Quick car makeovers
What to do when your car needs oomph!By Jeanette Ipapo-Tuason
Philippine Daily Inquirer
If your relationship with your car is as committed as the Philippines being the only country where divorce is not legal, then you have to find ways to not drive adobo every day. Usually makeovers happen when you have a break-up, you caught your hubby cheating and other eventualities that will wake the inner bitch in you to trade your trusty Tory Burch Reva flats to 5-inch Christian Louboutins.
But for cars there will be different reasons for you to hang on even after all the love has gone, there is price, financial situation, contractual obligations or just too weak to let go. Here are some ways that can put a little more spice or rekindle the flame.
Buy New Shoes. “The cheapest way to have a new car is to change its wheels or Mags,” according to Concept One’s Sam Liuson. Something we ladies never really understood is how men can be so passionate about a round, usual star designed metal wheel. The function of the wheel is basically to hold the tires. The bigger the wheel, the more expensive it becomes. The standard wheels come at about 15-16 inch. Sportier and luxury cars come in 17 inch. If this is not enough, go for a flashier 18-20 inch. This, however, makes the ride bumpier. Whatever they say about men with big feet does not apply in cars with big wheels; the ride does not get better. Starts at P30,000.
When you change the wheels you need to change the tires as well, you need to see what the recommended tire sizes for your car are. It’s more stylish to have a slimmer profile on the rubber, but as the rubber goes thinner the more you feel the sensation of a bumpy ride. More established brands such as Michelin and Bridgestone have a better track record in terms of quality, performance and safety, but they tend to run on the more expensive side. You don’t necessarily need to buy the same tire brand your car came with, so shop for options. Starts at P25,000.
Add highlights or change your color. If your ride has all the evidence of a rough night, opt for either a restorative treatment such as a wash-over, which means you paint the car the same color it is now, with a dash of shine and gleam, or opt for a total color change. Although a change of color will make the resale value of the car lower because OEM colors are oven-dipped and baked, making the rust proofing better, this will be OK if you plan to keep the car for a couple more years. Go to a reputable paint shop or casa, because this can turn into a real nightmare. Always check what material they will be using for the paint job. Opt for the 2-component paint which is closer in quality to the original paints.
A wash-over starts at P25,000, and a change color is about P35,000.
Accessorize, Accessorize. Fashion stylists always advise us that the accessories change the outfit; putting chin spoilers, wings, side skirts are all accessories that can change the look of your car. But as Coco Chanel mantra said, “less is more,” too much accessories can ruin a well-put ensemble as well. For cars, don’t be a fashion victim by putting over the top kits, making your car look like it’s about to take off, unless this is the look you are gunning for and your confidence level can carry it. Starts at P20,000.
Liven up your sparklers or your smile. Changing your lights and grill is like wearing contact lenses and false eyelashes. This is one of the most obvious changes you can make. Opt for HID versions because this increases the throw of light, making your night vision better, and has lesser energy consumption. The grill is pure aesthetics, so go ahead and just choose what you like. This will set you back anywhere from P20,000 and above.
Enhance your voice. Cars now come with CD players with an interface for your iPod or iPhone. Due to the increase of traffic, people now opt to have TVs inside their cars as well. If you plan to improve your car’s audio, the first thing you can do is to change the head unit and add some speakers and subwoofers. Unless you are going to make your car’s sounds a mating call, I don’t recommend you go to the BOOM BOOM side. There are a lot of choices to fit your budget, branded head units depend on what cars you have, but the popular brands are Sony Xplod, Blaupunkt and Kenwood, among others. See if having a navigation system is possible for your budget as well. Don’t go for just changing the head unit without changing the speakers, this will be futile. Starts at P20,000 and up.
Each make-over option can be discussed in full detail in future articles. But just to keep you informed before you play martyr, please be reminded that suffering in silence is so passé. It’s okay to ask your guy friends or husband for advice, but make the last decision. At the end of the day, it’s your beautiful behind that will enjoy or suffer if you decide to please other people.
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