Family Inspiration: Nadine Crocker's 1968 Chevelle

Photography: Malachi Banales

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Nadine Crocker, I am an actress and model living in Los Angeles CA. I was born in Nashville Tennessee, grew up in Fresno CA and moved to Los Angeles on my own at the young age of 17. I've been here ever since pursuing my dreams. Look out for several films I had the pleasure of being a part of coming out this year, one of which is the remake of Cabin Fever executive produced by Eli Roth and directed by Travis Zariwny, it will be a killer film!

So, tell us about this new purchase of yours? What is it?

The car featured is my girl, she's a 1968 Chevelle and I'm in love.

Have you been looking for one for a while? Why the Chevelle in particular?

I had been looking for several years for the perfect Chevelle that was far enough along to save on some repairs, but a good enough fixer-upper to get her at a steal so a starving artist such as myself could have the money to build her up over the years. Then the right one came along which is the beauty I have now. A close family friend knew we were looking and called my dad to snatch her up. She was a great runner driver already but a lot of things needed to be replaced and rebuilt for her to run the way we wanted her to.

What drew you to this exact car?

I'm not sure why I've always loved Chevelles. I have always been a fan of muscle cars compared to most of the classic cars I grew up around. My dad's specialty is American made 1948-1953 chevy pick ups, 1949-1951 Mercury Led sleds and quite a few coupes. But the Chargers, Camaros and Mustangs are what stood out to me and I've always loved them. Something about the Chevelle drew me to it, I knew that was the car I needed. But it did definitely help that my dad built several Chevelles over the years and I got to see many of them first hand over the years go through their transformations. So I think it was just that I loved what I was around and seeing so many of these beautiful cars and always begging my dad to let me keep one got me hooked.

Give us a few specs and some history of the car.

She is a 1968 Chevrolet Chevelle. She has a 327 motor which has been completely rebuilt. I know many of you are wondering if I rebuilt everything why I went with a 327 and the answer is... because I don't need the power of a big block. If I have it I use it, and I have enough speeding tickets as it is.

What do you find intriguing about American car culture?

My father builds and restores classic cars from the ground up. He builds some of the most beautiful cars I have ever seen, so I've grown up around these cars since I was a child. I remember being driven to school in a 1937 two door sedan and a blue 1933 Ford coupe as a young girl and just feeling like a bad ass as everyone watched these cars go by. I've been hooked ever since. But also I am my father's daughter and his passions are often mine so I think I have a real soft spot for the classics because it's what my father loves and what he loves to do. I find it really hard to let go of all the beautiful cars he builds as he's already on to the next adventure. I sat and dwelled on his last. He really builds some beautiful cars and that's why I wanted one built for me by him for so long. Now I have a piece of him and something he created forever.

Do you have plans to modify the Chevelle, or just drive it?

She is still far from done as I'm sure most people with classic cars know, your work is never done. Little things go wrong here and there especially at the rate at which I drive her. Most people have them as a Sunday car, I try and make her an everyday car because I love driving her so much. But she is still far from where I would love her to be. I have so many things I would love to do. I Would love to redo the interior, I would love to get the air conditioning unit functioning again so I don't melt into a puddle driving her down here in Los Angeles, I basically would just love to get her to a beautiful restored condition that looks like one of my father's works of art. I plan to touch everything on this car to make her perfect and to put mine and my father's Crocker touch on every part of the car.

This article fiorst appeared in Fuel Magazine issue 20.

Follow Nadine: @nadinecrocker.

Follow Malachi: @malachibanales.