Alaskan Cougar

Words: Gavin Gounden / Pics: MS Photo
Originally known as the Toyota Corolla E90  this was Toyota’s sixth generation of cars to roll out of the Toyota production plant worldwide. Sold in select countries under the nameplate Conquest, one of them being South Africa.  For general export, the trim levels are Base, XL, GL, SE, and SE Limited. The GT-i was sold in limited numbers in certain countries.
 The 4WD wagon was sold from 1988 to 1994 and had different bodywork to other Corollas. It was called the All-Trac in the US and sold with the Tercel or Corolla name in some countries. In general, all models depart from the previous generation’s boxy styling, for a more contemporary look and improved aerodynamics. High performance GT-i models are powered by 4A-GE, and offered as 3-door hatchback, sedan, and 5-door liftback. The North American GT-S coupé shared the same engine.


I have encountered many motorheads here at Gas Magazine, but none so enthusiastic, passionate and excited about a feature as Kaveer. Driving all the way from KZN’s capital Pietermaritzburg in the early hours of the morning before you even thought about crispy bacon and sunny side up eggs. It is almost as if his relationship status on Facebook reads in a relationship with my 4AGZE Turbo.

In his words “The way she looks, sounds, feels when she’s been driven. She’s unique because she’s been customised by me from bonnet to boot. She has a personality of her own, gorgeous on the outside and a playful sense of torque within. However what makes her completely unique is the fact that I can drive her through daily commute. Beyond the facelift she still remains everything I initially wanted in a car “ a smooth appealing ride”
Sounds to me like 30 year old Mr K Gaydin has got himself a cougar 😉


When Kaveer decided to own a set of wheels at his tender age he wanted something cheap enough for him to purchase as well as economical enough for him to get  around with. After many disappointing pursuits he found her, a 1300 sport, roadworthy and fairly presentable. Just perfect, yet back then he never would have envisioned in his words:

“that the chemistry between us would have escalated to this point”

Seductively resprayed the original Alaska white, she sits snug on Pro race rims engulfed in Yokohama 205/40/17 tyres. Leaning low or bending over… whichever you prefer is done through a set of Jamex springs. Breaking through the night sky her eyes are so dreamy one can stare into them forever shone through diamond headlamps and a DTM style yellow headlight almost like the wink at foreplay. Her interior has been customised to match the exterior ie: custom seats, doorpads and dashboard. Controlled by a gleaming red Momo race steering wheel as boost, oil pressure, air fuel ratio and voltage is monitored through Auto gauges.



A custom painted candy apple engine bay sports a 4AGZE engine  arp head bolts, commetic head gasket, wiseco pistons, forged rods, turbonetics T3/T4 Turbo, 750cc injectors, external waste gate, dumpvalve, intercooler, oil catch tank, boost controller, polished boost pipes, walbro fuel pumps,  63 mm free flow exhaust system. She screams Kaveers choice of vocals through a pair of JVC 6×9 speakers with a Rockford Fosgate 12” subwoofer to keep the bass going powered by a 3000W monoblock amplifier. Kaveers favorite modification would be the contrasting engine bay against the white exterior aswell as the boost.

There is just something about keeping her under control when boost kicks in.. …No pun intended;). Her future holds a Nitrous Oxide system to get his adrenalin pumping further. Kaveer chooses to participate in the only the occasional legal drag events. It just goes to show the nature of the man who owns a 251KW 364NM (@1.5 bar boost) car which would outdo most of the frequent illegal racers. Kaveer’s wish is to handle her on the curves of the Atlantic road in Norway…We are still talking about the car Kavz right? Lol.

Special thanks or shout outs: Thanks to Parents, brothers; Nishaan, Asheen, Vishkar, Shaun, & all the guys whom have helped me in the many ways over the years,no matter how big or small the favours were, they’re much appreciated!  Most of all my wife Bivasha for supporting me and the project over the years, and motivating me to pursue my ambitions in building this car.



In concluding the question still remains would you trade the Alaskan cougar for a Ferrari F12 Berlinetta?

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