A set of gauges for each of the two engines, 22 in all. The nav head unit and steering yol
Atop the fabbed and fabulously colored bed are two nitrous bottles and a pair of wide-diameter carbon tubes snaking from the engine compartment to the roof. That tubing is an elaborate air intake system for the rear engine, visible through the plexiglass window in the floor of the bed. Backup cameras are flushed into the bed supports. A 15-inch LCD is flushed into the tailgate between Scion taillights and beneath custom spoilers.
Back to the engines: The factory mills were 1.0L, four-cylinder, 60hp, transverse models. This was one of the first transverse applications in a car, a configuration later adopted by companies like Honda. Paul meshed his old-school tuner enthusiasm with the new wave of Japanese import tuner mania many years ago, so he had no qualms with replacing the original, worn-out engines with two Honda B16A2 1.6L, four-cylinder, VTEC engines - one under the bonnet and the other inside the bed.
These powerplants are housed in handmade subframes and have been balanced, checked, and machined to 2.0L by EuroExport. Other upgrades include Wiseco low-compression deep-dish pistons, lightened flywheels, a Competition Clutch race clutch, HBX Intercoolers, Eagle con rods, chrome-moly valves, titanium retainers, a Hondata S300 engine management module, MSD upgrades (high-output coils, caps, wires, and fuel pumps), two T3/T4 Master Power turbos (for 23 pounds of boost), Turbonetic blow-off valves and wastegates, a direct-injection wet nitrous system by Nitrous Express, and four 600-amp Kinetic batteries. Side air ducts (in the grille and the sides of the body) cool the brakes and rear engine, and the turbo's intake pokes out through the front grille. So what was the end result of all this knuckle-busting work? Paul estimates that the engines crank out a combined 1,100 hp and propel the 1,800-pound vehicle to F1 speeds.
Shell's V-Power 89-93 octane gasoline, a formulation that replaces the company's Optimax fuel, allows the high-performance engines to run at optimum levels and give Paul peace of mind when racing at triple digits. Detergents in the gas clean the engine and Shell's Friction Modification Technology reduces friction, ensuring there is no detonation. The engines are linked to a Honda Si five-speed transmission and a custom all-wheel-drive setup. The truck rolls on 17-inch MOMO Corse wheels wrapped in Dunlop Direzza tires with Digi-Tyre tire-pressure monitoring system. An EasyStreet air suspension keeps the Mini low. Paul tuned the suspension to racing specs, although he hasn't had a chance to test it...but he plans to very soon.
It was a part-time project for most of a year, until Shell Oil Company came onboard as a sponsor and pressed Paul to complete the project in eight very full weeks so that it would be ready for display at the immediately pending auto shows. A lot of people had their hand in this buildup. Paul thanks his wife, first and foremost; his son, Nick, who did some work on the truck; Alex Barrils; Chris Dalio; Don; "Dodge Guy"; Juan Jarrot; Stece McLesky; Rich Potts; Heather Quinn; Greg Rehard; Fred Shutrump; Pete Simmons; Andrew Wilson (U.K.); and Joe Wilson.
Paul has had a thing for Mini Coopers for 30 years. He's raced them, sold them, and customized them. It's passion that hasn't yet failed to stoke his enthusiasm for England's quirky compact-a passion that we greatly appreciate.