We’re willing to bet that if there were a lowrider sitting in Santa’s garage way up in the North Pole, it would look something like this one. The creation you see here wasn’t conjured up in Santa’s Workshop by his elves, but by Erick “RC Patina Guy” Padilla, himself. This heavily customized ride features a ton of work by Padilla along with a few key pieces made by other creative collaborators. We’ll get more into that in a minute, but first; let’s take a deeper dive into Redcat’s SixtyFour Impala Lowrider.
A NEW MOVEMENT
Spearheading the RC lowrider movement, Redcat took the genre by storm a couple years ago with its 1964 Chevrolet Impala SS derived SixtyFour lowrider. The innovative RC car is based on a real life lowriding classic that looks every bit the part and moves in ways that no other mass production RC car ever has. Since the release of the SixtyFour, Redcat has also dropped a three-wheel motion capable vehicle, the 1979 Chevrolet Monte Carlo and most recently, a high hopping 1959 Impala that they call the Fifty Nine. To say the RC lowrider scene is exploding in popularity is a gross understatement.
Each of Redcat’s lowriders would be complex RC cars to build. With multi-piece bodies, multi-part and highly detailed trim pieces and an armory of linkages, tackling an assembly kit of any of their three models would require quite the commitment and mechanical prowess. Just ask Jevries, the custom RC lowrider builder and pioneer that Redcat collaborates with to create these ground shaking vehicles. We’re glad that Redcat offers these three models as pre-built, ready to run (RTR) models. All we need to do is charge up its battery and we’re ready to hit the switches.
A COMPLEX BEAST
Of the three lowriders, the SixtyFour boasts the longest wheelbase and is arguably the most complex in the line. It’s a serious beast indeed. The SixtyFour utilizes four servos of which one is a powerful “hopper” servo that is supplied by Reefs RC. This hopper servo allows the SixtyFour’s frontend to hop on demand.
Its fully licensed and accurate 1964 Chevrolet Impala SS body is a highly detailed multi-piece body that comes with clear windows, a removable and detailed interior and 23 individual chrome plated molded parts that are used to fully realize the body’s realistic look. It looks great because clearly, Redcat didn’t cut any corners. The body comes LED light ready and is mounted onto the chassis using hidden body mounts and body clips that are located on the chassis’ underside.
“The creation you see here wasn’t conjured up in Santa’s Workshop by his elves, but by RC Patina Guy, himself.”
Of course any self-respecting lowrider should sit on whitewall tires mounted on chrome wire spoke wheels with center knockoffs and that’s what the Impala comes with as standard. Redcat also offers plenty of optional parts for their lowriders that offer plenty of customization options for those who want to make their car stand out from the rest.
The SixtyFour includes Redcat’s proprietary LR6X six-channel 2.4GHz computer radio system that has lowrider style switches incorporated into it. This stick style radio controller has been fitted specifically for use with RC lowriders and includes buttons, levers and switches to drive the Impala, as well as perform realistic looking lowrider tricks.
The LR6X radio includes individual switches to control each of the four height adjustment servos, momentary switches for raising either the front or rear to max ride height and momentary buttons for lowering either the front or rear to minimum ride height. The levers and switches are similar to those found on an authentic full-sized lowrider hopper control unit. This provides the driver with a realistic scale simulation of what it’s like to actually operate a full size hydraulically controlled lowrider.
Santa’s Wish list
You undoubtedly have noticed that this SixtyFour is built as a convertible. No, Redcat has not released a top down version of this lowrider yet, instead, the top was chopped by Erick “RC Patina Guy” Padilla to make Santa’s ride that much more special. Padilla followed up the custom bodywork with his distinct patina style of paint along with some really nice looking gold pin striping.
In fact, all of the accents on this ride were finished in metallic or chrome gold and thanks to Redcat’s optional parts; most of the original chrome parts that came on this SixtyFour have been swapped out with chrome gold parts as well. Some of our favorite details include the taillight color work that Padilla applied to the stock lights.
The highly detailed custom made interior is thanks to a talented artist named Hector Flores, owner of Scale Lowrider Interiors. Flores builds handmade biscuit tuck style interiors for 1/24 through 1/19 scale lowrider models and RC cars. The interior is made of craft foam that is stamped with a biscuit tuck pattern made famous by lowriders from the ‘70s, ’80s and ‘90s.
Santa’s SixtyFour features a special Christmas edition interior that features a classic white biscuit tuck interior. The front seats are white biscuit tuck with red edges trimmed in gold and red cord. The front seats are capped with a clean arch of gold lined mirrors that can be seen from above. The dash has more white biscuit tuck and trim but the instrument panel is framed in more gold mirrors and is finished off with a chrome chain steering wheel from Jevries.
Take a closer look and you’ll notice that the Impala’s door panels feature some green glitter panels with soft white trim. The back seat is fit for Saint Nick, with multiple curved edges and crisp peaks on both the seat bottom and seat back. Matching the front seat is yet another row of lined gold mirrors that can be seen from above. The rear deck highlights some curved edges for a touch of detail.
Santa himself was created and painted especially for this build by Mark Muniz of Headhunter Studio. (Read more about him in his profile article elsewhere in this issue of RCCA.) Muniz carefully custom sculpted the one off Santa figure and we think he looks right at home in his lowrider. The arm positioning is spot on and his rosy cheeks reveal that it’s a chilly day up in the North Pole.
We absolutely love seeing customized RC rides and this Santa themed SixtyFour is high on our list of favorites for this year. There’s so much work that went into this lowrider that we have to take a step back and just appreciate its workmanship and design. A collaboration project between three highly talented and creative artists will never disappoint. Special thanks to Erick Padilla, Hector Flores and Mark Muniz for coming together to create and share this special ride with us.
RC Patina Guy
Scale Lowrider Interiors
URL: etsy.com/shop/HEADHUNTERSTUDIOS IG: @headhunterstudios
Text and Images by Jerry Tsai