Being A Car Enthusiast In 2015

Reading Paddy’s recent Op-Ed, ‘The Self-Entitled Generation’, I found myself agreeably nodding along to most of the points. Unfortunately, it does seem there’s a lot of negativity online in our community, and I concur that not everyone should be entitled to their crappy opinion. But there was one big sticking point for me: framing this as a generational issue. Calling us the ‘Self-Entitled Generation’ might suit that time-old narrative that the youth is tearing down the pillars of our culture – in this case cars – but I think the problem may have another origin.


No doubt this whole scene has changed rapidly in the last few years with visually arresting trends like stance, JDM and widebody-everything having shot to prominence. Today, car enthusiasts are more likely to gather around a Facebook page than they are a carpark, and that’s not to mention the perplexing rise of the ‘Insta-famous’ car enthusiast, who treat cars as little more than a vessel for selling stickers for their ‘lifestyle brand’. I don’t think either of these examples will be looked back on fondly by enthusiasts of the future, but I do think they are a direct result of the rise of digital media within the worldwide car community.

I believe the same culprit may be behind what Paddy laments as those young people who believe they are the centre of the universe – authors of those comments that ruthlessly cut down another’s automotive pride and joy.

fitted friday iii-1357

So called ‘social’ media is the vessel for much of this vitriol. This digital medium does its best to emulate face-to-face communication, but I have to wonder if its imperfections are the real culprit here, not the generation who has grown up not only using but often inventing these tools. It’s easy to insult or criticise one another from behind a computer screen – distance gives a sense of safety, perhaps – but put the same people in a room together and I doubt you’d hear anything of the sort. For the record, I’ve seen plenty of abuse and misinformation from older blokes, but thankfully it seems most of them are still working out how to work this internet machine. We live in a rare time where any person’s brief moment of stupidity can be captured and broadcast to the world, so let’s not forget that we’re all human and we all say dumb s**t from time to time.

But it does get worse. The social media feeds that determine what content we are served are run on algorithms that are making us stupid. By their very nature, they favour the lowest common denominator – items that appeal to the largest amount of people. These get boosted into everyone’s newsfeeds while ideas that are challenging or too subtle silently languish. We end up being exposed to the same cars or styles over and over again until the impressionable fools are convinced there is no other way, and the mavericks of car culture are left completely disillusioned. A quick look at some of the folk trying to ‘break the internet’ at events such as SEMA only confirms the descent into this odd mush of imitated individuality. You’ll also see car enthusiasts dividing themselves down digital lines – forums for stance lovers, Facebook groups for Honda drivers and so on – the net effect being individuals who only see what they want to and thus limit their exposure to other ways of enjoying cars. There is no right or wrong when it comes to car modification, we’re all in it for fun. If you disagree with that statement, it’s time for some self-reflection. All the while, we are being drugged by the constant stream of likes, comments and shares firing hits of dopamine into our brains. The addicts are easy to spot – every post is a perfect mix of ‘look at my car/body/money’ and ‘inspirational quote garbage’. I’ll stop short of issuing a public health warning, but I would like to place a large bet on the announcement in 2030 that the world’s first ‘notification addiction’ rehab clinic has opened, and they charge per follower…


But, back to our generation. Many have called us self-entitled, and I think that’s unfair. Those who point the finger were likely raised in a world where a man’s dream was a house, a family and a car (nicer than his neighbour’s, if possible). The American/Australian/whatever dream actually existed and was, with a bit of hard work, obtainable. Now, the dream is dead. The house/car/family isn’t enough, we’re not just compared to our neighbour, but the whole damn world! It’s impossible to be materially satisfied when culture moves so fast that your latest purchase is outdated before you can even wear it in. They were raised in a world where cars were made of metal, and built in the same country you drove it in. We grew up in a world where manufacturing was offshored to the lowest bidder and were told physical labour was detestable. What does that do to values? Who does that leave us with for heroes? Not mustachioed men who build their own car and race it, just self-obsessed socialites who have mastered the art of selling their image to the most cashed-up brand.

1966 Baracuda-0609

Sure, there’s some entitled fools among us, but there’s idiots in every generation. A famous quote attributed to Plato goes, “Wise men speak because they have something to say, fools speak because they have to say something.” Nowhere could this be more true than on social media.

The hard-working, grateful and honest among us are simply less inclined to throw our comments into the ring until we have something of true value to add. You won’t even find the real enthusiasts behind a computer screen on a Sunday morning. You’ll find them helping a mate wrench in a garage, working overtime to save for their project, or driving a favourite road. Maybe that’s why their voices seem so absent on the internet. If you’re spending more time online than with cars, regardless of age, are you really a car enthusiast?

Blake Jones
Instagram: blaketjones



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If there's one thing that bothers me, it's that a majority of the car scene likes to blame younger people for things like bashing or shit talk, even though they are responsible for just as much of it. People need to stop pointing fingers, and just take responsibility for their actions.


You've hit the nail on the head. Period.


This is true.
And not only in car culture but in many more
aspects of daily culture. The youtube videos who stack up the most views
are mostly simple and plain, like 10 things every car enthusiast, or
student or whatever does stuff (just look at buzzfeed). But if you dig a
little deeper there is more genuine stuff, like Mighty Car Mods or
Roadkill, produced by gearheads for gearheads, people who are in it
because they enjoy it, or guys like John Oliver if you leave the car
So there is hope if you activly alter your social media channels and look out for the good stuff.


I still hold onto the stereotypical dream, but with a twist. I would like a nice little house, a nice family and a car to get to and from work, but i would also like a weekend toy, something more suited to places/pages like this. It's not a fancy dream, but it's mine. 
Unless i win the lottery, then you'll see me at LeMans, racing.


Not quite for this Hongkonger here. I really fell in with car culture since I was a kid, but the passion is decreasing since around 2010.-new debuts are mainly almost the same hideous design (only a few satisfy me), dominance is needed to win a Motorsport title...seems the excitement is gone sooner or later.

If you ask anyone around my age, they might think I'm unique or a freak to like these thing. Not even the younger ones have car in their minds. I dreamed to get a ride of my own, but reality turns it into fantasy.


I love articles like this, but I am always hesitant to respond for many reasons. Anyways, I guess technically I am a millennial and I can see every point you make. People (generally speaking) are very quick to bash another ones pride and joy on the net, but I hear very few comments like this when I attend shows or meets. 

I would like to say it isn't the younger generation who falls into these "automotive woes" of our time, but lets be is. And those of you who disagree, open your eyes (or go to a comments section on Instagram and look up the faces of those who throw out insults towards another car).

Either way, thanks Speedhunters (and Blake Jones) for the public service announcement. Maybe one day we can revive the late 90's car culture/bond it use to have.


This is so true. I was born in 92. Thankfully at a young age around 15/16, I realized just how stupid this internet trolling really was. Now at 22, I don't even bother reading the comments section on anything anymore. Even on this site at times if I know it's an article that's going to split opinion. 1% of comments are positive or constructive, the other 99% is just trash. People suffer "Newsfeed depression" becoming obsessed with likes and the approval of other people, meanwhile some people honestly just go online to purposely piss people off. I've seen guys join a forum for that specific purpose, just to start fights online. It's pathetic. Apparently, manners don't seem to mean much on the world wide web and that's sad to me.

This isn't just present in car culture though. It's on the web in general but as we can see it has seeped into our culture and sucks the nectar out of our wonderful scene like a parasite. You got trends of what is cool to hate on. I grew up around everything. My dad built muscle cars, imports, and euro rally cars. I watch all sorts of racing, and it makes me laugh when someone tells me to my face that I have to "Choose a side" what is that? STUPID! Diversity is what makes our "community" or what's left of it cool... So I'll let the trolls argue, I'll be out driving, working on a ride, or at the track or a meet with the real enthusiasts. I know that counts for many other Speedhunters readers on this article too! See you on the streets. We'll be smiling.


CharlesChris15  I agree it's not all young people. I've seen older individuals acting like snobby teenagers online and in person. Quite sad actually.


I know people who build their own vehicles and others who just pay someone for any wrench turning. You can really see a difference between the two. I tend to like the owners who do their own work. There is more appreciation for the car, from what I see. I'll admit, I haven't been to as many meets/events as I would like this year. I do plan to remedy that next year. Going to a meet or event is always better than sitting around staring at a phone. My good friend owns a 400+hp E46 M3 and a 450+hp Miata. He did 80% or more to both vehicles and I have more respect for him than most. He doesn't post whore on fb or instagram either. Very few pics actually. That's the way it should be. You want to see more of the car? Come outside and see it in person. Just my opinion.


racerlordheiman Grassroots events are the only place I can still find real car guys. Even at a local Cars n Coffee, it's being overrun with the kids who think the internet is how you modify a car. I see them ignore classic muscle and only focus on the stanced out cars.


I see where you are coming from, in some senses. I can understand that some people would stay in the same groups where they only get their fix of a certain car or manufacturer that they like.

Let me give you an example:

You walk to a Tesco (or Walmart if you are 'american') looking for a roast chicken for Sunday lunch. As you go, you see some good deals on other food. "Oh, 2 bottles of 2l diet coke for £2? Cool!" You buy that coke. Why? Because it's on offer, and it is better to get the coke than to not get it, after all, it's only £2.

What I am trying to say is that you do these mods because they are currently fashionable. If you liked green and yellow neon's, and the green ones were much more expensive, you would get the yellow as it is a SAFE BET. 

Later in life, people will see the neon's are cheaper, and life will become NFS UG2 all over again


I resent people who treat cars like rope chains and sneakers:
1- Because they will throw every thing they own just to show off.
2- Because they flick from car trend to trend with no true love.
3.-It appears that they pull this off in a very short time.
My project is sitting on 4 flat tires and a dream.
I hate talking on cell phones and driving.
Every corner has an apex.
Every road has as surface condition
Every car around me reflects the drivers minds.
At any given moment I AM the best driver on that stretch of road.
So who is "True To The Game"?
Answer- We both are and we both need each other.
We need those Posers to keep their rides looking "Fresh-to-Death". 
So, we will be inspired to finish working on our dream cars.
They need us to embarrass them into learning how to tune, setup, and drive their moving artworks. 
Long live the "The Great Divide" between us. it keeps things interesting.


This is one of the greatest articles I've read on not only car culture, but on social pitfalls in general. Well spoken.


By writing these articles, you are in essence perpetuating the negatives in our current car culture. I don't care for seems like complaining to me. If you want anything to change, be a proponent of change. Dont discriminate towards those you dont understand and perceive as "self entitled posers". I can go much deeper into the issue but I'm not going to. Here is the last thing though, this is the internet, and everyone is entitled to their own crappy opinion.


Reading this and the comments makes me glad I'm not the only one. The amount of people jumping into the scene seem like a bunch of attention seekers. They buy parts and lower the cars so they can be more "scene" than the next guy. "Yea I dumped money into my car so I can stand in this parking lot so I can tell you how much money I dumped into my car." For what though? Is there any purpose? Passion? Or just to gain respect from fellow scene seekers? It won't die though, this wave of "enthusiasts" is great for business and business' will do what they can to keep the fire lit. All we can do is stay true to ourselves and our passions and ignore the rest.


This kind of attitude is a huge problem in the car community. I do not have the time, the tools, or the skills necessary to repair the scored-up cylinder walls, or to deck the damaged head on my motor. So that makes my car and my passion for it lesser than the guy's who did all the work in his garage? By making the kind of statement that you just did, you are further perpetuating the exact problems mentioned in the article. You are talking shit about somebody else's car because there's no way they care about it if they decided to pay professionals to complete their build, right? I have the utmost respect for anyone who builds their own car completely on their own, but shaming people for sending their cars to a shop to ensure to quality work is just as bad as anything Blake mentioned. And consider this: If everyone just did ALL of their own work, there would be no tuning shops amd the aftermarket likely would not even exist. Sure there are plenty of douche bags who just take their car to a shop with no general direction because they "just want to drop panties, yo", but that is really only a small percentage of those who rely on shops. I love my car; it's my baby, and I do as much of the work as my skills and resources will allow. But sometimes professionals are needed and I'll happily work my ass off to be able to pay them to work on my car.


Damn Straight Blake!


I chalk it up to overstimulation.
People, as a whole, are more interested in a "microwave lifestyle" in which a constant stream of interesting things flow by them, like a parade.  The interaction isn't about depth, it's about breadth and instant satisfaction.  When we expect the hobby to be like one big, constant everlasting SEMA show, it's easy to fall to a lowest common denominator approach to reacting to the things that flow by our collective window of attention.  It loses it's breadth, and caters to the simplest form of feedback...a Caeseresque thumbs-up or thumbs-down reaction.
But since real life isn't like a SEMA show, and our hobby continues to cater to that fast paced, brutal mindset, it's all too easy for people to find the mundane in the extraordinary, or worse, to discount entirely something that doesn't tickle their particular, instant fancy.  
This doesn't just happen in our hobby, it happens in any hobby which has a major facet of it exposed to the modern media machine.  Its effects, however, are amplified in our hobby because of the relative high cost of each "entry" paraded before the masses to be judged.  Cars cost a lot of money, time, and effort relative to the 15 seconds of fame and/or brutal judgement which they might be lucky enough to garner by the internet masses.


Seems you don't understand where I was coming from. I also don't know how to rebuild a motor or even change out a gas tank. I want to learn to do more for my own car. I don't like it when someone just throws money at a shop and tells them to build the whole car themselves. It would feel wrong to me. Having to find parts and learning more about your car is what it should be about. Professional shops serve a very vital purpose. I'm happy they exist. They build insane shop cars that make us dream bigger for our own. When you have 100% of your cars upkeep being done by a shop, it feels more like their car to me. Now do you understand? You sound like you honestly care for your car and want to build it properly. What do you have by the way?


Social media maybe the tool that helps us understand who we always were, regardless of generation. Putting our social shortcomings on the table for observation and discussion. The first step is accepting there is a problem and all that....

Interesting piece, thanks.


Appreciate the article, its always good to stop for a minute and check ourselves. I know a number of times I have deleted a long diatribe I was about to drop in here (or FB, etc) to combat someone's opinion. The reason I will do so is because I try to ask myself, while reading my own comment, if what I am about to say a) brings something new to the table, and b) isn't just shitting on someone's opinion. Do yourselves a favor and ask yourself if you are part of the problem, or part of the solution? Usually it'll guide you pretty well in this culture.


I've done the exact same thing a number of times. Glad to see I'm not the only one. I typically won't comment with a criticism unless its constructive and not just tearing apart whatever it is, but even then there's times when it just isn't worth it to comment and I'll just delete it. I always try to have the same filter on the internet that I would have in the real world, but the same can't be said for most posters on the web, unfortunately.


With all the constant coverage and media streamed through out the world there are bound to be people who don't like it and comment sections give them an outlet to anonymously give their unadulterated opinion. The thing that gets me is the people who complain about hate when that was their ultimate goal "break the internet"(speedhunters you're guilty of this too!),it all seems so childish and this goes for the grown ass men as well you too are not immune from the internet fame craze. everyone wants to be famous  i don't and probably never will understand this probably why social media is lost on me.but i do love this site it forces people out of there specific comfort zones and makes them look at things a little differently or at all. but stop this hate bating bullshit you ask for peoples opinions then attack them when they dont agree with your point of view. bottom line everyone stop bitching,manup and if you cant take the hate then get off the internet its just to rough for you hahaha.


Ah, I apologize. I get what you're saying. There are just too many people who put down others for having a shop do any work on their cars. I have a 1970 S30 with an RB26 that blew due a set of faulty injectors.


I like your style! Hope she's back up and running soon. I've had a crush on S30's for a long time!


this post definitely hits the nail on the head, there is a massive competition going on, who gets the most likes?
and it all boils down to people wanting to be famous no matter what it takes.


I'm going to feel an utter hypocrite now but...
One generation always complains about the next ones take on individualism- whatever form it takes. It's easier to see in music, Rock and Roll, Jazz, big band... Each one lamented the passing of their own chosen time to shine and feared what the future will hold.
I am certain my dad didn't talk cars with me much because he didn't like Group B, and I loved it. He couldn't understand my attraction to the noise and out and out bad assery of it, and I couldn't understand his obsession with rust and "factory options". His father was into trucks by default as that's all they had - all about metric tonnage and load capacity, he couldn't understand why my dad wanted air conditioning or seats that weren't benched... And what load could survive doing 0-60 in THAT sort of time.....
It goes on for ever if you take into account sprung carriages and 1/2/4/5/6/7/8 horse drive trains...
Not understanding the next thing and bitching about it (- and it's manners....) is an age old tradition, it's just these days generations come into contact with each other more then we did 20 years ago.
The old always want respect and the youth will always stick their fingers up and do it their own way till they get old...
Circle of life, sinbar and all that.


Love this article. I'm partially running a car club on college campus and can attest to the lack of real initiative on young students' part to actually make it out to car events in person. Everyone likes to talk shit and even throw compliments on the internet and Facebook, but when it comes to getting to show up in person or help organize car shows, they're completely absent.


"not everyone should be entitled to their crappy opinion".
On the one hand you dismiss criticisms of youth and then take a generalising pot shot at the oldies who are apparently, "still working out how to work this internet machine". Every paragraph is a generalising stereotype about "they", "folk" and "people". They only name you mention never saw a car or the Internet. For example, who precisely is "
trying to ‘break the internet’ at events such as SEMA"? Who are these self-obsessed socialites? Who precisely told you physical labour was detestable?
" If you disagree with that statement, it’s time for some self-reflection." That hoary old chestnut. The polite way of saying, "agree or gtfo". Because you are undeniably right I guess?
You rail against negativity but this piece is as guilty of it as anything.


About the spending more time online part, what if you are spending your time learning about car culture and what everything is about? Not neccesarily arguing or hating on other people's pride and joy? The only reason I do this is because I don't have much mobility and ableness to seek out cars at this point in my life.


Hey Blake, is it good or bad that a shot of my Barracuda is in the story?
Nicely written by the way, it's a relevant topic and a touchy one for many. I basically look at it this way.. There's the doers  and the haters. Not many doers hate, and not many haters do..


Yes! Personal responsibility is a universal quality we should all strive for regardless of age.


Thanks for the thoughtful reply. We should remember that in general there's a lot more young people online, so they are probably over-represented in both positive and negative reactions.


Thanks for the support!


Haha, I guess you're right. It's impossible to fight criticism with criticism and hope for a positive outcome. However I hope this isn't just a compliant but will add to a conversation that can, in its own small way, bring the focus back to the cars and not the nonsense that sometimes surrounds them.


Great observations there! You're right, the 'like' button effectively forces us to evaluate the things we see on social media with a binary 'love/hate' frame. What about that beautiful grey area in the middle? I guess if we had a dislike button, maybe that would remove a lot of negative comments, because people are lazy.


rook56 Though it appears and is written that way, I don't believe that is the intent of the article. I don't think it was written to stereotype and generalise further, but that's just the nature of it unless you start bashing on certain individuals which is likely worse.
I think instead of worrying about others and being sensitive to everyone's opinion, take care of ourselves, just do what makes you happy, as long as you aren't hurting anyone.


People can say what's in there mine, why label it, by happy and leave other in peace


i23sonny rook56 All good points.


I'm not going to point the finger at any one individual as that would be an extremely crappy thing to do when I'm talking about a large issue. It's impossible to talk about a worldwide phenomenon without using occasional generalisations (I challenge you to try) so please understand this limitation of writing an opinion piece.


i was more referring to the social media side of things. The internet is an amazing tool for enthusiasts to expand their knowledge and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that!


Good quote Matt, rings very true. Two strangers having a yarn over a car built from passion - for me this photo is an example of everything that makes our hobby so damn great.


Blake Jones Well, instead you are implicating everyone who is old, or has a stand at SEMA or an instagram account about their cars. That is pretty crappy too.

You know I probably wouldn't have even commented except that you are exhibiting the exact traits that you're criticising. Your editorial is WAY more negative and guilty of generalisation than Paddys was.

Editorial is not a synonym for diatribe.


Blake, this is a true while hearted post and I thank you for it. For what it's worth I would like to add that in my opinion that, in a world of "connectedness" my car and my passion for it is a way to get away from it all.
I feel that car culture is. Truly one of the last free range hobbies were a man or woman can just get away from it all and Truly express their OWN style wether it be styling or competing in autosports.
you truly don't know how special our hobby is until your driving down a country road yiuve never been on and have a fellow enthusiast have his s13 wink at you lol. We are all a big family so let's embrace it.


"The hard-working, grateful and honest among us are simply less inclined to throw our comments into the ring until we have something of true value to add."
I'd change the quote to: "The decent among us are simply less inclined to throw our comments into the ring until we have something of true value to add.
In decent society or company, you wouldn't hear people harshly criticizing subjective things. Around people with no decency (online or offline), you'd hear rude and crass criticisms.
Unfortunately, Speedhunters has many readers who have no decency.
Some are worse - they have no decency and they impose standards I doubt they live by. They would hit the people behind this site with partialness for the sake of fulfilling commercial interests for example.
My question is: is it unreasonable to expect editors and authors of this site to make a living?
We do not even pay for the expenses the Speedhunters incur. What right do we have to say they shouldn't try to get funding elsewhere?
I do not speak for Speedhunters bu"The hard-working, grateful and honest among us are simply less inclined to throw our comments into the ring until we have something of true value to add."
I'd change the quote to: "The decent among us are simply less inclined to throw our comments into the ring until we have something of true value to add.
In decent society or company, you wouldn't hear people harshly criticizing subjective things. Around people with no decency (online or offline), you'd hear rude and crass criticisms.
Unfortunately, Speedhunters has many readers who have no decency.
Some are worse - they have no decency and they impose standards I doubt they live by. They would hit the people behind this site with partialness for the sake of fulfilling commercial interests for example.
My question is: is it unreasonable to expect editors and authors of this site to make a living?
We do not even pay for the expenses the Speedhunters incur. What right do we have to say they shouldn't try to get funding elsewhere?
I do not speak for Speedhunters but if I did, I'd say this: "If you do not like our content, then please do not come here. If you are rude, then please do not come here either."


@chris Sommerville


this needs to reach more then just speedhunter lovers! seriously good article dude, hit the head on the nail !


I'd like to just say that I don't think it particularly refers to any type of trend in a car scene even though stance is the major one. I'm 18 (no I don't vape, no I don't wear flashy clothing, no I don't brag) But I have a stanced 2011 WRX, why? I like how it looks and to me stancing my car is way cheaper then building the engine and blowing parts at my current age with my financial situation. I still do everything completely myself and still enjoy doing everything to my car a lot. I love meeting new people at shows whether they be older or younger, into muscle cars, euro, or imports, or whatever. As long as they're nice. Rather talk to someone with a stock car that's nice than a cocky dude with an amazing car. I think it's just all perspective on what we like and how we achieve those things. So don't go blaming the whole stance scene so fast!


I'm disappointed to an extent with modern car culture. It seems like most builders that have the funds to make flashy cars, never take those builds out for their full potential. Instead the flashy builds that have power to go with it are used for aesthetics and attention. In turn, they attract people who end up following in those foot steps. It's no different than the collector who keeps a super car garaged without allowing it to live it's life being driven. In comparison, Japanese tuners from the 90s built powerful cars that had the good looks to go with them. However, they drove them mercilessly on the streets and tracks all while having them presentable at show. From my experience at local cars meets and auto shows, I hardly meet companies that can relate to the older generation I described. They usually give me a statement like it's mostly for show or they'll eventually test its limits on the track, but never do.


What is involved in being a car enthusiast? I'll tell you: You should like a car, or cars. That's it. 
Some of us drive and race them, some of us build and fix them, some of us stare longingly at them. 

The most pure car enthusiasts appreciate a lot of different cars, and a lot of different aspects about them. The more simplistic enthusiasts may only like one car, or one scene. Whatever floats your (was about to say boat) amphibious wheeled vehicle! 

Sadly there are a lot of wankers- people bitching about different styles (or engines, or makes, or whatever.. etc etc). You'll always get them, and not just in the car scene. Let's call them what they are- dead weight! They should be ignored. Luckily there are also a lot of cool cats. 

The internet has made the sharing of ideas easier than ever before- Let's celebrate and encourage the thriving global car scene.


Great post, I totally agree. The internet has been a great resource when it comes to my interest in cars, but it is also full of tools, haters and attention seekers. Attention seekers that probably wouldn't buy certain parts if the foresight of social media likes didn't exist. It's important to overlook the bullshit and just use it for your own benefit.


Speedhunters is weird lately


I mean a a 14 year old I try to be with cars as much a I can but my parents can only drive me so many places... I can only really be present on social media. And I agree we have some people that only speak to be heard... But there are some real enthusiasts on Instagram etc.


Jbrady43 No excuse. I used to ride my BMX bike 5 miles every Friday and Saturday to the local car meets when I was 14, I'm 27 now. Or maybe I've just been addicted to cars for far too long haha.


JeremieSunico I'm not sure I agree with that. Yes, there are the SEMA effects, but there have always been those who build for art, or to sell something.

I would say there are just as many of us who have paint chips on our 500+ hp rides that push ourselves and our cars to the limits.


Jbrady43  Could always make a friend at one of the meets and see if you could bum a ride. I used to do that and buy them a big slam (taking it way back here) for the trouble. If you truly love cars and want to immerse yourself, do what Airlift_Lucas said. Grab a bike and pedal there. You'll get a workout and see cars that day, lol. I suggest bumming a ride though.


Blake Jones if Aldous Huxley and George Orwell were alive today, Huxley's Tweet to Orwell would be simple... 

"In ur face! Biach!"


Boom!!!!! Another great post! Okay bye I need to work on my truck.......


I do agree here. I have a truck that is more performance oriented. (Autox) my lil brother has a stanced Vw mk4 gti. I like both. I hate how lots of the stance car videos online really try to push a style(vaping, tatoos, snapbacks)
BTW am I the only one getting tired of seeing widebody flares on everything lol.
I mean I like it but damn its going everywhere


Great post, and sadly, those that we speak about being real car enthusiasts won't probably ever read this...


I've spent a fair bit on youtube and less time driving seeing as saving for parts thing doesn't happen as quick as breaking the car but i swear i was about to give up on it the other day. I like youtube for the same reason i like this site, i get to see meets and builds from all over the world and learn things and get inspired. 
It all falls apart when i read the comments (though more youtube than here), its often a cesspool of misinformation and trolling. Hell even in some local whatsapp "car" groups i've taken a back seat cause it's turned into a bunch of keypad warriors who are more interested in what mods will get the most girls or regurgitating some misquoted forum stat. But every so often i do manage to have a sane debate/discussion about cars with people who can teach and disagree respectfully with each other and still behave as part of the greater car community. Quite honestly those are the people i want to follow/have following me the other types mentioned in this article...and hopefully we won't turn into elitists along the way...


Just delete all social media, Instagram, Facebook, EVERYTHING. This is the answer to everything.  Trust


I've never commented on sh but I had to for this. Agree with everything, well said sir


Kirk_B That's why I stated that it's a disappointment to an extent. There's still some, myself included, who follow up to building and driving to the limit. It's more of a pet peeve that it seems like there are less people who do the same when we attend shows and meets that have people that show off their garaged builds.


The internet has been a huge help for a great many car enthusiasts through the sharing of information and opening the doors to building relationships with people you would have never had the chance to meet otherwise. 

It has also damaged the car culture in many ways. Every day it seems to strip away more civility, decency, and critical thinking. It encourages laziness and conflict. Like the evening news, the most controversial and popular content is the focus. It's what gets fed to us. It's about what will get engagement more than it is about quality. 

The good thing is, we all have the ability to use it less and find ways to make it work for us. Don't get caught up in the hype and the controversy and it can be a valuable tool, just like any of your other tools in the garage. :)


the_escape_road I thought this was appropriate...


TarmacTerrorist Every generation believes that both its predecessors and its successors are Doing It Wrong. It's a flaw in human nature.


xracer6 Wisdom ahead of one's time. Well done.


"The American/Australian/whatever dream actually existed and was, with a bit of hard work, obtainable. Now, the dream is dead. The house/car/family isn’t enough, we’re not just compared to our neighbour, but the whole damn world! It’s impossible to be materially satisfied when culture moves so fast that your latest purchase is outdated before you can even wear it in."

More reason to define for yourself what your dream is. 

Think of it like that part of the marriage ceremony, "...and forsaking all others..."


You like to look at cars on the internet and then share feedback with the owner/ poster? YOU'RE SHIT AND AWFUL GET OUT OF MY CAR SCENE. No but really social media sucks. The internet ,though, is a good, helpful place. Forums can be really helpful if you can deal with the people on them. Also doesn't speedhunters sell lifestyle stickers??????????? Oh well it's still my favorite site.


Great one, Blake.
I don't really care about what car someone drives. As long as it makes him happy, he's nearer to me than one who collects stamps.
Love for cars is the thing, we all got in common. Respect each other and take every chance to explore another part of the culture. You can only expand your horizon.


One of the major reasons I like to browse SpeedHunters is because you guys show whole swathes of car culture I'd never get involved in otherwise.  I drive a ph2 Clio 172 Cup, not the single most desirable thing on four wheels I know but for me it's brilliant fun to drive and I love it.  Most of the "car culture" that I directly associate with is around similar small, lightweight cars built more to have fun in than to look pretty (my car is covered in dirt from the back roads around where I work and I think it looks badass that way).  Looking at SpeedHunters I see all sorts of stuff that I either could never or would never do to a car (proper stance and VIP looks are definitely not for me, for example) but I don't see that as any less valid just because it's not my cup of tea.

Moreover, reading SpeedHunters has got me working on a plan.  One that fits with my own, old-school ideals of light and fast, but nicking the best bits of everyone else's ideals as well... a plan for a project that may never see the light of day but one that I might begin to get a little obessed with... I might have caught The Bug.  Just maybe.  Time will tell.


I may be the minority but I disagree with this. Since I don't want
to write a 500 page book, heres a  list to go point by point. 
1. Everyone is entitled to there crappy opinion, if they
weren't that would be called a "Fact"

The idea of a “self entitled
generation” Is perplexing and completely misses everything. Every
generation is a “self entitled generation” Theres a reason why
jelousy has been a thing ever since the dawn of time. We all want
something more then we can get, some work hard for it and then gop
other directions, and others resort to crime. It's rare when hard
work pays off, but thats why when someone achieves it, its down
right impressive.

The scene is an ever evolving
thing. Yes granted its moving at a faster rate, but it's no
different then fashion trends. Some things are timeless, while
others are the new eye candy.

Stance/ JDM/ Widebody. Really?
This is new? Stance is another word for slammed, and I slammed my
first car back in 95' JDM has been a thing as far back as the 80's
or at least as far back as I can remember as well as Widebodys.

Facebook groups are no different
from forus, or local car group websites, or even the pre 00' with
the hard to find local street racing scene pages.

Insta-famous cars have always been
around within the car culture. L.J. Garcia and his widebody hatch,
to the Drift King Keiichi Tsuchiya. Only now you don't have to buy
the DVD/ Magazine

If your ballsy enough to race
someone on a public road then you already think your the center of
the universe.

Haters have always been around.
Import vs Domestics. Honda vs everyone. Nitrous vs Forced induction.
Legal vs Illegal. You only hate something because you love
something. You wanna blame anyone on this one blame sports/ politics
and schhol spirit for that one.

You are correct on this one,
social media dose make it easier to be a jerk. But being a jerk in
person was way more an issue in the car scene I grew up around. At
least on social media you can ignor it without someone threating
your life. Now its just a pride issue, but I've had beer bottles
thrown at my car because I wouldnt race someone.

Older folks dont know how to use
computers? Ok.. this one is probably right

Social media feeds are no
different then car magazines. I know squat about Jeeps and Mopars to
this day but I know a lot about imports and mustangs because those
where the magazines I bought.

Dumb stuff has been captured ever
since one person brought a camera to an event. Now its just easier.

Socal media making us stupid is
like TV making us stupid, like radio making us studip, like the
thing so and so said that make us stupid because we quoted them.

Ideas to subtle? Really? Maybe
write it in a way that everyone understands. Thats like saying I
can't like something because its different but I'm blaming other for
not liking my guarage band.

Breaking the internet is no
different then any of the crazy cars shown at SEMA over the last 20+
years. Show cars have always been insain, if its not, then its not
wild enough

There absolutely is a right and
wrong for car modification. Its just a question of what you want out
of it. Take ART Cars for instance. Super gluing a bunch of
legos/toys to a vehicle is perfectly fine for that, but its not for
a track built vehicle, if your after faster times. But its all about
achieving the desired goal, if you've missed the goal, or using the
wrong tool then your absolutely doing something wrong.

Your Right it is about having fun
at the end of the day.

I think the word your looking for
is materialistic. Theres always been materialistic people in the

There already is a rehab for
materialism, half the population of LA's famous have probably been

So... House/car/family? You mean
the 1940-50's? Because last time I checked they raced in the
40's-50's & having the best stuff has always been a thing.
Otherwise the idea of racing would be meaningless.

Compare yourself to the world?
Thats once again always been a thing. It's the reason the Olymics
exist. Otherwise you'd just outrun your mates and call it a day.

If your so concerned about things
being in fashion and out of fashion being so impossible, then why is
it that statements like timeless exist. Trust me a nice leather
jacket is always going to look good.

ONE COUNTY! Everything is sourced from somewhere around the world.
Come on.. Seriously? Please redeam yourself with the next one.

True, in todays world things are a
race to the bottom for offshore manufacturing.

Yes some people built there own
car and raced it. There still out there, there still at the track,
and they fight and sacrifice to keep racing.

Aparently you've never seen an
advertisment before. Because selling an image is entirely what
advertisments are.

I'm going to ignor the out of
context quote, because people do say a lot of dumb stuff on social
media and that kind of the point to this article

Really? After Plato, hard working,
grateful, and honest? Dude

Yes you will find real car
entusiest behind a screen. We order parts, read diograms, find out
fixes to a proplem, tune, and share what we learned. Its kind of the
point. You can only get better with the people around you. Sometimes
were not perfect, sometimes we say dumb, even offensive stuff, but
come on... If your not adding to the community, your not helping.

Here let me write out what this
article should have said. Social Media allows for instant
connections where otherwise a lucky situation. It brings people
together for both good and bad. But thats what our crazy obsesion is
about in the end isn't it. You have to be kindda crazy to drive
fast, or think outside of the box and create something tuely
special. It's not an easy goal, but if it was no one would care.
When it's all said and done it's a hope that the new generation
would have learned enough to carry on once we no longer can't and
keep what we hold so dear and special around for the next.


The irony of this entire post is that speedhunters caters to that exact attention deficit audience that you profess to despise


i said it on Paddy's article and i'll say it again. we've had narcissists since the beginning of time. the difference is, now they have a vehicle with which they can express it, and the rest of us all feel victimized by it.
people don't really get better or worse. our morals really haven't changed since we became human and if you think they have, check your rose-tinted glasses. yes, there are large-scale social and demographic trends that can affect the superficial character of a populace, but we're fooling ourselves if we think we've created more narcissists. the people who are "addicted to Likes" just got their validation in other ways before social media. and the dickheads who put other people and their cars down on social media just used to do it at home before.
society is not headed down the toilet, it's been in the sewers all along. all we can do is rise above it ourselves. and we don't get there by bitching about how much people suck these days.


"Imitated individuality".

Excellent, sir.


While I agree with a lot of your points (I think internet trolls drag any community down, I hate the countless pages that just share ridiculously unfunny memes knowing it will start a comment war for example), you lost me with your very last paragraph. I don't really think its fair to say that if you spend more time online with cars, you are not a true enthusiast. Anyone who knows me will tell you that my biggest interest is cars. Do I go out and wrench on cars with my buddies? No. Do I even have any mechanical skills? Not at all. I would love to, I would really love to own a project car one day and learn some skills and more information about the mechanical side of this hobby. I wish I had the time, money and skills to be able to live that idyllic petrol head lifestyle of working on my car with my mates during the week and driving it on the weekends. The truth is though, I drive a 1.2 Punto that I have no interest in modding and none of my friends are even into cars in the same way I am. I will go to a car show and take in excess of 500 photos (because part of my hobby is that I love taking pictures of cars for fun) and upload them to Facebook for them to get zero likes sometimes. No one cares. I am the only car enthusiast that I know personally. I post one of those photos to Instagram, I can get at least 20 likes easily, my most liked picture of a WRC Impreza getting around 150. Now, I don't measure my happiness in likes such as you correctly point out some people do (your comment on notification rehab was spot on), but there definitely is some gratification to be had from sharing a picture and getting appreciation for it from other enthusiasts. For this reason, I do spend a lot of time on the internet, indulging my interests. Whether it is watching YouTube videos, browsing/posting on Instagram, reading online magazines or blogs such as this very website, the internet is a fantastic place for car enthusiasts. You can find so much information, so much cool sh*t that you would never have found anywhere else. Sure, people do abuse it, and those people do drag the community down in a certain respect but for the most part you can go to any website (such as this one) and strike up a conversation with good, decent, like-minded people. If I try talking to my friends about cars I an guarantee it will be a short, one sided conversation, so I don't do it. It doesn't bother me that much, we have plenty of other stuff in common, and I know I can always get my automotive fix in other ways. A lot of that comes from the internet. However, do I make sure that I go out and get involved in the automotive scene? You bet I do. I go to countless shows and motorsport events every year, and because I don't really share this passion with anyone I know, I often go on my own. I love it. I'm going to the Race of Champions tomorrow and to Brands Hatch on Sunday. I do take my crappy Punto out for drives, not necessarily the pointless Sunday drives that I would love to do if I owned a better car, but regardless, I love driving and if someone needs a lift or something from the shop I'll always offer to be the taxi/grocery getter.

So, do I spend more time on the internet than out in the real world doing car stuff? Probably. Unfortunately due to having a full time job, no mechanical skills and no car enthusiast friends, I'm not as involved as I would like to be. I know we all have jobs and commitments that we shouldn't let get in the way of our hobbies and passions, I'm not using that as an excuse. But due to all these factors I'm not one of those people that goes out and works on cars or long Sunday drives.

Am I real car enthusiast? Absolutely.


Everything used to be better right


I was waiting for the section of the article where he tells me to get off of his lawn.
Like 90's and 00's car mags didn't do the same thing. Showcase what's popular, create magazine covers as an ultimate goal. Etc.
It's just a different medium when posted on the Internet. Straw man argument your making honestly.




Hi Speedhuntes! I'm a young car enthusiast but I have to say I agree with this article a lot. I love and respect all types of cars. Some more than others of course. I follow a lot of car pages on Social media but I always end up unfollowing them. Except you guys. Everyone is mostly posting about the JDM trend (it's my favorite though!) but come on, it can't be rocket bunny a be drifting all the time. There's also drag races, rallying, Time Attack etc. We gotta show some love for muscle and euro builds too! I love this page because it shows about pretty much everything from car culture. Best of all, you guys have the most respect. Unlike some other pages that seem to not care. Here I learn new stuff like cars I never knew that existed too!
Even though I am a purist, I got to the point I saw I was being a dick. Which I'm ashamed of. I got carried away by the social media by what to like and what not to like. Cars I used to love as a small kid, I started disliking for no reason. All because I got carried away. If you can, stay away from social media. You'll end up seeing the same stuff over and over. It's better to socialize with people who you don't know and just talk about their car. You'll learn and appreciate all types of builds. The old fashioned way some might say haha. Sorry I wrote too much maybe I got a little carried away, I still got a lot to say but I think I'll end up repeating what you said on this article haha. Anyways keep Speedhunters alive. Cheers .


OH one more thing! I get teased at school cause I'm not one to follow what's new, specially in music. We don't always need to keep up with the trends, just find one you like, and don't get desperate on being on the newest shit. Sure you may not be the coolest guy on the block but you'll find love and appreciation for what you have or like.


I admit I have trouble grasping the ideals of current car culture. Perplexed at the need by many to receive the most 'likes' or have their cars picture become viral and this motivation or reasoning for modifying being the only reward strive'd for.
This is immensely WRONG to the point of being tragic, and for myself, for a considerable time have resigned from calling myself a 'Car Enthusiast' as this now only brings negative connotations to the general pubic and to the true down to earth car guys and girls such as myself. 
*- I have always believed and preached that the TRUE SPIRIT OF CAR CULTURE remains the fact that THE ONLY PERSON YOU HAVE TO IMPRESS WITH YOUR CAR IS YOURSELF.  Who cares what another person thinks of it. IF YOU LIKE IT - THATS ALL THAT MATTERS -*
Getting recognition for your tireless work is great yes and assists in that motivation to make the next project or next part just a little better, but ultimately it has to make YOU happy and excited.

If your not doing it for this and a true love of the automobile, maybe just doing it just to become famous or just because its the current trend - YOUR DOING IT FOR THE WRONG REASONS.

Building cars for customers is an slight exception but they still must have there own goals at heart and its your added responsibility to guide them toward what they truly are pleased with and not the most expensive part you can shift off the shelf onto them. 

Out of the box lateral thinking has been with car culture from the beginning. The reasoning that " I have to put overfenders on my car because its the latest trend, even though I'm not really a fan of them" defies logical thinking and reason. If everyone was resigned to perform the same modifications, on the same cars, the scene can become unbearably stale quite quickly. This has been happening for some time as I observe.

DON'T BE SCARED TO ATTEMPT DESIGNS OR COMBINATIONS not currently used if you are happy with the result. Once again it is your car, you have to drive it, if it dosen't make you happy, your doing it wrong.

I could go so far as to say " A real car enthusiast spend his weekday working on other peoples cars, goes home and spends the after-hours and weekends working and helping friends with their cars for little or no money and in the remaining precious time is able to work on their own project in between eating, sleeping and catching up on car culture news"  such as myself. This would be erroneously unfair and untrue to say as I am aware of several extremely dedicated car people who have other career's during the day but are still undeniably car culture at heart, One of the many being Under Suzuki san.


Too true mate. I am in the exact same boat. Albeit one with a Suzki Alto.
I'm moving to England in 2017.
Maybe we could go to some shows together then. No homo. :)


well said Blake


xracer6 shit, make me feel freakn old why don't ya. I popped out in '80 and had to ease myself into this 'social-online' deal, alas being discouraged by trolls, haters and wannabes. I've always had a thing about the 'old' guys and there techniques with rodding at the beginning of the culture. When they had to actually make the part because it didn't exist 'off the shelf', that's why I learn as much as I can from them to keep the spirit alive ( Those into leading, hammer-file and casting will know ;) I'm uplifted by the fact there are a few who share the same values and spirit as I and we shouldn't let the fashion craving trend leaches dishearten our spirit. It's very reassuring to know there are still individuals out there who modify for love,not fame, fortune or notoriety.


Luis2247 You not getting carried away bro, your just passionate about what you like, I'll drop the Dr.Phil but there was a recent 'famous'/'notorious' fabricator who once said " If you like it, F$#k everyone else" .


Jordan_Burgess I agree with you. It could be your forte is taking shots of cars and the culture possibly, it's still part of the culture. If there was no one to document the beginning of it all with rodding. speed trials, motorsport etc in general, where would our current knowledge or culture be??? and if it means anything.. if your interested in the mechanical aspect of it, just get shit and pull it apart !  even if it doesn't go back together, at least it gives some idea of the mechanical process. Shit, I still have crap lying around i pulled apart as a wee tot and I still haven't bothered chucking it back together !!  but it still taught me something. Hey what's the worst that could happen? ??  (oh, yeh, fires, sparks, smoke, police, fire brigade, licence loss, ........... ummmmm :)


oh, yeh, and how come the last nut your threading on fukx off into oblivion........................


Haha that's a great quote to live by!


Agreed, and I'm a "working overtime for car parts" person.


This guy. He gets it.
Im fine with whatever tuning style or automotive subculture, Im fine with any long as its done passionately and spontaneusly. Constantly craving for attention, for approval and to fit in a particular group up to the point where you become undistinguishable? That's not car culture, thats having the mindset of a troubled teen and making a car the pawn of your own personal issues. The concept of culture itself means that some are cult and some are not. What does cult mean in this context? Doing exactly what you want, defying convention for the sake of expressing yourself not, standing out only as an accidental subproduct of being thoroughly awesome.
If you're not doing it for yourself, just for the thrill of it, you're not a car enthusiast. Just another brat crying for attention using an expensive garage-queen as a canvas.


Just wanted to say that I totally agree with what is said. I for instance am big into old Mercs, Bimmers and Porsches among other cars. But folks on some of the car pages I follow would give me crap for posting a Brabus AMG GTs or a Ferrari F12, because apparently those cars are trash and aren't as good as a Type R civic. I typically keep to myself about cars, but this page has to be one of my favorites. Thanks for such a greta car resource.


Luis2247 I'm proud I have little idea what's going on in modern music. I'm not clueless, I just like what I like. Keep it up!


Jordan_Burgess agreed. I'm permanently paying off existing debts rather than saving for a car, and whenever I think I'm getting somewhere, BAM, big outgoing from leftfield. I loved the wrticle but that last bit rubbed me up all sorts of wrong!


what a different about old 4g63 and new 4g63?


Great article. This is exactly the problem I am having with the car scene. Too many people driven by ego and all they think about is how to feed it, how to look cool in front of others not realizing their making fools of themselves and us included.


The end of January of this year I've made the decision to sell my Kia for a good ol GM product (Chevy Malibu) and told myself to start fresh. I was always in a money pit with my Kia and couldnt deal with the stress with no cash at all. I was part of the tuner crowd. Going canyon runs, car shows/meets, misc BS us car people like to do. But I needed to grow up so I went the mid life crysis route. 

I enjoy my new piece of machinery, its fast, comfortable, and safe. But very bittersweet towards my peers since they dont seem to give two fucks about my ride anymore. I guess once you leave, your existence and enthusiasm follows too. 



I wonder if anyone can help me or guide me on my journey. My sister will be 60 years in 1/17. When she was 16 in 1973 my parents bought her either a 1971 or 1972 Yellow Mustang (Mach 1). I have no vin # or picture of this car. All I know is that the owners of the car would have been my parents, Bernard & Evelyn Litten. Do you know of anyway I can find out if this car is still in existence as I would like to surprise my sister with a picture of the actual car. Please email me at Thank you. Blondie 6510


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