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WTF Friday: The Honda Ranger


Building a vehicle isn’t easy. Believe me I know, and building a vehicle that veers sharply off the beaten path is even harder. When it comes to following in the foot steps of others Andrew Myers clearly isn’t the type. The proof of this lies in his “2000 Honda Ranger XLT”.

This truck has been floating around Facebook — and causing huge debates– for a while and I was waiting to see if it was going to get a bit more complete before posting. However earlier this week Andrew reached out on Instagram confirming that this is essentially the trucks final form.

From a straight up visual stand point it’s clear as day this truck is unique and also very low.

The truck is static, and features a very significant stock floor body drop. Usually a stock floor body drop of this significance would result in a motor sticking out of the hood, but in this case Andrew side-stepped that by pulling the factory motor from between the fenders.

Today the truck’s power comes from behind the cab.

Using some creative engineering, and seemingly whatever metal he had laying about the shop, Andrew has installed the entire front cradle of a Honda (I can’t quite tell if Integra or Civic) in the back of his Ranger.

Reuse was the name of the game here with Andrew re-purposing as many stock parts as he could. I’m not going to lie it’s a fairly clever way to create a rear engine vehicle, considering that as far as the drive train components are concerned it’s still in a Honda.

He was even able to use the factory cooling system, hoses and all. The braking system of course had to change along with the wiring harnesses on both the Honda and Ford sides of the fence.

The motor swap isn’t what has most people up in arms about this truck though. It is the execution.

Simply put it looks like it shouldn’t work. Several people also questioned the engineering merit of the entire truck and said it won’t drive a mile. Currently the truck is Andrew’s daily driver.

Executing a lofty idea like this from start to finish is an accomplishment in itself so hats off to Andrew for seeing this through to the end.

No matter what anyone says he figured it out all on his own.

Of course time will tell if the naysayers are right and this truck really is a rolling accident waiting to happen, or if Andrew pulled a fast one on us and actually created a vehicle that will last a long time.

If you want to take a look at how this truck came to be, ask questions, or simply tune in to see if it’s going to explode you can check out the Facebook page.

A lot of me is wondering what the truck would look like if Andrew pulled it off the road and put his mind toward building it cleanly. In this photo below he proves he is fully capable.

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He seems to have no desire to execute to that level on this truck though so we can leave this as one of life’s many great “what ifs”.

Theme Tuesdays: Weds Kranze Bazreia Appreciation


Two weeks ago I paid homage to the CR-Kai via a Theme Tuesday dedicated to the Work Wheels classic. This week I’ll be throwing some love to the Weds Wheels Kranze Bazreia.

A modular construction and timeless design make these wheels exceptionally versitle. Made in sizes as small as 16, and as large as 22 they work equally well on sub compact cars like Fits, big cars like G35 sedans and everything in between.

Blain has rebuilt, and owned, many of the sets of Bazeria’s currently floating around Ontario so it only makes sense to start with him
These 19″ Bazreia wheels were unfortunately stolen, and are still missing, as far as I know which is a damn shame, they looked exceptional on the car…
I didn’t know this before last week but these cars have a 5×120 bolt pattern
Making these one of the few (perhaps the only) 5×120 wheels in Ontario
As improbable as this might seem, this car is static.
Impeccable fitment
Jon’s RX-7 is so good that I’ll make any excuse to post it
The Bazreia’s look great on the car of course
Generally, I am pretty luke warm on Lexus SC430s but this one, is next level
Dreammaker customs basically built the entire car around the wheels.
To reuse the caption I used when I posted this car in the is300 Theme Tuesday, nine times out of 10 Bazreias are the right choice.
How sick is this little Fit? – Photo:
Or this uh, whatever it is- Photo:
Not just a wheel for Japanese vehicles 20″ Bazreia’s look right at home on this Audi- Photo
Mad Mike has great looking Drift cars, this one is a bit older but is wearing the wheels of the day- Photo:

To further bolster this Theme Tuesday I pulled some of the more unique usages of Bazreia’s from Instagram. I’ll probably be keeping up this trend of ending Theme Tuesdays with a couple Instagram photos when it fits.

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What wheel would you guys recommend next? Something common or something obscure? I am open to suggestions!

Motor Monday: Chevy Body, Cummins Motor, BMW Interior


This series is called Motor Monday, so it should be about motors right?

Well, in the case of this GMC Sierra crew cab the motor is the lure, but there’s a heck of a lot else going on.

First things first, we’ve seen the truck before. Back in 2015 at .

The truck was bagged, swapped and on the road at that point but nowhere near as cool as it is today.

From the outside the truck looks similar to how it did in 2015, but with a few refreshed exterior items. The most noticeable changes are the wheels, headlights, and fresh paint.

The fresh paint and tidy up job didn’t end at the exterior. The Cummins was pulled out and given new paint and copper hardlines.

Equal attention was put into the engine bay itself, cleaning it up as much as possible and adding new wheel tubs.

The bed floor has been lined with hardwood and in the middle is a cut out that shows off the custom back half.

Just ahead of the suspension is a Low key Designs plaque that represents the collective work of the Margeson brother’s Chris, James, and Jeff.

As cool as all of the above is, the interior is where things get really mental. Jeff and his brothers have pulled out nearly all of the factory Chevy parts replacing them with e38 and e60 BMW components.

Dash, center console, seats and all.

The final result is phenomenal and, only rewarded to those who are willing to take a closer look. Posted up at Engineered Automotive’s Cars and Coffee plenty of people walked by without giving the truck a second glance.

Those that did peak inside were blown away at how well the Margeson brothers made everything flow. It took a lot of cutting and retrofitting (the transmission hump at the base of the rear seats is brand new, as is the cradle the dash sits on) to make this work but the result speaks for itself.

It goes to show you, no matter how cliché the saying is you can never judge a book by its cover.

Event Coverage: Fitted Lifestyle 2018


For the past nine years has been the unofficial season opener for much of the tuner community here in Ontario.

But, in 2018 Import Expo and Driven leap frogged Fitted for season opening status. Personally, I was a little worried about what sort of impact those shows might have on Fitted 2018.

I’ve watched Fitted grow from a parking lot meet, to what it is today, and along the way their have been competitors but never two so early in the season.

The Fitted organizers of course didn’t blink, instead choosing to focus on what makes their event great and not worry about the competition.

With the hash tag as busy as ever I got out the door early this year in time to catch many of the cars on their way into the show.

Unlike previous years where everyone rolled in practically all at once this year’s rollin was a bit more staggered which allowed me to split my time between shooting the interior of the show with very little people inside, and catching cars in motion.

When everyone was parked up and it was time to tour the event halls, truth be told, my immediate reaction was that foot traffic wasn’t the same as previous years.

However I was on “dad time” which was a little early and things started to pick up right when I left around 2pm.

Spectator numbers aside, car quality was as great as ever and hat tip to Dave and crew for keeping that bar consistent year after year.

More importantly, great job on the staff for selecting a number of cars that have never been shown at Fitted before.

Based on feedback and attendance from previous years Fitted announced a few new award categories for 2018.

One of these categories was dedicated toward track cars, both drift and time attack, and the other two were aimed at traditional VIP and VIP style.

There’s been somewhat of a changing of the guard among the local VIP community so it’s nice to see Fitted embrace that by opening up an award to those who have traditional VIP platforms and those who don’t.

After being put onto the game by my friend Aidan VIP is one genre I can’t help but keep a close eye on.

Finally there were also awards for vintage JDM and European cars to reflect the fact that a lot of enthusiasts are starting to invest their time and money into older platforms instead of the latest and greatest.

I know given my previous lambasting of trophy hunters it might seem weird to focus on awards, but with the Fitted trophies being so unique it’s worth mentioning that they are allowing more people the chance to take one home.

These are not winged angels we’re talking about. They are legit bespoke items worth displaying on your fireplace mantle, should you have a mantle that is.

Again, it was nice to see a number of fresh builds at Fitted despite the two previous events, three if you count Motorama.

After nine years Fitted still holds clout and people are willing to wait until this show to debut their vehicle’s current look.

Based on the cars in attendance it seemed like people were dialing things back a little bit when it came to camber and tire stretch.

There were some extreme cars no doubt, but as far as I know no one lost their plates to local law enforcement on the way to the venue. As someone who’s watch the progression its nice to see things come back to center.

I’d rather see a car make it to the show a little conservative then not make it at all.

I like pushing the limits as much as the next man, but lets not to rile up the local police department at the beginning of the season eh?

A definite highlight for me at Fitted 2018 was seeing the Dynamotorsports twin charged, v8, Celica roll into the show under its own power.

This car has been shown in various states of completion for the past four years, but now it’s a fully road worth vehicle. It just might be time to reach out to the owner for a photo shoot.

Another highlight for me was seeing this extremely clean, four door, e30 sedan sitting on Borbet Type As fit with flat caps.

I’m not sure if it was a 325is or a 325e, but, it brought back memories of my own e30. These cars are only getting rarer by the day so clean ones stand out.

Shout out to the owner of this Camry for still whipping this car as hard as hell.

These things used to be everywhere, right up until they were not.

Next time I see the car I’ll have to take a closer look at it for a crown shaped tissue holder. Those were so common that I am not entirely convinced they were not offered as a factory option.

Team Mayzn president Frank’s car continues it’s non stop evolution. He recently pulled the motor from the engine bay to modify his strut towers for more clearance. While it was out he hit it with a fresh coat of paint and generally cleaned things up a bit.

He’s since yanked the motor out of the car again in order to change things once more for the next show.

, aka the only tow operation in town with an Airbagged trailer has been showing up to all of the events lately.

Being one of very few tow operations not to put up a fuss about towing a low car, Fitted really is marketed towards his target audience.

I might have to give him a ring when it’s time to take the cab of Project Why Wait off to the body shop because getting it on an off a normal deck trailer isn’t the most fun thing to do.

All said and done Fitted 2018 was an enjoyable show, but I am curious to see what kind of stops get pulled out for next years show.

It is the tenth anniversary after all and I imagine the organizers have a few things up their sleeves to make it something special.

If you’d like to see more coverage from Fitted Lifestyle 2018 head over to and give my most recent article a read, it went live yesterday and it’s my first post as an official contributor!

Theme Tuesdays: Recently Viewed – May 2018


Hey guys, I know last month was a bit on the “slow” (slow being relative term as two events were covered and a Project Why Wait update was posted) month around here, but, never fret there’s lots to come as summer picks up.

Until then, here’s another edition of the recently viewed Theme Tuesday series.

As always future recommendations for YouTube channels and podcasts are welcome!

Theme Tuesdays: Work CR-Kai Appreciation


When it comes to relatively affordable, great looking, light, single piece wheels of reputable manufacture the Work CR-Kai wheel stands among heavy weights (in the figurative sense) like the Enkei RPF-1 and the almighty Volk TE37.

Truth be told I like the CR-Kai more than either of those wheels and wouldn’t hesitate to run a set on nearly any vehicle I see myself owning in the near future.

A Theme Tuesday dedicated to this versatile, timeless, wheel is long overdue.

There’s no better way to start this post off than with a set of CR-Kais on a truck. Any wheel that works (ha!) equally well on cars and trucks is noteworthy
These wheels don’t just work on Datsun trucks either, check out this B2200 laying frame over CR Kais
If leading off with two trucks wasn’t unique enough how about CR-Kais on a Thunderbird? Straight out of left field but works pretty damn well – Photo: iputinwork.com (which is sadly no more)
Keeping with the ‘vehicles I didn’t expect to CR-Kais on for 100’ how about this Cobalt?
Mustang’s wear CR Kai wheels quite well too
The number of third generation Supras I come across is far too low, this car looks awesome
sold his CR Kais shortly after his Toyota MR-2 was fully painted, which is a bit of a shame because they looked great
An older 5er squashed on CR Kais
The elusive Saabaru 92x, sitting pretty on white CR-Kais
I absolutely love how this R33 Skyline looks on CR Kais Photo:
This R34 looks great on Kais too, both cars are to the point with no frills – Photo:
Simple and clean, as things were in 2011
Another throwback, this time to 2010, with these Asphalt Grey CR-Kais on a stuffed s2000
I am still a big fan of CR Kai wheels on Mazda 3s
Looking at this photo now makes me really want a set CR kais for my car in 18×9 et 38ish sizing
A clean local NSX keeping it simple on CR Kais
This E class looked great at CM a few years ago. (These might be CR Ultimates)
This Chaser looks absolutely fantastic on CR-Kais, love the paint too, great at color- Photo:
Super clean s13 ready for the street or the track – Photo:
An equally clean S14 on the wheel of the day – Photo:
And completing the s chassis set… – Photo:
Many a Subaru has been on CR Kai wheels and most look great. – Photo
Similarly many an IS300 has looked great on CR-Kais, to bring things full circle this car, which I saw recently, inspired this entire post

WTF Friday: Pro Street Double Up


The pro street era was slightly before my time, but it’s easily one of my favorite periods of car modification. Pro street cars look like drag cars, they sound like drag cars and they often make the power of drag cars but most will never see a quarter-mile.

Caged, with fully trimmed interiors, miles of chrome and immaculate paint these cars are quite literally rolling excess. Engineering marvels built to specifically to be over the top. “Peak” pro street may have passed, but there are still people building cars befitting of the pro street golden years.

One builder still putting cars together in pro street fashion Brad Gray, of the Blown Mafia. Twin charged cars are his game and I saw two of his in person at the Detroit Autorama.

Another person holding it down for the Pro Street era is Gary Kollofski. Gary is putting one of the craziest motors in a tri-five that I’ve ever seen. And I’ve seen my fair share of crazy tri-fives, crazy motors, and crazy motors in tri-fives.

So what’s Gary putting under the hood? Well, two v12s. Yes, that’s 24 cylinders inside of a car that usually has 8.

The 24 cylinder is actually made up of two 5L BMW M70 motors joined in the middle. Looking at the picture above you can see that they are essentially mirrored and to be frank it’s completely overwhelming.

Like I said, I’ve seen some crazy motors, but this one is a monster.

Given the amount of custom work that goes into a car like this, it’s been a long-term project for Gary, but no matter how long it takes there’s going to be nothing else quite like it when he’s done.

If the motor wasn’t crazy enough, being a pro street car, Gary is going to trim the entire vehicle out as a car fit for the show and street.

Now, unfortunately I can’t link you to any sort of build thread on the car because those are quickly becoming extinct, but I can link you to .

Gary optimistically aims to have his Chevy finished by the end of the year. Hopefully he posts updates regularly because I’m interested to see how it turns out. Hopefully you are too.

I wonder what kind of numbers it would put down on the dyno…

Event Coverage: Cars And Coffee Toronto 2018 Season Opener


Together the words ‘Cars’ and ‘Coffee’ represent some of the best free automotive events in any locale. Following a formula originally perfected in California Cars and Coffee events celebrate everything that is automotive enthusiasm.

Little more than what the name implies; Cars and Coffee, these events feature no heavy-handed corporate sponsorships, three-foot tall trophies, or scantily glad ‘models’.

The cars and the people are the focus and it all works extremely well.

Year after year, and event after event, ‘s Cars and Coffee Toronto events continue to grow. EA has managed to capture lighting in a bottle and they let a little more out the first Sunday of every month.

The weather for 2018 season opener was exceptional and as a result it was a full house. Cars were lined up in the front, rear, and sides of Engineered Automotive and overflowed into the surrounding lots.

Engineered of course had a few on display inside as well.

It’s a good thing Engineered Automotive is located where it is, because if it were a street or two closer to houses I don’t think the event would go quite so uninterrupted.

With so many cars present it’s really hard to choose exactly what to look at. Fast, slow, lifted, slammed, muscle, exotic. If you can’t find something you like at this Cars and Coffee then you might have a hard time finding something you like anywhere.

For those who have yet to go it might sound like I’m embellishing but trust me I’m not. There is quite honestly something for anyone who likes cars beyond their ability to take you from point A to point B.

Something about the atmosphere of Cars and Coffee also makes people that much more approachable. Maybe it’s the lack of formal organization beyond park here, don’t park here, or maybe it’s because it’s so early on Sunday, but everyone is laid back.

I’m not an extrovert by any means but I often end up in lengthy conversations with complete strangers, and their cars in general, at Cars and Coffee.

That’s exactly what happened between the owner of this Triumph and myself. The car arrived about twenty minutes before I made my way over to shoot it and I remembered that as it rolled by something seemed off.

Of course it wasn’t until I went over to investigate that I discovered why the car sounded so different.

The custom badge, spoils the punchline, but also totally explained why I didn’t hear the car when it drove in.

The somewhat distinctive me mechanical sound of the inline 4 cylinder motor has been replaced by the nearly inaudible hum of an electrics.

When it comes to electric cars, I don’t really know head from tails, but, I do now there’s a lot going on here. Through a HPEVS AC50 3-Phase AC motor the car puts down 77 wheel horsepower. This might not seem earth shattering but it’s worth noting that electric cars are pretty much instant on, at the jab of the gas pedal.

The 77 horsepower combined with the 120 ft-lbs of torque mean that first gear of this car is pretty much unusable. Unless you want to roast the tires of course.

Ithe build is a father son project, and the owner admits that he’s a little scared of it. Or maybe scared isn’t the right word.

He’s very aware of how little in safety features the car has in the event he did get in a crash.

Remember what I said about variety? ‘The E-Fire’ Triumph was parked nearly directly across from the BMW S38 powered Datsun I featured in last week’s Motor Monday post.

Variety, these events are all about variety.

The sheer number of unique, spotlight worthy,  cars at every event is making me somewhat rethink the way I present the Cars and Coffee Coverage. I’m still mulling a few ideas in my mind but I may transition into mini features on certain vehicles versus the entire event.

Though I do truly enjoy covering the event at large, so I’m at a cross roads.

All that said, you can expect at the very least for me to continue to attend these events because how could I not. Checking out an amazing variety of cars and having the rest of my Sunday afternoon free to do whatever I want?

It honestly doesn’t get much better than that.

Thanks again Engineered for keeping the dream alive here in Ontario.

Theme Tuesdays: Lettin’ The Sparks Fly: Part 5


Taking a trip back to an old favorite with this fifth edition of the Lettin’ The Sparks Fly Theme Tuesday series.

This series remains a favorite of mine because no matter how you do it throwing sparks just plain looks cool. And at the end of the day, for better or worse, I’m just a guy that likes things that look cool.

Start things off with something from , their old “Party Van”
Drift sparks are a rare appearance in this series, but a welcome one – Photo: Bannana JDM
Literally down to the wire. – Photo: Yan Photography
This Ghia showering the streets with sparks was captured by
Lowriders don’t throw sparks all the time, but when they do… – Photo:
Kevin Dickson dragging his Extreme Blazer
Earnest Hicks doing the same with his full size Blazer
You guys know I can’t do a post like this without at least one first gen S dime – Owner: Bobby Eiland
Another one, owned by Mike Schaefer
Ron FS Lara’s Primer C10 laying a thick trial of sparks
Loaded c10s are a popular choice for rippin’ up road dots – Owner: Cameron Jag
This C10 is absolutely hammered, not a single care was given – Photo: Texas House Of Threads
I think this is the only time I’ve knowingly posted a girl throwing sparks
Truck does a damn good job of lighting it the way – Photo: Heather Pendleton
Derek Baehr out for a rip – Photo: Craig Rusboldt Photography
I don’t see a lot of bagged and bodied Trailblazers/Envoys
RJ Swanson owns this one that clearly lays out hard as hell
Oscar Sierra the third holding it down for the full size Ford contingent
Roman Briones laying his truck out on the road
You’ve got to look awful close but there’s a spark or two under this truck
Last but certainly not least a great looking Silverado painting the down yellow – Photo:

Event Coverage: Driven Toronto


is a long running car show series that up until 2018 hadn’t ventured into Toronto. Instead they hosted successful events in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg and Saskatoon.

This year however they decided the time was right to bring the event to Toronto. They did so with the help of local Ontario OG Neal Woon Fat of TBA apparel. Neal and Driven rolled into town with a bang flying in RWB’s Nakai from Japan.

Along with Mr. RWB himself came all of the builds he’s done in Ontario to date.

I’ve already penned a piece about the curious case of Raugh Welt Begriff, so I’m not going to delve too much into the man, the myth, or the legend here.

I will say it was cool to see multiple RWB builds at the same venue, so close to home.

Long lines however are not for me, and I’d already waited in a super long one to find parking  –partially open mall parking garage, weekend, you do the math– so I didn’t spend too much time anywhere near the autograph signing area.

Instead I cruised around the two sectioned off levels of the parking garage checking out who showed up to this event.

The turnout and variety of the cars that were approved was really quite good and generally I have no complaints in that regard.

Usually the shops of Don Mills parking lot is filled with mini vans and the like, so there has likely never been this many cool cars ever housed within the parking structure.

One of the first builds to catch my eye, or rather my ear, was this Audi A4 Avant. Though the hood of the car is closed in this pic I can confirm that there is an S4 engine and transmission in the car.

I think it might be one of the first of its kind to have such a motor installed.

There is also an absolute metric ton worth of audio installed into the car. Saying this car is loud would be an understatement. It’s louder than loud.

When the owner had the system playing at partial volume it could be heard from quite literally anywhere in the venue.

Mazda guys, take a look at this FC, like it? You should, it’s a great looking street and track ready build by Jon Lee at Akii Tire.

The last time I saw the car it was sitting in his shop hood up and non operational due to a blown head gasket.

No, I didn’t mistype I said, and I mean, headgasket as there’s no rotary to be found in this Mazda.

The replacement motor is, curiously enough, a Nissan motor.

It’s not an sr20 however, no that would be too simple. Instead a turbo KA has been bolted in.

This motor was chosen for its availability and low-cost.

Purists probably hate it, but as someone who loves his fair share of odd motor swaps, I absolutely love it.

Walking through the indoor portion of the show, one car was quite literally stealing the spotlight; this phenomenally restored Hakousoka Skyline.

My memory isn’t quite what it was, but I’m pretty sure this is the only one I’ve seen in Ontario. Period.

Where it was parked wasn’t the best for photos, but I did what I could knowing that the car was from Windsor Ontario.

Windsor is one of the more south-western parts of the province, and not an area I travel to often.

The car was the subject of a lengthy restoration (documented here on the owner’s ) and 2018 marks its first year back out on the streets.

All the hard work the owner put in paid off in spades because the car looked incredible.

Having enough of fighting with the sun optimal lighting conditions of the lower levels, I made my way to the roof of the parking garage where I was again greeted with an eclectic group of cars.

Farid’s IS300 is no stranger to the show scene, having been to all the major Toronto events over the past few years.

For 2018 he’s debuted the car with a freshly swapped 2JZ-GTE motor.

Unlike most 2JZ swaps this car is still twin turbo. Honestly, as much as I love seeing a big single turbo, the twins, give this car a unique touch.

Boost Theory (a shop that opened in 2012) did a lot of the heavy lifting on this build and I’m told it’s going to crank over and hit the dyno very soon.

Another car with swapped 2JZ under the hood was this incredibly clean s14. This car was under the knife for a while but hit the streets late last year.

Driven marked the car’s debut with its new motor set up.

The Nissan is sitting on Air Lift Performance suspension that allows it to tuck Work/Vossen collaboration wheels.

The sharp-eyed among you have probably already guessed what’s going on with this car, but for those of you who may not have noticed the interesting intake pipe routing, this Porsche isn’t so Porsche powered anymore.

Yep, that’s an LS, stuffed in an otherwise stock appearing 996. I imagine this car is an absolutely blast to drive, and more deserving of the title sleeper than half the cars on Netflix’s Fastest car show. But I digress…

This e30 looks like a hoot to drive too. In addition to aesthetic modifications the temperamental, stock, s14 has been removed and an s54 put in its place.

The final upper deck car I’d like to showcase is the TE27 Wagon built by Mike at GT custom exhaust. He built this car for a new upcoming Toronto drift series known as

Because it was parked in the Drift Jam booth, and had quite a crowd around it, I wasn’t able to get the greatest shots of the car but I’ll make up for that later in the season I’m sure.

I did however get photos of the most important bits; the business in the front, which is an authentic Beams 3SGE motor.

And the party in the rear, a functional cage, and coil over set up that Mike put inside the cars rusty exterior.

The Driven Show might have a few logistical items to work out for their next venture, but for an ambitious first year event they did pretty well.

It will be interesting to see if they retain this venue but only time will tell. Hopefully they stick around and Ontario has another show option to attend.

Until there here’s a few more pictures from 2018.