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February 2012 - twelve (P11)

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    Posted: 23 Jan 2012 at 12:19am

Congratulations on winning February 2012 COTM Phil! A lovely rare BT3 coloured Nissan Primera P11 and packing some choice modifications too! How does it feel bagging this exclusive award and the awesome COTM trophy as well?

It’s so difficult putting into words how amazing this feels. I’ve had many ups and downs with this car but this has made everything 100% worth it!!!

Before we talk cars, modifications and mechanics, we’d love to find out about you the owner. Please tell us about yourself and what you get up to, away from the NPOC.

I’m a 26 year old bachelor from Surrey. Unfortunately I’m still living at home with my parents due to not being able to afford the deposit for a house on my own (does anyone in Surrey want a lodger?)

I work as Wintel support for T-Systems. This is usually met with blank looks. T-Systems is a sister company of T-Mobile providing IT solutions to clients such as T-Mobile, Orange, Philips, Shell, VW and Linde. Wintel support is a fancy way of saying I support Windows servers running on Intel hardware. I hate it but it pays well and during this economic climate can’t really afford not to have a job.

Most of my time away from work and the forums is spent one of 3 places. Under the car, in front of the PS3 or at a bar (shocker).

How did you find the NPOC forums and are we any good? Would you happily recommend the club to other Nissan Primera owners?

I found the forums when I was performing a brake service on the P11 and had hit a road block in the form of two different rear discs being available. First impressions were fantastic, easily the warmest welcome I’ve had on any forum. 2 days later I paid my membership, think that’s fair to say I liked the little part I had seen in the General Section.

I not only would recommend it I actively do to anyone I meet that owns a Primera as well  as people that used to own them and speaks highly of them (surprisingly large amount of people that regret getting rid of them).

You’re an Elite Member here (our highest level of paying membership), are you getting value for money with that? And please sell us the reason, why everyone should become Elite.

Free breakfast at Ace Café and free food/drink at JAE make it absolutely worth it! The discounts I’ve received over the years through being an Elite member have likely far outweighed what I’ve spent. In this age it’s very rare to get back what you give but with Elite membership you definitely do.

Like many before you, you came to the forums with a completely standard Nissan Primera. You also came with this quote in your opening introduction post: “I've always gone with the image that it's generally old people that drive them (Primera’s) at 20 MPH”.. So here we are now a few years later, you own a very nicely sorted car so what changed with your stance?

Before joining NPOC I had no idea about this sort of club culture. I’d seen modified cars and just assumed they’d come about from people reading Max Power (RIP) and the like. I certainly had never seen the Nissan Primera as car for modifying. I didn’t even know that a GT model existed.

What got you into a Nissan Primera? Was it on the list of cars you wanted to own, or was it a chance purchase?

It was a chance purchase. My previous car was a gutless 106 Diesel which had developed a list of faults so long that I had to get rid of it. I found the Primera for sale at a reasonable price and in a nice colour and thought there was no chance I could get insured for a 2.0 litre. After doing some quotes and realising big engine doesn’t always mean big insurance I jumped at it and never looked back.

The colour code of your car “BT3” is not a common one in the club. Did you know about the uniqueness of this colour when you bought your car, or did you just buy it because it was a colour you liked?

I didn’t know it was that unique as there was a Nissan Primera P11 144 the same colour down the road from me (which at the time I didn’t know was any different from a P11 LOL). It was only after joining here I became educated with what a rare colour it is, and it became very apparent how rare it was when trying to source a wing for it after putting a massive dent in it one year.

The Nissan Primera isn’t the only car you own, what others do you own and which one of them is your “daily driver” and why?

I’ve currently got 2 cars that are solely mine and unfortunately I also have part ownership of a third.

Obviously there is the Nissan Primera P11 SX. This is my daily drive and car I am most proud of.

The second is a Toyota MR2. I’ve wanted an MR2 mk2 since as long as I’ve been into cars (easily over 10 years), so when my Nan passed a few years back I used my inheritance to buy one. With such a long build up it would have to be the right one, couldn’t just be any MR2. A few months looking I had my hands on a 10th Anniversary Limited Edition (number 122 of 250) MR2 in Caribbean Blue (this colour will crop up again in the spec list). The car had only done 65,000 miles in 15 years and was completely standard. I endeavoured to keep it standard and it did up until the first MOT when it failed as the exhaust had rusted, when I found out a standard exhaust was going to cost £1500 I decided to go aftermarket so it now has a Mongoose cat back. Over the years it’s had a couple of other mods but nothing that can’t be put back to standard.

The third car is a Volkswagen Golf 1.6 which I co-own with my mum. We thought at the time it would be a good idea to get as it should be cheap to run for me and she could use it when she needed a boot (as she drives a Saab 9-3 convertible). However I get better fuel economy from the Primera, and she makes do with the Saab’s boot space 99% of the time. Every time it comes to selling it she makes up some excuse not to so I’ve disowned it.

33% Geek / 33% Petrolhead / 33% Alcoholic – Would be my tongue in cheek summary of you, if I were asked… How accurate are my percentages LOL?

HAHAHA fantastic question but that’s only 99% (1% pervert/sex pest seems too low). I think it’s pretty accurate, though the geek and alcoholic sometimes fight for control but never really gain anything.

This year I’m promising myself the alcoholic will be reduced, but he’s already beaten that out of me a few weeks ago with an all night/early morning binge LOL

The petrolhead is the only real constant as if I’m gaming it’s often a racing game and if I’m drinking I’ll usually find someone that will listen to me ramble on about cars in some way (mine, theirs, motorsport etc).

On to the modifications, now would be a great time to tell us all about your Nissan Primera P11 SX! So please list your full spec and all modifications, inside and out:


GT front bumper

GT rear bumper

GT sideskirts

GT Spoiler

GT dials

Fog lights (SX didn’t come with them for some reason)

Front & Rear flat wipers

JDM Xenon Headlights

Smoked rear lights

Smoked side indicators

SX badge removed from rear

Rear Primera and Nissan badges resprayed Satin black

De-vinyled pillars

Momo Gear knob

Blue footwell neons

Dash console resprayed Caribbean Blue

Rocker cover resprayed Caribbean Blue

Intake plenum resprayed Caribbean Blue

Fake Nismo oil cap

3M DiNoc Carbon fibre gear lever surround

Brushed stainless steel dial surround

Chrome dial rings

Plasma dials

Genuine Nissan wind deflectors

Bonnet lifters

GT wiper stalk

GTLE rear leather seats

Powder coated purple radiator supports

Blue dress up washers around the engine bay

NPOC tax disc holder

NPOC stickers

Dezent Type-V 17” wheels


JDM strut brace

A&S Cold air intake

Apexi cone filter in the wing

Long life cat back


Toyosports manifold and downpipe

BC Coilovers

Grounding kit

D1 spec radiator cap

B&M style short shifter

Polyurethane exhaust hangers


Kenwood KDC-6047U head unit

30GB iPod

JVC 6x9s in rear shelf

Alpine 13cm speakers

What’s the most enjoyable change you’ve made so far?

Every time I do something new it becomes my new favourite for a period of time. Favourites that have stood out to me are the JDM HIDs, JDM strut brace and BC coilovers. But all of them are nothing compared to the GT bodykit. Finally getting that on transformed the car and how I see it.

If I gave £500 right now and told you it had to be spent on the car, what would you buy?

Paint, paint and paint. Cameras hide a lot of blemishes but I see them everyday. I’m sure every time I clean the car a new stone chip or scratch has appeared.

If money was no object and you could do anything you wanted to the SX, what would you do?

For starters I’d get a VVL engine in there, complete with cams and proper mapping, then I’d polybush absolutely everything I possibly can, followed by a full respray (in BT3 of course). I’m always tempted by a turbo but Nissan must have kept the Primera N/A for a reason.

Now I know you’re always keen to bust out the tool kit and DIY a lot of the stuff that has been achieved with your car - Is there anything you would leave for the professionals to do, or are you always ready to give it a go?

Before joining here servicing was the only thing I would do myself, referring heavily to the Haynes book of lies. 3 years later quite a lot has changed and there is literally nothing I wouldn’t have a go at. I can’t do welding but I’d love to learn, just not on my own car!

I try to be realistic though, if I can’t do something I know when to admit defeat and ask someone to help.

What was the hardest modification / job you’ve taken on??

The hardest job I took on was replacing a tiny 3” water pipe around the back of the engine block. It seemed easy enough but the reality was everything above it had to come off just to get leverage (the inlet manifold, fuel rail, fuel injectors and numerous other pipes and electrical connectors). The car was off the road for over 2 weeks as I ran into numerous problems and also threw my back out part way through. But firing it up afterwards was probably the most satisfying feeling I’ve ever had.

Time for the quick fire question round! (and a tweak for 2012!):

How long have you been an NPOC Member?

3 years and some change.

What makes you smile?

Hanging out with friends (offline and online).

What makes you sad?

Not really sure but I know Forest Gump always makes me cry.

Tell us something we don't know about you..

Probably not that much, I’m pretty open. I like chick flicks and romantic comedies, dunno if that’s already out there.

Your favourite colour?


Your lucky number?

Urrrmn 12.

What will it say on your gravestone?

“I was wrong, wanking can kill you.”

Your favourite drink (any)?

Becks. Are you buying?

If you could steal the keys to someone else’s car (on NPOC) for 1 day, which car would you steal and why?

“ragt20”s Mystic. Just to prove it exists outside of JAE and Rolling Road days.

Although I’d love to get behind the wheel of “ChrisLK”s track P10. It looks amazing out on track. 

You are a club meets whore (RESPECT!), which meet of the year do you look forward to the most? Is there a meet or event the NPOC should be going to, that we currently don’t?

Close call between Winchester and Ferry Meadows. Has to go to Winchester though as it was my first ever meet and always falls around my birthday.

Only event I miss is Dorset Jap Car Show but not a lot we can do about that.

What has been your favourite all time ever NPOC Meet so far and why?

JAE 2011. It was when I had finally got the car to the standard it’s at now. I certainly didn’t get bored of people complimenting the car.

PR cap on - Please tell everyone why they should take the time to get out to our club meets (regional or national).

Talking on the forums is a good way to get to know people but it’s no substitute for the fun that is had with meeting up with everyone in person. Distance isn’t a valid reason when the NCN guys come over from Holland every year.

NPOC’s just a big family, except you want to see them every month.

Any plans to move away from the Nissan Primera, or does this car tick all the boxes and is a keeper for many years yet?

I’ve never made it secret that I’ve thought about selling a few times but there’s one reason I never did. This car is a part of me, and not a useless part like the appendix. I genuinely believe it will kill me to sell it.

NPOC for life (regardless of what car you own and drive) or leg it when you change car?

I’m afraid you’re stuck with me for life.

Tell Carlos Ghosn why he needs to bring back the Nissan Primera brand:

All the other Japanese car giants have success in the mid sized family market but Nissan have got a big hole to fill. Bring back one of the most successful marques in Nissan’s history. You’ve got a market right here that are very interested to see it.

Many thanks for telling us all about yourself and your sweetaz Nissan Primera P11, it’s great to have tagged you both in the NPOC history book! Congratulations once again for winning Car Of The Month for February 2012 Phil! Please end this feature, in your own words and feel free to thank anyone who’s made this one possible.

I want to thank everybody on NPOC that has ever given criticism of the car (good and bad). You’ve all helped in some way in shaping the way this car has come to be.

“Ant-Dat” for his endless advice when I’ve got myself stuck.

“ragt20” for providing me with lots of parts that are on the car today. And the numerous group buys he runs for clothing/service kits etc.

“edk_N16” for every time you’ve dropped by to help out with the car and a big thanks for some of the photos you see in this feature!

And again everyone that makes it out to all the meets. They wouldn’t be the same if we didn’t get so many people out to them.

And lastly a big thanks to the club owners for giving me the opportunity to join the staff team. I hope I continue to do the club proud for many more years to come.

Congratulations once again to Phil!

February 2012 COTM - twelve
Written by essNchill

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