A-Mode is the focused, aggressive, and dynamic side of Von you see wreaking havoc on opposing teams every Sunday. This side of him is responsible for his many near-superhuman feats on the football field, from leading the NCAA in sacks at Texas A&M to being a multiple-time NFL Pro-Bowl veteran. Fueled by his A-Mode side, Von became the 2nd overall pick in the 2011 draft, where legendary quarterback and Broncos executive vice-president John Elway declared him a once-in-a-decade talent.
B-Mode is the chill, relaxed, funny side of Von that his friends and family spend time with off the field. Teammates see this side of Von when he’s cracking jokes and lightening the mood in the training room. Reporters get a glimpse of B-Mode whenever he dons a particularly furry hat for some of his post-game interviews. The A and B Modes of Von’s personality are also reflected in his two favorite cars in his collection: his murdered-out, widebody 2011 Chevrolet Camaro SS and his futuristic, two-toned metallic grey 2015 BMW i8.
“When I came out for the draft in 2011,” Von recalls, “the Transformers movie was out, and the Camaro was the hottest thing. But I wanted mine to be different, and that’s why I took the route that I did. The vision that I had when I started customizing it was The Batmobile.” With its aggressive stance and menacing looks, the Camaro looks like it drove right out of the pages of the DC superhero’s comic book. Sharp, angular bat-symbols adorn the car in multiple areas – from the front grill to the glove compartment and even on the stitching on the headrests of both front seats expertly done by California Upholstery.
To make his Camaro stand out even more from the crowd, Von centered his build around the TS Designs widebody kit which envelopes a set of gigantic 24” satin black Forgiatos GTR wheels on Pirelli P Zero Nero tires. “I think I can fit my whole family inside those back wheels,” Von jokes. It was then lowered via Eibach’s Pro-Street Coil-Over kit and also fitted with their front and rear sway bars. Four 12” JL Audio speakers powered by a 4,000W amp in a custom enclosure fabricated at the DUB Garage replace the rear seats and help put Von in A-Mode on the way to games, with the right mood music, and later help him relax and go back into B-Mode afterwards. Von’s attention to detail extends to the blue-tinged ORACLE Halo LED lighting that encircles the headlights and foglights to the interior lighting system that adjusts to fit whatever mood he’s in. He finished the exterior transformation off with an ACS Composite TL1 hood insert and a stealthy gloss black finish from Durans Quality Painting in Baldwin Park, CA.
When pressed to name his single favorite thing about the Camaro, it all comes down to the sound and fury of that engine. Already equipped with a potent V8 from the factory, Von chose a Vortech centrifugal supercharger to boost the muscle car’s power to even higher levels. The rumble of the Borla exhaust system coupled with the whine of the supercharger’s belt system creates a primal roar that announces his arrival wherever he goes. “When I’m in my Camaro, it’s definitely A-Mode. It’s super-fast and super-loud. There ain’t no sneaking around in that thing.”
But it’s no fun if you have to be in A-Mode 100% of the time. When it’s time to relax and decompress, Von hits the B-Mode button to his personality and drives his 2015 BMW i8. Not wanting to abandon speed and power completely, Von chose a ride that can be the most civilized, fuel-efficient and environmentally conscious car on the road one minute, and a true cutting-edge, high-tech performance vehicle the next. Or as Von puts it, “I like it because you can look very, very sexy driving the car and at the same time, you’re saving the earth.” Choosing the i8 was no spur-of-the-moment decision for him. In 2011, at the same time he was garnering Defensive Rookie of the Year honors and making his first major purchase with the Camaro, he had his eye on the futuristic BMW that was at the time only a concept car he had seen on the show car circuit. But he knew that if and when it ever went on sale to the public, he would get one.
Ultimately, Von loves how different his Camaro and i8 are from each other, and how perfectly each car fits the different aspects of his personality. “The Camaro is supercharged, high-performance and crazy and the i8 is quiet, sleek and smooth. They’re like left and right. There really is no middle.” As fall approaches and the NFL season begins, Von starts flipping that switch once again from off-season to on, and goes back into A-Mode to become the boogeyman to opposing quarterbacks just as Batman is to the criminals of Gotham City. But when asked about what’s next in terms of both what he plans to do with his cars and what he plans to do in his NFL career, Von simply smiles and says, “The best is yet to come.”