Not content to relegate his creativity to yet another BMW, Chris Marino of Century West BMW decided to exert his creative energy on the oft-forgotten-of-late BMW brand: MINI Cooper. As the General Sales Manager for Universal City MINI and Century West BMW, Marino had his veritable pick-of-the-litter.
“I had to do it on a Works Hardtop,” Marino says as though it was a foregone conclusion while he’s quick to point out that this particular build was a collaboration with the world-famous West Coast Customs and its CEO, Ryan Friedlinghaus.
“Ryan is a good friend of mine and unbeknownst to many, a great BMW enthusiast—someone who has a lot of respect for the BMW brand and someone who has been very guarded with any projects related to BMW & MINI as a whole.” Marino shares.
“When Chris approached me on the JCW design, I was really excited about it,” says Friedlinghaus. “I shared Chris’ desire to take an amazing hatch and make it less-understated while at the same time not take away from the unique style that is the MINI Cooper.”
The result of Marino & Friedlinghaus’ union may be “understated if understated is synonymous with “sick” and “viciously-cool”. With the design in mind, the West Coast Customs team went to work: custom matte-black wrap, shadowline exterior trim, gas cap, front grill and a subtle 35 percent window tint. Both Marino & Friedlinghaus, early-on, agreed to utilize MINI parts whenever possible so shadowline headlight & taillight trim pieces were sourced along with a gorgeous set of 19” JCW Style 526 wheels.