Having a lowered car is far from a new trend, especially for car-show enthusiasts and tuners. When done correctly, lowering your car can even improve its aerodynamics and performance, but that isn’t always the case. Custom car shows have been overtaken by ‘slammed’ cars, vehicles that are lowered so drastically that they sit just inches above the ground, and some even closer.
Lowered versus ‘slammed’
Having a lowered car is one thing, but a car that’s slammed all the way to the ground is totally different. This can be achieved in several ways, but the most popular is to use lowering springs, which keep your car at the height you adjust it to, or ‘bags’ that allow you to raise and lower your car with the press of a button. Regardless of personal choice, having a lowered car can improve the appeal of your car, but having a slammed car can actually ruin more than just your car’s value.
The benefits of being ‘slammed’
Of course, having a lowered car can have some benefits. For one, it lowers your car’s center of gravity, making it less prone to rolling over when taking corners faster than average. This is part of the reason why many sports cars come much lower to the ground than your standard passenger car, causing similar problems — like when we weren’t able to clear a piece of wood on the road when bringing our Lotus Evora across the country (yikes!).
Having a lowered car is also a big customization that many tuners and custom car fanatics value, and while it doesn’t necessarily increase the value of your car when it comes to selling it, for the right buyer, it might improve its appeal.
Is it legal to lower your car?
In just about every state in the US, it isn’t entirely legal to lower your car, anyway. While some states, like Florida, are much more lenient on what they will allow because they don’t have regularly mandated inspections, it is frowned upon by the law overall. In more strict states, you might find yourself facing tickets and high fines for lowering your car without proper authorization — in some states, you can get an engineering certificate for your car being lowered a certain amount.
Then again, with such a range in car ride heights, especially in sports cars, most non-car-enthusiast passerby’s might not even notice that your car is lowered at all unless it was slammed all the way to the ground. But, that it is a legal risk drivers have to decide for themselves.
Then, of course, it can actually do quite a bit of damage to have your car lowered to the ground. Lowering your car dramatically puts increased strain on the car’s suspension, causing it to wear more quickly or fail completely. It also increases your risk of damaging body panels, your front bumper, and scraping the undercarriage of the car. Regardless of the very obvious and potential risks, slammed culture prevails for many car enthusiasts.