"Stance" at MVC

Car Stuff

Toyota MR2

To begin to understand a culture, find a small part of it, focus on it, and from there expand the general themes to other aspects of the culture. Cars and car cultures are no exception.

Car modifications began as soon as the first mass-produced vehicles became popular.

The idea behind modifications is similar to clothing, that is, we want to find our identity and stand out.

"Stance" is what it sounds like; the way the vehicle sits on the ground.

But, the term has grown to be most associated with like cars in this article's gallery.

Car Mod

Modified Honda Integra

Nicholas Solaris, 17 years old, attending Moreno Valley College is an active participant in the car community.

He drives a 2000 Toyota Celica, which has been "slammed," or lowered and given slight body modifications.

Both Solaris and I agree that there are multiple styles in how to stance a car, but the style prevalent through this article is “getting the car as low as possible and the wheels as close to the wheel arches as possible.”

The drawbacks to such modifications are obvious.

The lower your car, the more difficult and painful it is to go over dips, speed bumps, potholes, and any uneven ground.

Also, to get your wheels as close to the fenders as possible, some negative camber (slanting your wheels so the tops point inward) is needed to create a tighter fitment (the gap).

This creates uneven wear on the tires, which require often wheel balancing, rotation, and changing.

So why do people do this, if it causes so much trouble?

Because “it makes us happy. It differentiates our cars from everyone else's,” says Solaris.

These modifications make the car so vulnerable, that even a McDonald's cup could cause the front bumper to get ripped off.

Because they have to concern themselves with such things, it is the price they are willing to pay for the satisfaction, having such cars, gives them.

Nick's Car

Nicholas Solaris and his Toyota Celica

Talking about the price to pay, people who actively modify their cars surely have put thousands into them.

Solaris has put $2000 into his Celica.

Other expenses are anything that rides below the undercarriage: oil pan, exhaust system, suspension components, bumpers, lips, side skirts, etc. 

Just to lower your car, an average cost would be around $700 for good coilovers (suspension components that allow a car to lower).

After that, it’s a slippery slope of expenses to compensate and continue commitment.

Fairlady 1

Fairlady z33 350z 

Stance is ridiculous from a practical standpoint, but it is also something quite enjoyable and connecting.

When you see someone else with a stanced car, you know they understand, they are part of the culture.

The car above is a Nissan 350z as know in the United States (Fairlady is its original Japanese name), is not the same as the car below, another 350z.

But both of these cars are similar in style and both owners would respect each other.

These two cars and their owners have this connection through things that others do not.

Humans tend to connect better with people who are similar to themselves, regardless of what that similarity is.

To put it in other terms, the connection these two Fairlady owners have is like that of two iPhone owners.

Fairlady 1

Fairlady z33 (350z)







Many other students like Solaris have also modified their cars.

You can stance any vehicle you want, but it is most typically done with import cars: JDM’s (Japanese domestic market) like Toyota, Honda, and Nissan and EDM’s (european domestic market) like Volkswagen and BMW.


Stanced Volkswagen Jetta


"Murdered Out" BMW 3 series

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