When I was a kid, dopeboys had the best cars. Besides providing the neighborhood with a centennial celebration worth of fireworks every 4th of July, the neighborhood hustler gave us something to aspire to one day, vehically.
I remember Larry* was shining his 2001 Escalade tires with the gangster white walls teasing me and my boy “y’all stay in school, don’t be like me, it’s hard working keeping a car this clean.” Then he let out a big smile full of gold teeth that matched his rims perfectly. Though Larry suffered from severe halitosis, it didn’t stop him from shining. Every summer it was a new car, and every summer I said “that’ll be me one day.” I’m taking the long route (10+ years in comedy) but one day I know my car collection will rival Larry’s*
Here are the top 5 cars most Black Dudes have wished to magic carpet their bus pass into.
5. 1997. Oldsmobile Aurora/1995 Chevy Impala
Mostly Seen In: Chicago
Let me start by saying the engine in the Aurora was pure trash, these cars lasted about two years before they ended up for sale at your local gas station. People just dropped these off with the doors unlocked and caught a ride home. But, for the couple years that they did work, it was the fastest, smoothest ride you’ve ever had.
My favorite thing about the Impala was that it was a police car as well. A dude I knew got a siren, and used to scare his friends off I-94 at top speed. If an Impala was behind you, you weren’t getting away.
Sounds: “Adrenaline Rush” Twista
4. 2001 Chevrolet Escalade
Mostly Seen in: NBA All-Star Weekend
From 2000 til whenever Bush started raping us via gas prices, this was THEE car. Every rap video, hood movie, and street corner had one. Bonus points if it was all white. With the money you spent filling up the tank, you could feed a small family in Peru. But who are we kidding, nobody ever fully filled the tank.
Sounds: Ludacris “What’s Your Fantasy?”
3. 1985 boxed Chevrolet Caprice
Mostly Seen in: All over Atlanta
Something about cop cars that the streets love. The boxed Chevy is the “n-word” of cars. We took a thing created and used by bigots and turned it into our own thing. It’s also uncomfortable to see it steered by a non-person of color. It’s not against the law, it’s just incredibly difficult to acquire a pass on using one.
Sounds: “Take it Off” UGK/ “85” Youngbloodz
2. 1989 BMW 325i Cabrio
Mostly Seen In: Harlem
This car should have gotten a supporting role in the movie “Paid In Full” and “New Jack City.” Beautiful, fast, and goes perfectly with a gold chain and Jordan’s (no creases). The Mercedes was too “stock-brokery” and a Bentley back then came with a horse and buggy. The Beamer 325i was smaller, so you can whip it into tight parking spaces.
Sounds: “Paid In Full” Rakim and Erik B.
1. 1964 Chevrolet Impala
Mostly Seen: Straight Outta Compton
I think of LA, when I think of this car. From “Menace to Society” (drama) to “Baby Boy” (comedy) this car always made an appearance. My dream ’64 would be sky blue, with a white hard top, suicide doors, hundred spokes and Rihanna. It could happen.
Sounds: “Boys in the Hood” NWA