Lowrider culture making it big in the High Plains

Hispanic Heritage Month

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — What began in California in the 1950s quickly made its way to Texas and is still going strong.

One lowrider car club said the popular yet misunderstood lifestyle has taken over the panhandle.

The flashy classic cars, the outfits, and the music make this unique style stand out.

Lowriders are the spitting image of Chicano culture and for many here on the High Plains. It is more than just a hobby, but also a way of life.

“It’s the culture you know the Chicano culture, the Mexican American culture, and it’s more about family and getting together and have a great time,” Juan Lozano, President of Nueva Vida Car Club, stated.

According to Lozano, lowriding can carry a negative stigma after movies portrayed lowriders often times as gang members. However, Lozano said he is trying to change that.

“Me, as a pastor, I take the opportunity to use the car as a ministry to minister to the people that are into that culture,” Lozano said.

It is not just for men either, .over the years women have shown a love for lowriders as well.

“I got tired of just looking at all the guys you know just showing off their cars. For a change, I thought I want my own so I went out and got one,” Silvia Garcia, a lowrider woman stated.

Garcia said aside from the paint and hydraulics, there is a touch from the whole family that goes into a lowrider.

“So when you start fixing up a lowrider you get the teenagers involved and the teens involved and so involved that they’re not trying to get into trouble or do other things they shouldn’t be doing,” Garcia explained.

As far as the unique style and fifties clothing goes, it is all part of it.

“More of a classic thing, you know having a nice engine is a plus but it’s more of the looks and the style, a smooth style,” Lozano said.

Chicano and lowrider culture has become so popular there are even lowrider clubs in Japan.

If you want to see lowriders cruising in town, Nueva Vida, said they go out most Sundays and drive around the Amarillo Boulevard and occasionally host shows that give back to the community.

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