Antisocial Media

Antisocial Media


It’s hardly a revelation to say that the Nissan Micra takes more than its fair share of lambasting and lampooning in the UK. It’s a granny’s car, a throwaway shopper hatch, a basic and unexciting thing. Or so the general populace will have you believe. The unfortunate reality that a significant percentage of Micras are, in fact, being bumped into trolley stands in supermarket car parks by doddery old crumblies has done much to cement this viewpoint. You just can’t make them cool.


…or can you? Well, it all depends on your definition of ‘cool’, really. Is having countless TikTok fans cheering you on a marker of cool? If so, then this particular Micra is just about is ice-cold as they get. Yes, it’s obnoxious. Yes, it’s ridiculous. But that’s the point – and when you dig deeper beneath the surface, you find that this deliberately tongue-in-cheek aesthetic is underpinned by some genuine engineering ingenuity.

Jack McNeill is the mastermind behind it all, and he’s a man who’s crammed an impressive amount of motoring adventures into the three short years since he got his driving licence. “My first car was a Beats Edition VW Polo 1.2 TSI,” he recalls, “which I absolutely loved – as you do with your first car. But as I started to learn more about the car community, experience different cars and develop my own tastes, I learnt that modern German cars which tend to have numerous driver aids were not to my taste. However, that car didn’t escape my ownership without having a custom exhaust, a satin grey wrap, Bola B25 wheels and a remap.”


Between that point and this, Jack’s been on a bit of a motoring frenzy, having owned four different K11 Nissan Micras, two ZZW30 Toyota MR2s, a Mk1 Toyota Yaris and a Suzuki Jimny. Clearly the fella has found his niche within the warm furrow of small Japanese machinery. These cars all experienced various levels of modification and mischief, and it’s the Yaris that draws the clearest line to the present day, as that was chronicled in instalments on TikTok before being raffled off. At this point it’s probably worth mentioning that Jack has 1,200,000+ followers on TikTok…


“The reason why I chose a Micra to modify this time was that I knew I wanted to do a series on TikTok with an old cheap car,” says Jack, “and since I had a little bit of experience with Micras already at this point, I chose to buy another K11. I found this one on Facebook Marketplace for £300 – it had done 88,000 miles and was in reasonable condition for the price. The car came equipped with wind-up windows, a 5-speed manual gearbox, the 1.0L CG10DE engine, three doors and a glorious blue paint job.”


Now, if you’re familiar with the format of TikTok, you’ll know that it’s all shortform video, generally rich in rapid jump-cuts and with a relentless high-energy vibe, and it’s this ethos which helps to shape the impressively swift evolution of the project. A minute or two of content and the car is transformed, sending Jack scurrying back to the garage again. And this eagerness is no more evident than in what’s gone on under the bonnet. “Well, the monstrous 1.0-litre engine now has a small but characterful turbo,” he grins. “This setup produces a sensational 114bhp, which in fairness almost doubles the stock power. The turbo kit was supplied by Gizfab, which included a front-mount intercooler and boost piping, a modified sump to run the oil return, 2.5” downpipe, tubular manifold, T25-based turbo, Turbosmart Ultragate 38 external wastegate, and a screamer pipe.” Bolstered by uprated fuelling and a few other tweaks, the new EMU Classic ECU has been custom-mapped by RRR Engineering, and it’s a bit of an animal.



Jack’s taken a methodical approach here, and the Micra – whose nickname is Boris – isn’t just about dumb horsepower; there are intelligent solutions throughout the chassis to suit. “Boris is running BC Racing BR Series coilovers,” he says. He will always run steelies, as the popularity of the car was entirely down to a video of painting the standard steel wheels pink – but recently we’ve upgraded from the stock rims to a wider set of banded steels that are 8”-wide on the rear and 7” on the front.”

When it comes to the aesthetics, Jack’s keen to throw around terms like ‘obnoxious’, ‘horrible’ and ‘tasteless’, because the whole point of this build is that it’s a bit of fun. So outside we find a matte black wrap with garish pink stripes and flames, a pink GTR badge (“it adds horsepower, of course”), copious tints of varying grades, and the biggest possible spoiler that Gizfab could provide. Inside it’s equally polarising: the EP3 Civic Type R seats appear to be a particular bone of contention for viewers, and of course there’s all sorts of pink in here too – the steering wheel, the dash, the floor mats, the fluffy dice. The gearstick is a samurai sword, and the stereo install is highly antisocial.




“The TikTok series that’s responsible for the creation of Boris was just a bit of a joke at first, and it’s turned into this crazy social media series that has tens of millions of views,” says Jack. “It still blows my mind thinking about it! The inspiration behind it was honestly just lockdown boredom, I thought it would be a funny idea, and it’s just unreal how popular it’s become. The concept of the series is that my followers on TikTok choose the modifications that I do to the cars that I buy, but more specifically the top comment on each video. I think the engaging aspect of the series is what has allowed it to do so well and in turn, it’s allowed me to – unbelievably - do everything to the cars that the numerous top comments have said!”




What’s really engaging about Jack and Boris is that nothing is off-limits, and it’s all authentic. Whatever that top comment says, he’ll do it. But while it all looks amusing and strange, it all has to be done absolutely properly – because the concept may have started as a wheeze, but the performance and handling of this clown-car is no joke.

“When I’m driving Boris around, the car garners a large amount of attention,” Jack smiles, “whether it’s from young people who have watched the series and love it, or from old people who give complete death stares and looks of disapproval! As for future plans? I think Boris is almost finished with his mods. There are a few minor things, like getting his new steelies painted pink and putting some proper tyres on there, but other than that I think I’m just going to enjoy the car, never ever sell it, and spend my time, money, and effort on other builds which I know my followers are keen to see happen.” So there you have it – keep an eye on that TikTok feed, it’ll be very entertaining to see what happens next.




Engine & transmission:

CG10DE 1.0-litre, T25-based turbo, Turbosmart Ultragate 38 external wastegate and screamer pipe, custom front-mount intercooler, Walbro 255 fuel pump, QG18DE injectors, custom 2.5” exhaust system with twin-tip side-exit by The Exhaust Company, custom intake by The Exhaust Company, EMU Classic ECU, custom loom and wiring setup, custom map by RRR Engineering, CG Motorsport Stage 3 paddle clutch


7x13” (front) and 8x13” (rear) banded Micra steels, BC Racing BR Series coilovers.


EP3 Civic Type R seats, pink fluffy dice, pink aftermarket steering wheel, pink painted dash, pink floor mats, samurai sword gearknob, Pioneer head unit, uprated tweeters and mids, huge subwoofer


Matte black wrap with pink stripes and flames, carbon-wrapped rear wing by Gizfab, tinted windows, chameleon tint windscreen, dark smoke tint on taillights, light smoke tint on headlights


I just want to say a massive thank you to RRR Engineering, who did an amazing job with mapping Boris and sorting out his ECU and custom loom. Also, I want to say a massive thanks to Gizfab for not only supplying the kit which was of very high quality, but also for having great customer service and answering all of my questions while my naive brain was trying to figure out how the kit fitted. Also, a big thanks must go to The Exhaust Company for sorting out Boris’ custom exhaust and custom intake which are both amazing pieces of fabrication. Most importantly, I need to say a massive thanks to Dan who is a really good mate of mine. He helped me out with fitting a lot of the mods which I had no clue how to fit, and has spent a lot of his time helping the Boris and Theresa builds come to fruition; without him I don’t know if any of it would have been possible.”