Hyper Meeting 2008
Tsukuba Circuit, Japan
Foreign correspondents are invaluable to the publishing industry. That's why we love Mike Garrett so much; he lives in Japan, paradoxically has both ears to the ground of the JDM tuning scene, and resides a stone's throw away from the Tsukuba Circuit-meaning we can always count on him to pull through with the sickest event coverage anywhere, like his snaps of the Hyper Meeting 2008, for example. The staple event in the world of all-wheel-drive turbo-four tuning, the Hyper Meeting invites Japan's greatest Subaru and Mitsubishi tuners to prove their mettle on the scene's most sacred battleground each year-and with the debut of the new generation EVO and STI only months prior, this year's meet was one of the best to date. It was JUN's EVO X with a 1:01:31 that claimed the fastest pass by an '08 at the event, with little more added to it than when we shot it for last month's cover. The Runduce Impreza GRB followed closely, claiming the top '08 Subie spot, but the more heavily modded veterans remained atop the competition with sub-minute passes, including Sun Auto's 56.28-second Cyber EVO VII, Varis's Cyber EVO V, and Zero Sports' Impreza, driven by Tarzan Yamada. Still, our favorite machine of the event had to be CS Hiro's chop-top super clean Impreza-with a roof so low, Nakamura-san had to peer through the steering wheel to drive it. In addition to the time attacking, D1 champ Nobushige Kumakubo and Team Orange threw down multiple four-car demo drift runs, and of course, race queens were in abundance to keep their drivers cool...and look hot doing it! www.hypermeeting.jp
Performance Nissan Meet
From warranty compliance issues to highway-robbery-league repair bills, and techs trying to explain how your car's cold-air intake is causing its clutch to slip, does it ever seem like your dealership just doesn't get it? If the answer is yes, you didn't buy from Performance Nissan in Duarte, Calif. These guys get it, as evidenced by the third annual Performance Nissan meet presented by HKS, held in San Bernardino's Orange Show Speedway. Featuring an autocross competition held by Drift Day, and a drifting demo courtesy of Formula D, the meet showcased the industry's greatest parts manufacturers, vendors, tuning shops, models, and of course, tuned Nissans. USDM R35 GT-R? Check. Even Performance Nissan's Andy Kim brought out his own heavily modded 350Z sporting the only Ing's Long Nose kit in the States. At the end of the day, attendees walked away with thousands of dollars of raffled-off industry schwagg, a preview of the upcoming FD season, and an idea of what to expect from Nissan's legendary GT-R supercar, along with a strong reaffirmation of how heavily the car maker impacts our scene altogether. Can your dealership keep it real like that?www.mynismo.com
Tuners For A Cure
In Right Coast news: The fourth annual Street Wars show, held at Richard Stockton College in Egg Harbor, N.J., raised over $10,000 for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure promise. Sponsored by NOS energy drink, Pride Performance, and NJ Tuners, the event marked one of the first on the east coast, and despite the cold weather, tuners came out by the hundreds to show-off their winter labors. Notables include the white/red STI that Ernie, from NOS, put together for Bosal, and Muzzy's widebody 350Z that won Best of Show, de-throning last year's title holder, South Jersey's Jeff Retucci and his FD RX-7. Even the college chicks blew off a few classes for the sake of the greater good; RSC's Zeta Tau Alpha sorority raffled off gift cards and prizes and auctioned off dates with pledging sisters. Young sorority girls forced to date tuners? Who says hazing is a thing of the past? When the dust cleared, East Coasters in attendance rolled onward with raffle prizes courtesy of some of the industry's greatest, energy buzzes courtesy of the NOS crew, and some good reasons to begin penicillin regimens. We love you, Dirty Jersey! www.myspace.com/streetwarscarshow
Attendees of the second annual SpoCom show on June 22 at the Long Beach Convention Center, the sport compact industry's premier public tradeshow-think SEMA, but with general admittance-will be treated to complimentary subscriptions to their favorite magazines upon online advanced purchase of general admission. Not only do you get to meet the industry's top company execs, racers, car builders, models, and magazine editors, but you'll also walk away with a year's worth of Import Tuner issues absolutely free. Already a subscriber? It's OK-we'll tack on another year anyway. www.spocomusa.com
1967 toyota 2000 gt: japan's first supercar
"May I fetch your car, Mr...?" utters a nervous valet attendant. The British secret agent replies in a calm and collected tone. "Bond. James Bond. And yes, you may-I drive a Toyota." A Toyota?! Amidst a sea of high-brow European sports cars, for his swan song role as Double-O, Sean Connery actually rocked a JDM ride-a '67 Toyota 2000GT Convertible, to be exact.
Debuted at the 1965 12th Tokyo Motor Show, the 2000GT was billed as the first true original Japanese supercar-a title held exclusively by top-tier offerings from European carmakers until that point. Its bold styling marked a departure from other copycat designs Japanese manufacturers had been criticized of in their early sports car builds, and its promise of high-dollar, sports car-rivaling performance seemed far-fetched coming from a car-maker known for practicality and economy. But by the time the production 2000GT hit showrooms two years later with a 150hp 2.0L DOHC inline-six, five-speed manual gearbox, limited-slip differential, and four-wheel independent suspension with power-assisted disc brakes, the critics bit their tongues.
One year prior to its production debut, a prototype 2000GT placed Third in the Japanese Grand Prix and won Japan's Fuji 24-hour race a year later, before going on to set several FIA speed and endurance world records-about the same time Road & Track magazine was touting the 2K as "one of the most exciting and enjoyable" cars they'd ever driven, pairing it with offerings from Porsche and Jaguar. Legendary racer/builder Carroll Shelby was an early proponent of the car, as well-he bought and raced three of them to such success that Toyota actually bought one back for the company's corporate collection. The other two remain in stateside collections.
The Toyota 2000GT was actually produced by Yamaha for Toyota from 1967 to 1970, and in very limited numbers-351 cars were produced in total; only 60 of which reached our shores. Additionally, the 2000GT was offered exclusively as a coupe. The two convertibles made famous by You Only Live Twice simply had their roofs hacked off and were given upholstered humps at the base of their cabins to simulate folded-down soft tops-it seems that the Double-O's head was, literally, too big for his ride.www.toyota.com
1967 Toyota 200GT
|FUEL DELIVERY:||MIKUNI SIDE-DRAFT CARBURETORS (X3)|
|OUTPUT||150 HP @ 6,600 RPM / 130 LB-FT OF TORQUE @ 5,000 RPM|
|BODY||TWO-DOOR HATCHBACK COUPE|
|SUSPENSION||FOUR-WHEEL INDEPENDENT (F & R) / ANTIROLL BARS, ( F& R)|
|BRAKES||FOUR-WHEEL DISC BRAKES (F & R)|
|WHEELS||CAST MAGNESIUM 15-INCH DIAMETER|
|CURB WEIGHT||2,481 POUNDS|
|PERFORMANCE||0-60 MPH IN 8.3, 135 MPH TOP SPEED|
|MSRP||$6,800 (1967, U.S.-SPEC)|
By the Numbers: 3,892
The number of Falken Azenis RT-615s burned off in competition by Falken Drift teams last year.
News Of The Not So Bright
As a well-known macro-brew ad campaign states, sometimes it really is "all about the beer." But not when driving. And a Northern California man's actions leading up to his near-fatal, one-car crash do well to illustrate this point. While driving down a desolated Citrus Heights, Calif., road after procuring a 12-pack of un-named beer, suspected drunk driver Alexsandr Gritsyuk lost control of his car, veered off the road, and slammed headfirst into a tree. Not having buckled his seatbelt prior to the collision, Alex sustained serious bodily injury, but his front-seat passenger, the 12-pack, was found buckled in and unharmed.
Import Tuner Remains Calm As Rival Magazines Cement Their Plans; Let The Ass-Kicking Begin!
So here's the deal: Castrol Syntec has officially invited yours truly to kick the asses of all other magazines by building the ultimate power-producing engine. Actually, the other guys get to try building one too, but as you'll see in a minute, that means nothing. The short end of it is: Whoever builds the baddest engine (us), wins. And it seems we're in a pretty good spot so far (see sidebar); especially when the other mags are either blowing up family sedans on the autocross course, installing hydraulics on God-knows-what, or struggling with B-series swaps in their EF hatches. Not namin' any names, of course
We're going straight for the jugular with this one; four-figure power from an SR20DET. And with the support we've got, we'll hit the mark without breaking a sweat. Sure, we'll have to deal with the forced-induction penalty that essentially means our 2.2L SR20 will be judged as though it were a 4.4L...but we're still talking about 227 hp-per-liter here-Ass-kicking guaranteed! Still, just for the hell of it, let's look at what the other guys are doing, and have a good laugh at why they think they have even a snowball's chance in hell of defeating us.
Don't forgot to tell the world how much Import Tuner is going to rule this competition; log onto www.syntectopshop.com and cast your vote for us today - you even get a shot at winning the monster engine we're gonna build!
We have to admit, when we first heard Super Street had contracted all-motor guru Bisi Ezerioha to build them a naturally aspirated F22, we wondered if they had a trick up their sleeve. But as it turns out, they ain't got shit. Don't get us wrong-Bisi's engine building skills are second-to-none; his personal drag car can do low 9's in all-motor trim, but this isn't a drag race-it's a power competition. At best guess his methanol-fed F22 puts down about 360whp. Knock off some ponies for having to use 100-octane gasoline like the rest of us, and we're thinking Stupid Street will be making 350 flywheel hp at best from their naturally aspirated 2.4L F22. Going n/a eliminated the displacement-doubling penalty all us turbocharged guys will have to deal with, but we're betting they'll still be left with only about 136hp/L. Weak Sos!
Everyone knows that euros and horsepower go together about as well as oil and water. It's a fundamental rule of automotive science, right up there with the Venturi Effect and Murphy's Law. Yes, we know the Bugatti Veyron is European. And the badass LP640 hails from Italy. But Volkswagen manufactures neither car, and eurotuner thinks they can win this thing with a 7A Quattro engine. What's that? You're laughing? So are we! In all seriousness, we wish them the best of luck. That doesn't mean we won't laugh again when their engine does nothing but trigger a door chime when they fire it up for the first time. Duh nuh nee, duh nuh nee...!
Here's where things get good. Turbo magazine and SP Engineering are teaming up to build a 2.6L RB26DETT. They'll need at least 1,100 high-revving hp to hang with us. They've got more cylinders, and more displacement...but also a shorter redline. Stroked RBs revving 10.5K? Pleeeease...that's SR territory, kid! Higher revs = more powerband FTW!
They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. And we're inclined to believe it-especially after seeing Modified follow us down the turbo-four route, albeit with a 4G63 a la AMS in Chicago. EVO specialists above and beyond all, AMS is no stranger to the T-4 platform, or to building 4G63s that put down over 1,000 whp in street trim. The 4G63 and SR20 are rivals for good reason-both are more than capable of producing record power. Still, let's consider what counts; the SR20DET comes from Nissan, the 4G63 from Mitsubishi. We've got the GT-R and Skyline behind us. Mitsu has the AMC Eagle. The SR20DET is the result of meticulous Japanese engineering and craftsmanship; the 4G63, a long partnership with Daimler-Chrysler. Rallying? We've got the Wangan and Touge! Drifting? Nah...all ours!
Hey, Lowrider: It's an engine building contest, not car-hopping. Yeah-engine...you know-the heavy, outdated chunk of iron in front of your cars, hidden beneath all the chrome, that causes your fuel gauge to fall to "E" even at idle? No? Well here's an idea anyway: Why don't you take the biggest, stupidest old-school V-8 you can find, like a 427 Chevy, and try to get it to make more power-per-liter than we're going to. You'll be looking at about 1,540 hp naturally aspirated or 3,000 with a blower. Can't do it? Well at least you can airbrush some moonlit wolves on the valve covers and go out strong!
Sport Compact Car
These guys crack us up! First, they decide to enter a VQ35DE in the competition. Not a rev-up engine, but still not an entirely bad choice. Then they go to Cosworth to build it. Very good choice; Cosworth wrenches on F1 cars for fun...safe bet they know what they're doing, but here's where things go genuinely SCC-they decide to go naturally aspirated. At 3.5L, they're practically at the same displacement as our built SR20 with the forced-induction penalty. This means that, pound-for-pound, they'd have to churn out about 770 horses to even be competitive. Ain't gonna happen.
G-Dimension, City of Industry, CAThese guys have been in the game since the beginning. Literally. Owners James and Leon Chang lay claim to doing the first stateside SR swap ever, over 13 years ago. These are the guys who built Jack Tsai's 460whp RB-swapped S14 240 that appeared in the November, 2007 issue of 2NR, and they're currently wrenching together a 800+whp, 2.4L SR20-powered S13 drag car. When it comes to calling shots and tuning, these guys got it covered.www.g-dimension.com
Mazworx, Orlando, Fl
Titleholders to the all-time high horsepower SR20DET record building quadruple-digit SRs is what these guys do for a living. Mazworx is fielding three SR20-powered S-chassis drag cars in this year's NOPI series, including their newest addition, PRL Racing's 1,300+ whp, 7.41-second S15 killer. The best part is they're building an SR20VE head for us, to 100whp spec; wanna talk flow? Slim Shady ain't got nothing on this beast. www.mazworx.com
Speed-O-Motive, West Covina, CA
With over 60 years experience building engines, Speed-O-Motive is widely known as SoCal's go-to guys for any major project. On their plate at the moment is an RB25DET build commissioned by the Drifting.com crew, an RB26DETT for an upcoming RB Motoring project, and oh yeah...our nuclear-warhead resistant SR20DET bottom-end. What do you get when you combine in-house CNC capabilities, digital balancing and DTS Engine-dyno fine-tuning with over six decades of gearhead knowledge? We can't wait to see! www.speedomotive.com