Millions of cars are sold in the US every year. Evidently, a lot of us have the same car. But many people fancy the idea of making their ride unique, something that stands out of the ordinary. Sometimes, people are looking to make their car’s performance better or they want to change how the car looks and rides. All these needs are satisfied through the process of modding. Modding your car means altering its default factory-installed parts or adding/removing extra stuff to elevate the car’s performance, looks, or style. We can see lots of different mods applied to everything from a grocery getter to a track-only supercar. But sports cars and tuners remain the most commonly modded cars. From the front bumper to the rear taillight, every part of a car can be tweaked by a skilled mechanic. The only limit seems to be our imagination (and physics) for this aspect of the automobile industry.
Car mods have existed for decades now, and we have seen a plethora of mods come and go. Some turned out to enjoy 5 seconds of fame, while some have managed to stay evergreen so far. A few of those even got banned in some states regarding safety issues. Let’s dive into the world of car mods and take a look at 5 that have burnt out and 5 that are still badass.
Aftermarket Scissor Doors
Lamborghinis have become so popular that other manufacturing brands and people tried to copy the styling of their cars. One of the most prominent among them is their scissor-doors. We all were in awe when we first gazed upon them, and we all wanted our cars to have them.
What we don’t want is the risk that comes with them. If the car flips over, opening the doors would be impossible without outside help. Lamborghini and other manufacturers who fit these doors have the facility to blow open the doors upon flipping. Aftermarket doors are unlikely to have the same.
Racing enthusiasts know how important wings are for a race car’s performance. Ricers know how cool they look on their daily drivers. And we are talking about the latter one as properly designed wings (or spoilers) remain one of the most important aspects of motor racing.
Rather than directing airflow upwards to increase rear downforce to get more traction or reduce drag, these aftermarket wings (if not chosen properly) can interrupt the airflow and add extra weight. Sometimes they even cause instability at high speeds, if the car is fast enough to go to the speeds where the wings are actually useful.
Spinning Wheels (or Spinners)
These shiny spinny boys are the epitome of the phrase “15 minutes of fame”. During the early 2000s, the spinning wheels blew up in hip-hop culture bigger than Mt. Tambora volcanic eruption. The idea of catching people’s attention by letting the outer rims spin temporarily after the car has stopped seemed so amazing that tons of people tried to apply them on their daily rides.
Their popularity in music videos helped a lot as well. But other than different shapes of the rims and spokes, we saw little innovation over the years, and they slowly faded away in the mid-2000s. Now, hardly anyone considers them as still relevant.
When The Fast and The Furious came out in 2001, the car community saw an uprising in terms of an increased number of car enthusiasts and new trending car mods. One of them was applying neon underglow beneath the car.
The first shot of the movie featuring four black Honda Civics with green neon lights hitting the roads is an iconic shot, and many tried to recreate it up to some extent. But they didn’t realize that these lights were too distracting to other drivers, and some states have since passed a law banning such mods, making them illegal and irrelevant.
Fake Badges and Stickers (And even Kits!)
If a person buys a vanilla Chevy Camaro and then puts on a fake ZL1 bumper & grille and a ZL1 badge in the rear, he isn’t fooling anybody. Sometimes, people even add a body kit to make your car appear something else entirely. It’s all good when they do it for fun or are self-acknowledging.
But when they aim to fool others into thinking that their ride is way cooler than it actually is, they fail hilariously. And watching base models with an upper trim sticker in the back with nothing else backing its facade up is always amusing.
Forced Induction (Still Badass)
As amazing as naturally aspirated engines are, there’s no denying that turbocharged and supercharged vehicles are just sick. And if applied to a capable engine that can handle a lot of extra boost, the ride is cranked up to a whole nother level.
The looks of a blower sticking out of the hood of a classic muscle car are classy as ever, and the sound of the turbo fluttering blow-off valve, and the whine of the supercharger is music to the ears. Just make sure the turbo lag is not too sudden when driving on hilly or curvy roads.
Camber Angle (Still Badass)
This one is for all the drift guys out there. In simple terms, the camber angle of a car is the angle made by the wheel’s alignment and a vertical straight line. Changing the camber angle allows the car to get more traction while going sideways.
Doing this can help achieve more controlled drifts, the ones we love to watch. While you don’t want your daily driver to have more than 1 degree negative or positive camber, race cars, and drift machines look simply awesome with a lot of camber.
Engine Swaps (Still Badass)
An engine is the heart of a car. And usually, the engine fitted in a car is the one most compatible with the chassis type and suits the car’s intended use. But sometimes, swapping the engine with another one (especially a bigger, more powerful one) can lead to insane results.
Either the body, transmission, or crankshaft won’t be able to handle it, or it will elevate the car to the next level. General Motors LS swaps, Nissan RB26 swaps, Honda B16 swaps are common in the modding community.
Bigger Brakes (Still Badass)
There is no point in making your car faster if you can’t stop faster. “The Grand Tour” test driver and professional racing driver Abbie Eaton considers bigger brakes to be among the first mods to apply to a car. Big Brakes are likely to be evergreen because stopping faster is something that everyone benefits from.
They add a sense of security to the car and increase the confidence of the driver. Bigger brakes are not only badass but every car enthusiast should be encouraged to get one of them.
Cold Air Intake (Still Badass)
Cold air intake includes dragging the air filter outside the engine compartment. Doing so lets the air filter send cooler air to the engine. Cooler air is denser, hence more oxygen is stuffed inside the cylinder, which increases power.
Cold air intake is a cheap and easy way to get a little boost out of your engine without hurting it too much. Unless you are planning for track days over the weekend, this mod paired with a modified exhaust can be sufficient to make a car faster for city and countryside roads.
Mods have been around just as long as video games, and Grand Theft Auto has one of the largest modding communities of them all.
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