Stance is an odd topic, especially for me. I’m no hater, but I’m not entirely in love with the craze either. In my opinion, stance is almost one of those debates that could be as relatable as chocolate vs. vanilla. The folks with “hella stance” believe their method is entirely radical, and the folks flaunting form and function feel anything with “hella” in it is a complete travesty. Yet what blows my mind even more than hanging out with Sam Du for a weekend, is that even though we are all under the same umbrella of car enthusiasts, our world is almost completely divided between something as simple as ride height and camber settings, or in the case of choc vs. vanil—“flavor.” But hey, to each his own right? And rather than trying to come up with some fancy story of what flavor wins the ultimate contest, I’m going to tell you why pure enthusiasts build our community, and why ice cream itself is so damn good.
For many of you, no matter what spectrum you’re on, this probably isn’t the first time you’ve seen Armand’s slammed widebody MR2. Though the wheels have recently been updated, the build has graced the pages of many popular stance sites and has been whored throughout your Facebook feed time and time again. Either you’ve looked up to it and drooled over how perfect the fitment is, or you’ve been one of the horrible Internet haters commenting about how he’s completely ruined his MR2. In my case, I have no opinion or statement other than the fact that Armand Pranadi is a full blown enthusiast through and through with nothing but straight octane running through his veins.
Truth be told, my location ended up being the opposite of what I had expected. The canyon road was janky, filled with potholes and barely had a single pull off for proper shooting time. Immediately, I knew this wasn’t going to be the best situation for a stancey car (my fault), but Armand remained more positive than I ever could’ve been, and didn’t give a single F as we winded through the narrow blinding turns. See, one of the great things about this widebody MR2 is that it’s static, entirely static and daily driven on a set of custom fabricated coilovers. And I truly believe it takes a lot of love to risk a flawless body for a single photoshoot.
DD’ing a car like this in the LA area is also pretty ballsy on its own with the amount of theft that goes on around here. The body is an authentic TRD GT2000 widebody kit, the engine has an upgraded turbo along with a bunch of other goodies, the interior has certainly been upgraded to fit the bill and those new Blitz wheels are fully custom barreled. Needless to say, it would be a massive inconvenience if any of these parts were ever snatched. Through cracked bumpers and split fenders, the wing on this car is actually the clearest example of how much life it really sees. See what happened was, after a night on the town, an intoxicated friend actually decided to lean on the wing (doh!) causing it to snap in half (doh!!). And because it’s an extremely rare piece only available in Japan, Armand has found himself struggling for a replacement.
With all said and done, I apologize if I lost y’all in my opening ice cream analogy. What I’m really trying to say is that though this car may not have originally been my exact cup of tea, I ended up falling in love with it solely by how much of a true enthusiast the owner was. By how much love he had for all things automotive and how much respect and patience was given. You may have a monster trucked-out S13 and Armand’s still going to be excited about what you’re doing—and that’s how it should be. The majority of us are all enthusiasts and we all love ice cream. Stance is just his current flavor of choice.
1993 Toyota MR2
Occupation IT Consultant/System Admin
Power 366whp/321 lb-ft @ 6,895RPM
Engine 3rd gen 3S-GTE CT20b turbo; 3rd gen camshafts; RMR intake manifold; K&N intake; metal headgasket with ARP head studs; 540cc injectors; HKS SSQV BOV; A’PEXi GT exhaust; Berk 3" downpipe; dual SPAL fans with shroud; Alcohol Injection Systems water injection
Drivetrain ACT six-puck unsprung clutch; Fidanza flywheel
Engine Management JDM ‘93 ECU, HKS EVC IV boost controller; S7 boost, oil pressure, water temp & volt meter gauges
Footwork & Chassis custom coilovers by Steven Pan w/ Koni Yellow shocks; Eibach front springs; TEIN rear springs; modified Cusco camber plates; OBX camber bolts; Tanabe 22mm anti-sway bars; High & Tight end links; TRD strut bars
Wheels & Tires 18x10" -5 front, 19x12.5" -15 rear custom Blitz TechnoSpeed Z1 wheels; 235/30R18 Toyo T1R front tires, 265/30R19 Archillies rear tires; Project Kics lug nuts
Exterior Ferrari Corso Rossa paint; TRD 2000GT widebody; Shine Auto carbon-fiber rear grille; ‘94 Kouki tails; wiper delete
Interior Spacro Torino seats; MOMO steering wheel; NRG quick release hub
Thanks You Steven Pan, Tee Giang, Jeevy Bathan from ETL Garage, ABC Bodyshop and to all my friends who have supported me along the way