Many outside of Lowrider culture don't realize that our cars aren't built just to look cool; they have a sentimental value to us that is priceless. Some Lowriders are bought from family members, others are gifts from generous parents, and some are built in tribute, just ask Claudio De La Torre of Parris, CA. Claudio built a specific make and model to remember and honor someone very special in his life. "My dad was always a Chevy guy," Claudio says with a smile. "From his '63 Impala to his '82 Monte Carlo, which was his last car he owned before he passed away on June 11th, 1990." Claudio's dad always wanted to build himself an old school Chevy step side truck but, unfortunately, he passed away before he was able to do so. This gave Claudio the motivation he needed to take it upon himself to get one and build it for his father's memory.

"I saw the truck for sale and I just fell in love with it," says Claudio describing the project '49. He was fortunate enough to find a running truck that had a great interior and paintjob on it. Even though the step side was in great condition, it wasn't modified to the level that Claudio wanted. With help from his friends Pepe Gallegos and Jose Frias, the trio customized the truck to award winning status. Air cylinders were added to the rear to lift the wood bed and allow the chrome rear end to be displayed at shows. The engine, interior, and undercarriage got a make over by the trio in order to create a truly unique truck that serves as a great dedication to Claudio's dad's memory.

Special thanks are in order for Claudio's dad, Magno De La Torre, his daughter, Claudia De La Torre, his De La Torre family, Pepe Gallegos, and Jose Frias. Also, a special thanks goes out to the City of Perris Fire Department Station #1 for allowing us to shoot in front of their station.

TECH SPECS

"El Jefito"

Owner: Claudio De La Torre

Vehicle: 1949 Chevrolet 3100

City/State: Perris, CA

Engine: Jose Frias installed the 235 with 3-speed manual transmission.

Body/Paint: Claudio did the bodywork himself and had Emnald paint it with PPG almond and brown. Angelo added the stripping.

Interior: Light brown cloth

Setup: Jose Frias installed the Viair setup with Odyssey batteries. A Mustang II front and Camaro rear end were installed.

Chrome: Brother of Riverside, CA chromed the rear end and springs.