Sunday, August 28, 2011

The short answer is YES!

I seem to get a lot of emails these days asking me if I'm still available to do renderings for individuals. I may be a bit low-key these days due to all of the other things going on (opening our shop, building SEMA projects, doing art for Hot Wheels) but the short answer is YES! I am absolutely available to help you with your project renderings. Whether it's a simple rendering or a very involved design project, I am happy to be a part of it! As always, I'm available via email at or over the phone at 760.481.5542.

When emailing me about a rendering you're looking to have done, be sure to include a little info about your car, what your goals are, and your contact info so we can stay in touch!

I look forward to being a part of your projects!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Pit Boss featured on the cover of Diesel World!

Hey folks! I just thought I would post up and let everyone know that The Pit Boss was featured in Diesel World magazine this month with great photos and an excellent write-up by Steve Temple! Editor Kevin Wilson was also kind enough to feature the truck on the magazine's cover. Here's a preview, but I should be posting up the full article once the magazine has had its run. Go out and pick up a copy today!

Monday, May 2, 2011

New Renderings in the Gallery

Here's a quick taste of what's new in the gallery! Be sure to check it out for these and many other new additions!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

...The Meaning of Haste....

Well, that didn't take long. For those of you tech-savvy folks out there (and anyone under the age of 40), you can now view Cars by Kris on your mobile device! It's as simple as going to your phone's web browser and visiting The device will do the rest and take you to our new mobile site. In the interest of getting you straight to the good stuff, we decided to keep it simple. So be sure to visit the mobile site's awesome gallery page to see the latest artwork or check out the news/media page for any other updates!

A New Look for Cars by Kris

If this isn't your first time visiting Cars by Kris you may notice that things have changed a bit around here. Our goal was to bring everyone a site that was up to date and easy to view on any computer. Hopefully everyone digs the new look and the updated GALLERY. We've also updated the ABOUT page and added many more of our friends, sponsors, and project contributors to our LINKS page!

For people trying to view this site on a mobile device, hang tight, we hope to have a mobile site up and running soon!


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

What Cars by Kris has been up to lately.

I may have said that 2010 was going to be BIG earlier this year when we started our truck project, but apparently I had no idea just how big. In early 2010 I was contacted by Mattel as they had seen some of my work and were interested in working with me on a project. After an enjoyable sit-down with a few of the folks over there I came to find out that they were getting ready to revamp the "look" of their Hot Wheels packaging for 2011 and wanted me to be a part of that revamp. Needless to say it was an incredible honor to be picked by Mattel to be a part of one of their biggest product lines.

I've been pretty busy over the past year having worked on a TON of cars and have had the pleasure of working with some truly great people at Mattel. I've held off on posting about this as I've been waiting for some of the cars I worked on to come out. Now that a handful of them have hit the shelves, I'm excited to share some of the work I've done so far!

Here is just a taste:

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A million thanks...

I hope to keep this from sounding too "Award Show Speech"ish so bear with me.

I want to express a very sincere and heartfelt thank you to the following people who helped personally or contributed in any way. I hope I remember all those involved and will do my best not to forget anyone. On the bright side, there won't be an orchestra playing me off once I start rambling. So here we go:

First and foremost, I'd like to thank those closest to me. The friends and family that not only helped finish this truck, but also put up with me through the most trying of times. If they stuck around through this build, they must be special.
These thanks go out to:

My dad, Tim Horton and my mom Beate, who helped in more ways than I can put into words.

My amazing girlfriend Jade, who was (to use a horrible cliche) my rock throughout this build. She kept me going and whenever things got too stressful or overwhelming, she would take my hand and tell me everything was going to work out.

Our great friend and part-time reality-check person, Jay DeGrado, who put in countless late nights after working a day job and raising a family to make sure this truck was finished.

Jason and Sue Russell and the guys at Airhead Kustoms, who stuck it out and got all 22 feet of this truck painted for us. They stayed late many nights give the truck its unique exterior.

Ryan Franklin at Painted Rhino who not only hand-crafted the truck's body kit, but came by for some crazy last-minute work that only he and his guys could knock out under such intense deadlines. I've taken to calling on Ryan in near, if not full-on, panic from time to time and he's always been there for us. The guy is a class act.

Our late-night, 11th hour friends who stuck out the final push with us, Tommy Roberts, "Chino" Avila, Nick Zajkowski and Robbie Ellis, who can tape headlights like nobody's business.

Also a big thank you to Wayne Reed, KC Horvath, and the guys at Hamner Towing for coming at all hours to transport our beast of a truck.

Of course the truck wouldn't have be been nearly as cool without many of the great products that are featured on it. We had the opportunity to work with some great companies on this build and would very much like to thank them (in no particular order):

American Force Wheels - For supplying the amazing rolling stock for our truck and ensuring people will always stuff their heads in the rear wheels and ask "how deep are these???"

Falken Tire - For their excellent tires, both on the truck and on the wheels in the bed.

BASF Refinish - For the paint and supplies needed to give this truck a beautiful finish.

DJM Suspension - For giving the truck the low-slung stance we were hoping for with their excellent suspension components.

Pecca Leathers - For their beautiful work on our seats and making sure our backsides are riding in comfort and style.

Rockford Fosgate - For making sure our ear drums are in mortal peril.

BedRug - For laying the foundation of our truck's showpiece bed.

Snow Performance - For the boost juice and the smiles that go with it.

QuietRide Solutions - For keeping the good sounds in and the bad sounds out.

Billet Badges - Steve makes some true automotive jewelry and helps feed my inner narcissist by helping to put my logo on the truck in style.

Hydromech/CMAI Industries - For creating an excellent hydraulic lift system for our bed and for being super helpful along the way.

AFE Power - For being the first company to jump onboard and for making sure the truck breathes in only the good stuff.

Nitrous Express - For their awesome Diesel Nitrous kit and accessories which always draw a crowd.

Street Scene Equipment - One of the coolest companies I've had the pleasure of working with since I got into the game, they supplied the huge rear fenders and roll pan for the truck.

Hellwig Products - For supplying big beefy sway bars to help keep the truck from getting too out of hand.

NSV Auto - For sending an 11th hour care package from half way around the world to help light up the front of our truck.

Dashboard Devices - For supplying and installing their ENV100 in-dash computer system.

Undercover - For supplying us with awesome SwingCase Toolboxes and for being fun to chat about car design with.

Gaylord's Lids - For supplying a gigantic bed lid to cap our truck off with.

Firestone - For their RideRite helper bag kit to ensure a comfortable ride even with a ton of stuff in the bed.

DPE Wheels - For the beautiful wheels on display in the truck's bed.

TireGate/Wilschur Manufacturing - For...well, a bunch of things really. They engineered the bed-mounted tire cage, made beautiful wheel knock-off caps, built the floor of the bed, and cut the amazing exhaust tips featured on the truck. These guys can do it all and were a tremendous help. Not to mention they put up with all of my last-minute needs. Paul, Vishal, Derek, Steve, and everyone else there were fantastic to work with.

And last, but far from least, Sherry, Melvin, and everyone who had a hand in SEMA at Ford Motor Company. You guys are awesome and have made this project and our time at the SEMA Show some of the most memorable and enjoyable things I've ever experienced.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Cars by Kris "Pit Boss" Super Duty wins Ford's Design Award

Blogging when you're speechless is tricky, but here goes nothin'.
This morning we were presented with the great honor of accepting a Ford Design Award for our truck, The Pit Boss. We can't say much more than that we're completely blown away and would like to thank everyone involved in this project. We couldn't have done it without the support of some very talented and very hard-working individuals. We'll post a follow-up to this once the room stops spinning!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Project "Pit Boss" debuts at SEMA 2010

After an absolutely intense build, we're extremely proud to say "we made it." There should be some exclamation marks after that statement, but frankly, we're too exhausted. A raincheck is in order perhaps...

This build has been a true learning experience...a trial by fire even...a perilous journey filled with stress, emotion, sweat, blood, tears...and so on. But the end result was worth every hardship we faced and we're extremely proud with what we've accomplished. The early feedback here at the show has been overwhelmingly positive and we couldn't be happier. We set out to build a unique truck that would appeal to all types of enthusiasts and so far we think we've done a good job of it. We'll see what the week brings, but for now I think a bit of R&R is due.

BUT! Not without some pics first. More soon. :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Progress pics of the Cars by Kris "Pit Boss" project

Hey folks!

Just checking in to post some progress pics and info of our Super Duty project, dubbed "The Pit Boss"! While we'll be posting pics and updates of the truck here, be sure to check out for full coverage of the project!

Here are some pics of the truck getting ready for teardown. While it looks like not much has been done at this point, the truck has already spent several weeks having a custom body kit fitted to it. It has also been lowered using a slightly modified DJM Suspension drop kit which consists of a set of their "DreamBeams" up front and a flip kit for the rear, which relocates the leaf springs to under the rear axle. This kit, paired with DJM's CalMax shocks, rides amazingly smooth all while dropping the truck 3 inches in the front and 5 inches in the rear.

And a few hours later...
A preview of some of the audio equipment going into The Pit Boss, courtesy of Rockford Fosgate!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Look what just showed up on our doorstep...

We received a very special delivery today, but definitely not the kind a stork drops off...

Overall, this 2011 F-350 Super Duty is very impressive. From the factory it has a beautiful Tuxedo Black paint job (which we'll be changing), plush leather seats (which we're going to reupholster), chrome wheels and many other chrome accents (which we're going to be painting), and ultra-quiet exhaust (which we'll be making much, much louder). So it must be official, our 2010 SEMA Project has arrived!

Many thanks to the good folks at Ford Motor Company for supplying us with such a beautiful, if somewhat gargantuan, blank canvas. Stay tuned, things are about to get interesting!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Cars by Kris to build 2011 Super Duty for SEMA 2010

What better way to say "This year is gonna be BIG" than by building a 6-wheeled, 22-foot long diesel truck?


Well that was the plan when Kris decided he would take a brief step away from sporty muscle cars and Euros to try is hand at designing and building a Ford F-350 Super Duty that he "would drive." Kris wanted to step out of his comfort zone a bit but still wanted to work with a company and a product he knew. The Super Duty was also newly redesigned for the 2011 model year and was a canvas ripe for customization. Despite its fame as a workhorse, Kris wanted to design a truck that also looked good, had a plush, high-end feel, and performed like a hot rod (well, as much as a 8,000+ pound truck could).

More info and pictures will be coming soon, so check back for updates!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Cars by Kris Mustang gets a new look for SEMA 2009

In the spirit of not leaving well-enough alone, Kris and company completely redesigned the company's mainstay Mustang with the 2009 SEMA Show in their sights. This redesign was born of an unfortunate mishap at a small town car show in April where an unwitting contestant in a burnout contest shot a heap of hot chunks of rubber and gravel right at Kris's Mustang. This resulted in the front 2/3 of the car's paint being completely decimated and left Kris pretty sour on burnout contests.

Though as they say, "Everything happens for a reason" and well, we tried to roll with that...

Kris met with Jason Russell at Airhead Kustoms to discuss what direction to take with the car and after some tilted heads and some squinting - and a few hours at the computer working on a rendering of the car, of course - a new look for the Mustang was created. Being somewhat early in the year, the word SEMA was only being tossed about as a "wouldn't it be fun" sort of thought, but once the beautiful paint job was finished and sunlight hit the car once more, we decided that there was no way we couldn't debut the car at the SEMA Show.

After the paint was finished, Kris decided to strip the interior and swap out the light tan for black with some custom touches. Corbeau supplied a set of their A4 reclining race seats which were refinished by James Mendoza at A&C, an incredibly talented guy who was quick to lend his creative talents to the project. James also refinished the rear seats to match the fronts and covered the headliner, dash, and pillars in black suede, going so far as to include the updated flame pattern in the car's headliner. To quiet down road noise and help with insulation, QuietRide Solutions supplied an excellent sound deadening kit. Kris added a TCI ratchet shifter, Auto Meter custom gauges, Scott Drake billet pedals, and a Corbeau harness bar as well.

Because restyling the car visually wasn't enough of a task, Kris thought it would be "fun" to drop in a rebuilt and forged 4.6L V8 with an Edelbrock supercharger system as well. He claimed that he needed to pull the motor to paint the engine bay, but is that ever really the case? No, the answer is no. Kris had his good friend Daniel Capps take on the task of rebuilding the motor and installing the new blower kit.

Other touches were added in the weeks leading up to the SEMA Show, including new 3-piece "Traviata" wheels from the folks at Petrol, a set of Toyo TR1 tires, Eibach lowering springs and sway bars, custom center exhaust from Street Scene, a custom painted radiator cover from BangaStang, and a set of billet hardware and under-hood goodies from Scott Drake.

The Mustang enjoyed great feedback and a wonderful spot at the SEMA Show, parked right in front of one of the show's main entrances. Kris claims he's done with the car this time around and hopes to enjoy it from here on out, but then a project car ever really finished?

Check out the Mustang Project page to see more pictures of the updated Mustang project and some of the work that went into it!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Project: RATTLER

Project: RATTLER
Jeff Curtis Jr. came to me way back in 2004 with this project. I had only been in the design business for about a year, but it was already a far cry from the projects I had done. Amidst the Camaros and Mustangs, here was this sport truck...
Sport truck is really kind of an understatement though, as Jeff has BIG plans for his ride. Some of the mods planned for this truck are a 6.7 litre stroker motor, SRT10 Viper-style wheels, big brakes, and a good helping of carbon fiber. In keeping with the snake theme, Jeff dubbed this truck "Rattler" and plans to feature some ghosted snakeskin graphics on the rear fenders. Also making their way onto the truck are a Viper-styled rear roll pan with center-exit exhaust and a rear spoiler to help with traction.
You can see this rendering and a great write-up by Mike Finnegan in Sport Truck Magazine this month, go pick it up!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Keepin' Busy!

Wow, it's been a while since I posted an update! I thought I would put up some of my latest work here and show you all what I have been up to since September. It's just a taste of some of the cool projects that I've been working on. Keep checking back as I should be posting more real soon!


JME Enterprises "BOSS 0770" Mustang

Jeff Bliss's Custom Firebird Convertible

Allen Brown's Pro-Touring 1970 Nova SS

Rod Keeling's Pro-Touring 1967 Camaro

Sunday, September 7, 2008

New cars in the Gallery!

There are a few new cars up in the Gallery! Go check them out and remember, if you've got a project that you're working on and would like to have some custom 3D renderings done, Cars by Kris is ready to help! Renderings are not only a great way to visualize your project long before it's ever completed, but they help to promote your build, gain sponsorships, and keep you on-track and motivated! We can be contacted at:

Phone: 760.481.5542
Skype: carsbykris

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Extreme Sports meets Insane Horsepower

Professional skaters Rob Dyrdek and Josh Kalis are known for being extreme athletes, but they also happen to be gearheads. Cars by Kris is fortunate enough to have been part of both their own personal hot rod projects. Both cars are 1969 Camaros built by All Speed Performance and match each skater's own personal style.

Rob's Rogue Status-themed Camaro is "murdered out" with low-gloss black paint and bright red stripes featuring the Rogue Status "gun show" print. The car sports an ATI ProCharged 383 small block, Air Ride suspension, Wilwood Brakes, and many other cool mods.

Josh Kalis' DC Shoes Camaro is currently under construction and will not only be a daily-driven turbocharged monster, but it will also be a promotional tool for DC Shoes and Josh himself. It will feature a custom 2-tone paint scheme with DC graphics, IForged wheels, custom suspension, and all the goodies you'd expect to see in one of All Speed's cars. If you want more info on either one of these two cars, check out!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Cars by Kris 2005 Mustang takes 1st Place at 1st Annual Modern Muscle Mayhem show.

On Saturday, August 9th, the Cars by Kris 2005 Mustang GT took "Baddest S197 Mustang" at the first ever Modern Muscle Mayhem car show. This show was huge and featured a lot of very cool cars. It took place the same night as Hot Import Nights, its sister show, and made for one huge event for gearheads of all kinds. The 2005+ Mustang class was one of the largest groups at the show and there was stiff competition. Our Mustang was very well-received and we couldn't be happier about earning top honor in our class! To see some pics of the Cars by Kris Mustang, check out our Projects page!

On a related sidenote, one of the key features of this show was the "Ride Revamp" contest, where one lucky person was chosen by the people to have his car completely customized. We're happy to announce that Cars by Kris will be a major sponsor on the vehicle, in charge of pre-visualization and styling. Other sponsors include STILLEN, Sinergy Motorsports, SW Customs, DPE wheels, Killer Glass, TruFiber, and many other great companies. The car should be a real head-turner once it's finished. Plans are to debut the car at the 2008 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Nov. 4-7.

E46 M3 Lighting Test

I've been working on a "look" for a BMW E46 M3 lately and thought I'd render it in a realistic setting as opposed to the normal studio environment. I tried to recreate golden hour with my lighting and added a bit of artificial light on the pillars and overhead. I spent about 5 days modeling the scene and lighting the shots. I'll be posting up animations of this scene soon!

Friday, August 29, 2008

The latest and greatest...


I'll be using this blog to post my latest renderings. My gallery will still be up, but in the interest of keeping this site up to date with my latest works I thought a blog would be a pretty good idea! To see a larger version of the pictures I post, just click on them and you'll see the full-sized images in a new window.

Thanks for dropping by!

Kris Horton
Cars by Kris