Model: Jasmine Luna, http://www.jasmineluna.com
Somis, California is an unincorporated community in Ventura County California known for being an agricultural area, far removed from the urban hustle and bustle of The City of Angels to the south. Life in Somis is much slower-paced, as the area is home to a number of horse properties, farms, estates, and ranches. Due to this rural environment, a pickup truck is the most common choice of transportation within the community. That said, the sight of a deep-black 1962 Chevy Impala on the roads of Somis would be enough to make anybody stop and stare. That’s exactly what Mike Vasquez was counting on when he decided to restore his 1962 Chevy Impala, and his efforts have the community abuzz over his creation.
Mike’s older brother Ben has always been into cars, and Mike credits him with introducing the Lowrider culture to him as a teen. An avid builder, Ben has built a number of cars over the years, and the deuce was just another in waiting. As he was juggling projects, Ben decided he could part ways with the ’62 in order to make room for another project. When he shared that information with Mike, the younger sibling decided to make an offer to buy the deuce so that the classic Chevy could remain in the Vasquez family.
Mike also had every intention of restoring the ’62 to his own high standards, as he was anxious to get to work. No sooner than the car made it to his house did Mike get under the hood, and so began the restoration process. His brother Ben got to work prepping the body of the ’62, a task that was easy for someone as experienced as he is. Once it was ready, Mike chose a DuPont Jet Black color for the Chevy, adding some class with an incredibly smooth and shiny finish.
One of the great things about Mike’s deuce is that it is a hybrid of old school class and modern efficiency. This is extremely prevalent under the hood where Jim Basset from Bones Fab in Camarillo, CA., worked his magic. Jim installed a 2009 Chevy 383 Stroker with a mild cam, ported and polished heads, roller rockers, and an 850 Double Pumper Carburetor. Looking to give Mike some much needed reliability, Jim mated the engine to a Turbo 350 tranny with a 3000 stall Torque Convertor. Doug headers and a dual Flowmaster exhaust system capped off the modernization of the engine, with George from La Puente, CA., chroming and anodizing all of the parts.
The brothers also tackled the suspension upgrades, with older brother Ben installing a custom air ride suspension using Air Ride Technologies components that allow the deuce to lay frame and lock up and dip front and back. Tubular A arms and trailing arms came courtesy of Bones Fab, while Mike and Ben added disc brakes in the front and rear of the car. Manny, from Manny’s Upholstery in Oxnard, California handled the triple black interior with Mike adding a tilt steering column, digital dash, and power windows. The late Terry Anderson also provided power vent windows for an added touch before a booming sound system courtesy of Josh, from Breakers in Oxnard, California, capped off the build.
After a year and a few stacks of cash, the deuce was restored with an addition of modern components in the engine, suspension and audio departments. The final addition to Mike’s immaculate ’62 was the addition of the Connected Car Club plaque; a club to which Mike has belonged for three years.
Mike’s black stallion is an example of the classic and modern style we have come to expect from Connected Car Club. Great job on the restoration Mike; and great job on keeping the deuce in the family!