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D/L/K Nissan Silvia Drift and Show Car From Japan

Breaking the rules of color, camber, and drifting

Steve Enomoto
Apr 22, 2016
Photographer: Colin Waki

When envisioning the ideal image of your dream car, you can't let the haters get in the way. Takashi Kusunoki has been told left and right what isn't appropriate and what can't be done in the drifting world. The critics told him his Nissan Silvia was too low and too pretty to drift and were quick to point out the amount of negative camber would never be accepted. Unsure of himself, Kusunoki actually let the haters get to him and changed the way he wanted to build his S15. During this time, he raised the height of his coupe and dialed back the camber, but he quickly learned that his ability to drift became significantly impaired; he also didn't like the way it sat anymore. So listen up, kids... Stick to what you trust and what you're comfortable with. You know your car better than anyone else and how you want it to drive or look.

Dlk nissan silvia s15 dlk trunk spoiler Photo 2/13   |   Dlk Nissan Silvia S15 Dlk Trunk Spoiler

To help give you a little more backstory behind the owner, Kusunoki isn't your average Joe poser who's simply trying to make a stanced show car stand out in the crowd. He's the founder and operator of a successful body shop in his hometown called D/L/K, short for Drift/Luxury/Kusunoki. His company is responsible for creating countless vehicles that are on point in his region. This particular Silvia is his second S15 project. His first, which he still owns, is a little more rough around the edges, however much faster and more competitive at drift events. He created this pink pioneer to serve multiple purposes—street, drift, and show.

Dlk nissan silvia s15 work meister m1r wheel Photo 3/13   |   To get the fitment of the Work Meister M1R wheels right, Kusunoki also squeezed in 65mm spacers out back.

Kusunoki goes on to elaborate more to us about when he modified his Silvia to what the critics were telling him to do. On one hand, the car didn't look as loud; however, on the other hand, it also helped save his aero, keeping the car unscathed from damage during drifting. But deep down inside, the car's driving style didn't have the same swagger as it did before. He explains that there is a common belief where he is from: Destroying expensive aero in the midst of a third gear slide is praised on the track. It might be strange philosophy to many people, but try to understand that along with the plume of smoke that comes from a drift, banging the aero against the tarmac gives the textbook impression of the overemphasis of the "perfect drift." We should also note that because this particular S15 still rocked its naturally aspirated SR20DE, Kusunoki had to make the necessary adjustments to alignment and camber to help him initiate drifts easier and hold them longer due to a slightly underpowered engine. So he reverted back to what worked.

He states jokingly and at the same time proudly, "Since it's an S15, it has negative 15 degrees of camber." This is possibly the hush-hush key to his drifting. The contact patch of the tire is less than a third of the entire tread. He's also overinflated the rear tires to 78 psi. What's this mean? Basically, because there is minimal contact between the tires and pavement, equaling less grip, it's easier to lose traction and initiate a drift. The downside of this setup is that it's difficult to hold high-speed slides no matter how hard one may push the throttle to regain some traction. Going through tires every more frequently is another negative that should be cautioned as well if you're thinking of following in his footsteps. But regardless, this is Kusunoki's very own recipe of getting his machine moving to his liking, which shows that every driver requires his or her very own recipe.

Dlk nissan silvia s15 widened fenders Photo 7/13   |   Kusunoki uses the S15 chassis code as a basis for the negative 15-degrees camber. Seems to work for him!

The fenders that cover the lips of the 18x10" Work M1Rs remain stock, but have been pulled and worked over. Like a Super GT car, the wheelwells have been hammered, cut, and gutted to accommodate the wider wheels—a step just shy of "tubbing." Suspension components consist of mostly parts from 326 Power, the popular choice for many Japanese drifters. The Chakuriki coilovers feature stiff 12kg front and 19kg rear spring rates; however, the most impressive aspect of the suspension may be the upper camber bracket holes, which have been drilled to give more wheel lean. The rear subframe has also been raised 2 cm to help achieve this look.

Dlk nissan silvia s15 undercarriage Photo 8/13   |   A look at the upgrades to the rear suspension to help Kusunoki achieve the correct alignment as well as benefit from stronger components.

Feel free to hate on non-functional cars that have aggressive camber all day long, but Kusunoki is not one of them. Let us learn to praise those who modify their cars for the right reasons. Let us appreciate those who drive their pride and joys harder than the daily drivers and the trailer queens out there, yet look as clean and show worthy as Kusonoki's Silvia.

Dlk nissan silvia s15 momo steering wheel Photo 9/13   |   Dlk Nissan Silvia S15 Momo Steering Wheel
Dlk nissan silvia s15 dlk rear diffuser Photo 13/13   |   Dlk Nissan Silvia S15 Dlk Rear Diffuser
By Steve Enomoto
24 Articles
D/L/K Nissan Silvia Drift and Show Car From Japan
Tuning Menu
Owner: Takashi Kusunoki
Hometown: Kagawa Prefacture, Japan
Occupation: owner of D/L/K body shop
Engine: SR20DE with Blitz SUS Power air filter; custom dual exhaust
Footwork & Chassis: 326 Power Chakuriki coilovers with 12kg front, 19kg rear springs; 30mm front extended control arms; KTS front tension rod; Ikeya Formula front tie rod; 326 Power rear traction rod, rear upper arms, rear toe rods; modified subframe
Wheels & Tires: 18x10" -17 front, 18x10" -24 rear Work Meister M1R wheels; 215/35R18 Haida tires; 10mm front, 65mm rear spacers
Exterior: D/L/K custom front lip, trunk, ear roof spoiler, rear diffuser; 4cm front, 8cm rear widened fenders; modified wheelwells; Autech front bumper; Genuine side skirts; Wise Square LED taillights; yellow tinted headlights; Toyota Vitz pink paint with gold flakes; Ultraman silver painted roof
Interior: MOMO steering wheel

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