With the first full week of 2014 upon us, we're reflecting on the past year's magazine covers. Call us sentimental old fools, but these front pages captured another year of Modified and the unique stories we brought you in every issue. Along with each cover we've also included three stories from within each edition -- let us know in the comments section below which issues and stories you dug most.
The first issue of the year brought pages and pages of feature cars, tons of tech and of course no shortage of cars to drool over. The story on Alex Witkin's 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX impressed us with its "you dream it, you build it" mantra, resulting in the incredible modified WRX you see above. Archie Santos' fire orange 2008 BMW M3 Coupe was modified for practicality, performance and weekend track events, resulting in this Bavarian beauty. In addition, we covered the seventh annual Wicked Big Meet, showcasing 1,600 stunning Subaru's and their owners, creating one big candy store for enthusiasts.
FWD or RWD is a battle that's raged for ages, but which layout really is superior? In this issue we test the hot 2013 Scion FR-S (RWD) against the 2012 Honda Civic Si (FWD) to find out. Greg Thompson's 2005 Mazda RX-8 GT above is what we like to call "Rotary Royalty" for claiming the coveted Best-in-Show award at the Deals Gap Rotary Rally. Finally, SEMA is one of the largest automotive events of the year and in this issue we brought you some of the best and coolest new products from the 2012 event.
We've all heard the saying, "Don't judge a book by its cover." But what about a car? The pictured 2001 Honda S2000 you see above is a prime example of the axiom, because while it may look stock on the outside it features a powerful Import Muscle V8 Swap Kit. Meanwhile Jamie Johnson's 1993 Nissan NX2000 above showcases a long-running love between car and owner and how this little NX2000 was given a second chance. Finally, we brought you some products from 2012 PRI, a huge industry show featuring racing and performance oriented venders without the crowds and madness of SEMA.
As summer began the cars just kept getting hotter, such as the 2004 Honda S2000 above that boasts incredible racecar looks while also being used as a rolling guinea pig for ScienceOfSpeed, testing forthcoming products. Or Timothy Desper's always cool 1972 Datsun 240Z finished in a brilliant Laguna Seca blue and the right mods to make this classic alive in current day. Finally, there was another auto show on a large scale, the 2013 Tokyo Auto Salon, showcasing some hot and crazy rides.
The moment when you fell head-over-heels for a car you just couldn't afford -- that happened to the owner of the above 2010 Mitsubishi Evolution X, Scott McIver, and that's how the car and his business, Kaizen Tuning, were born. Or how about when you got bitten by the tuner bug? We all know someone like that and Steve Devers' 2003 Nissan 350Z Track, pictured above, is the perfect example. His tuned 350Z just might be a keeper. Lastly how does gaining 100.4 whp sound? That was made possible thanks to Jackson Racing's R18 supercharger, which made the 2006 Honda Civic DX you see above into a fun-to-drive, unassuming street car.
Jeff Hoffman's 1991 Acura NSX shown above isn't your typical bolt-on, add-on job; rather it's a serious labor of love. The owner purchased the car with the intention of making it stand out from the rest and that he did, creating a one-of-a-kind NSX. Possibly more surprising is Aaron Ochoco's 2005 Porsche 911 Carrera -- nothing too over the top here, just some nice touches thanks to interior upgrades, engine tuning and a clean exterior. When adding a turbocharger isn't enough to satisfy your craving for speed, there is the TX2K event; in its 13th year in 2013, it's dedicated to bringing speed junkies several days of horsepower heaven.
Those are two images from the same article, because the 2013 Street Car Shootout was a huge event featuring a number of teams battling it out for the top spot. From Scion FR-S to varying kinds of Honda Civic and even a Mazdaspeed3, the competition put teams and their cars to the ultimate test: on the race track. Additional links are below. The issue also featured the V2Lab Mystery Meat event, which attracted thousands of cars and people showing off crazy builds and powerful monsters -- doesn't get much better than thousands of incredible machines all meeting in the city of Orlando, Florida.
While winter came up fast, the cars in this issue were anything but cold. Take, for example, the 1993 Mazda RX-7 pictured above built by Phil Sohn who is a prominent figure in the American rotary scene. The result of lots of teamwork and dedication is this super fine RX-7. And then there is the introduction of the 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS project car. The purpose of this project car was to see what it would take to make it a decent track car while still being a civilized street car. If the Sonic isn't your cup of tea, there's always the RX-7 Track Day Special featuring one of the tuner scene's most beloved cars let loose on the circuit. Nothing gets better than that.
All good things must come to an end and that includes the 2013 year of Modified -- but not before we highlight three more stories for you. The 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X and 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX STi widebody feature showcased two wide, low and mean-looking tuner cars. These two would surely turn heads stopped at any streetlight. And there's always room in a tuner's heart for the Mazda Miata, like Adrian Chu's 1991 beauty. The owner wanted to turn what some consider to be a "chick car" into a mean tuned machine. Finally, if you're looking for something more extreme, try Chase Lautenbach's 2011 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X on for size. While it may look aggressive on the outside it's even more so under the hood; an insane 1,000 hp is what makes this EVO a lot more than just a fun driver.