There are a few MTV shows I watched with hypnotic fascination as a 15-year-old: Room Raiders was one, as was MTV Cribs and Punk’d. Hell, I watched Rob and Big all through college because those dudes rule. But nothing was as great as Pimp My Ride, where MTV would trick out seemingly BLAH lemon cars into dream whips with the most ridiculous accessories imaginable, like an espresso machine in the center console or a Toyota Corolla with more flatscreen TVs than a Dave and Busters.
Today, however, we learn that the show was a big fat lie. The Huffington Post caught up with three of the kids who got their cars pimped for the show. HuffPo notes that their experience on the show was mostly positive, but most of Pimp My Ride was made-for-TV smoke and mirrors.
Sometimes things were taken out of the cars after filming ended because they were just for show. Via:
In Justin Dearinger’s Reddit AMA, he claimed that “they actually take out a lot of the stuff that they showed on TV,” such as in his case, a “pop-up” champagne contraption and a “drive-in theater.” Further explaining to HuffPost, Dearinger said that they removed the champagne part because the show didn’t want to condone drinking and driving. The theater was removed for not being street safe.
According to Larry Hochberg, however, the removals were done with a specific purpose in mind. “Sometimes we did things for safety reasons that the kids on show interpreted as us ‘taking away’ some items,” he said. He gave an example where 24-inch spinner rims on a 1977 Cutlass would look amazing for television, but “out of abundance of caution” they’d end up switching the spinners to “beautiful 20s for daily driving.”
That said, it seems as if things were occasionally put into cars with no intention of them ever working in real life. For example, a robotic arm installed into Seth Martino’s car was, as he put it, actually solely “controlled by commands that were entered into a laptop by the spiky haired guy off screen.” In reality, it “was just a robotic arm with a bunch of wires hanging out of it.”
Probably wise. How the hell could you drive and work a robotic arm inside your car in the first place?
And sometimes those fancy accessories plain old didn’t work:
As Seth Martino recalled, some things that didn’t work on the car included the LED lights that were put in the seats. ‘They would get really hot if left on so I couldn’t drive with them on,’ Martino said. ‘They took the gull-wing doors off because the pistons used to lift them kept them from putting seat belts in the back, which was highly dangerous.’ A cotton candy machine they installed was fit into the trunk without leaving enough room for the dome top to keep the cotton candy strands ‘from flying all over the place.'”
Go figure… A cotton candy machine in your trunk doesn’t work?! NO SHIT, DUDE. YOU DIDN’T NEED A COTTON CANDY MACHINE IN YOUR TRUNK IN THE FIRST PLACE.
Oh yeah, and one car apparently burst into flames and exploded. I’m sure car insurance carries loved it when they heard one of their customers had a vehicle featured on the show:
Still, though, I miss you, Pimp My Ride. Warts and all, you were a wonderful part of every 20-something Bro’s teenage years and come from an era when you could say “pimp” as a verb on TV without it divulging into some B.S. faux-controversy on the political correctness of the term.
Pimp My Ride 4 lyfe. Let’s start the show…