How to pimp your everyday car to look & feel completely different on a budget

Posted by: 234DRIVE x NAIJAUTO.COM

Share this post:

Latest news articles

Get bored with your old car? Here are the 7 pimping tricks you can do with your car that completely change the way it looks and feels without being broke!


Pimping old cars can be a lot of fun

If it's one thing I love doing the most with regular cars, it would be making a regular car stand out from the rest of its kind with simple classic pimping that won't make it look 'razz' or low budget. I can't have my car looking like an ice cream van with uneven colored lighting all over the place or a life-sized child's toy car.

Here is a detailed guide on how to pimp a car and I have tried it in NIGERIA on cars that belong to my cool car lover friends. They understand the joy that comes in rolling around in a regular car that people would still stand and look at for seconds because it feels special.

Shall we begin? You pimp your car because you want to add value to it so it can be timeless, not because you want it to look like the latest model. Making your old car look like a newer model is a topic I would shine a light on some time soon.

I won't give a budget, just to avoid limitations to what you can achieve. Instead, I would touch on all the aspects of a regular car that can be pimped so you can work with your own budget by focusing on any aspect that makes you happy. And speaking regular cars, I mean everyday cars like Camry, Altima, Accord, Rio, Elantra etc.

1. Let's start from the exterior

1.1. Custom paint job/wrap job

The exterior is the best place to start, and the easiest thing to do is a custom paint job/wrap job. A good custom paint job makes your car stand out so well if it's done perfectly. Finishing like matte, satin and metallic with matching color combinations in the form of decals, stripes, and badges.


The first thing you want to refresh is the exterior

>>> Here are 6 easy tips to protect your car paint

1.2. Add aftermarket body kits

Attaching aftermarket body kits also works wonders for the exterior. Most regular cars have an aftermarket body kit manufacturer somewhere across the world. All you have to do is search online for the keyword "aftermarket body kits for *insert car model and year*". This is a hack nobody would tell you about but now you got it hehe.


Body kits can make the whole difference

The prices vary based on shipping to your location. For example, I once bought a body kit for a 2007 Camry and spent time two of the worth on shipping because I live in Nigeria but it was worth it anyway.

Bodykits come in various forms from modified front & rear bumpers to fender flares, side skirts, hood scrap, roof scoop, hood vents, bumper add ons, and a whole lot more. You just need to be sure of what would look good on your car. Look at the 2 Toyota Camrys below, why B looks better than A is JUST because of the bumper add-on.


Can you see the new bumper has changed the game?

>>> Here are Prices of wheels & rims in Nigeria & how to choose the best one in market

1.3. Get a cooler set of rims

Another underestimated pimping for cars on the exterior is RIMS!!!. Aftermarket alloy rims are the easiest things to find in a car store and it does wonders on the appearance of regular cars, especially when it is on a thin-walled tire.


Movements attract attentions; with better rims, you draw more eyes

1.4. Refresh the headlight and taillight

Buying the right aftermarket headlight/taillight comes out top also in the regular car pimping game. For almost every car, you would find full aftermarket headlights based on halo rings, LEDs, DRLs and Halogen technology.


An important thing to note when buying aftermarket headlights is choosing the one that's compatible with your car

The effect the headlight/taillight gives makes your car stand out. And I must say I prefer a complete headlight change to replace of bulbs just because some aftermarket bulbs are not compatible for all kinds of headlight. So after finding a way to install aftermarket lights, it might not look good on the car because they just don't fit.

>>> You should consider: Xenon headlight pros and cons: should you go for it?

1.5. Get new grilles and door hinges

The last two pimpings for regular car exterior that you can do are aftermarket grilles and modified door hinges.


The grille is more than the car's nostril; it adds beauty to custom cars as well

>>> Read also: 

Grilles in forms of mesh, plastic and some other materials make your car look timeless and if your car is a 2 door car, you should really consider scissors/butterfly door hinges just to show people how well your regular car can bloom.




You need to be very brave to swift to such doors

I think I am sounding like a vain guy, well, I am a lover of cars and this is a good vanity if you think about it. So, let us continue.

2. Make it real different with the interior

2.1. Crank the infotainment system up a notch

On the inside, you can start from the infotainment system to spice up the entertainment function of your car's interior space. A perfect example is the 2004 Toyota Corolla. This common car comes with a regular CD player but you can purchase the android infotainment system with Bluetooth & phone compatibility function. Most comes with a reverse camera.

You can decide to go further by installing an amplifier/woofer system if you are a lover of good sounding speakers. Your car gets to be a studio experience for passengers and they would never forget it. If you are an Uber/Taxify driver, your 5 stars would be regular on every trip.


With the display screen, you look little more high-end

2.2. Give the upholstery a whole new look and feel

Another mod is handmade upholstery for the car which is mostly available in quality leather material. A car with quality leather material as a seat is already a luxury car in the process if it is done well. I don't like the idea of pimping car seats with cheap seat covers that slack and disfigures the aesthetics of the car manufacturer after some certain time.

>>> Read more: Leather interior maintenance A-Z


A wiser choice for upholstery is buying handmade one rather than ODM products

Aftermarket trims in the form of vinyl/stickers are also an uncommon option for your car's interior.


Adding some highlights inside

If it's done well, it will be very hard to tell that the trim wasn't factory fitted and it comes in a wide range of material effects and colors. You can get carbon fiber, metallic, formica, steel, glass, wooden and so on. It is a bad option as opposed to wrapping it with vinyl. I see people paint interior trims and it peels after a very short while and it won't look good at all.

Video: DIY Car Upgrades That Are Next Level

Last words

All the car pimpings I highlighted in this guide would do nothing or very little to boost the performance of the car. They are just to make your regular car look really good and adorable. But guess what? I have some hacks to pimp a car and make it perform better and maybe faster depending on how hardworking you can be with the process because impossible is not real.

If you need help with pimping your car design you can send me emails at I would be so happy to reply and help you build a car of your "dream".

Join me on this same platform next time and let's have more fun.

>>> Visit our Tips & Advice for more articles like this.

>>> Other topics on Latest car news, Car Prices, and Reviews.




The number one social media platform for cars in Africa 234DRIVE is now on NAIJAUTO.COM

Crank - the head of content for 234DRIVE is a mechanic/car enthusiast/car vlogger that writes and creates relatable motoring experiences. Whenever he lays his hands on any car, he reviews them in depth. He calls himself the 'Educative Car Guy'.

See more