Sabra Johnson - Celebrity SEMA Car Builder & Author
30+ Years In The Industry
Sabra Johnson, the owner of City Classic Cars, has been in the industry for nearly 30+ years first as a performance enthusiast, consumer, entrepreneur and car builder. Sabra's first modification was at age 16, when he and friends equipped his boring Volkswagen Rabbit with custom performance exhaust, an over the top sound system featuring double 15 inch subs, Limo "Black" tinted windows, custom seat covers, GTI performance package, and sirocco GT rims... It was not much on a HS dishwasher's salary, but it planted the seed of modification and a thirst for performance followed by a Big Block Ford he purchased for $350 with a big dent in the side.
Sabra Johnson's passion for classic cars runs deep. It started with the stories his grandmother would share on her antebellum style porch in the '70s and early 80's- those were stories full of fun, innocence and cool cars. The deeper story is that Sabra's father (Harrison) died when he was 2 years of age. As a child, Sabra's simmering memories of his father were fanned through the stories Grandma Anna told… and many times a cool car was featured!
" I remember when you and your Daddy were riding to the pumpkin center… when he went down the back road you said Daddy stick! (which meant shift gears and go faster)... " Oh, the stories Miss Anna painted to her grandson about father and son enjoying time together in the cars of the '60s and early '70s. Each day and every project at City Classic cars is a walk down memory lane for Sabra Johnson just like those stories on grandma’s porch.
The performance passion was stirred when his uncles and older cousins would line-up on the main street in their modified cars of the '50s & '60s for all to see and race for bragging rights. Once driver license was acquired, Sabra was a constant assistant to Mr. Porsche himself, Adam Samuels of Samuel Auto Brokers. Sabra was a constant shadow watching his older cousin purchase Porsche's, BMW and Mercedes Benz, repair foreign exotics in his shop with factory parts and manage the banking process. Sabra was not only able to see Ferraris, Porsche, Lambo's, Vettes and many others up close, but was often required to drive one of the exotics back in record-breaking time.
"Our deal was he would pay for the ticket, so we would normally exceed speeds of 80 miles an hour in porches headed back to the Performance Shop. At the time, it was simply fun to drive these german exotics, and boring being in the shop all day or at the bank, but now I understand God was developing me for today's assignment... My grandma and uncles have me in love with the American Classics while my cousin showed me the world of exotics, so I truly am all makes and models "- Sabra Johnson
When Sabra is asked his favorite car he often says "a toss-up between a 1989 Porsche 928S4 and a modified 1957 Chevrolet Belair with 383 Stroker" which speaks to his rich automotive upbringing. Sabra is passionate about all makes and models henceforth, the motto of his car building philosophy at City Classic Cars. From concept and design to build and final assembly, Sabra Johnson has proven he can complete all phases of the build process on all makes and models. Today, City Classic Cars is a successful one-stop complete custom shop where rusty clunkers turn into show winning works of automotive artistry. What once was an idea in the heart of Sabra Johnson has become a talented one-stop shop commonly known simply as “The Restomod Factory”. The Restomod Factory (a term coined by his wife Matilda Johnson) is a motto that embraces new horizons and undiscovered possibilities in mind, body, spirit and in every build at City Classic Cars.
Sabra Johnson lends his presence, his voice and his finances to youth initiatives that positively impact students. Sabra is an active Good Guys Rod & Custom member, and an active Sema member that represents his company by lending a minority voice and perspective to the ARMO and HRIA committees respectively…. and is also a member of the SEMA PAC and supports its bi-annual Washington D.C. Rally to support SEMA's efforts in protecting the backbone of the Automotive Industry as a whole. This car builder has come a long way from the days of customizing his Volkswagen Rabbit and tuning his old '70 Ford Big Block (I could never get those rear drums brakes to work right)
Sabra’s passions away from City Classic Cars involve witnessing the gospel, sharing what he terms his "Humpty Dumpty" story with at-risk youth and cruising the back-roads in one of his many classics or modern performance vehicles but his greatest passion is spending time with his family. Sabra is happily married to Matilda Johnson and the proud father of Julia (12 yrs) and Anna (5 yrs)... and their two dogs (Maxie and Gator).
For Media Appearances or Interviews, Sabra is reached through his Agent Attorney Anton Pal Montano, JD 866-316-2889 | 6575 West Loop South, Suite 500, Bellaire, Texas 77401