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  #1  
Old 08-12-2012, 04:43 PM
Drew Drew is offline
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Default Drew's 2012 Cooper

On July 31, 2012, exactly 6 years from the day I took home my first MINI, I signed the papers to become the owner of the 2012 Cooper you'll see below. In the last 6 years I've built three different Cooper S MINIs with slightly changing interests, modification choices, and needs from the car.

First was my custom ordered 2006 Cooper S. Hyper Blue with a Silver top and U-Stripe, a nice set of options, and over the 20 months I owned it a few modifications, too. The picture below is before I installed the Aero Kit, and about 3 months before I ordered the next MINI.
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One year after taking home the 2006 MINI I became a Motoring Advisor at my local MINI dealership. I had put 42k miles on the R53, and was itching to be one of the first go low with an R56. I was drawn in my the turbo, knowing which options I really wanted and which I could do without, and the desire to start fresh... as I was nearly out of warranty on a car that was just a year old! In February of 2008, while in Las Vegas for Clubman training, my 2008 showed up at the store waiting for me to take it home. By April I had coilovers, wheels from the R53, and a few minor mods done... but that was just the first set of modifications this car would see. After doing well at a few track days, but realizing that this was my only car, I picked up a Miata to build for track duty. The R56 got a set of V-Maxx coilovers, some Schmidt wheels, and was dropped as low as I could take it without further modifications. The focus was lost for the first Miata, and it was sold to a friend, but my attention changed again and I decided to buy another Miata to turn into a slammed daily driver, with the hopes of getting rid of a car payment for a while. The R56 was returned to stock, and I rode out the lease while sharing daily duty with the 93 Miata.
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The Miata saw a few changes, but no longer made sense as a daily driver for me. I had since moved from the Sales department to the Service department, and after becoming Service Manager I felt it was time to pick up another MINI, and one that I had really loved for years. Griff was considering selling Magnus around the same time, so we worked out a deal, and in September of 2011 I took home a car that was already very nicely setup. It was also one that I knew as well as any of my own cars, and the history was great, so it was a no brainer. I had to make the car my own, which meant new wheels were on their way before I ever took the MINI home. For H20i I ran a set of Porsche D90's, giving it a nice look with the staggered setup. Over the next year I swapped for a set of 17" AZEV's, and I made subtle changes as the car was already very well setup when I got it. That was the only problem, though. As much as I loved this car, it never felt like it was completely mine. The chance to sell the car and pay off all of my other debts was one that made the decision an easier one, as selling this MINI was really not the plan for a while. Yesterday Magnus was picked up by his new owner, and brought home to VA where he'll certainly see many more years of love.
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The option came up to lease a new Cooper, which fit all of my new requirements for the daily driver. Fuel efficient, cheap to own, reliable, fun to drive, and with a few nice options to make daily driving even better. You won't see crazy modifying with this one... but that doesn't mean it won't see a few changes soon. There is a big box sitting at work waiting to be installed, and some parts have just been dropped off for powdercoating, too. I think this one will be a lot of fun, so stay tuned for the upcoming changes.

Here are a couple of InstaGram pictures I took while it was still 100% stock.
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A farewell shot...

And now with a new roof rack, no more stripes, and the ever important short antenna!
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  #2  
Old 08-12-2012, 08:11 PM
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VicSkimmr VicSkimmr is offline
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looks awesome. i love the holies
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  #3  
Old 08-12-2012, 09:17 PM
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Cooper looks great on those Pepperpots!
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  #4  
Old 08-12-2012, 09:22 PM
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You know I love it... I have to .

Also, have you considered the Coupe front lip? It adds just a little extra something .
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  #5  
Old 08-12-2012, 11:51 PM
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Nice write-up
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  #6  
Old 08-12-2012, 11:55 PM
Chase Chase is offline
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woo woo. i love it. as is
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  #7  
Old 08-13-2012, 01:57 AM
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Great stuff! Cool to hear the history too.
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  #8  
Old 08-13-2012, 04:37 AM
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I like it, good job buddy.
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Old 08-13-2012, 12:01 PM
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Looking forward to seeing this in person
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  #10  
Old 08-13-2012, 01:20 PM
Drew Drew is offline
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Thanks! Aaron, I haven't really looked into the coupe lip, but I might check one out today.
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  #11  
Old 08-13-2012, 08:14 PM
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I thought you were getting away from the Mini.
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  #12  
Old 08-14-2012, 02:13 AM
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cool little story man! I just started as a Motoring Advisor, used to be a Mercedes Benz tech and I can't get enough of the brand! I've been a customer for a long time and on my second cooper this time a clubman, coil overs on both. Coopers & Coilovers are the best combo for a daily...
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Old 08-14-2012, 03:56 AM
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Great write up there Drew. Great to see you in a Cooper.
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  #14  
Old 08-22-2012, 04:21 PM
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Nice write up!
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  #15  
Old 08-27-2012, 02:05 AM
Drew Drew is offline
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Yesterday was an exciting day for me. At 8:45 I picked up the wheels from getting powder coated, at 9:30 I started installing the suspension, and by 12:00 I was driving a MINI that I was really proud of. This afternoon I adjusted the ride height a little, cleaned it up, and shot some photos in a new location I wanted to try out.

The powder coat added just enough thickness that the center caps don't fit right, but I'll cure that soon. I'm sure there will be a few little things here and there, but my goal of getting this one setup within the first 30 days was accomplished. New tags just arrived and I'll be off the paper tag next week.

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