Slam'd 64 Impala
Do you remember the first lowrider vehicle you witnessed? The first ones I saw in action in person were a beat-up Nissan pickup and a G-body Cutlass that hopped until they flipped over or caught fire. Both vehicles achieved both; fires were put out and tires were returned to the ground, and the party continued. They were gutted shells built for competition; the adjustable-suspension equivalent to a bracket-car. The owners of these unusual vehicles were in it for the glory; the car was literally a vehicle to achieve their goals.
On the other side of the lowriding spectrum (much like the hot rod world) there are enthusiasts who take styling cues from the hardcore group, and incorporate those into a pristine show car. We’ve all seen racecar parts on a polished and painted show stopper that most certainly doesn’t need a 1,200hp engine, and we’ve seen 13” Dayton wires on a tattered, flaming Regal as well as a flaked, smoothed and juiced Impala. Some parts are must-haves in order to get the look.
Looking at this purple ’64, you might be thinking that it’s too nice for actual use, whether it be driving or competing. In a way, you’re right. The body work, panel alignment is spot-on; the chrome is perfect and the interior couldn’t be nicer, but Kamal Fernando’s Impala has the goods where it counts, too.
The car was built in Japan by the crew at Perfect Image Hydraulics under the direction of Mr. Tamura as a follow-up to his Amethyst ’64, which was the first car to grace the cover of Lowrider Magazine Japan in 1993. More than hydraulic cylinders replacing the stock coil springs, this car has been cut every-which-way to allow the body panels to rest gingerly on the ground. Starting at the bottom, the rear frame rails were reshaped to allow the rearend housing to go higher than the GM designers ever thought possible. Front control arms were fabricated along with a rear four link, and CCP brakes are located behind the iconic 13” Dayton Zenith wheels. 6” cylinders are up front with 10” units in back, meaning this car goes from sky-high to ground-scraping and back without breaking a sweat.
Setting the frame on the ground is one thing, but actually putting the rocker panels on the pavement gets you a whole new level of respect. That, and a whole new level of modifications! The body was channeled four inches, and this isn’t a Model A; there’s quite a bit to it in this case, like raising the trunk floor six inches, raising the transmission tunnel, narrowing the rearend, and moving the package tray up. After all that, it’s a miracle the doors open and close let alone line up as if they’re one with the quarters!
Under the hood you’ll find a ’92 Corvette engine spruced up with billet and chrome accessories. Clean and functional is the name of the game here too, with the plumbing and wiring placed with the utmost care. Lowriders aren’t about going fast, but looking good while cruising the block; this LT1 is the perfect choice for both.
Kamal’s ’64 has the requisite pumps, switches and wires, but it isn’t used for competitive events. I wouldn’t call it a poseur though. Keep in mind that no one accuses a Camaro with a lumpy cam and headers of being a Pro Stock imitator. This purple sled draws attention everywhere it goes on the streets of Japan. It’s a happy balance of requisite lowrider features coupled with a useable drivetrain and interior, all wrapped up in the classic lowrider package.
Photos courtesy of Slam'd Mag
More information can be viewed on their site: http://slamdmag.com/2015/05/1964-impala-japans-lowest/