The Miami custom auto scene is unique. Bright, loud, and fully-custom exotics, Jeeps, trucks, Donks, and everything in between, making the Magic City arguably the epicenter of vehicle customization. And at the center of this world is Alex Vega’s The AutoFirm, who has pushed and helped build the scene for over two decades. With a massive list of famous and not so famous repeat clientele, The AutoFirm thrives in the art of making them unique custom rides.
Pairing up with his long time friend, singer and songwriter, model, and custom car enthusiast, Teyana Talor, they represent the East in the Slingshot Best of the Builders challenge to customize a 2020 Polaris Slingshot SL.
“I had heard that the new model was out and I was excited about it because I loved my first one, and I’m even more excited because they are making an automatic. Alex converted my manual to automatic on my first Slingshot,” Teyana details.
“It’s gonna be tough to do this one better, but we will kill it. I had previously built Teyana a Slingshot in which we swapped out the manual and replaced it with an automatic transmission because it wasn’t available in the previous model. I’d like to think the Slingshot people took note of what we did!” Alex jokes.
It’s always challenging to outdo yourself, mostly when you’ve already built a wild custom Slingshot for a client. The AutoFirm was up to the challenge and had the advantage of knowing the Slingshot ins and outs as they are one of the more well-known Slingshot customizers in South Florida.
“I was slightly nervous because Alex and his team outdid themselves the first time, and it was a stick that he turned into an automatic. But I know every time we collab, we just keep coming out with better and better rides,” she details.
With limited time and the addition of the Covid pandemic limiting the supply chain of parts and working conditions, the team was calm, cool, collected, and methodically transformed the Slingshot.
“Here in the East, we are smooth operators. Last time we went with a lot of colors. This time I wanted to pick a key color and mix it with another key color to come out with a color that is hard to imagine. I didn’t want to tell her everything I was going to do, but I wanted to make sure she knew that it would blow her mind away, which is a tough task for me, but having worked with her for so long, I have a good idea of what she wants.”
What set this apart from their previous build was the addition of an air ride system. Aired out, the Slingshot sits on the ground, and with the addition of the Slingshade top, it gives Teyana’s ride a futuristic feel. With the lighting in the cabin and underglow added, it gives it an almost spaceship-like appearance at night when it’s rolling through the streets. The custom Avorza wheels matched with Pirelli tires complete the stance.
“I wanted it so when she showed up in the Slingshot, and she drops it, all eyes would be on her. It’s gonna be a movie. For the sounds, music is her specialty, along with modeling and acting. I did the sound system where it’s perfect, not overwhelming. When she’s driving in Atlanta or Miami, I want her to enjoy herself. I did some badass seats and added her logo so that people know who’s Slingshot it is!”
“When I drive, I like to be in a stable place and have a vibe going on the road. I don’t want the highway louder than the music,” Teyana adds.
When I first saw it, my jaw dropped. It turned out amazing and better than I had imagined!
My key things were it had to be a showstopper, and it had to be automatic, which it already was since they came out with the new AutoDrive. I wasn’t really worried about anything. I felt like there was nothing in my head that I wanted to be done to it that Alex already knew I wanted. When I first saw it, it was eye-catching and phone-stopping. It gave that feeling that when people see it, and they’re on their phones, they’d say, “hold on, let me call you back because I need to take a picture of this thing!”
- Custom paint – Satin Battleship Gray, Satin Sky Blue, Satin Black
- Air Ride suspension
- Avorza av57 forged wheels, 22” all around with Pirelli tires
- Custom Avorza Leather Interior
- Polaris Slingshot® sound system with custom speaker pods
- Custom led color changing lighting
- Polaris Slingshot® Fog Lights
- Polaris Slingshot® wide rear fender flare
- Upgraded brakes, calipers painted satin sky blue
- Polaris Slingshot® Heated + Cooled Seats (driver and passenger)
- Polaris Slingshot® Stage 1 tune
- Polaris Slingshot® Ride command 2.0 update
- Polaris Slingshot® Overnight bags (driver and passenger)
- Polaris Slingshot® Side storage bag set
- Polaris Slingshot® Tinted ripper windscreen standard height