Car, truck culture fuels passions, interests

By collecting, working on or driving automotives, many are finding an outlet to express their passion for their vehicles.


Michael Rebuck

Under the hood…Working on a BMW in the North Montco Technical Career Center automotive shop, sophomores Dane Soulliard (left) and Keiran Maldonado display their precision and focus.

For years people have felt strong connections to cars and other automotives, often because of the creative options and freedom vehicles give.
Today, many express their passion by collecting cars, working on them or simply driving them around. Doing so often lands the person under the umbrella term car culture. Many are so passionate about their cars that others find it to be an obsession or even overbearing to their personality.
According to, a website run by Oxford University, car and truck culture is “a society or way of life characterized by excessive use of or reliance on motor vehicles.”
Sophomore Brooke Augustine finds some cars to be “cool” and thinks there’s nothing wrong with having an interest in cars, just as long as it’s not an “aggressive passion.”
“I think specifically car guys are alright unless they make it their entire personality, then it gets obsessive and almost makes their personality repetitive,” Augustine said. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with working on cars or collecting them or anything.”
North Montco Technical Career Center provides students an opportunity to learn and practice trades they’re passionate about and interested in pursuing in the future.
An offered course at North Montco is automotive, which alumni Johnathan Stull teaches.
For Stull his interest in cars isn’t so much the car specifically, but rather the work put into it.
“I just like mechanical things. I didn’t particularly like a certain make or model,” Stull said. “I just really enjoy seeing new things, how they work, taking them apart, putting them back together and all things similar to that.”
Stull’s interest in working on cars started “by chance” when he got a job at a Ford dealership.
He attended North Montco when he was in high school and practiced carpentry.
When he gained interest in automotive work, he decided to return to the tech school once he was knowledgeable enough to instruct teens with similar interests to himself.
“I do think the hyper fixation on cars and trucks can be cool, it’s really awesome that people are passionate about it,” Stull said.
North Montco student Michael Rebuck spends half of every school day working under Stull’s instruction. Rebuck has an interest in automotive that he says partly comes from “playing with Hotwheels” and “seeing cool cars go by” at a young age.
“I find cars interesting because of all the possibilities,” Rebuck said. “They can have different bodies, speeds, makes and models as well as providing the freedom to transport you practically anywhere your heart desires, I mean who doesn’t love the idea of cars?”
North Montco student Dane Soulliard, also attending for automotives, sees eye to eye with Rebuck.
“Cars are almost like an art, building the body, changing colors and adding mods are just like painting or drawing,” Soulliard said. “Cars are sick. They can take you just about anywhere and help you discover new things.”
Harleysville resident Katie Townsend finds cars to be both fascinating and vital in people’s day-to-day lives.
Not only are they important to her, but she also enjoys the idea of luxury cars like many people do. However, she wouldn’t categorize herself as a part of “car culture.”
“I do love and appreciate my car simply for getting me from point A to point B. I find that to be the most important aspect of a car,” Townsend said. “I just generally like the way some cars look but I’m not extreme by any means.”
Townsend said she “draws a line” when the relationship between the car and owner becomes too passionate. “I do think some people take it too far sometimes and I actually heard a story about a guy marrying his vehicle. There was a ceremony and all. He even said he might not survive without his car,” Townsend said.