To pass the time in the office (we could work, but what fun would that be) we often engage in meaningless debates about whatever topic that catches our fancy. Last week, lines were drawn in the battle between Blu-ray and HD DVD. I took Ricky's side partly because I haven't the faintest clue about these sunglasses (?) and mostly because he can kick our asses in a fight. However none of these conflicts, from creationism vs. evolution to which of the Dicks, York or Sargent, made a better Darrin can begin to compare to the great engine swap debate.
In terms of engine swaps Yamz is one of those guys who manages to offend both purists and radicals alike (actually, Yamz offends everyone). His initial F-you to our industry was a clean '91 Celica with an obnoxious Buick V-6. His latest potential project is an AE86 with a 13B rotary. I can't even begin to tell you how blasphemous this is. In fact, I can't even tell you why this is wrong-it just is. Now a 3S-GTE or even a 2JZ-GTE in a Corolla is fine; the F20C is just barely within the boundaries of good taste. No, 13B belongs in a 510 or perhaps the odd RX-8 and maybe a Miata.
Darren McNamara is another brave soul who chooses to slide along the path less traveled. D1 kingpin Keiichi Tsuchiya himself called the Irishman his favorite D1 UK driver. This was shocking since half of us thought he was Mexican and the rest guessed Italian (probably because the only flag we're familiar with is white). The fact that Darren is an Irish drifter is strange enough, but stranger still is the engine swap in his Hachi Roku.
At Irwindale Darren even earned the respect of his hero Katsuhiro Ueo who is undoubtedly the finest Corolla drifter in the world. But that respect turned to light-hearted ridicule when Ueo-aka 4AG 'til I D-I-E-saw the SR20 nestled in the bay of Darren's Eight Six. Ueo immediately assumed the "Peeing Calvin" position above Darren's SR. Hi-larious stuff, indeed.
Another master of the JDM variety is Smoky Nagata. He's got the J-spec chutzpah to replace the original 2JZ in the JZA80 with everything from an RB26 to a 3S, but his latest Supra V-12 is so wrong it's right all over again. Sure the big 12 upsets the weight balance of a car that's woefully unbalanced to begin with, but for sheer outrageousness it's a joy to behold.
And then there was Cater who bought the 5Zigen GT500 Supra-you know the one with the 3S-GTE. Actually this is the one without the 3S-GTE as Cater bought it sans motor. Since none of us have any say in what he does with the car we all proceeded to tell Cater exactly what he should do with the car. Cater was tossing around the idea of reverting back to a 2JZ. This swap is just wrong on so many levels. I can't tell you why, it just is. And if you have a problem with that, well then... um, I'm going to have to ask Ricky to kick your ass.