Ever seen a car on the road that is ridiculously low and has its wheels popping out? If so, then I want to tell you that the owner has purposely done that to his car. Yes, you can question him and ask though if he has gone mad. But according to me, he is the bravest man alive. Because ladies and gentlemen that man right there has stanced his car.
Your confused brain can make you question what camber is. So the technical answer would be the following. Camber angle is the angle made by the wheels of a vehicle. More specifically, it is the angle of the vertical axis of the wheels. Negative camber is used in performance vehicles as they provide more grip in high-speed corners, but some take it further for aesthetic purposes. This trend originated in Japan and now has spread around the world being known as stance culture. However, to me, Camber is an art that simply combines the definition of style and performance together.
“Stance culture isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, because you need to have a heart that is stronger than Bruce Lee in order to embrace everything it has to offer.”
Now that the boring stuff has been covered, let’s focus on the two types of camber that exist. Firstly you have the widely used negative camber which is when the top of a car’s wheel is pointed in towards the centre of the car. If I had to give an example, let’s focus on Mr Sennat Zaman’s Mitsubishi EX Lancer. This type of camber not only makes your ordinary car look aggressive and unique but does so much more. When your front wheels have a minimum amount of negative camber it helps the car in making turns around corners more smoothly because the wheels and tires are positioned better for that purpose. If your tires and wheels were to be perfectly aligned with the vertical axis and have no camber angle at all, then cornering would cause the contact patches of the front tires to lift from the ground. This is why high-performance vehicles which corner frequently like rally cars have negative camber, as it enables the driver to attack the corners more aggressively without having to think about saying goodbye to their family. However, most of the negative camber that we come across in meets are usually for show rather than performance.
The second type of camber is known as positive camber. It means the top of the wheel is inclining towards the outside and away from the centre of the chassis. Back in the days, old race cars used to have a positive camber as they didn’t have power steering. The camber, as a result, made the steering “lighter” which made controlling the car much simpler. But nowadays, this type of camber is very rare as modern suspension technology has made the need for positive camber redundant. So if you want your car to look good, then sticking to negative camber is the way to go.
“For looking good you will have to bear the consequences.”
Once your vehicle is cambered, you will be a victim of aggressive tire wear as your wheels sit unevenly. Negative camber is usually paired with very low ride height, thus driving on bad roads would be beyond uncomfortable. But the most unique issue for cambered cars would be Tramlining. This happens when your car starts following the cracks on a road like a donkey being shown a carrot. However, this isn’t where it ends. For Mr Sennat Zaman, he had his lip extensions break off, skirts fall off, and once he went over a huge bump that left a hole in his gearbox. He even had his airbags blow on him. So, the list of struggles that take place after you stance your car is literally endless. Yet people with strong hearts camber their car as all of these issues are outweighed by the fact that your car is going to look amazing once stanced appropriately and not excessively.
Thus it brings me to my final point of maintaining your limits. There are no restrictions on how much you want your tires to stick out. If it’s for functional use, maintaining a negative three-degree camber is safe. If you are aiming for more of the “slanty boy” or ”aesthetic” look then you can go up to figures like negative thirty to negative forty degrees and if it’s still not enough for you, then just blow your socks off since you are your own boss. However, always remember that at the end of the day you are the only one who is responsible for your own safety. Stance culture is not a choice for the average person. It requires a large amount of conviction and loyalty to this way of life because there are certainly a lot of hurdles to overcome especially in Bangladeshi roads. Whether it is right for you or not can only be answered by you, because this isn’t your average mod, this is a lifestyle