If you haven't figured out by now, we're obsessed with Japan! It might be because we're simply JDM fanboys and things like the Nissan Skyline aren't accessible here in the States. Sure, we have the R35 GT-R, but there's always going to be an infatuation with '90s Japanese sports cars like the R33 Skyline. Which explains why we lost our marbles when we encountered Daisuke Yokoyama's Skyline at our Tokyo Fresh Car Meet the night before Tokyo Auto Salon.
During the day, Daisuke operates his shop Oval Auto Performance in Adachi-Ku. He also happens to be heavily involved in the community as the CEO of Hoonigan Japan and a member of Hardcore Tokyo Japan. His R33 is a different story, though... It's not a car you'd normally see at a car show or even on public streets. He may be a business owner during the day, but at night he's part of a wangan midnight racing team. His Skyline is notorious (and possibly wanted by local authorities) for performing actions beyond the threshold of acceptable conduct on public roads. Don't try this at home, kids!
Allowing Daisuke to do who knows what is an explosive powerplant under the hood. Far from ordinary, an RB26DETT N1 rests between the shock towers. The N1 basically means that Nismo modified the standard motor with an improved crankshaft, water channels, piston rings, and turbos. All that, plus a 2.8L HKS stroker kit and more aggressive V-Spec cams meant this motor was ready for bigger boost. To suck in as much air as possible is a T78 turbo. The titanium exhaust, exhaust manifold, and surge tank are completely custom one-off pieces fabricated specifically for Daisuke's car. When all was said and done, the motor is estimated to put down 700 ponies to all four wheels.
With all that power, the R33 needs the right chassis upgrades. To handle those tight highway corners, Quantum Racing suspension components were added, while Brembo brake calipers and AP rotors allow the coupe to stop on the dime.
The exterior is kept straightforward with a Trust front bumper, a carbon hood, and a custom rear spoiler. For wheels, Daisuke is rolling on classic bronze TE37s. And to keep weight down, he installed polycarbonate windows made by Lexan—almost gives this R33 a true race car feel.
Then you look inside the interior and it's a dead giveaway this car was made to go fast. Recaro seats, a Nardi steering wheel, eight-point rollcage, and a few gauges are all Daisuke needs to attack the highways. For shits and giggles, he still rocks the race inspection stickers from '99.
Even with a questionable street racing reputation, he's one of the nicest guys we've met. With our affairs in order, we said "yes" to an opportunity for a few joyrides on the highway. Luckily, there were no encounters with the police, but we did almost lose our ramen! Professional Formula D driver Matt Field may have said it best, as he was lucky enough to get behind the wheel of the car after our Tokyo Fresh meet, "Driving this car is like playing with a knife at 10 years old. It can get you and easily spin all four tires on the freeway. Luckily, the brakes are face-melting good. Daisuke's car is wild and a shitload of fun!"