download indesign cs6 software color efex pro complete

V to the I to the P
I have been asked several times over the years, “What makes a car a VIP CAR?”  That’s when I reply, “It all depends on what part of the world we are standing in.”

It’s very simple and something we tend not to make overly complicated, pronouncing it  “vip” or “bippu,” not “vee-eye-pee.” In essence, saying it as one word and not spelling out each letter.  

It all starts with the platform though. Fortunately in Japan, where this trend originated, they are blessed with a large variety of luxury sedans from its domestic automakers. A VIP Car starts with that foundation, the car itself. Nissan brings a fleet of sedans to the VIP party: the President, Cima, Gloria, Cedric and the Q45. Toyotas fleet includes the Century, Celsior, Aristo, Crown and Majesta. Take one of these platforms and begin the modifications of your choice.

Let’s start with the suspension. Air suspensions are extremely popular for the fact you can drive as low as you want and provide the clearance when needed. Coil-overs can also be used. The main thing is to bring the car down as low as possible. Next, we add low offset wheels. The rim is pretty much kissing the fender, or barely clearing it, when tucking into them. From there a body kit as installed, making the car seem even more massive than it already is and even closer to the ground. These are the building blocks of a modified VIP Car.

V to the I to the P V to the I to the P

Here is where a VIP Style Car comes in. You would take these same types of modifications and put them on cars that are not considered a VIP Car platform. A very popular trend is to use a van (Honda Odyssey, Toyota Previa and Sienna and the Nissan High-Ace), box (Scion xB and Nissan Cube) and other sedans (Infiniti G35s, Lexus IS300s, Nissan Maximas and Honda Accords). Outfit any of these cars with the same styling cues and/or vendors that a VIP Car would use, and that is what I like to define as a VIP Style Car.  

In North America, we aren’t as fortunate to have the large selection of true VIP Car platforms that other countries do. Though the trend is still in the infancy stages here, some U.S.-based companies have tried to sell European sedan offerings as VIP Cars. But, while those can belong in the VIP Car category, there is a large sense of pride within the Japanese modding community in its own luxury sedans. That said, within the past couple of years, we are starting to see a lot of the usual VIP Car suspects beginning to add their touches to the Mercedes S-Class, Rolls-Royce Phantom and other Euro luxury sedans.

V to the I to the PWe tend to adapt styling cues seen in Japanese VIP Cars to the platforms we have available to us. It isn’t our choice that we don’t have a Toyota Century or a Nissan President here. And, there is nothing wrong with starting on a Honda Accord or a Toyota Avalon as long as you can distinguish that a VIP Car starts at the foundation of the car itself.

VIP Style Cars simply take the styling cues of a modified VIP Car and adapts them to a non-traditional platform. A great example of this is Performance Auto and Sound’s own Honda Accord; it takes many VIP Car mods and then applies them to the Accord to achieve that all-important VIP Style. Several U.S. companies like VIP Modular Wheels and VIP’d Out tables provided custom-built parts just for the project.

I hope you enjoy this VIP-themed issue. Here you'll be able to see many different genres of VIP.

More Articles

Simple Yet Bold: ADVAN Racing GT Wheels

Written by Randi Bentia / Photography by Shaun KeenanThe GT wheel (5 spoke) from ADVAN Racing, as seen here mounted on the Bulletproof Automotive Nissan GT-R, is a simple yet (powerfully) bold. In both design and specs, GT aims to…
Read More

Team Profile: Nitto Tire's 2015 Driver Line-Up

There’s no denying that drifting at a competitive level requires the support of a tire company. Over the years, 12 different tire companies have earned a podium finish, with 10 of them earning an event win. Nitto Tire has been…
Read More

Project Forte: KIA Forte Koup - Konig Rim and Sailun Tire Install

Step 1: Place rim on tire mounting machine Step 2: Insert valve stems in rim(s) Step 3: Apply lubricant to the bead of the tire Step 4: Place tire onto rim and use tire mounting machine according to specifications Step…
Read More

RTE: What it Takes What It Takes

Time Attack is an incredible form of motorsport. It is uniquely accessible to the average weekend warrior; low risk compared to wheel to wheel racing, and thanks to media coverage from websites and awesome magazines like PASMAG, can also be…
Read More

Target: Newfoundland - Inside the Speed Academy Scion FR-S Targa Racer

Written by Jordan Lenssen | Photography by Speed Academy & Scion Canada Targa Newfoundland is the perennial North American event for automotive enthusiasts and club racers looking to push their skills and vehicles to the absolute limit. The week-long rally…
Read More