Terry Cook, President
PO box 102
14 Schooley's Mt. Rd.
Long Valley, NJ 07853
908 876-9727
fax 908 876-1692

Europe by Lowrider
Lowriding through the Low Country-- on to Germany.

Heading into Germany, traffic picked up pace considerably. I passed trucks on the expressway, but was constantly moving over for fast-lane traffic. A tooth on Titanic's speedometer gear broke, and the needle now bounced wildly between 40 and 100 MPH.

In Essen, the Belgian Street Cruisers hotrod club invited us to its Christmas party, where we went bowling and drank beer. We considered changing the name of our club to the Manhattan Löwenbräuriders.

We exhibited the Lincoln at the ten-day Essen Motor Show. This spectacle fills sixteen buildings with tuner-type cars and attracts more than 300,000 visitors. We were on a turntable in a large hall filled with an eclectic mix of cars and motorcycles selected by the show's organizer, Wolfgang Schöller. The smorgasboard of automotive oddities ranged from the Thrust SSC jet car that broke the sound barrier to the Pink Panthermobile. We were across the aisle from the stage where a bikini show took place six times a day. Most of the time, showgoers had their backs to the Lincoln.

We've heard about a guy's car being a "chic magnet", but this is ridiculous

People took photos of Titanic, but in general, the car was a giant brick on a turntable. It wasn't nearly the smash hit it had been in England and France. Rods and customs exist in Germany, as seen in Chrom & Flammen (Chrome and Flames) Magazine, but they're a distinct minority. Tuner cars dominate the interest of most German gearheads. Most young German males know what a lowrider is, but it doesn't wind their clocks the way a modified Audi TT roadster does.

In France, we saw couples in love everywhere, making out in public. Not in Germany. Where they loved the Titanic in Paris, the unimpassioned Teutonic non-reaction of the Germans reminded me of director Fritz Lang's bleak, futuristic fantasy Metropolis. It's remarkable that even though England, France and Germany are close together geographically, their cultures are worlds apart.

In retrospect, piloting our Titanic through Europe was exhilarating- and exhausting. Driving a two-and-a-half-ton lowrider with a gigantic American V-8 in a land where it can cost $50 to top off a half-full fuel tank was surely an insane proposition. But it was definitely on the cool side of insane.

Illustration by Joel Naprstek. We may soon offer T-shirts of this art with the words
If you want to be notified when available, contact us.

Titanic Thanks

In bringing my lowrider odyssey from fantasy to reality, several companies and talented individuals helped defray expenses by donating hardware or services. For the Lincoln's lowrider suspension, I chose air bags over hydraulics because they provide a superior ride. My setup is from Air Ride Technologies of Jasper, Indiana, the industry leader in hot-rod air-spring R&D. Ramsey Mosher from Ram's Rod Shop in Dover, Delaware, cut off the car's top and chopped the windshield four inches. He then fabricated a lift-off landau-style half top with a removable front roof portion over the driver. his crew stretched a set of fiberglass bubble skirts to nine and a half feet in length and restyled the front end. Don "The Egyptian" Boeke of Dayton, Ohio, mixed a custom blend of House of Kolor "Liberace Lavendar" pearlescent paint, and Ram applied it. Bobby Sapp of Milford, Delaware, stitched the interior and the half top. For tunes, Blaupunkt supplied a Sydney RCM 126 AM/FM/Cassette head unit with a CDC-A08 trunk-mounted ten-disc CD changer. Precision Power supplied three amps (two PC4400s and one PC2300) for ten speakers- four exterior 5.25-inchers, two interior TI tweeters, two Class Pro Eight eight-inch flat-piston subwoofers, and two 5.25-inch midrange speakers. DJ "The Golden Gup" assembled a special CD for our tour, with twenty songs containing lyrics about the United States, including "(I want to live in) America" from West Side Story, the Guess Who's "American Woman" and James Brown's "Living in America." Getting a twenty-foot, two-and-a-half-ton lowrider from New Jersey USA to Europe is no small matter. Cosdel International Company helped ship the car across the Atlantic. -TC