It’s got enough audio to register on the Richter scale, but this really is only the tip of the iceberg for Scott’s fantastic, hydro’d modified Nissan Cube. Prepare for a big slice quirkiness!
A mobile coffee shop, a miniature animal carrier and even a giant pretzel dispenser. Since its refreshed launch in 2002, we’ve seen the Nissan Cube’s lovable, dinky nature exploited to assist all sorts of businesses and personal ventures. Because those unconventional boxy Japanese lines in that small, cute package are enough to melt the hearts of anyone who looks at one, right?
Scott Pickles is one man who thinks otherwise. Instead of embracing the more well-known side of the Cube’s persona, he’s instead hardened it up with some winning show car modifications and a killer sound system install, to prove this little car can do serious as well as any other. Get ready to change your mind on how you see Cubes forever. Trust us. This one’s something else.
Perhaps slightly unusually for a car this extensively modified, this Cube was in fact Scott’s first, starting as nothing more than a daily and gradually evolving into a full-fat show stopper over a number of years. “It was standard when I bought it, apart from a horrific tribal vinyl that’d been put on!” he remembers, about picking up his then-black motor.
“Electrical gremlins plagued the first two years of ownership,” he recalls, telling us the horrific story of going through three whole ECUs and ordering a bespoke new wiring loom from Nissan Japan to iron out a pesky short in the electrical system (all covered under warranty, thank goodness).
Despite the hiccups, Scott didn’t hang about when it came to adding his personal touch to the Cube, ordering coilovers before he’d even collected the car and getting it sitting refreshingly lower in no time. Already looking fairly unique on the UK Cube scene, it only took a month for Scott’s car to take a truly unique turn, in the form of a load of US styling bits shipped over from an American Cube owner’s car which he was breaking.
Gaining momentum rapidly, the course of the next year brought even more drastic changes to Scott’s Cube as he began taking it where not many other owners had ever been before: a bespoke custom exhaust (unsurprisingly they don’t really make off-the-shelf items for this car), and a respray of the standard wheels in candy purple (because why not?).
By this stage, Scott had reached something of a fork in the road. Did he follow convention, sell up, and start seriously modifying something more mainstream? Or follow his gut instinct and take his Cube on a journey that no other example in the world had gone on? Starting to feel how much potential the car had, he thankfully chose the latter route, which began with a delve into the world of adjustable suspension.
“I looked into air ride, as it seemed to be the route most people took,” he says. “I got really put off by the price, though.” A chance encounter with Ray from Rayvern Hydraulics meant a solution was found fairly quickly, though. For those who know, Ray is THE man when it comes to getting your car bouncing on custom hydraulic suspension setups. He quickly whipped up a plan for the Cube. Albeit with a bit of a sacrifice. “I had to cut my coilovers up to use as camber-adjustable top mounts,” Scott painfully reveals. “But it’s still the only Cube on hydros on the planet, so I think it was more than worth it!”
With a multi-height, remote-control setup at his disposal, Scott is now able to dump his Cube on the floor at a moment’s notice – a sight that never fails to put a smile on your face! The exterior was promptly finished off with some sumptuous one-piece WORK rims and a purple sparkle re-spray in a nod to the car’s old wheel colour. Although a fairly outrageous hue, with its awesome JDM rims and a killer stance, the car now looks more grown up than ever, commanding respect like no other Cube quite manages.
Now a regular on the show circuit, Scott began bumping into more people who could help suggest where to take the Cube from here. “I met a girl called Laura at the Gravity Show,” he tells us. “She’d just had a big install on her car, and the Bass Hull guys who did it were keen to find other cars to work on.” After a chat with the team, the car was booked in for a few weeks’ work at the firm, after Scott’s final show on the calendar, Ultimate Stance.
How much car audio can you cram into a Nissan Cube? More than you might think, if this beast is anything to go by! The system revolves around Alphard Machete components, with a total of 12 speakers, six tweeters and four mahoosive subs on hand to get those fillings rattling. There’s even a TV in the bootlid. Because, why not? As you can see, the install is top-notch and provides a quality sound inside and out. Andrest assured, it now packs one hell of a punch. “It sounds phenomenal! Clear and crisp, and not all about the bass,” Scott grins.
“We measured it at over 147db on a test run when bedding the system in.” We can’t think of a better way to make use out of that boxy rear section than to stuff it with a hefty install!
Scott’s journey with his humble Cube has elevated him from a new driver to one of the scene’s favourite faces in the course of just a few years. There’s not many shows in the UK you won’t see his mighty Cube proudly appearing at, never failing to draw an overwhelmed crowd in the process. By daring to be different, Scott’s making one hell of a noise right now.
TECH SPEC: NISSAN CUBE
Full respray in Purple Sparkle Pearl; ATI USDM front grille hydro-dipped in carbon fibre; smoothed bootlid; USDM marker lights; USDM marker lights; carbon fibre hydro-dipped wing mirrors and side panel; modified Heko wind deflectors.
USDM Stillen air intake with Pipercross foam filter; uprated spark plugs and leads; custom 2.5in manifold-back exhaust system; USDM SEMA Show engine cover; Tegiwa anodised battery brace; Tegiwa anodised ancillaries/bolts.
Rayvern Hydraulics two-way hydraulic suspension setup with BC Racing camber-adjustable top mounts; modified USDM Tanabe strut brace; uprated bushes all-round; 7.5x18in WORK Emotion D9R one-piece alloy wheel, WORK wheel nuts; modified rolled inner arches; OEM Cube disc brakes.
Retrimmed front seats; LED mood lighting throughout; custom front and rear doorcards; custom fabricated ported sub wall, hydraulics enclosure, amplifier mounts and bootlid; TV fitted to the boot lid.
3 x Alphard Machete speakers with 1x tweeter per front door, 1x Alphard Machete speaker and 1x tweeter per rear door, 4x 15in Alphard Machete Sub Woofers, 4x Alphard Machete speakers and 2x tweeters in boot lid.
Pawel, Bartek and Boris at Bass Hull for the Install; Wayne and Leanne at Bodyworx for the paint and hydro-dipping; Ray at Rayvern Hydraulics for the amount of custom work he has done for me; Rhys and Emma at Defined Detail for looking after the car throughout my show calendar and providing all my vinyl; Faru595 for the continuous pushing to get the audio installed and being a motivation to finish the project; #TeamDefined for the support and my mum and dad for the continuous support and help where needed.