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2003 Infiniti G35 - The Last Dab

A drift build so hot, it'll make The Hot Ones sweat

Jonathan Wong
Jul 4, 2018
Photographer: Cody Helton

There's something to be said about those who live by their words. We often say "live life to the fullest," but who actually does this to its full extent? We like to think Alex Docken does. This free-spirited car enthusiast applied this ideology to his daily routine, giving up everything to travel around North America in a Sprinter van with his best friend and wife, Allison. Together, they're doing everything possible to make a drifting/car lifestyle work, by creating a build that's heavily influenced by the premise that tomorrow is never guaranteed: "Losing my mother-in-law nine years ago really taught me a lot and changed how I view my time here on Earth. Along with a couple friends who passed when I was younger, plus near-death experiences from car or extreme sports accidents, I've become aware of my mortality, and we want to make the most of each day by drifting as much as we can. These experiences and friendships mean the world to us."

2003 infiniti g35 k2 front bumper Photo 2/15   |   2003 Infiniti G35 K2 Front Bumper

Originally from Southern California, Alex moved to Minnesota at 15 and has been drifting ever since. He has a thing for sedans, simply because of the way they look and how well they can actually hang with coupes while sliding around. "Seeing [Japanese drivers] like Nomuken or (NOB) Taniguchi inspired me strictly for style reasons," Alex says. "For all the sedans available in the U.S., the G35 has plenty of aftermarket support since it shares many parts with the coupe counterpart and 350Z." He purchased the car from the original owner and within five hours of taking possession, it was lowered and fitted with coilovers, seats, a Nardi steering wheel, and wheels-since then it's become a completely different animal.

Alex's inspiration for car styling comes from the nearby city of Chicago and the early '00s competition cars from Japan's D1GP series. "Those type of cars weren't built for max performance, but more max excitement," Alex explains. "I care more about the style of a car and the fun of driving, not because some dude wins first place at a contest. That's what drifting will always be about to me, and I want future generations to see super exciting cars and continue coming up with new ideas to make drifting more exciting."

2003 infiniti g35 VQ35DE Photo 6/15   |   2003 Infiniti G35 VQ35DE

But styling aside, this G35 is built to do what Alex does best: be driven hard. Its VQ35DE has been fully strengthened from top to bottom, turbocharged, and sees plenty of custom fabrication, including a V-mount intercooler setup and exhaust system. More one-off work includes the rollcage design by Oppomoto, which integrates NASCAR-style door bars, plus a wild set of Work VS-XXs done by "That Wheel Guy," combining black barrels with white/gold flake faces and 24K gold-plated hardware. The aero parts are some of Japan's finest, yet also require some modification to fit onto the sedan body.

Over the past few years, Alex's G35 has earned the nickname "dabsedan," something he assures us is not because of the dance move based on the word "dab." He says, "I didn't think it would stick; it was a placeholder name when I joined Instagram, based around a lot of the ideas for the car. I'd session in the car with friends and bounce crazy ideas with them and how to pull them off. I tried changing the name, but I've become known for it now so it's stuck." (laughs)

2003 infiniti g35 oppomoto drift spec rollcage Photo 10/15   |   2003 Infiniti G35 Oppomoto Drift Spec Rollcage

One fact remains constant throughout our conversation with Alex: experience life to the fullest. "If you're going to build a dope car, make sure you drive it hard! It's the most important part, and the most fun!"

2003 infiniti g35 custom bumper canards Photo 11/15   |   2003 Infiniti G35 Custom Bumper Canards
2003 infiniti g35 nardi steering wheel Photo 15/15   |   2003 Infiniti G35 Nardi Steering Wheel
By Jonathan Wong
483 Articles
2003 Infiniti G35 - The Last Dab
Tuning Menu
Owner: Alex Docken
Hometown: "No home/garage/place to call home besides my van."
Occupation: Full-time traveler
Instagram: @dabsedan
Engine: VQ35DE built by Landslide Performance; Manley I-beam rods and 8:5:1 Platinum series pistons; Cosworth main/rod bearings, fuel rail and oil baffle; HR head gasket, head bolts and oil pump; refreshed OEM cylinder heads; EPS oil galley gasket; Fluidamper harmonic balancer; Mazworx oil pan; Tomei oil cap; Z1 plenum spacers; Injector Dynamics fuel injectors; Walbro 450-lph E85 fuel pumps (x3); Radium Engineering surge tank, stainless fuel filter and fittings; Oppomoto custom V-mounted Treadstone intercooler and stainless fuel hardline; Continental flex fuel sensor; C&R dual pass NASCAR radiator; Jim Wolf Tech turbo manifolds and 700BB turbos; Turbosmart race port blow-off valve; Koyorad 32-row oil cooler; Setrab power steering cooler; custom 3-inch downpipes/exhaust; GrimmSpeed electronic boost control solenoid
Drivetrain: Spec Clutch twin-disc clutch; Z1 stainless clutch line, solid transmission mount and differential cover; Tomei two-way limited-slip differential
Engine Management: Haltech Platinum Pro standalone ECU tuned by DB Performance
Footwork & Chassis: custom Reinharte three-way adjustable coilovers by Touge Factory; Parts Shop Max front lower control, rear traction, toe and camber arms; Hotchkis sway bars; SPL solid subframe and differential bushings, sway bar end-links
Brake: Chasebays proportioning valve kit; custom Oppomoto/Rad Industries lines; Maverick dual caliper bracket; Parts Shop Max hand brake with Wilwood reservoir
Wheels & Tires: 18x9.5" +4 front, 18x10.5" +4 rear Work VS-XX with white faces with gold flake, black powdercoated barrels and 24K gold-plated hardware built by "That Wheel Guy" Alex Henderson; 225/40R18 Federal tires
Exterior: K2 front bumper; modified OEM hood/fenders; 326 Power spoiler; Hikkatadori side skirts; Monkey Magic modified skirt extensions; Varis rear canards and rear diffuser; GK Tech side mirrors; Origin under canards; custom bumper canards
Interior: custom Oppomoto six-point drift-spec rollcage with NASCAR-style door bars, seam-rolled door panels, rear firewall and floor plates; Bride/Cusco Zeta 3 glitter back seats; Nardi 350mm steering wheel; Takata harnesses; Buddy Club super low seat brackets; Parts Shop Max weighted shift knob; Halon fire extinguisher; AEM wideband; Turbosmart boost gauge
Thanks You: "This car is what it is because of my wife, Allison, my friends, and my team, No-Mind. Their support and encouragement, giving up their time (and clean hands) to help me keep this going and the dream alive means more than I can express. I love you all!"

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