Nick Price’s “Tangerine Dream Mini” project began just over three years ago when Nick’s father Peter, an auto-electrician, bought home a Mini one weekend to do some work on. It was almost love at first sight and Nick bought a Mini soon after. It was a very ordinary 1976 Leyland Mini with 998 cc engine, minimal creature comforts, drum brakes all around and painted in British Racing Green.
After driving the Mini around for about six months, Nick had decided on a plan for his first ever car rebuild. Nick recalls, “I went through and worked out what I wanted to do engine wise and once I’d worked that out then I knew that I had to upgrade the suspension and put disks on the front for extra stopping power to match the extra horsepower. I also decided that I needed to do something to set myself apart from the rest of the pack”.
Here are just a few highlights of Nick’s Tangerine Dream Mini:
- Colour – a Ford colour called Electric Orange Pearl with contrasting black, rather than silver, trim
- Engine – 1,046 cc capacity with roller rockers, Monte Carlo retro style lightened flywheel and RE13 turbo cam.
- Eaton M45 supercharger with SU HIF 44 carburettor.
- Wheels – genuine 6” x 10” Minilites and Yokohama 165/70 A032Rs tyres.
- Brakes – 4 pot MiniSport disks up front and Minifin drums at the rear. Spax coil-overs are fitted as well as a Quickrack 2.2 turn steering rack.
- Matching Dakota digital gauges which include analogue needles along with digital readouts. One unit has a 160 mph speedo, plus fuel and volts, and the other has an 8000 rpm tacho with water temperature and oil pressure.
- Super clean engine bay with concealed wiring loom, braided hoses and all unwanted holes filled.
- Cruise control, electric windows and hidden CD head unit and speakers
- LEDs for all internal lights, including on the doors, for both looks and low power usage. New headlights ordered from eBay include LED daytime running lights.
- Custom interior trim complete with the reverse “S” flashes on the dash and doors.
Nick’s first serious outing with his Tangerine Dream Mini was in August 2013 to Townsville’s “Extravaganza de Engine” car show held at Bluewater Park as part of the Northern Beaches Festival where he won the Sports Car trophy as well as the People’s Choice trophy
Nick Price’s Tangerine Dream Mini is a testament to what can be achieved by a novice car builder with hard work, great advice and assistance, meticulous research, an eye to detail, and a desire to do something a little different.
Hopefully we’ll see more of Nick’s Tangerine Dream Mini in motoring magazines in the near future.