A Daily Driven Touring Car

Brandon’s NB Miata

Unlike a touring car, Brandon’s NB Miata doesn’t have a massive V8, the interior isn’t gutted, and it’s perfectly street-able. What this car is, is a formidable track weapon with looks to snap necks, while doubling as Brandon’s grocery getter and daily driver during his 60km daily summer commute. Take a Miata parts catalog and throw it at an NB; turbo, suspension, wide sticky tires, tons of aero, and a ridiculous amount of carbon fiber, combined with four years of experimentation, blood, sweat, and tears, and this is what you’ll end up with.

Packing a modest 225whp, it boasts a power to weight ratio that rivals factory muscle cars, and sticky tires and coil over suspension allow it to demolish nearly anything in the corners. Yet this car is far more than a sum of its parts. This wasn’t a summer project car thrown together in a few weeks with a blank cheque – this car is a labour of love, and it was done on a strict budget. The turbo kit was bought second hand; Brandon isn’t even totally sure of its origins, though it stands up to track abuse. The front splitter was actually made by hand using the remnants of his Track Dog splitter which cracked in half when he flew off the track during an event. The enormous APR wing is actually the second one he’s been through after a deer ran out in the middle of the road and sheered the original wing clean off the car. The car’s insane rear diffuser was made by a local company; in fact his car was used to design it.

The whole thing started in 2011. Brandon sold his 87’ Trans Am and spent years without a car. He chose the Miata originally because of its potential on the track and considerably better fuel economy; which he promptly ruined by fitting a turbo to it. The rest is history. Parts were accumulated and friends would get together in the garage whenever things needed to be done. Brandon described the scene as the house from the first Fast and the Furious. The place would be surrounded by modified cars, and whoever’s car happened to be broken at the time would be in the garage. Four years and many broken knuckles later, this is the gorgeous result.

I feel the need to compare Brandon’s NB to Dave’s LS3 powered monster, both being Miatas. They’re both incredible, but in completely different ways. Dave’s NC is an engineering marvel; the whole thing is built to an obsessive degree of perfection and it’s an unbeatable animal on the race track. Brandon’s NB is a balanced, fast, time attack machine, but while Dave threw only the best parts at his car, Brandon built this on a budget. More so, Dave has several cars – his Miata is his toy. Brandon’s NB, as radical as it looks, is his only car during the summer months. Everything he does, he does in this car; this car isn’t a rolling advert for a shop or built to collect trophies. It’s the product of car people coming together and building something that works, fixing it when it blows up, and making memories along the way. That my friends, is car culture at its finest.

Wheels and Tires

  • Advanti S1 Storm 15x9
  • 225/45/15 Hankook RS3s.

Brakes and Suspension

  • Ohlins PCV Coilovers
  • SuperMiata Sway Bar kit
  • Wilwood Big Brake Kit
  • Hawk HP+ Pads

Engine

  • Mega Squirt ECU
  • Turbo Kit,
  • Oil Cooler
  • Oil Temp Gauge
  • Magnaflow Muffler
  • Greddy PRofec Electronic Boost Controller
  • 3.9 Torsen Diff

Exterior

  • Carbon Miata Carnards
  • R-Theory Motorsports Rear Diffuser
  • APR Rear Wing

Interior

  • Nardi 330mm Steering Wheel
  • NRG Wheel Hub
  • Sparco Sprint V Seat
  • Rev 9 Poly Blocks
  • MT Motorsports Roll Bar

***This list is by no means conclusive, and it’s intentionally unspecific

Notes about the shoot:

I met up with Brandon on the day of the shoot, along with his friend Matthew at a local gas station in Brampton Ontario. From there, we drove to the most scenic place that came to mind; Forks of the Credit Road. It was there that I discovered that Brandon’s friend Matthew is an Instagram nerd, and loves taking pictures, so the whole thing couldn’t have gone better. I willingly handed over my Nikon to Matthew, and he went at the car capturing every impeccable detail. I recalled staying up late the night before researching aperture, ISO, exposure – boring photography stuff. Matthew just grabbed the camera, set it to ‘auto-mode’ with no flash, and went at it. I couldn’t have been happier with the result.

Once I had unloaded my torrent of questions on Brandon, Matthew came over seemingly satisfied with the shots we got. At that point he looked my way and casually asked, “So, how comfortable are you driving in on-coming traffic?”

So Matthew then sat shotgun in my Miata as we made our way from Forks to a small breakfast joint at the end of Hockley road. That allowed us to get incredible rolling shots of Brandon’s NB as I passed him on long stretches of two-lane road. When we arrived at the breakfast joint, the only logical thing to do was to double-park Brandon’s car in a handicap spot, and take more pictures. The day was incredible and made me realize I really need to get my hands on a photographer.

On that note, a huge thank you to Matthew Atienza Gugins for making these amazing photos possible. You can check out all his stuff on instagram here.

Gallery:

You can find High Res. photos on our Flickr, for all of your wallpaper needs: