25th Mar2016

Make It Yourself: Widebody Voltex WRX

by Michael Chandler

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-4

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

Since that fateful SEMA, all those years ago, making your car wide has become a lot easier.  There are rivet on fender flares for all of the popular chassis: FRS/BRZ, 350Z, 240SX, E36, I even saw that there’s a Pandem kit for EG Civics!  If you have a Porsche, you can have Nakai-san fly to you and make your 964 or 993 chassis 911 insanely wide.  This is great and all, but seeing a hand made wide body kit, where the fenders were cut and shaped and re-welded and repainted is a rare sight.  Hardly anybody is doing that.  Jon Truong is no stranger to making something work on his bug-eye WRX.  For a while this thing was known for sporting some Voltex pieces, pieces that weren’t made for the 02-03 WRX’s.  How do you improve on that little project?  Well let’s talk about that.

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-8 Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-16

A pair of bright red Bride Low Max seats with 5-point Takata harnesses brighten up the interior.  An Auto Power roll cage provides some extra security in case things get a little wild, which hopefully they don’t.  Jon lays his hands on a gorgeous, limited edition Sparco Champion steering wheel, which is attached to an NRG quick release hub.  Between the steering wheel and the gauge cluster are an AEM UEGO wideband gauge, and one of his Defi gauges.  Atop the dash, dead center, are the rest of his Defi gauges.  They monitor oil temperature and pressure, exhaust gas temperature, and boost.  The shift boot has been replace with a JPM Coachworks Alcantara piece.  All those gauges and that cage would be ridiculous if the engine was stock, but thankfully that is not the case.

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-12

Definitely not stock.  Far, far from it.  Very few OEM pieces remain.  The crankcase is the on that came with the car, but that has been filled with some shiny new bits.  The block received a set of Darton sleeves, a crankshaft from a 2008 STI, KillerB pickup tube and baffle, King bearings, Rallispec connecting rods, and Cosworth pistons.  ARP headstuds hold the ported and polished two liter heads to the block, with Tomei headgaskets in between, and those heads are like a pinata: filled with goodies!  BC 1mm oversized valves, titanium valve springs and retainers, and 272 degree camshafts.  Supertech valve guides let those big valves move smoothly.  NGK spark plugs, one step colder than stock, supply the bang for the Otto cycle.  Samco radiator hoses, a Grimmspeed thermostat and a Koyorad radiator keep the engine cool, and a Tomei timing belt connects the new crank to the lumpy cams.  Hiding the alternator (hey, that’s stock!) is a gorgeous Abbey Road Company, more commonly known as ARC, alternator cover.

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-13

Sitting atop an Agency Power manifold and TurboXS rotated up-pipe is a massive Garrett GT3582R turbo, featuring a TiAL hotside.  That’s quite the hair dryer!  That beast requires a bit of fuel, which is provided by a Walbro 255lph fuel pump, Agency Power fuel rails and Injector Dynamics 1000cc fuel injectors.  An Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator makes sure the flow is consistent, which is an important thing when you’re dealing with any larger-than-stock turbo setup.  Keeping the boost in check are a wonder trio of bits: a TiAL 44mm wastegate and Q blow off valve, and a Hallman boost controller.  Jon is running an AEM 3.5 BAR MAP sensor, because reasons and there’s no place for a MAF sensor.  The brains of the operation aren’t behind Jon’s bespectacled eyes, but in the COBB Tuning Accessport.  Keeping everything lubricated is oil, and sending that oil to the places it needs to go is a Cosworth high volume and pressure oil pump.  At the end of this whole thing is an Invidia G200 catback.  Ok, while all of that is awesome, it’s not what makes this car special.  While beauty in people is on the inside, the opposite is true for this car.

Now, all of the power needs to go through some stuff so it becomes what they call “usable”.  As you know, or not, Subaru transmissions are known for having 2nd gears made of glass.  Thankfully an upgrade to a six speed trans out of a JDM 2007 model should have that situation remedied.  Holding that new transmission in place is a Perrin transmission mount, and connecting that to the rear differential is a PST carbon driveshaft.  Helping with the gear shifts are a Kartboy short shifter and a Goodrich stainless steel clutch line.  With great power comes great necessity for a clutch that can handle that.  A Carbontec carbon clutch is up to the task, and an ACT Streetlite flywheel helps with engine response.

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-7 Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-9

Actually putting the power to the ground are a set of Yokohama Advan AD08Rs, which are mounted on a massive set of CCW Classics.  They come in at a staggering 18×11!  Behind the gargantuan wheels (11″ wide!  On all four corners!  ON A STREET CAR!!!) are Brembo calipers harvested from an STI, which clamp Hawk HPS pads upon DBA T3 slotted rotors.  All hail the magical kangaroo paw.  Feeding brake fluid to the calipers are some Stoptech stainless steel brake lines.  The suspension is fairly simple, a set of Zeal Function coilovers bring the car down and make the lateral transitions sharper.

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-10Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-2

They say beauty is on the inside, and while the insides of this car are very pretty, the outside is much prettier.  You can clearly see that the license plate say VOLTEX.  This is for good reason.  Jon was bold enough to graft Voltex parts not meant for his chassis on to it.  For the longest time this was just the Voltex Bugeye, and that was good.  The rear diffuser, sidesteps and GT wing, and Greddy lip proved to be starting points, because things just went from there.  In the rear we have 04-05 tail lights, and a rear bumper and fender arches from yet another STI.  Oh, and there’s also the widebody setup back there too.  But why throw a widebody on the rear, and not the front?

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-3

Before we get to that, let’s talk about some of the other stuff on this car.  There’s a wide assortment of JDM goodies on this: STI V7 hood scoop, grill and headlights; Spec-C roof vent; side markers, and ion fog lights.  There’s a roof vane behind the roof vent, and the corner markers have been plugged with carbon fiber.

Voltex WRX feature CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-1

As you can see, there are no rivets on the exterior of this car.  And the wide fenders on the front didn’t arrive at Solid Autoworks in a box.  Those are handmade in metal.  Seeing someone with legitimate wide metal front fenders is a rarity, in an age where you can order FRP over fenders and slap them on.  A lot of craftsmanship went into this bugeye, proving that sometimes the only way to have the best is to make it yourself.

GALLERY:

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
13th Nov2015

A Superb Roadster

by Michael Chandler

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-4

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

I’ve said it many times before: the Honda S2000 is the best Miata ever made.  It has near perfect weight distribution, has an amazing engine and gearbox combination, and (to me at least) looks much better.  It never got the stigma of being a “hairdresser’s car”, but it never really changed much over the course of its ten year life.  And Honda axed it in 2009, and left rear wheel drive behind them.  Thankfully, S2000s are rather widely available, and there is a huge aftermarket for these cars.  Jonathon Esmeyer’s S2000 is an excellent example of a well done street car, that’s inching closer to becoming a track day terror.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-2 Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-8 Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-9

 

The car has an OEM+ look to it.  While there are plenty of options as far as widebodies, flares, and monstrous wings, Jon went far more subtle.  A Greddy Gracer front lip and a Speedhunter’s tow strap are the only changes made to the front of the car.  An OEM hardtop and decklid spoiler are the other big noticeable modifications to the exterior, or at least the ones you notice at first glance.  It’s when you look closer that you notice the little details, like the smoked S2000 CR side markers, shorty antennae, and badges redone in black chrome.  Getting closer makes the carbon fiber single exhaust cover and ForbiddenUSA carbon side strakes readily apparent.  These little details add up to that OEM+ look.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-10

Lowering spring can do wonders for making an S2000 more ground bound, but coilovers are the way to go for the burgeoning track day hero.  Since Jon plans on taking this thing to more NASA HPDE events, he went with the ubiquitous KW Variant 3 coilovers.  To help stiffen the chassis further than it already is, a Cusco front lower cross brace and a Comptech rear lower tie bar have been installed.  And to eliminate the vibrations coming from the driveline because the car has been lowered, a set of Megan Racing driveshaft spacers were added, along with Megan’s anti bump steer kit.  eXedium differential collars help minimize the amount of flex in the OE differential bushings.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-6

Stoptech slotted rotors are gripped by Axxis pads on all four corners, with brake fluid delivered to the calipers via Agency Power lines.  A good set of wheels and tires can do wonders for any vehicle, and this roadster is no exception.  Desmond Regamasters aren’t a foreign sight on a Honda, and the Marquis Promada Brights look amazing with the Silverstone Metallic paint of the car.  The wheels measure 17×8 +35 in front, and 17×9 +38 in the rear, and are covered in Hankook Ventus V12 tires, 225 width in the front and 245 width in the rear.  Don’t focus too much on the tires, stickier meat is on the way!  All of that is held on KICS Leggdura lug nuts.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-19

How do you make an incredible engine better?  Some would say “leave it alone”, but the rest of us would say “add more power”.  And that can only mean one thing: forced induction.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-16

A Science of Speed supercharger kit, based around a Paxton Novi centrifugal supercharger, was chosen to up the power.  The heat exchanger upgrade box was checked when the kit was ordered, and one of their ported throttle bodies made its way into the box as well.  A Comptech Ice Box was modified to work with the supercharger setup, but the Berk header, high flow cat, and HKS exhaust didn’t require any modification.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-11

 

A Mishimoto radiator with slim fans help keep the boosted mill cool, while a plastic intake manifold gasket help keep intake temperatures cool.  A PasswordJDM Kevlar cooling plate makes sure that radiator gets all the air it needs.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-21Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-20

 

The interior has the same OEM+ feel that the exterior has.  A MemoryFab Kevlar bucket seat on Buddy Club seat rails replace the factory red seat.  Yeah, red seats.  They’re pretty bad ass.  The optional titanium shift knob one could get from the factory has been replaced with an Aspec titanium knob (heh), and the shifter has been extended with a Moddiction shift knob extender.  The interior is dripping with Go-Tuning suede products: elbow pad, A-pillars, sun visors, shift boot and e-brake cover.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-1

Jon doesn’t have any concrete plans for the car, aside from more track days and driving the car whenever he can.  He has no plans on making it a trailer queen, so be prepared to see this thing prowling the streets and cruising to the track for years to come.

Supercharged S2000 feature Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-18

 

Mazda’s Miata is entering its 4th generation, having been in production for 26 years.  Honda’s roadster was only built for ten years, 1999-2009, and lasted two generations.  In those ten years though, it rivaled Mazda’s grip on the roadster game, and may have even surpassed it.  It represents a time when Honda was building fun, rear wheel drive cars alongside their front wheel drive selections.  As we bring Honda Week to a close, I can’t think of a better car to close the curtain.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
10th Nov2015

A Tale of Two Civics Part 1

by Michael Chandler

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-13

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

It takes a lot to grab my attention at the track.  There are some ridiculous cars out there, as you’ve seen here many times, but then I laid eyes on KC Russell’s EF Civic.  He was pulling off track after an HPDE session, and I saw the full glory of the livery on his hatchback.

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-1

Naturally, I followed him back to the day garage he was sharing with Zack Serna.  Zack drives a Civic hatchback himself, one similar to KC’s but rather different at the same time.  I chatted them up, and they agreed to let me shoot both of their cars.  Since I saw his first, let’s talk about KC’s.

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-7

Firstly, let’s talk about the livery.  The graphics package from stickymy.com are 103% JDM.  Go look at some of the Kanjo Civics and tell me that this thing wouldn’t fit right in.  The VIS carbon fiber hood has seen better days, but it being beat up adds to the feel of the car.  So does the replica J’s Racing front lip.  Rounding out the styling mods are a set of side skirts for an EK.

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-10

 

For a while, every track day Civic was on a set of 949 Racing wheels.  Thankfully those days have passed (I dig the 949s, don’t get me wrong.  Just got sick of seeing them on every Miata and Civic), and KC threw on some 15×7 Kosei K1 TS’s.  Because it’s a track day hatch, he threw on a set of 205/50 Falken Azenis.

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-26

Front brake calipers and rotors donated from an Integra ,along with a master cylinder from a Civic EX and a set of Hawk DTC60 pads help reel in the rather light Civic.  Helping with the lateral transitions and keeping the rubber on the tarmac are a set of KYB AGX struts and Ground Control coilover sleeves, a truly OG combination, and an Innovative traction bar.

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-15NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-16 NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-20

 

Keeping the dreadlocked driver, or whoever is behind the wheel, and a passenger secured are a pair of Crobeau seats.  Steering inputs are entered via the sweet, old school MOMO steering wheel.  Just look at that thing!

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-33

KC picked up the car in May for $1500, with one big mod already done: the single cam motor was ditched in favor of the venerable B16A.  1.6 liters, twin cam and electronically controlled variable valve timing (hella mad vtaks yo), the B16A powered some of Honda’s best FWD, including the JDM EF chassis Si.  Basically KC bought himself one of those.  While a bone stock B16 swap is good, one with some mods is even better.  He cracked open the ECU and installed a Mugen chip, and threw a Toda replica header on the cylinder head. That exits into a Greddy exhaust.  Hiding under the gold foil wrap is a K&N Intake.

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-35

A lot of aftermarket radiators for Civics are half size.  Think of a big cereal box, that’s about the size of one of those radiators.  They do a fine job, but a full size radiator is… well it’s bigger.  And this one says Racing Series on it, so that’s something.  The radiator is big, but the battery is diminutive.  The Odyssey battery provides plenty of juice for a day at the track, and weighs a lot less than your average battery.  All of this adds up to a very potent track day car.  It has plenty of power, but there are far more powerful swaps one can shove under the hood of a Civic.

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-2

We’ll talk about that tomorrow.

BONUS IMAGES

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-3

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-8

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-19

NASA Utah Civics Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-34

 

 *Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
29th Sep2015

Three Musketeers

by Michael Chandler

JDM Trio shoot Group Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-3

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

Somethings happen because someone works hard, long hours, for days and weeks on end.  Somethings, like this shoot, happen because of pure circumstance.  If, on the day I saw two of the cars featured here, I decided to make a left turn instead of a right this might not have happened.  Thankfully, I made that right, and got the ball rolling on this shoot.

JDM Trio shoot Group Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-5

The two cars I saw were the Black FD and the purple SW20.  Seeing either of the cars would be awesome, but seeing both, cruising around together brought up all sorts of images of Daikoku Futo.  I put the word out on Facebook, and almost immediately someone responded.

JDM Trio shoot FC Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-12

Brad, the owner of the red FC RX-7, said they were friends of his.  He acted as go between, and helped set up the shoot.  Oh, and he drives a red FC.  A red coupe with pop-up headlights?  Let’s look further at this child of the 80’s.

JDM Trio shoot FC Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-13

Captain Coolpants might not have some cool things (like a turbo, or torque) but he does have some sweet ass S5 taillights.  That’s gotta count for something.

JDM Trio shoot FC Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-7

And the 17″ Racing Harts, courtesy of a Mazda Protoge5, fit nicely.  And the gold looks great with the red.  Enough of the opener, let’s get to the feature and headliner.

JDM Trio shoot SW20 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-15

Mid-engined sports cars hold a special place in the hearts and minds of us enthusiasts.  Ferrari, Lamborghini, Lotus, even Acura made their top tier sports cars mid-engined.  And so did Toyota*.  It’s fitting that Tayler’s MR2 wears purple, it is after all the color of royalty.

JDM Trio shoot SW20 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-17

 

Wedged in the middle of the MR2 is the venerable 3S-GTE, a two liter, turbocharged four cylinder that also powered the all wheel drive Celicas that eventually got Toyota in deep trouble with the FIA.  Thankfully, there isn’t any sort of trickery going on in this particular motor, but it is making all sorts of glorious noises.

JDM Trio shoot SW20 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-4

A modern classic like this needs modern classic wheels, and the 5zigen FN01R-C fits that bill perfectly.

JDM Trio shoot FD Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-6

Those same wheels, albeit in a different color, set off the classic lines of Kaiden’s FD.  Like its contemporaries, the Supra and 300ZX, the FD RX-7 ditched the angular lines that defined the previous generation and became more rounded and smooth.  While it came with pop-up headlights from the factory, Kaiden’s has been fitted with a set of flush mounted lights.  Despite the omnipresent lights, the shape is still instantly recognizable.

JDM Trio shoot FD Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-5 JDM Trio shoot FD Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-15

 

The front bumper, fenders and hood have all been replaced with pieces that shed weight and help with air flow.  Air flow, especially through the engine bay, is key when you’re dealing with an engine the size of a basketball, but weighs as much as an LS1.

JDM Trio shoot FD Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-25

But what an engine it is.  Despite the publicized “short comings” (they’re not the torqueiest motors, but they can make plenty of power without eating apex seals every other day), the 13B is a legendary motor.  It has powered some blisteringly fast cars, and if you can shove one into a Miata, you’ll have yourself one hell of a roadster.

JDM Trio shoot Group Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-2 JDM Trio shoot Group Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-4

 

I’ve noticed something with the youths.  It seems that they’re gaining an appreciation for some of these modern classics.  It could be because they’ve realized that the more mechanical cars have a feel that the current cars don’t have, or they might be dropping into their price range.  I doubt that last part to be true, but then again, when I was in high school my budget for transportation was enough to grab a new shop deck for my skateboard every now and again, so my views may be skewed.  Either way, seeing more of these cars in the hands of young enthusiasts is a good sign for the future of us, the enthusiast.

BONUS GALLERY

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
22nd Apr2014

Catching up with the RBZ

by Michael Chandler

RBZ burnout Michael Chandler CAMautoMag (1 of 1)

When last we saw Clint Stoneham’s RB26DET powered 260Z, it was little more than an old Datsun shell wrapped around a new Datsun body.  But now things have changed.  It’s been tuned, had a cage built and certified, and it finally made a few passes.  After weeks of talking about it, I met up with Clint, Jason Kemp, and Melvin North.  What followed were four passes interrupted by some hunting.

By the time I got there (thanks for cutting me off twice Prius!) they already had the car unloaded and were getting her ready to make the first pass of the day.  After waiting in the staging lanes Clint pulled the orange sled into the burnout box and lit up the slicks.  And then he made his pass which, if I’m honest,  wasn’t exactly stellar.  I’ll spare you the time (i.e. I forgot to write it down), but it was slower than what the car was capable of.  While Clint was making the maiden pass, the rest of us heard something.  We met back in the pits, and the guys got to work.

 

Clint Stoneham RBZ Test N Tune Michael Chandler CAMautoMag (3 of 10)Clint Stoneham RBZ Test N Tune Michael Chandler CAMautoMag (4 of 10)

Out came the laptop, and the theories of what sounded like an ignition problem.  The data logs didn’t show anything, but we all heard it breaking up.  Thinking the spark plugs were amiss, Jason and Clint pulled them and Jason re-gapped them.  Fun Fact: the engine of a car gets hot while making a 1/4 mile pass, and it stays that way for a minute.  Guess who relearned that lesson?  No, not me.  I had my hands full of camera.  With the plugs re-installed and the coil packs back on, we piled onto the side by side and followed Clint to the staging lanes.

 

Clint Stoneham RBZ Test N Tune Michael Chandler CAMautoMag (8 of 10)

Things were better, 10.87 compared to something much slower.  But the ignition was still breaking up.  Jason, who has a 900+whp 2JZ swapped Mk 3 Supra (!), posited that it might be weak coils.  The RB26 and 2JZ are made for a similar purpose, maybe they had similar problems.  Logs still showed nothing, plugs looked great, so it was back in the side by side for another pass.

 

Clint Stoneham RBZ Test N Tune Michael Chandler CAMautoMag (5 of 10)

Clint lined up, burned out, and proceeded to go 10.50.  Still improving, and still breaking up.  Back in the pits I learned that the best time he could post was a 10.00, and the fastest he could go was 135mph.  Anything beyond that would require more safety equipment in the car.  So with that in the air, the guys again started taking the coil packs off the engine and pulling spark plugs.  The original plan was to swap in a set of HKS spark plugs, but Jason noticed something on the cylinder 3 coil pack.  There was carbon tracking, which meant electricity was arcing in the pack itself.  It wasn’t dead, but it was hurting.  Thinking a decrease in cylinder pressure would help, they switched places between the bad #3 pack and the known good #1 pack.  With the car buttoned up, we made our way back to the line.

 

Clint Stoneham RBZ Test N Tune Michael Chandler CAMautoMag (9 of 10) Clint Stoneham RBZ Test N Tune Michael Chandler CAMautoMag (10 of 10)

Before we left, Jason did some slight tweaking.  The boost was turned up ever so much and “a touch of fuel” was pulled out.  “This will exacerbate the problem” said Jason, knowing that some of us only heard that the boost was going up to around 24 or 25psi.  The 4th pass yielded a 10.33, which all things considered is not bad.  Plans were made for another pass and I would have stayed to watch him make a 10.2 pass, but a supercharged Charger SRT8 decided it wanted to break after doing a burnout… then repeat the the burnout/breakdown cycle again after a few cars were waved ahead of him.  Unfortunately I had a prior engagement and had to leave, BUT FEAR NOT! There is another chance for us all to see this thing go for the gusto!  This Friday night, or April 25th if you’re reading this after the event, is the first Midnight Drags at RMR and Clint will be making some passes in the brisk evening air.  I encourage you all to come out and watch.

Clint wasn’t the only fellow running at the Test N Tune.  I snapped some photos of those characters, and included them and all of the RBZ photos in a gallery below!

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners.
13th Jun2013

Mk IV Supra: Upgrade!

by Michael Chandler

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag cover Michael Chandler

When last we met with Nick Long, he was surprising anyone willing to take a run at his turbo Cobalt SS.  Since then, he’s made a slight upgrade to his garage.

 

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-2

He picked up a 1997 15th Anniversary Limited Edition twin turbo Supra after selling his Cobalt.  The Cobalt was cool, but this Supra is a thing of legend.  It’s the car people aspire to own, and Nick finally got his…  Then sent it off to get some work done.

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-3

The car got a full detail, a nice 4 inch straight pipe exhaust and a few under-hood “accessories”

 

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-4

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-6

A Precision T78 turbo sits in place of the factory twin turbos, with a K&N filter keeping the nasty stuff that could get sucked in to it or the motor out.  Custom piping feeds the charged air into a custom front mount, and then in to a factory throttle body and manifold.  A Greddy boost controller keeps the pressure at 22psi, which is a nice number but meaningless without proper fueling…

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-5

Which is provided by a pair of Walbro fuel pumps and kept in check with an Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator.  These few parts, and some careful tuning, yields 610 horsepower at the wheels, and 588 lb/ft of torque.  610whp on an internally stock motor.  The stoutness of the 2JZ is one of the reasons why people are still clamoring for these cars fifteen years after American importation stopped.

 

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-8

That, and because it is still a gorgeous car in factory trim.  This isn’t factory.  It’s been lowered two inches, had a set of BBS wheels fitted and has a VIS carbon fiber hood in place of the stock metal hood.  No crazy bumpers, fenders, graphics, wings.  Nothing to distract from the classic JDM lines.

MkIV Toyota Supra CAMautoMag Michael Chandler-9

 

Except maybe a little tire smoke…

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners. Images and words may not be re-posted, re-distributed, modified, or copied without expressed written consent from CAMAutoMag.Com.

 

 

 

 

 

Off
07th Nov2011

One of a Kind: Mitsubishi Galant

by Michael Chandler

If you ask most people what kind of Mitsubishi they would like you’ll hear a lot of Evolution and Eclipse responses, and a few Galant VR4 responses. You’ll get a few Starion responses, but that’s neither here nor there. The reason you’ll only get a few Galant VR4 responses is because they only sent around 3000 of the AWD turbocharged sedans to North America and because of that only the hardcore Mitsu fan boys and rally geeks know about them. This is not a turbocharged AWD rally special. This Galant is a lot cooler.

 

We’ve known of Broderick, the owner of this daily driven Galant, for a little bit. We’ve known his car longer. For a while this was unofficially the first 3.5L swapped Galant in the country. That made it special. The fact that it’s now packing a 3.9L stroker motor puts it up there with the AWD Galants.

The 3.9L 6G7X motor is all self built. A set of 1mm overbore 6G75 pistons are pumped by stock, forged 6G74 connecting rods attached to a stock 6G75 forged crankshaft. JE file to fit rings hug the pistons and ACL bearings keep everything moving smoothly. All that is stuffed into a .010 decked block, topped with ported and polished and shaved 6G75 non-MIVEC cylinder heads filled with stock 6G75 non-MIVEC camshafts topped with Fidanza adjustable cam gears. ARP main studs keep everything together.

A custom 3.5 inch short ram intake feeds air into a 90mm throttle body lifted from an Infiniti Q45. That is bolted to a 90mm Xcessive Manufacturing surge tank manifold with a port matched lower intake manifold. The fresh air is mixed with 91 octane; which finds it way to the combustion chamber through AeroQuip Starlite -6AN fuel lines, an Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator and Disturbing Motorsports billet -6AN fuel rails. It is ignited by a spark provided 8.5mm Magnacore spark plug wires via an 11.5 pound Braille daily use battery. The spent gasses exit through self made long tube headers, with 1 7/8 inch primaries, and a modified Greddy Ti-C cat back exhaust intended for a 3rd generation Eclipse.

The whole one off motor is held in a tucked and shaved engine bay (which Broderick did himself) by Prothane solid engine mounts. Untuned it put down 241 wheel horsepower and 239 lb/ft of torque.

 

An engine is useless if it can’t put the power down, and this thing can. A SPEC stage 2 carbon kevlar full face clutch and Fidanza 9 pound flywheel (held together by ARP flywheel bolts) transfer the power to the wheels via a 2003 Dodge Stratus R/T manual transaxle. A Megan short shifter connects the USDM trans to the JDM cabin (complete with a Greddy counterweight shift knob!), and Zaklee shifter base bushings and under hood shifter bushings keep the gear changes crisp.

The power physically contacts the ground through whatever rubber is wrapped around the big 18×9.5 Rota Torque wheels. Behind those split five spoke wheels are some Stoptech slotted rotors… For an Evo 8. That seems a little weird, but those calipers are the OEM Brembo Evo 8 units stuffed with PFC carbon metallic pads up front and Axxis pads in the rear. Technafit braided lines move the fluid that provides the squeeze.

 

The car sits very nicely. This stance comes courtesy of a set of KSport Kontrol Pro coilovers. It also handles very nicely thanks to said coilovers and a Suspension Techniques 24mm rear sway bar with Kartboy end links intended for use on a WRX STi front sway bar. The end links for the front sway bar are custom adjustable units, as is the rear tie bar. A Carbing front strut tower bar provides some stiffness in the front, along with some more under hood bling.

 

Outside are a lot of JDM and other assorted goodies. A Pre-facelift JDM front bumper and grill join with JDM headlights and a Monster FRP hood to create a face that looks all sorts of scary when it’s bearing down on you. A trunk spoiler from an M3, along with some carbon fiber trunk garnishments and JDM 3rd generation tail lights keep the rear end looking good as it pulls away. Apexcone 6000k HID’s light the way, and Redline hood struts keep the hood from falling on Broderick or anyone else who’s poking around under it.

 

The cabin is rather straightforward. A dry carbon fiber dash bezel, and regular carbon fiber shifter and center dash bezels add a bit of flare while AEM digital water temperature and oil pressure gauges and UEGO wideband display all pertinent information one would need.

When you ask people what kind of Mitsubishi they’d like, you probably won’t hear a lot of Galant answers but maybe this car will change that.


Words and photos by Michael Chandler, Video by Trent Bray

 

*Article, Video, and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners. Images and words may not be re-posted, re-distributed, modified, or copied without expressed written consent from CAMAutoMag.Com

27th Sep2011

The Blueprint: Nissan 240SX

by Michael Chandler

If you’ve seen the drifting coverage we’ve previously had, then you know of the car featured here. What you might not know are all of the gritty details of how this S13 coupe came to be the silver, purple and green beast it is today. Let us begin with the obvious question: why a 1JZ? (more…)