly rocking its factory two-tone champagne gold coloring. Pure 1990s gangster status.

For the real kyusha experience in Long Beach we’ll have to wait until JCCS in September, but there were still a few proper classics sprinkled in among the later model cars at Wekfest. This bad ass RB-powered Hakosuka sedan from San Diego for example.

Here’s a car that just seems like it was designed to start flame wars on the internet – an Evo 9 absolutely slammed over a set of Rotiform NUEs.

Just as the white Evo will likely ruffle the feathers of the Mitsubishi purists, this dumped STI on Fifteen52 Tarmacs will probably do the same for the hardcore Subaru fans.

Here’s another one of those classic Southern California-style EF Civics from the Akebono Crew, wearing a set of old school SSR McLaren finned wheels.

I honestly can’t remember the last time I’ve seen a customized Acura CL. Pretty cool to see one of these USDM luxury coupes modified in a Japanese-influenced VIP style.

Although not quite as rare as the CL, it’s certainly not common to see a Z32 at a show like Wekfest. This Z from the Low ‘N Slow Crew was looking just right on a set of five-spoke Work Equips.

The Equips really are the perfect wheel choice to accentuate the Z32′s aggressive, angular design. Just another reminder of just how cool these cars can be when modified right…

Taking the angular theme to an even more extreme level is this 1JZ-swapped Celica Notchback, also representing the Low ‘N Slow Crew. Always one of my favorite cars to see at events in LA.

I know when the factory wheel specs for the new 86 were announced, many were concerned over the car’s high offsets and 5×100 bolt pattern. It seems, however, that owners have had little problem squeezing aggressively sized wheels under the stock fenders – as modeled by this Hot Lava-colored FR-S.

Would you agree with me when I say that the BMW E36 is a car that has aged extremely well. They were cool when they were new, and they’ve only gotten better as they’ve grown older.

Another car that I think has aged well is the first generation Toyota bB/Scion xB. Although the simple boxy design is well over a decade old now, these things still look quite modern in my eye.

When I saw this gold-wheeled AP2, I immediately thought of it as an S2000 version of Mike Mao’s NSX build. There’s just something about that bright red and gold combo…

If you ask around, a lot of people will say that matte black finishes went out a while ago, but cars like this G37 Coupe show that it can still have a big impact under the right circumstances.

Nope, that’s not another G37. That’s a Hyundai Genesis Coupe that’s been dropped over a very aggressive set of Rotiform BLQs.

‘]White car, red interior, green wheels’ might not sound too appealing when you hear it, but then you see car like this NSX and it all comes together. Who wouldn’t want to drive something that looks like a Super GT car on the street?

Perhaps the ‘friendliest’ looking car at the event was this Miata equipped with a set of Revolution wheels, a Project G top and a whole lot more.

Clever!

I’ve become so accustomed to seeing Hondas with K-swaps and shaved bays at car shows that it almost feels unnatural to look under the hood of a Civic and see a factory D or B series motor in there.

While it was clear that a lot of the cars at Wekfest were dedicated show cars, it seemed that plenty of others like this BMW E39 were daily drivers that just happened to be damn cool.

Of course the show wouldn’t be complete without an assortment of S-chassis cars, including this classy looking Zenki S14 that’s been popping up at events all around SoCal recently.

I was also pleasantly surprised to find a solid group of SW20 Toyota MR2s, one of which I’ll be sharing in my upcoming Wekfest Spotlight-O-Rama.

You might expect someone who does a JDM Type-R front end conversion to their Civic to go for the Time Attack route, but instead this FD2 conversion is sporting custom BBS wheels and tons of negative camber.

One more beautiful VIP machine: an LS430 with a trick red interior and lots of other custom work. A nice sign that the American VIP scene is continuing to evolve in new directions.

More and more, it’s appearing that high-end Japanese wheels are becoming top choice for owners of European cars, as evidenced by cars like this four door M3 on TE37SLs.

Here’s a very similar theme executed on an absolutely mint E34 5 series.

Just because you need one more reason to dream about owning an NSX, here’s another one of the mid-engined beauties that was on display at Wekfest. Simple, but all too effective.

That will do for volume two, but I shall return tomorrow to wrap up my event coverage with a special Wekfest LA Spotlight-O-Rama.

Mike Garrett
Instagram : speedhunters_mike
Email: mike@speedhunters.com

Wekfest LA: Where the Cool Kids Are

All Wekfest coverage on Speedhunters


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109 comments
apex_DNA
apex_DNA

"The Equips really are the perfect wheel choice to accentuate the Z32′s aggressive, angular design. Just another reminder of just how cool these cars can be when modified right…"

 

These cars are even cooler when they're left stock, unmolested, and in red.

 

"I was also pleasantly surprised to find a solid group of SW20 Toyota MR2s, one of which I’ll be sharing in my upcoming Wekfest Spotlight-O-Rama."

 

Still waiting...

 

"You might expect someone who does a JDM Type-R front end conversion to their Civic to go for the Time Attack route, but instead this FD2 conversion is sporting custom BBS wheels and tons of negative camber."

 

The only two (2) things Type R about it is the lip and the badge...

ylee
ylee

that EF is killer! sweet!

Mahon21
Mahon21

I dont think that the Red BMW E90 is an M3. It doesn't have the side vent.

japanophile25
japanophile25

That white NSX needs those wheels repainted. Also, that Subie hurts my heart.

izzuera123
izzuera123

that super GT looking NSX... Drools....

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner
Chris 'Haffy' Hafner

Dude so much hate, don't like it? Suck it up! We don't need to hear your puny narrow minded opinions. ITS A STYLE! It don't matter if it's flush, bagged, racer, rally, drag racer or streeter it's your own car, don't let anybody make you change if they don't like it! Just tell them in a nice way to go fornicate elsewhere!

Retard Gere famous actor
Retard Gere famous actor

Racing automobiles have minimum ground clearance. As well as this, I remember Jay Leno specifically stating that his problem with his Carrera GT was that there were always places he could not go because it was very low. He was glad that cars like the Pagani Huayra have a lift kit. I am not trying to compare these kind of cars to any of those demonstrated here, but it does not mean that stanced cars cannot perform. There is no reason for Kevin and Jake to respond to everyone in order to convince us that certain cars can be modified in a very specific way. It is their car, their money and thus, their decision to do what they want. There are several nicely modified cars at this post. The day Speedhunters chooses to please exclusively guys like Jake, Kevin and those hypocrites who think that every car needs to be a racecar, I will stop visiting it. I embrace diversity and variety.

KietaPhillips
KietaPhillips

About the only decent rides I've seen so far are the pair of SW20's. Nothing too crazy or "flush" about them.

FunctionFirst
FunctionFirst

Possible spotlight on the Celica Notchback or the Hakosuka? Both look damn nice, but that Celica's a rarity... Very cool. Need to find me a nice E36 or E34 for a daily driver, that red five-series looks damn nice - though I'd definitely want to raise it up, especially in the back.

Anon
Anon

I see jake made it to the party

 

this is hilariously entertaining, keep it up guys

jake Laird
jake Laird

It's getting to the point where I'm thinking about sewing my palm to my face. My arm is getting tired from constantly lifting it up there while reading this coverage.

jbest
jbest

lol you don't have to be a purist to dislike the evo and subie. It just seems more logical to use the econobox versions of those rides for slamming. It goes the same for R32 golfs, bmw M3's, amg benz's, etc. Not that I care and am mad, but the slammed look compliments lifestyle rides, and not so much performance oriented models.  The cars look damn cool, but logic tells us not to "dumb down" a car that has had effort put into it to make it perform better.

Jochem
Jochem

It's a shame to see a lot of Impreza's and Evo's being slammed lately. Why not make it look like a rally car? Isn't that much cooler?

samversionone
samversionone

Why all the hate? I think these cars look great in their own unique way and an extension of their owners unique sense of style. I think some of you forget that some of these cars are set up for show and most don't even give a crap about tracking their cars. If they did, you don't think they would go with a completely different setup? It would be insane to think that most of these owners would even think of tracking their vehicles in "show" setup. I know if it were me, I'd probably have a setup for show and a setup for track.

DJ_Manila
DJ_Manila

 @Mike Garrett correction on the E90 sedan, its only a 335i sedan on the TE37sl. Great coverage as always, makes me want to move to the west coast

daniel
daniel

That four dour "m3" is no M3, its a regular E90! Very easy to say because of the sight turn signals, they are just the regular ones, not the typical M ones! And the hood normally has a scoop as well :) just a little comment, maybe you guys wanna edit it, well, in terms of professionality etc. :D great post tho, lovely shots!

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

 @Driveitlikeyoustoleit What hate? Opinion isn't "hate". And if you don't like my opinion, do as you say and "Suck it up". No one is forcing you to make comments. You're simply "hating" on those who don't care for "stanced" cars, and aren't afraid to say so.

apex_DNA
apex_DNA

@Retard Gere famous actor Yes, "stanced cars cannot perform" the way "racing automobiles" could...and I "embrace diversity and variety" as much at the next guy.

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

If you noticed, I never said that EVERY needs to be a "racecar". What I said was that it was sad to see people take cars that were designed to be performance cars, and ruin their ability to be performance cars. I actually said that I understood the slamming of cars like air-cooled Bugs, mini-pickups and Impalas. Those cars were never intended to be performance cars. I find it funny that if I state my opinion, then I'm a "hater", but if you state your opinion, then it's just that, your opinion. I don't "hate" stanced cars, but I really dislike the idea of taking a fast, corner carving car and turning it into a slow, ground crawler.

jake Laird
jake Laird

I'm not saying that there's only one way to do a car, you can do it in any way you damn well please. I'm just saying that I dislike this particular style. It seems like people are thinking I'm saying things that I have never said. It's okay to dislike things, you know. It's better than just going around all the time being fake and saying "I love everything!" Nobody loves everything. You have to have an opinion about something sometime, and it's perfectly okay to share that opinion.

 

Oh, and what do you mean by "it doesn't mean that stanced cars cannot perform"? I'm genuinely curious. Are you saying that because they can move around under their own power that they're performing? I'm not trying to be hateful, I just want to know what you mean.

jake Laird
jake Laird

What's to be confused about? It's just another stance car with canards and a wing. I could go buy track shoes and running shorts and wear them all the time, but that wouldn't change the fact that I was still fat and white.

jake Laird
jake Laird

Y-y-you're obsessed w-with me, Anon-kun. S-s-shall we d-do something together.....m-maybe?

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

And that was my point exactly. If you're going to slam a car into the ground, do it with the plain jane version. Don't take a performance car and ruin it. Take a standard Golf, Civic, Impreza, Lancer, etc. and do that.

NickTE
NickTE

 @Jochem ...because then they'd have a rally-LOOKING car that they never rally, and be criticized for that.  How many people that actually own Impreza's and EVO's even use them for rally?  A very privileged percentage, I can assure you.

 

The funny thing about the anti-flush arguments is that no one is considering the fact that there are lots of cars that mod "for track", but don't use them as such.  I see people spending thousands of dollars to have their cars professionally modded "for track" when they've never even tracked the car at it's base level.  That, to me, is more deserving of criticism than the flush crowd where they're not pretending to be anything but flush.

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

 @samversionone My point is, why take a car that was designed to perform on the track and destroy it? Take the base model and ruin it.

DJ_Manila
DJ_Manila

just beat me to that lol. M3 would have bigger fenders and the front fenders would have the M3 scuttle.

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner
Chris 'Haffy' Hafner

@KevinVetters Have a look at your other comments on this page and get back to me, i think that you have contradicted yourself hardcore. Have a good day

Brad_S
Brad_S

@jake Laird up those hellagay stance cars are so maaad jdm tyte They can out perform all your race cars. No jk

Retard Gere famous actor
Retard Gere famous actor

@Jake

 

Several of these cars including the red NSX with the gold Mugen wheels can perform much better than your average rice box. In both posts by Mr. Garrett, there are many cars that are more than capable to perform. There is also a bagged Subaru Impreza by Airlift Performance which is being used on tracks.

 

Nevertheless, you are doing it again. There is no need to answer to everyone that has a different opinion. You cannot convince me that everyone has to follow a particular path when modifying performance cars. Avoid punching animals or any of these disgusting actions you thoroughly describe and stay away from posts that you do not like. You feel sorry for guys that embrace the stance movement but, I am glad that there are guys like the guy who conceived Stanceworks that is constantly pushing the boundaries by introducing something refreshing to car enthusiasts like his new hot rod with the BMW engine.

Anon
Anon

my place, 10 minutes

NickTE
NickTE

 @KevinVetters It's all part of the "show package".  Stance is for show.  Everyone knows that.  If you're going to show, you're not going to mode the "base model".  How many hellaflush lancers have you seen on a magazine?  They get the higher end models because it appeals to more people.  Even if they're destroying performance quality, it's still appealing to the builder and to other people that their car is "higher up" than the base models.

 

And from an even simpler perspective: the higher models go faster (more hp).  That's something that can be enjoyed regardless of how you mod your car.

 

I'm not part of the hellaflush scene....in fact I personally think it looks ridiculous.  But I do understand their perspective, and I can still appreciate the amount of thought and work that goes into it...even if it's something that I wouldn't do.

jbest
jbest

I've noticed it's easier to prove this point if insults aren't thrown, or if the owner isn't stereotyped. Make a statement about the practice rather than the ones practicing. Otherwise arguments start and nobody can make a fair point for their cause.

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

 @NickTE  @Jochem The big difference: cars modded "for track" still perform on the road. For the most part, even if a "track car" never sees a track, they are faster, more agile, and actually safer than the average street car. The criticism against "stance" is that often times those cars are slower, less agaile, and less safe than the car they started out as. Like was said, "stance" is all about show (safety and ability be damned!), but "track" is all about go.

 

And really, my criticism isn't about "stance" as it is about taking a "performance" car and eliminating the "performance" part. Go ahead and "stance" out a base Civic, Golf, etc. I don't care. Heck, if you want to destroy a perfectly good performance car, that's your choice. But I have just as much right to disagree with that choice as you have to make it.

Jochem
Jochem

 @NickTE What I mean is that these cars were used in rally. You don't see many people tuning their car to make it look like a rally version. I think thats to bad.

samversionone
samversionone

 @KevinVetters Because the base model is usually crap. The thing is, why should i hate on someone who wants a fully loaded, top of the line whatever and they choose to do whatever they want with their vehicle? It's not your money they're spending and if you want to go out and build a proper Evo or STi, then go for it. As for these guys, most do it for show. I don't see anything wrong with them wanting to express their love for tuning in their own way.

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

 @Driveitlikeyoustoleit  I think you have your definition of "hate" messed up. I truly dislike it when people take performance cars and ruin their performance capabilities. But that doesn't mean that I "hate" those cars, or their owners. Saying that I dislike those cars is not "hate" speech, it's simply saying that I dislike them.Why is it that those who scream for "tolerance" the loudest are the ones who tolerate the least? If we should "suck it up", why can't you?

apex_DNA
apex_DNA

@jake Laird "You guys are taking my posts too seriously. I will share my opinion regardless of whether or not it's popular. Maybe you should take some of your own advice and simply ignore my replies if they bother you so much. I refuse to censor myself simply because certain people may get their feelings hurt that I dislike a car they like. As I said elsewhere, if you're going to support such a controversial form of modding, be prepared to hear some negative comments about it, not only from me, but from other users."

 

Very well said.

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

Well said Jake. It seems that the only opinions that are acceptable are the ones that agree with the "stance" style.

jake Laird
jake Laird

 I'm not arguing that the red NSX isn't functional or usable, it's done extremely well. The gold wheels aren't for me, but the rest of the car is very nice. However, if you think a car like the blue STI is as usable on a track as a track-prepped car, the simple truth is it just isn't. 

 

It seems that you did not read my original reply to you, because you continue to believe that I said something I didn't. I NEVER SAID NOR WILL I EVER SAY THAT THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY TO MODIFY A CAR. You can do whatever you want with your own money. Please, please, please get this through your head. I feel like I'm talking to a wall here. 

 

You guys are taking my posts too seriously. I will share my opinion regardless of whether or not it's popular. Maybe you should take some of your own advice and simply ignore my replies if they bother you so much. I refuse to censor myself simply because certain people may get their feelings hurt that I dislike a car they like. As I said elsewhere, if you're going to support such a controversial form of modding, be prepared to hear some negative comments about it, not only from me, but from other users.

DaveT
DaveT

 @Hayakushiro  @KevinVetters  @NickTE I've spent a fair deal of time around slammed cars of all varieties and yet to see that happen. I'd be curious to know the full story there but have never really seen much more info.

NickTE
NickTE

 @KevinVetters So people can't enjoy merging onto the freeway at a higher rate of acceleration because they're stanced?  I think you're thinking too hard about it.  Most people (even those with "performance" cars) experience the horsepower performance of their car on the street, in a straight line, more often than any other situation.

 

One of the issues I have with the "performance" argument is that most people that buy these vehicles don't ever use them close to the limits they were designed for...so arguing that stance "ruins" them is a little hypocrytical from a general standpoint.  I see old ladies driving Z06's and Porsches all the time.  Should they have gotten the lowest versions of their cars because they never use the cars the "way they were intended"?

 

Both sides of this argument are too full of the stigma that's been created over the last years based on stereotypes and how others think builds should be done.  I understand this is just your opinion, but you seem to think it's a little more than that...seeing as you've posted the most out of anyone on this article.

 

Again, I don't care for hellaflush.  But I'm not seeing much thought on either side of the argument.  I just see the same stuff people have been saying for a decade.

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

 @NickTE Actually, when you go the "stance" route, then you can't enjoy the HP. The modifications to make a "hellaflush" car make it dangerous to go fast. And that is my point. What good does it do to have a "faster" car if you're going to make it unsafe at anything above a crawl? Like you said, it's all about the "show", all about posing, it's not about actually driving.

KevinVetters
KevinVetters

 @samversionone If you're gonna rip everything out and replace it, who cares if it's "crap". Besides, if you take something like the Subie, the only differences between the base 2.5RS and the STi are engine and suspension. If you're bagging it, then the suspension doesn't matter,. And if you're stancing it, then the HP differences don't matter either. The same goes for the GTi vs Golf. Why not take a car that costs less, and stance it?

 

And again, why is stating an opinion "hating on"? That's simply a term to denigrate those who don't share your opinion.


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