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1993 Nissan 300ZX - Altered States

Darryl Konrai's White Hot Z Has Evolved With The Times

Evan Griffey
Oct 1, 2000
Photographer: Henry DeKuyper

Darryl Konrai has taken his pristine 1993 Nissan 300ZX through just about every possible dimension of the automotive landscape. He has followed some trends and set some trends, but each alteration has served to evolve the Nissan to a higher plateau.

In 1993, the Z car was originally conceptualized as a top speed Bonneville Salt Flats long-distance runner. The Nissan never saw the salt, which may be a good thing as its white hue would make it hard to track on the expansive salt field. However, Darryl did the next best thing-an qunderground, San Francisco to Los Angeles Cannonball Run. The Z posted an impressive e.t. of 2 hours and 44 minutes, hitting an outrageous top speed of 196.7 mph on a Top Speed Analyzer. In '94 the car was altered to take advantage of the drifting trend. A short-lived trend, the car was transformed into a street/strip racer for '95 and '96. From 1997 to present, it has been a show-and-go proposition and has taken home upwards of three dozen trophies.

The VG30DETT has been fitted with Ross forged aluminum pistons and Total Seal rings. The crankshaft has been heat-treated and the rods secured via ARP hardware, but no other internal mods have been made. The heads retain the stock size valves, but rely on Nismo valvetrain components. Improved flow characteristics have been attained by unleashing the ExtrudeHone process on the intake and exhaust ports. The heads are kept in place by ARP head studs and GReddy gaskets. Prior to compression, charge air is directed through a Jim Wolf Technology Dual POP Charger.

On the exhaust side, a 3-inch Tanabe system is in charge of dealing with spent gases once they are pushed through the turbine housings. A pair of Jim Wolf 550 turbos provide the pressure. The hair dryers are dialed in to 22 psi by an HKS EVC III and blow through a pair of Stillen factory-mount intercoolers with a dynamic duo of Blitz Super Blow-Off valves relieving pressure between shifts.

Engine operating parameters are under the control of a Jim Wolf Technology-tuned ECU. The tweaked ECU has been reprogrammed to oversee upgraded 550cc Nismo primary injectors. A GReddy Rebic III is in charge of two secondary squirters. The JWT ECU is also in command of a JWT spool-up nitrous oxide kit. The spool-up system activates at WOT and squeezes the V6 until a pre-determined boost pressure is reached. The VG30DETT is dressed to thrill, thanks to GReddy hard pipes, Earl's stainless-steel lines, Hose Techniques hoses and a gangload of polished and chromed engine pieces.

The V6 feeds power to a custom Nismo transmission that uses an RPS carbon fiber clutch and JUN lightweight flywheel to lay down the power. The gearbox runs Nismo second and third gears that were originally destined for a Skyline GT-R as well as a Nismo limited-slip differential.

In its current configuration, the Z's suspension is set-up for street handling and high-speed stability. The weapon of choice is a Tein Circuit Master RA Type suspension system. The Tein system consists of four shocks, four main springs, four helper springs, spacer spring seats, thrust washers, bumper cushions, dust boots, upper pillow ball mounts, height measuring gauge and damping adjustment tool. The dampers are aluminum bodied, mono-tube designs that utilize large-diameter piston rods and big piston valves and feature 16 points of adjustment. The Tein system has been augmented with Stillen sway bars front and rear, an AB Flug strut tower brace and a Cusco rear lower strut brace. Stopping power has been addressed with calipers and rotors from a '93 V-Spec Skyline GT-R.

Rolling stock consists of Yokohama Sienna Generation II aluminum and Yokohama AVS Sport rubber. Up front, the Z flexes 19x8.5 Gen IIs and 245/ZR35-19 AVS Sports. The rear is shod with 19x10 wheels and 275/ZR30-19 tires.

The Nissan's success on the show circuit is illustrated in the interior. The entire interior has been rewrapped by Alfredo's Interior Upholstery. The seats have been wrapped in leather while the panels and other surfaces are adorned in vinyl. The rear section of the car has been wrapped and fitted with 10-inch JBL subs and a PPI amp to go along with the high-voltage, Clarion-commanded audio/visual system. An Auto Power four-point road race roll bar and Momo five-point harnesses adds insurance while a carbon fiber dash kit, Veilside shift knob, Razo pedal and Stillen carbon fiber gauge pod add ambiance. The Nissan flexes a Sony PlayStation and an on-board computer with a full keyboard mounted in the glovebox. The computer uses a PCS cellular network to access the net and is capable of running DVD movies at the touch of a button.

Body tuning has been executed to show-winning standards. A Stillen GT-R front fascia has been employed to set the Z apart. The Stillen piece features openings that are designed to move air where it is needed-intercoolers, radiator, oil coolers, intake system and brakes. The fascia is constructed from impact-resistant urethane and is a direct factory replacement. The coolest trick is the grafting in of Skyline GT-R tail lamps. We are talking real taillight assemblies, not a circular sticker. The freshened body was sprayed with six coats of Lexus pearl white by Kustom Workshop in Pittsburgh, CA

The Z has seen it all and has taken the lessons learned from one phase and applied it to the next. Its top-speed phase addressed the power vs. reliability dilemma. During its stint as a drifter, much useful suspension data was extracted from the Nissan. Tweaked for strip duty, the Z ran 12.1 at 121 mph while driving to and from the strip. Power output was dyno'd at 575 hp in this phase. More recently, style has moved to the forefront and the 300ZX's immaculate interior and tantalizing body lines have garnered enough trophies to fill the garage well past capacity. As it has morphed from one altered state to the next, Darryl's Nissan has improved at every turn; isn't that what it's all about?

Power Technick
1993 Nissan 300ZX

Best e.t.:
12.1 @ 121 mph


3.0 liters

Forced Induction:
Jim Wolf Technology 550 turbos

Stillen factory mount upgrade

Nitrous Oxide:
JWT spool-up kit

Fuel System:
550cc main injectors, 2 secondary injectors, GReddy Rebic III

Ignition System:

Air Intake:
JWT Dual POP Charger


Boost Control:

Engine Management:
JWT-tuned ECU


Nissan Motorsports
Gardena, CA 90248
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
GReddy Performance Products
Irvine, CA 92618
RPS Performance Products
Chatsworth, CA 91311
Ross Racing Pistons
El Segundo, CA 90245
Azusa, CA 91702
Yokohama Tires
Fullerton, CA 92631-5106
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688
Signal Hill, CA 90806
Tein High-Performance Suspension
Yokohama-City, Ka 224-0043
Paramount, CA 90723
Tanabe Suspension/Mackin Industries
Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670
Hose Techniques/Turbo Accessories
Torrance, CA 90501
Jim Wolf Technology Inc.
El Cajon, CA 92020
By Evan Griffey
271 Articles



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