Axalta Coating Systems partners with three-time NASCAR Cup champion crew chief and 2018 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee, Ray Evernham to display the beloved 1958 Chevrolet Impala from the movie, American Graffiti at select automotive shows this summer.
The Impala is featured in Axalta’s exhibit space during the NHRA Hot Rod Reunion in Bowling Green, Kentucky on June 15-17, Goodguys Columbus in Columbus, Ohio on July 7-9, and NSRA Nationals in Louisville, Kentucky on August 3-6, 2017.
The 1958 Impala and the movie, American Graffiti, inspired Evernham’s passion for American car culture. After a long pursuit throughout his adult life, Evernham was finally able to acquire the car after the movie was produced in 1972.
At first, the car was visibly in need of restoration to protect it from further deteriorating. Evernham and his team set out to preserve the car and restore it to the exact specifications as it appeared in the film.
When it came time to restore the most visible part of the car, the finish, Evernham turned to Axalta. With the help of Axalta’s color experts and Cromax refinish products, the vehicle’s finish was completely restored to its original paint scheme, including the iconic hand-painted red striping.
“The paint was more than 40 years old and hadn’t been maintained. If it was left unprotected for much longer, the car would have just been bare metal,” said Evernham. “My long-standing relationship with Axalta allowed me to call on the industry’s best paint experts to evaluate the car, get recommendations and subsequently, restore a vehicle that was originally coated in obsolete lacquer material. Axalta’s color match ability played a primary role in making the car look just as it did in the movie.”