Being called a car guru is an honor not easily gained by anyone, but Shawn Pilot is merited enough to be called so. Since debuting in “Car Masters: Rust To Riches”, Shawn has gained the audience’s hearts with his vast knowledge about car restoration and customization, on top of his great sense of humor and skillful ways of entertaining viewers.
There’s no doubt that Shawn awakens a sense of curiosity in the audience and fans alike, turning him into a fan favorite in no time, and gaining him enough fame to start his own independent projects.
So do you want to know more about Shawn Pilot? Stay here to discover all the often little-known facts about him, from his personal life, passing to the less-known side of his career on TV, to his best well-kept automotive-related secrets!
Although Shawn Pilot has become widely known for his appearances in “Car Masters: Rust To Riches”, what many don’t know is that he debuted in the entertainment industry long before this show premiered in 2018.
As it happens, Shawn’s earliest job in the industry dates back to 1999, when he appeared as a berm soldier in the movie “Three Kings”. While his role was small, having some type of acting experience is rather unexpected for a man who is nowadays known for his job in the very different industry of automotive customization.
As well, Shawn’s credit in the movie is somewhat impressive considering he shared the stage with the likes of George Clooney, Ice Cube and Mark Wahlberg. Other than that, it’s unknown if Shawn had other uncredited acting roles in movies or TV, but his experience in front of cameras is noticeable to anyone who has ever watched “Car Masters”.
He Was In Another Car Series
After debuting in a 1999 movie as an actor, Shawn Pilot’s first unscripted appearance on the small screen came in 2011, with the series “Inside West Coast Customs”. Centered on the California-based business West Coast Customs and its owner Ryan Friedlinghaus, the show introduced the audience to amazing car restorations, and the process behind them.
Shawn appeared in the episode “Will.I.Am of the Black Eyed Peas” from the second season, in which the staff restored and mixed a 1958 Corvette with a C6 for the famous hip-hop singer and producer. Given that Shawn’s specialty is Corvettes, he was of great help in the process of finding the right cars to conceptualize, and make Will.I.Am’s vision come alive.
The ending result was the Willvette, a red-painted futuristic-looking car which perfectly combines the best parts of the older and modern Corvettes, both on the outside and inside. It was undeniably a great addition to Shawn’s job resume in the automotive world, and also proves that he’s been doing his thing in the automotive world for quite some time.
He’s Been To Great Car Shows
The car world is a big passion of Shawn Pilot, even when cameras aren’t rolling. As seen on his social media, he’s often present at some of the industry’s most coveted events, such as the Specialty Equipment Market Association, generally known as SEMA’s show.
While it’s unclear if Shawn attends these events to promote some of Gotham Garage’s customization works, or as a celebrity guest, that hasn’t stopped him from enjoying the experience no end. Fans also enjoy the thrill of meeting their favorite “Car Masters” dealer in person, as the several tagged photos of Shawn with fans on Instagram easily demonstrate.
He’s a Very Private Person
Though it’s usual for reality TV stars to exploit their public image for the sake of money and fame, that’s not the case with Shawn Pilot. Despite having accumulated several thousand followers on Instagram so far, Shawn’s posts to date aren’t numerous, and are posted at long intervals. The oldest photos on his account date back to 2018, which makes it impossible to trace his life prior to the show’s premiere.
On top of having no public Facebook account for fans, Shawn also remains inactive on his personal profile on the platform.
While this choice for privacy is rarely noted in a TV star, Shawn has let us know some personal details about himself, such as his closeness with his mom Carol, who appeared in the fourth season of “Car Masters” as a guest, and wore matching race suits with her son. It’s also known that Shawn has a daughter and two grandchildren, but further information about his romantic life or partners – past or present -hasn’t been revealed.
He’s Popular & Quite Rich
Given how well-liked Shawn Pilot is by the “Car Masters” audience, it’s truly unsurprising that he’s quite an agreeable personality, and is easily liked by people everywhere. Besides the fact that his Instagram account has almost 30,000 followers, despite being rarely updated, Shawn has proved his knack for catching viewers’ attention with his original and very popular YouTube content.
After sharing his first video on the platform in March 2023, Shawn gained over 30,000 subscribers and hundreds of thousands of views in less than a month, a very impressive accomplishment, especially considering that his channel had remained inactive since he started it in 2013.
Regarding Shawn’s financial details, several online sources point to his net worth being a modest $500,000 as of April 2023. While he’s refrained from revealing whether this figure comes from his job on TV and as a car dealer, it’s safe to assume a huge part of it comes from his profitable hobby as a poker player.
As registered on some websites such as CardPlayer.com, Shawn has earned around $373,894 in tournaments since he debuted as a professional poker player in the late 2000s. His best winning night was in 2009, when he won $39,663 in one go, which is quite impressive.
He’s A Corvette Guy
Shawn Pilot’s love for Corvettes has been more than evident in his appearances in “Car Masters”, and it’s the same for his everyday life. As it happens, Shawn’s YouTube channel not only makes sure to showcase his love for Corvettes and good deals but is also part of his new project VetteRod, with which he plans to brand himself as a connoisseur of this car brand.
As read on VetteRod’s official website, Shawn considers himself a ‘genuine Corvette freak’ and is the proud owner of over 100 of them, including the black and red stripped-out Corvette Z51, which was introduced in the show as the Vette Kart., suggesting that these aren’t included in his estimated net worth.
Shawn’s love for ‘Vettes goes from finding them somewhere on the internet, to making a deal after assessing the car’s body and engine conditions, before finally taking them to his Los Angeles shop to fix them. Some of his Corvettes end up on sale, but others are added to his large collection. The couple of videos on Shawn’s YouTube channel also let us see that not only is he vastly knowledgeable when it comes to solving issues under a car’s hood, but has a great talent as a host.
All in all, Shawn’s off and on-screen career has been amazing so far. Going from the times he had a small role in a Hollywood film, then becoming a reality TV star, to finally creating his original online content, it’s clear that Shawn and his VetteRod have a bright future ahead.