When you add 10 years to 2004 you get 2014. While this ’04 Infiniti G35 isn’t 10 years old yet, it has been 10 years in the making. A vehicle of this caliber takes not only time but also style, and to develop a relevant sense of style takes time. It is evident by the product that this build took its fair share of both.
Kris Yu, of San Francisco, began his journey with cars a decade ago at 18 with an ’01 Honda Accord. Kris found himself quickly dissatisfied with his first vehicle purchase. “The car was slow and handled like a boat so I started looking for ways to make it faster and handle better,” he says. “I’ve been hooked ever since.” It was this newfound addiction that led Kris to go through a laundry list of cars of all makes and models from an ’00 turbo’d Integra, swapped ’93 Civic hatchback, ’92 Miata, and ’05 Scion TC to an ’01 BMW 5-Series and an ’87 3-Series. Let’s not forget the ’02 Yamaha R6 motorcycle. He even had a ’96 Nissan Quest! Why? Who knows?
Cars came and went, as did time—the years maturing Kris’ style and taste. It was in 2005 that he decided to purchase a G35 sedan. Working at a bank at the time, a classy four-door vehicle was necessary in case clients needed to be given a ride. While he had been driving around in a BMW 5-Series, he became bored and picked up the Infiniti “to play with and use as a daily driver. I just wanted a luxury car that was still fun to drive.” Not surprisingly, Kris found himself discontent yet again. “I got bored because it was an automatic, but I liked the actual car so I picked up a coupe to go along with the sedan as a weekend car,” he says. Must be nice, right?
Choosing a Diamond Graphite coupe, Kris immediately began modifying the car, putting it through stages and going through what most of us would be more than content to stick with. In the first stage, he purchased essentially every suspension option and bolt-on available for the chassis: Nismo aero, Volk wheels, Rotora big brake kit, pair of Sparco seats, and had a color change done with custom paint. Sounds good, right? It probably was, but he gets tired of things rather quickly. It was only a matter of time before the car was redone. The next stage of the build involved more forethought, with Kris’ sense of style and taste shining through. A subtle and classy custom green hue was chosen to slather the full APR widebody and Mastergrade trunk that was chosen to accent and complement the OEM body lines of the chassis. The newfound dimensions required an appropriate set of wheels to sit properly in the new arches. Wanting to customize every aspect of the new rollers, Kris turned to DPE and purchased a set of their S20 wheels in a massive 20x11 for the front and 20x13 for the rear with brushed silver spokes and chromed inner barrels. Yes, you read that correctly, he had the inner barrels done in chrome. Why have the inner barrels chromed? For two reasons: One, to make the baller Project Mu SCR-Pro six-pot front, four-pot rear brakes stand out even more. And two, because he could. To provide the necessary driving and parking stance, Kris chose Universal Air Suspension to tie the new body and wheels together and provide adjustability at the flick of a switch. With the gamut of aesthetics addressed, Kris turned to the powerplant of his vehicle. A Vortech V-2 supercharger was installed, complemented by a Spearco FMIC, Kinetix SSV intake manifold, DC Sports headers, Crawford high-flow cat, and an HKS Hi-Power dual titanium exhaust system. Tuned by FFtec in Hayward, CA, the car put down a solid 417 whp and 369 lb-ft of torque, making it sound like a “Dyson on steroids.” Looks, class, and power—Kris addressed every aspect of this build, so it is no surprise that he has taken home multiple First Place awards at various events.
Although the ending to the story of how this car came to be is like a fairy tale (being featured in Import Tuner magazine, duh), the journey was definitely not all smooth sailing. Kris and his friends had their fair share of bumps along the way. For example, during the installation of the Project Mu brake setup Kris made the mistake of placing a washer on the wrong side of a bolt, apparently causing the brakes to stick. This major problem caused by such a minor mistake was discovered only after they had removed and reinstalled the entire brake setup. Then, after taking the car out to test and enjoy, Kris heard a “ticking noise” that started to get louder and louder and drove him crazy. Wanting to find and solve the problem immediately, Kris took the car home and tore into the suspension and brakes. For two days he went through everything that rotated, all the way down to the wheel bearings, but the sound was still there. Frustrated after the umpteenth attempt to find and fix the problem, Kris lost his temper and hit the A-arm and heard the sound. Regaining his calm, he focused and realized that the sound that had eluded him for two days was simply the brake line tapping a bracket on the shock. Literally laughing out loud, Kris grabbed a zip tie and fixed the problem right then and there. The problems didn’t just come from under the body of the car; they also came from under the hood. Installation of the supercharger took Kris and his friends a couple of days and when they were done they took the car out and it ran fine. But when they pulled it into the garage the car died, and they couldn’t get it to crank back over. Problems rarely arise at a convenient time, this instance being no different. With a car show just three hours away, they checked and double-checked but couldn’t figure out what the problem was. Sending Kris home to get some rest, his friend assured him that he would continue trying to figure out what the problem was. It was only 45 minutes later that Kris got a call from his friend letting him know that all was well. Apparently after starting to dismantle all kinds of parts, they realized that the problem was caused by one small ground wire.
After all of the time, money, and sweat put in to this car, there’s no way that Kris is going to get bored of it and put it on the back burner like he’s done to so many other cars. “I’m working on a Civic hatch right now. My friend and I are building the motor for track events. And maybe I’ll get a bike again.” OK, never mind.
Behind the Build
San Francisco, CA
time-attack, shooting, working out, cooking, working on cars, chilling, Team Hybrid (NorCal chapter)
I built this car as a display for my shop and as a weekend project to keep myself busy
2004 Infiniti G35
Engine Vortech V-2 supercharger; GT Motorsports pulley; Kinetix SSV intake manifold; DC Sports headers; Crawford catalytic converter; HKS Hi-Power titanium dual exhaust, blow-off valve; Spearco intercooler; ZEX boost-activated nitrous system; ARC air diversion panel, oil cap, radiator cap; DevilsOwn methanol injection; Bosch fuel pump; UTEC EMS
Drivetrain Cusco Type MZ 1.5 way LSD; ACT clutch; AMSOIL fluid
Suspension Universal Air Suspension (daily); Stance GR+ coilovers (track); Hotchkis front and rear antiroll bars; Stillen front and rear tower braces; GT Spec front/rear lateral bar, rear tie bar; SPC rear camber kits, rear toe kit
Wheels/tires DPE S20 brushed wheels (20x11 front, 20x13 rear) (daily), S10 matte black wheels (track); Continental DW Sport tires (275/25-20 front, 325/25-20 rear); Project Kics R40 Neo Chrono lug nuts
Brakes Project Mu SCR Pro six-pot front calipers, four-pot rear calipers, brake lines
Exterior Custom green paint; APR full widebody; Hikkata Dori hood; custom ’06-plus projector headlights; Mastergrade carbon-fiber trunk; JDM ’06-plus taillights
Interior Recaro Speed front seats; Takata long harnesses; rear harness bar; Personal steering wheel; Works Bell Rapfix II, short hub; JDM A/C controller, trim; Nismo titanium shift knob; Infiniti sport pedals
Electronics Greddy infometer, tachometer; DEFI Red Racer boost and EGT gauges; AEM wideband gauge; Pioneer head unit; TV tuner; hidden PS2; UAS nine-way air-ride controller; Dakota digital gauge
Gratitude Veronica, without you my car wouldn’t be where it is now; James Lin, Hybrid Hunnyz, and family from Team Hybrid especially NorCal’s Joe Bacigalupi, Chris, Andy, Danny, Nesto, Paparudy, and all the OG our*garage members; Eric, Wyman, Kelly, Ray from Machiii; Meguiar’s; NOS; Steve from Mackin; Jeff from Promo; Ken and Adam from Weaksauce; Junior and all the folks from Full Function; Mikey from Horizon; Sunny from Franklin Autobody; Tony from TNT Autobody; Mike; Brandon; Dave; Joe B.