ONE OF THE MOST EXCITING things about the last 20 years in this industry is watching all the growth that has taken place with builders and manufacturers alike. Many of the top parts manufacturers started as simple backyard fabricators who found an open market and jumped in the deep end with both feet. They have perfected their product lines and assembled a group of professionals to create a winning combination. After years of learning, trying, failing and persevering, the best of the best rose to the top and now enjoy a career in the field they love.
In this story, we focus on Jim Ries and his impressive company known as Classic Performance Products, a.k.a. CPP. Jim opened his business in December 1991 and has not looked back since. He grew up watching his dad, Jack “JR” Ries, run a successful classic truck parts business in the ’60s and ’70s, but he wasn’t quite ready to open shop until he had a few real-world experiences. Ries got in on the action when the monster truck craze hit Southern California, and he found himself building and racing several of these massive vehicles for Horsepower Promotions. This experience gave him valuable knowledge on the inner workings of steering, brakes and suspension truck parts.
The transition from monster trucks to classic trucks happened with the help of Seth Doulton at Golden State Pickup Parts. After working for Seth for many years and feeling unsatisfied simply selling parts, Ries set out to redefine the classic truck steering, brakes and suspension industry with better quality parts at a much more budget friendly cost. Engine and transmission crossmembers kicked off Jim’s early success as his first manufactured products before CPP went on to design a brake booster kits, full blown suspension kits and bolt-on disc brake kits for classic C10 trucks. Are you ready to go behind the scenes of this impressive American-built company? Let’s go!