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Toyota Supras Invade Las Vegas - Speeding Bullet

Jasper Chan
Mar 1, 2006 SHARE
Turp_0603_01z_toyota_supra+front_left Photo 1/1   |   Toyota Supras Invade Las Vegas - Speeding Bullet

With the many Supras in attendance at the annual Supras Invade Las Vegas event, this chrome beauty really stood out. Aside from the fact that we got a tan standing next to the custom paint reflecting the desert sun, it really caught our attention because it epitomizes the ultimate street car. This daily driver not only is a commuter (70 miles a day) but it has the awards of a show car (15 trophies, count 'em) and the track slips of a race car (two-time consecutive winner of Hawaii's fastest import street car shootout). Not to mention we give props to any enthusiast willing to ship his car out from Hawaii and then make the four-hour drive to the show. That is love.

Cedric, not The Entertainer but yet still entertaining, Smith has a long history with Supras. Having previously built, raced and owned a 1993; 1994; and 1997 676-rwhp, six-speed Supra, he was not new to the scene when he picked up this 1997 automatic Supra from a friend in New Mexico (a surprise find on eBay no less).

Cedric has been racing in Hawaii over six years and over the last five his cars have consistently been winning car shows. Other than his Supra he terrorizes Oahu with his 1997 BMW 540 and 2000 Suzuki Vitara. No other Supra in Hawaii has won as many car shows or fastest street car shootouts. This car, which took one year to build and a whopping $45,000, truly is to be feared on the island. Although Cedric shows the car, he maintains that it "was purpose-built to be a very fast and capable street car." On this Supra you notice the many custom items that reflects Cedric's approach of trying "to be the first to do and try new things" with his vehicles.

Now, putting down 10.92-second e.t.s at 131 mph requires a lot of engine oomph, even for a turbo Supra. Stopping off at his local McCully 76 Station in Honolulu, Hawaii, Cedric wanted to ensure the 2JZ powerplant would withstand the rigors of extreme boosted duty. For this he called upon Snyders in Honolulu to perform the precision machine work on the bottom end. Cedric felt that the factory crankshaft was stout enough to handle the 700-plus horsepower he planned on generating but before it would make its way into the bottom end it received some massaging via micro-polishing and high-speed balancing. Once all the machine work was completed, Heath Kobatake at McCully assembled the engine using forged 8.0:1 Wiseco pistons mounted on factory connecting rods.

Once the bottom end was buttoned up, Cedric concentrated on improving the flow into the combustion chambers. The head was left unported but the upgraded valve train from Crower (springs and titanium retainers) help keep the factory tightly shut for better compression. Orchestrating the valve train movements are a pair of HKS 264-degree bumpsticks. The largest gain in performance came from a Sound Performance single-turbo upgrade he uprooted from his previously owned six-speed. A stainless steel RPS tubular manifold collects the spent gases and directs them into an SP67 turbocharger. Once the spent gases are done spinning the Q-trim turbine wheel a 3.5-inch RPS downpipe expedites the exhaust through a custom fabricated 3.5-inch exhaust system that gets muffled through a Blitz canister before exiting out of the rear.

Unique to this Supra is the DB methanol/water fuel injection system. This DB kit injects methanol once boost pressure rises above 14 psi and allows the driver to run up to 28 psi on pump gas. (Yeah, that's what I'm talking about. With the price of fuel these days race gas is just too rich for my blood.) Aiding the DB kit is a Sound Performance fuel system with 720cc injectors, twin in-tank pumps, Aeromotive fuel pressure regulator and -10 fuel feed lines. All of this equates to 600-plus rwhp through the built automatic transmission. Sure, four-digit dyno numbers from a Supra are fairly common, but even 500-hp Supras will make your adrenaline run thick.

The tranny comes to this Supra all the way from Import Trans in Wayne, N.J. A house-special torque converter with a 4000 rpm stall was installed. Ensuring the transmission runs consistently on the drag strip and in the Waikiki heat Cedric installed a B&M transmission cooler.

Cedric, ever the handyman, set up his own suspension with HKS Drag coil-overs at the front and rear. Halting the thrust are TRD brake calipers and Brembo drilled and slotted rotors. Goodridge was the brand of choice for the stainless steel brake lines. Pumping through these veins is Motul 600 brake fluid.

Equally impressive as the chrome paint are the D5R Racing 19-inch wheels staggered 9.5 wide in the front and 10.5 in the rear. These puppies have the bragging rights of being the first 19-inch D5R wheels in the United States. Eurosport of Honolulu mounted and balanced the AVS Sport 235/35/19, front, and 275/30/19, rear, tires. When dragging the quarter mile Cedric uses BFG Drag radials out back and regular street tires up front.

Since this track titan is often barreling down the quarter mile at breakneck speeds safety is paramount. A six-point chromoly roll cage installed by Exhaust Systems of Kailua, Hawaii provides rigidity as well as passenger safety.

Let's get to the paint job already. It is hard to miss an all chromed-out Supra blazing around the island of Oahu. It is undoubtedly the original paint job and stunning body kit that contributed to the Supra's win for 1st place Toyota at Import Showoff Honolulu. Cedric started with the body kit when first modifying this vehicle. He had GX Auto of Honolulu install the Do-Luck front end, Trail side skirts and rear end, as well as an Explosion rear wing. The rear wing is a first of its kind in the United States. All parts were molded to the body and the VeilSide over fenders were cut and custom-molded to the body as well.

Once the body lines were set the paint scheme Cedric envisioned could take place. GX Auto completed this paint job in two separate stages. The first stage consisted of five coats of Dupont Super Black and five coats of clear. After wet-sanding and buffing it they layered Mirra Chrome on top.

This Supra took home Import Showoff Honolulu Best of Show Interior with help from the Sparco Milano suede race seats, suede and leather steering wheel, carbon fiber door panels with custom suede door handles and carbon fiber dash by Kings Upholstery in Honolulu.

Adding to the interior appeal is the sound system installed by Progressive Auto Sounds of Pearl City, Hawaii. The trunk houses two Boston Pro 6.5 speakers with tweets; two JL WS6 10-inch subs in a custom speaker box; two Xtant 500 watt amps with custom amp rack; a seven-inch passenger side monitor; and finally, a Clarion 7552 DVD monitor deck. The back of the amp assembly has an illuminated custom acrylic rear panel.

What did catch our eye are the provisions in the sub enclosure for two 10-pound polished nitrous bottles. What is scandalous is that someone stole these (empty) bottles while the car was being shipped to the mainland for the Vegas Supra show. Need we say how on fire we'd be if someone made off with our $800 chrome bottles? Hell hath no fury.

While this car was the first Supra to break the 10-second mark in Hawaii as well as reach the 130 mph mark, Cedric plans to improve the record and reach the mid-10s. While 10.92 on the quarter mile is already impressive, we should be fair and point out that the Hawaii Raceway Park track is, uh, let's just say not in ideal condition. Or as Cedric puts it, "one of the worst tracks in the nation." This vehicle may post some better numbers elsewhere.

All in all we liked this car's show/go balance. It looks good and it drives fast. Cedric had this goal in mind and is satisfied with the outcome. We will leave you with his own words because no one can sum it up better than him.

"Why am I so well known [in Hawaii]? There are several Supras on the island. I am known because I do shows, races, and I daily drive the car. The same people that see the car in the car show see the car at the mall or on the highway. Then they see me on Fri[day] or Sat[urday] night tearing things up at the track. Anyone can do a car show. Anyone can hit the drag strip. But rare is the car that can do both and WIN both consistently. When I pull into the track and the car show everyone knows I am the man to beat."

"The fact that the car does so well AND is driven hard everyday is a true testament to the car itself and the uncompromising commitment of the owner. I refuse to lose and I want to be the best at whatever I do. The car has more than fulfilled all my dreams and expectations and still is docile enough for me to drive comfortably on a daily basis." Well said, Cedric. If you are lucky enough to be on vacation in Waikiki and are passed by a speeding silver bullet, you'll know exactly who it is.

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Sources

Sound Performance
Bensenville, IL 60106
630-893-5002
http://www.spracingonline.com
Blitz
Azusa, CA 91702
626-839-8350
http://www.blitzpowerusa.com
Yokohama Tires
Fullerton, CA 92631-5106
Sparco
800-224-7113
www.sparcousa.com
By Jasper Chan
21 Articles

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