A Pontiac-Shaped Work Of Art

One of the things I love most about the hot rod and custom scene here in California are the tight-knit car clubs you’ll find up and down the state. Not only is the camaraderie strong, but each club seems to have their own unique style, and few groups are more distinct than the Loco Banditos of Bakersfield. And as you saw during my event coverage last week, the Banditos had a strong presence at this year’s Gambino Sit Down.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-93 copy

The Banditos’ cars are unmistakeable due to their incredible paint jobs performed K-Daddyz-Kustomz, and this 1960 Pontiac Bonneville – owned and built by K-Daddy himself – is easily one of the club’s most recognized creations. I’ve seen the Pontiac at several different events in recent years and thought now was the perfect time to take a closer look.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-97 copy

In factory form a ’60 Bonneville is a machine that perfectly represents the long and wide American cars of the era, but this custom build takes that stuff to another level. While the body of the Pontiac has been shaved and smoothed in all manner of ways, the big story is the massive roof chop which makes the car look even longer and wider than it is.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-94 copy

The stance of the Pontiac is on the ground of course, and along with the air suspension there’s a beautiful set of wire wheels and vintage-style wide whites.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-15 copy

Then you get to the paint job, which is hard to convey with photos and even harder to describe with words. From scallops, flames and metal-flake, to gallery-quality lettering and artwork – it’s just mind-blowing.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-90 copy

Perhaps the only thing more impressive than the paintwork itself is thinking about all the hours that must have gone into it.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-98 copy

Naturally, the customization has spread to the Bonneville’s cockpit and includes a custom console and dash setup that bares zero resemblance to anything you’d find in a stock ’60 Pontiac. It’s all very space age.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-95 copy

And while there is some custom upholstery, K-Daddy left many of the interior surfaces in metal so he could work his magic with the paint. The closer you get, the more impressive it gets.

Gambino-Sit-Down-15-99 copy

The result is a Pontiac that looks incredible from afar and only gets better upon closer inspection.

Many of consider custom cars to be works of art, and this thing literally looks it could be placed in an art museum. Such is the creative touch you find on this and all of the other Banditos cars.

Mike Garrett
Instagram: japanifornia_media

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sandpaper condom

Hehe looks almost cartoonish



I want more content like this. Love me some proper lead sleds.


Nicely lowered!! proportionately chopped !!! Unmistakable stance !!

Such a great contemporary pioneer retro piece of art!!


Holy S**T! The amount of work on these cars is Incredible! People underestimate the build time, and the fabrication work that goes into a car like this. Insane! Love the painted metal interior. Any pics of the air setup?


I grew up in SoCal around a lot of low riders, but they were no where near the sophistication of this amazing beast!

Does anyone know - did he have to have some kind of custom windshield made?   Or did he somehow get the standard bubbletop glass to work?  Either way, it looks very trick.




This car is amazing, notice how low the roof line is in the 2nd photo


So cool!


Many moons ago it was Air Syndicate and K Daddy.  Those guys turned out the best So Cal style paint jobs anywhere.  They influenced me in a big way.  K Daddy has always been on top of things.  From his rocking flat black Toyota Hi Lux pickup with a Rambler station wagon graf to this car today.  This car oozes the coolness that can be total Kustom paint.  Killer write up and awesome pics.  More pics would have been nice but I like what I see.  More Banditos please.....


@AmazedByLife I bet he dropped the windshield into a pocket.  Making it looked cut.  Although he could have very well had it custom cut.

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner

Like that purple 53 chev sled? C'mon Mike, we all want to see that awesome car!

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner

The paint, the stance, the chop.
One of the best customs in a long time. Until we see that purple 53...........


Chris 'Haffy' Hafner Mike, can we just get a spread of the kustom paint jobs? Its rare to see any other aspect of car culture spend so much time, money and effort on mile-deep black paint jobs and hovering stripes over watercolor, etc. I'm floored by what they do with paint.


Just line up the entire Banditos gang for one massive shoot and article. Done.


If you look really hard at the c-pillar on the rear of that rood; it becomes apparent that that is entirely custom as well. The original GM bubble top c-pillar was little more than an elegant thin post flowing into the rear deck. This is much fatter and has a nice kinc on the rear windo corners. Looks like maybe a 1957-58 Cadillac/ or 58 full size GM coupe c pillar out grafted in there. Maybe even a 1960 dodge hardtop rear c-pillar!
Either way EXCELLENT work. For full size pintiacs from 59-67 to have been so popular, they get very little recognition now.


It was Air Syndicate and Kal Koncepts. By far the best team ever.


Chris 'Haffy' Hafner lol really gotta chubby for that 53 huh?...

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner

I own one so yeah massive chubby!!


dadecode I love me some full size Pontiacs. My dad actually recently picked up a '64 Catalina wagon as a tow car for his boat. Looking forward to seeing what he does with it.


dadecode I love me some full size Pontiacs. My dad actually recently picked up a '64 Catalina wagon as a tow car for his boat. Looking forward to seeing what he does with it.


dadecode I love me some full size Pontiacs. My dad actually recently picked up a '64 Catalina wagon as a tow car for his boat. Looking forward to seeing what he does with it.


D1RGE Might have to go down to Bako and do just that.


D1RGE Might have to go down to Bako and do just that.


Chris 'Haffy' Hafner I'll be sure to give it some love the next time I see it. Just for you!


Chris 'Haffy' Hafner I'll be sure to give it some love the next time I see it. Just for you!


donkyyyyyy Thanks much!


donkyyyyyy Thanks much!


Frozzy Yep, doesn't even come up to my waist haha.


@AmazedByLife I believe the rear window is completely custom.


etoomeyaacc It was all hidden away, but I'm guessing it's quite trick. Will take a look the next time I see this car.


MatsNorway You got it!


MatsNorway You got it!


D1RGE Chris 'Haffy' Hafner Will do that the next time I hit a rod and custom event for sure!


D1RGE Chris 'Haffy' Hafner Will do that the next time I hit a rod and custom event for sure!

Chris 'Haffy' Hafner



Mike Garrett dadecode  Same here, I had a 1966 2dr hdtp Bonneville and a 1967 2dr hdtp Catalina. Love those big torque motors and stacked headlamps. I always preferred the "this is fast" brashness of Pontiac styling from that era as well.




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