Take a chance or go with what's familiar - it's the classic battle of conscience and one that you and I contend with on the regular. Sometimes those battles are small; nothing more than tempting yourself to order something new at your favorite restaurant, while other times that back and forth minutiae can drive you nuts as you contemplate the endless "what ifs."
Bangkok's Wijit Padungtian knew his way around a build, having put together a long-term Civic project that he'd enjoyed for a number of years, but what he wasn't familiar with were the ins and outs of Nissan's venerable S15. And that's a shame, because the sultry Silvia had long served as his dream car. Aspiring to someday purchase one of his own, he kept wrenching on the Civic, all the while knowing sooner or later he needed to take the plunge, leave behind the familiar, and move into the unknown.
That was two years ago, and if you ask Padungtian today about his beautifully modded S-chassis, he'll have no problem breaking down for you the various changes he's made in that time period. The goal for his build was fairly simple; put together something that can be driven daily, go just about anywhere he wanted, and make enough power to have fun doing it.
The power equation, the sum of which eclipses the 450whp mark, is based on an array of GReddy goods, including their T67-25G turbo, cams, and adjustable cam gears. A nicely crafted custom intake manifold is met by pie-cut titanium intercooler piping, while a Splitfire coil pack line up helps ignite the mix as the Link Monsoon system makes those tough split-second decisions. All of this is tucked nicely within a freshly painted bay that's done away with most unnecessary bits but doesn't take on the faceless look of a completely shaved engine compartment.
With enough power to keep him happy, Padungtian updated the Silvia's look with a GP Sports aero kit and vented fenders, along with a Vertex carbon fiber wing that plays well with the carbon trunk and hood combo. Knowing you can never go wrong with bronze wheels and fresh white paint, a set of 18-inch CE28s that measure 9.5 inches wide in front and 10.5 rear were loaded with Toyo tires to take on the rough streets of Bangkok. Look a little closer - between the bronze spokes - and you'll notice the gold GReddy calipers at all four corners.
Being a daily driver but still wanting a performance edge to his build, Padungtian opted for adjustable Recaro Tomcats and a Momo steering wheel. To keep tabs on his feisty SR20, an AIM digital display sits front and center while an AEM Electronics gauge continuously spits air/fuel ratio vitals. It's the type of cabin that lends itself well to idling endlessly in traffic or banging gears at a weekend track event.
While Wijit Padungtian didn't start off as an S-chassis guy, over time, with a longstanding passion for Nissan's sporty coupe, and some hands-on experience, he's certainly established himself as one. Having conquered a chassis that was once foreign to him, he's got more than enough confidence to jump into something else outside of his comfort zone. Or perhaps he's found his calling and will stick with the S-chassis for the long run. There's that inner battle again...