Scenes From South Africa: Cape Town Stance

Obey You Collective: South Africa heads down to Cape Town for a street-level look at the city’s expanding stance car scene.

February 05, 2014

After spending some time in the creative corners of Johannesburg and Durban, Obey You Collective: South Africa is heading down to Cape Town for a street-level look at the city’s expanding stance car scene. Stance, according to Urban Dictionary, is “to adjust a car's camber, ride height, and spacing, so that the sidewall of the tire sits as flush as possible with the fender” — basically the act of turning your car into a “lowrider.” Though initially popularized in the US and Japan, the scene has has blown up in South Africa over the last couple of years, particularly in Cape Town, where the local cars have started attracting attention from the world’s most passionate stance enthusiasts.

“I think we have a definite flavor to the way we do things,” explains Lorenzo Lakay, co-founder of the Cape Town lifestyle blog Casual Society. “We don’t always have parts easily and readily available, so we have to make it work in our own way.” Some of the scene's standout cars, like the classic-looking yellow Volkswagen Beetle in the above video, have been showcased by car blogs around the globe for the painstaking, DIY quality of their construction. Like any tight-knit community, the individual stance crews can be pretty selective about who they let hang around. “We’ll check out their car, their attitude, the way that they portray themselves, their style,” explains Lakay. “You don’t get recognized for just lowering your car — you need to show some guts.”

When not working on their cars, the guys who live the stanced lifestyle like to spend time with each other, meeting up after work to go for a drive along the beachfront while the sun sets over the South Atlantic. “It’s more than just a fad or a phase,” Lakay says, “it’s actually a lifestyle that we love.” The video introduces us to the inner-circle, Lakay included, as they joy-ride through Cape Town's scenic streets in their highly-modified whips. In addition to things like video game systems and high-end stereos, almost all the cars have built-in bike racks. “BMX and cars just look good together, we love the aesthetic of it,” Lakay says of his crew’s latest hobby. “But we also just like the feeling of riding a bike. It’s amazing.” Watch the entire video above, soundtracked by Jo'burg rapper Reason, and keep checking for more eclectic scenes from South Africa's bourgeoning street culture.

Scenes From South Africa: Cape Town Stance