25th Aug2011

Project Perfection: RB26 Datsun 260Z

by Trent

260Z CAMautoMagThis project has been a project of love and determination. Clint, the owner of this 74.5 Datsun 260Z originally started this transformation 9 years ago on a different continent. He was stationed in Okinawa, Japan with the Air Force and bought this US Spec car in Japan 15 years ago. Being constantly surrounded by Nissan Skyline’s, he decided it would be best to mate the looks of his Datsun, with the power of the almighty Skyline.
Datsun 260Z RB26DETT
Just before Clint was transferred back to the United States, he got the motor swapped in. He was stationed in Alaska where the majority of the work on the rest of the car was to be completed. It unfortunately spent 5 years in the chassis shop, so the motor got transplanted in another Z and ran a 9.1-sec 1/4 mile before he wrecked the car at the track. He estimates it is now putting down 750whp.
Skyline GT-R Datsun
How does a stock RB26DETT turn into the beast it is now? He started with a motor out of an R32 Skyline GT-R and swapped in an R33 crank, Crower Rods, HKS Pistons, JUN ported head and valvetrain, 280-deg. cam, Head coolant mod, 1000cc injectors, and a T88 34D turbo. All of this is controlled by an HKS VPro Tuner, HKS meters, and HKS Boost Controller.
260Z Front Mount Intercooler
Getting this power to the ground not only requires a healthy dose of tire(31″ tall Mickey Thompson slicks), but it is channeled through a 2-speed Power Glide transmission and a Ford 8.8 Rear End.
260Z Ford 8.8" Rear End
RP Squared in Utah finished up the chassis before paint and it is now certified to run an 8.5 1/4 mile. Clint is currently deployed in Qatar, but hopes to be back on the track when he returns and plans to run a low 9 or high 8-sec. 1/4 mile.
260Z RB26 Inside
The body is hardly original on this car, it is comprised of many fiberglass replacement parts to lighten the load. The front mirrors and doors are all that remains untouched on the body, the rest is aftermarket.
Drag Datsun 260Z
Out of the 9 years this car has been under construction, it has been on the road for a total of 1 year. Clint demands perfection in this project, he made sure to point out things in the shoot that just weren’t quite perfect enough and said we weren’t shooting that. This car just needs glass and it is perfect. The paint glistens, the stance is just right, and the swap is clean. However clean it is, Clint tells us he still has some work to do in the engine bay to tidy it up. While in there, thoughts of a bigger turbo also come to mind to ensure he hits that elusive 8-sec. 1/4-mile time. We plan to follow up on this car as it hits the track sometime next year, until then it’ll be perfectly preserved waiting for its chance at the Christmas Tree.
RB26 260Z

RB26 Swapped Datsun 260Z Feature on CAMautoMag from CAMautoMag on Vimeo.

Words and Video by Trent Bray, Photos by Michael Chandler

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