Aggressive Fitment Needs To Die

Aggressive Fitment Needs To Die

15

Almost daily I see people blame stance (99% of the time they actually mean aggressive fitment, but that’s another discussion for another day) for the downfall of the automotive community as a whole.

Proclamations are made that once the ‘fitment fad’ dies off everything will miraculously change for the better.

pfaff-tuning-scraped-crusaders-nissan-350-3

Really? We’re using aggressive fitment as the scapegoat for all the problems that exist among enthusiasts today, while completely ignoring the fact that less than functional wheel, tire, and suspension setups are nothing new?

If you jump back forty plus years –conveniently hopping over the “ricer era” that is its own can of worms– and examine the ‘70’s Street Machine movement you will observe that people have been choosing their wheel and tire set-ups based on looks for years.

It just so happens that currently a significant portion of the community views pebble pushing ride height,  low offset wheels, stretched tires, and ample camber as pleasing to the eye.

No. Aggressive fitment, nor whatever styling trend comes hereafter, is not the problem.

But those flat billed hat, skinny jean wearing, kids have single–handedly lowered the bar at car shows you argue? Well, no again.

A few years back a car that’s modification list started and ended with suspension and wheels wouldn’t make the cut for a show, and rightfully so wheels and lowering does not a show car make, however these cars are not driving into shows behind the organizers turned backs, they are being welcomed with open arms.

Why? Because event organizers have a lot of pressure on their shoulders; sponsors need to be pleased, venues need to be filled, merchandise needs to be sold, and models need vehicles on which to leave spray tan impressions.

From the perspective of a show runner it only makes logical (or financial whichever best represents your show of choice) sense to usher in as many people as possible by heavily leaning on what’s hot now, regardless of if it represents the best of the best from a practical, engineering, or build quality stand point.

pull-up-with-the-doors-missing

But the flaws in the current car show model (touched on here by Shift Hype) are not really detrimental to the community as a whole because car shows are arguably a very small piece of the pie.

In my observation, the largest problems in the community today center around attitudes and egos.

The biggest and most concerning of these issues is that the voice of the car enthusiast is being drowned out by that of the scene enthusiast. Unlike car enthusiasts, scene enthusiasts don’t appreciate the hobby as a whole, they like their segment of car modification and wholly reject the ideas, and opinions of people they feel ‘don’t get it’.

These individuals don’t appreciate someone’s right to build whatever they want and worse still lack the ability to respect any aspect of a build that sits outside of their own personal preference.

mashup

People have become so head down and focused on what they like, and so opposed to what they don’t, that they fail to realize they wear the same brand of blinders as those of the opposite opinion.

The second, and perhaps equally troubling problem within the community today has to do with egos. The double-edged sword that is social media has grossly inflated the egos of those doing nothing more than lather, rinse, repeating what the person before them did.

The loud, boisterous, vein, obnoxious, and attention seeking are being heralded while the humble, talented, creative, true innovators are being almost completely ignored.

If you try to challenge or question those who have been lifted upon pedestals made up of likes, comments, and shares their bands of merry men, hiding behind shields emblazoned with the word hater, verbally strike you down.

We are caught in a vicious cycle where as one trend gives way to another a new group of close minded, ego-centric, people replaces the last. As this circle continues nobody truly benefits and the hobby suffers as a whole.

If it’s necessary for wheel widths to go back to 6.5″ and offset to flirt with +60 for this downward spiral to stop then by all means aggressive fitment needs to die.

SIMILAR ARTICLES

15 COMMENTS

  1. i never understood peoples need to be down on a different style than their own. no matter your flavor of choice, it all takes time, money and effort to build any custom or modified vehicles. when you appreciate a build that is a different style than your own comfort zone your really just admiring someones dedication and craftsmanship. just because you are hot shit now with your dapper stickers and matching bmx bike on top, doesn’t mean at one time you didn’t drive a busted car with cut springs and a straight pipe welded in.

    Respect the work not the style, except donks, death to donks…

  2. The reference to the raised, big tire cars of the 60 and 70s is incorrect. They did what they could to make them hook better. Which, was using larger wheels and tires. How do you fit those in a era before coil overs, shortened axles and 4 links? You lift the rear of the car. If you follow the history of racing, you will see how Gasers came about, followed by Altereds which ultimately led to Funny Cars. All of which, was a progression in performance and not style/looks.

    Sure, there were cars done to mimic those who sought performance, just like you see now in the stance world. Big wings, aero yet, at ride heights and tire sizes that wouldn’t allow the cars to function on a track.

  3. Bacon, it might have been an over simplified example but I don’t think that EVERY car in the 70s that had the back raised was set up purely from a functional point of view.

    Your second paragraph was in line with where I was hoping to land with that reference.

  4. I would fully agree that, these hipster kids who feel as if they are entitled to everything due to this, everyone is a winner mindset need to be removed from the earth. They are, the reason why the car scene has gone downhill rapidly. At least in my local areas. They god like attitudes leave the lots full of garbage, keep the neighbors up with their loud music and constant reving (OMG BREH I GOT DAT 2 STEP DOH!) and then, their blatant disrespect for the law enforcement that shows up as a result.

  5. At the risk of sound old (I guess I might be) I think lack of respect in the younger generation is a problem that just seems to be carrying over into the car scene.

    @TCC ‘when you appreciate a build that is a different style than your own comfort zone your really just admiring someones dedication and craftsmanship.’ nailed it.

    As for Donks I don’t really like them myself but I have seen more than a few built to really high standard!

  6. Even donks have a function over form… if you live in an area prone to flooding,lol. But all joking aside, this is a very well explained article and if I i can take anything away from it, it’s respect the effort not the style.

  7. Ive been in the car scene longer then most people I know. Im the only 38 year old around my area that I know that still drives a slammed Integra as a daily, has a slammed GS300 for a weekend car, and a slammed Ruckus for the summer. For someone that has been in the import car scene for the better part of 20 years, my view on the current state of the scene is very mixed. While I love the creativity and style that some people show in there cars whether it be a german car or japanese. The arrogance, immaturity, and just narrow-minded attitude of a good amount of people in the scene, sucks.
    The scene trolls, that make arguments about saying “Wheels” or “rims” is moronic. People have called them “rims” for like 30 years! Stop being snobs and accept the fact that not everyone gives a shit, what the proper term is.
    The whole “fake” wheel or “real” wheel debate is stupid too. Not everyone can spend $3500 on a set of wheels for the car they spent $2000 on. People build what they can afford to or what makes sense for them. I have SSRs on my Lexus, and Whislters on my Integra. Why? Because I spent $1200 on my Integra and I drive it everyday. Why would I spend a fortune on wheels for a car that can potentially get stolen or banged up at any moment? Its about making your car look better, for whatever is in there means, financially.
    Having 5 car meets a week is another thing that just makes the scene boring and sucks every bit of excitement out of seeing your peers build progress. It also makes cops hate the scene. 2-stepping and blasting music, then doing a burnout in a Best Buy parking lot is why they make “too low” laws and “excessive camber” tickets.
    Its not about VIP, or stance, or shaved bays, or big turbos, or airbags vs static, or “hellaflush”. Its about attitudes and general admiration for each others attempts to build something. I have no crew, I love VWs and BMWs, but I prefer Japanese cars and that should be ok, the term “ricer” pisses me off, and I wish the kids in that have been in the scene for the last 5 years could go back and see what it used to be like. It was way more fun.

  8. I have to disagree with Brian a bit. The older you get the more you’ll misunderstand the younger generation. People 20 years older than you said the same thing at your age. The toungins are also going to say the same thing when the time comes. That’s just life. Also I disagree with the “real vs fake wheels”. You don’t have to spend 3500 for a set. Plenty of used wheels with out there that cost the same as a brand new knockoff. They might not be the size or offset the replica makes but you could always rebuild some. That’s also a different area of being a car enthusiast that some people could learn about.

  9. Here in the UK “stance” “euro” and just plain laziness has killed off many big car shows as the movement from innovation and imagination being the pinnacle has fallen to scene kids rating on the bleets of there followers. Obsessed with fashion and trend but protesting all the while they are elite members of some fringe movement and so very “underground”, despite every car following a Ladybird book simple paint by numbers approach.
    I am a hater! A hater of hot right now being greater than what new take or innovation can be made. Hastags, roof racks, and BBS or concave wheels. Slap on some stickers and you’ve created the next big thing if you can get enough shares or insta hits.
    Aggressive fitment? I don’t think that’s the culprit, social media is far more firmly to blame and as the younger generation comes forth the majority see this frankly Lazy fad and it is easily accessible. So they are drawn to this insta’nt fame on tap. Rather than styles that seem too much work. Peer pressure and a smart phone are powerful influences.
    The fitment however as stupid as the camber obsessives are I’m loathed to give them credit as they are only very weakly stealing queues from Japanese VIP styled cars which they neither understand nor would realise the amount of work goes into them.
    Thankfully people are getting sick and the very media it thrives upon is now turning its back slowly on stance and its TV dinner modifying if you can even call it modifying, I still don’t count a brand of polish as a mod.

  10. I have to agree with Brian a lot.. I`m 35 and have been around the scene since I was 16 so I also have been around for along long time and have seen the rise and fall of a lot of the styling fads of the day. I`ve actually have distanced my self from the automotive scene in the later years because of the “scene enthusiasts” over the auto enthusiasts. I`m open to any make or model of car, if the build is quality I have respect for it but the show scene or cruise scene or what ever it is anymore has just become so cookie cutter with rows of the same 4 kinds cars on the same 4 kinds of wheels and if you don`t have either your treated like a complete outsider. I`ve seen so many large car meets destroyed in the last couple of years because of this too. They come in take over, pop there antilag systems on there stock turbo cars, do burn outs and drift out like they are ken block of the car meet. But that`s not the whole problem, the problem is the people who then snap a pick of it and upload it to Instagram/Facebook/Twitter etc etc and become “scene famous” which spurs on more of the same behavior the next week leading to that venue being shut down. The biggest example of that being H2Oi going from a simple VW show to being a “scenefest” and being run out of town by the cops. The aggressive fit movement will diminish..it’s not if it’s when and be replaced by a new trend like others in the past. Hellaflush will go down in history with the likes of chrome lexanis, pastel paint jobs, body kits, street touring cars and fiberglass UFO style stereo installs…and hopefully it takes the scene trolls out with it and replaces it with Car guys again.

  11. When a vehicle has lost function and can not be driven safely on or off the race track it is called a piece of art. Art has no function. This scene has attracted nothing but hipsters and people who think it’s cool to do this to vehicles. I’d say 90% of stanced vehicles are also built with garbage for parts, knock offs and just cheap shit. Not the entire industry but it has become a trend and we all love how trendy shit becomes to all jump on the band wagon. Everyone is trying to make a name for themselves and everyone wants to win a limbo contest and a car show. Seriously, grow up. You may call what I’m saying hate, it’s not. It’s common sense. Cars are meant to be driven and perform. Stop with the statements. Stop with the I’m different, when all this really shows is you are an idiot. Call it self expression or whatever you want but when you modify something to do something other then better it’s performance and just after a look, you are a ricer. Pure and simple. Just like Neons and LEDs and chrome rims and graphics from 2001 from F&F this is exactly what stance is. Useless and only for attention, hence it is classified as rice.

  12. I hear what youre saying Mackie. I may not go to meets, and I dont run with a crew, but I dont completely shut myself out. I talk to these kids coming up. Some of them are awesome kids with a lot of vision and a lot of drive to do great things with there cars. Most of them are not. I get that its a different generation and Im just shy of forty and Im still doing the same stuff I did to cars when I was 18. Im not saying I totally understand how these kids were raised, and Im glad I grew up when I did, because growing up now, they have no idea of where things came from, but most of these kids are doing this for the wrong reasons. ITs more for vanity then actual enjoyment.
    Let me also re-word the real wheel/fake wheel thing. 20 years ago, there werent really companies making “reps”. There were just wheel compaines. Companies like Enkei, and TSW and Konig, werent considered crappy wheels and the wheel “building” scene was tiny, almost non-existent as far as I could see, and back then we ran with a much bigger group of enthusiasts. Now a lot of these companies are probably outsourcing the wheels to Taiwan and the quality has gone down, but historically I dont remember anyone giving anyone else shit about a rim brand. I just feel like that aspect of the scene has gotten very snobby.

  13. Maybe change your site to cars is anything so u won’t get butthurt by stance kids. Your site did come about at the start of its popularity juss sayin

  14. Marco, I hate to break the news to you, but you arent really comprehending this at all. Since probably the 50s and 60s, there have been “show cars” and “performance cars”. Most of the “show cars” over the last 40 years are not meant to be taken out and driven on a track or raced. Look at the entire Lowrider scene thats been around forever. Or the car audio scene when some dude has 18 subs in the back of the car. Theyre meant to “show” not “go”. So putting neon and LED and chrome wheels on your car may not be YOUR style. But if thats what the person is into, and its their style. You cant really judge.
    The term “rice” is so god damn stupid. And youre definition of it is completely wrong. When people say a car is “Ricey” it refers to the horrible bodykits and spoilers companies used to make in the mid to late 90s and early 2000s. They were ridiculous looking and basically were never cool. Whats even worse is they made all these kits for German cars too, so the people that coined that phrase were just as moronic as the term itself. And now , like everything in the scene these days, the term is just beat to death.

    Oh and check this link. http://www.bmwdrives.com/bmw-artcars.php BMW might disagree with your art has no function theory.

  15. Brian C took the lowrider/kustom etc words right out of my mouth!

    Style oriented builds have been around forever.

    @Boris I’ve mused with the idea of a rebrand but I still think the right wheel and tire setup radically changes any car so I’ve stuck with Stance Is Everything.

Leave a Reply