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 |   |  '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up
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'93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up

Hunting down rare parts and applying them to a 1 of 250, limited FD3S.

Oct 29, 2020
Photographer: Taylor Galster

Based on what you see on social media regularly, you'd think that every FD3S had ditched its native, internally triangular powerplant in lieu of American muscle, but that's simply not true. Just ask Joshua Freeman, owner of this 1993 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition. Having been infatuated with the car's sultry lines ever since his elementary school days, he had no intension of making the massive jump in displacement and instead focused on the Mazda icon's more than capable, turbocharged rotary.

1993 Mazda RX 7 Touring Edition M Sport Japan Bumper Photo 20/20   |   '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up

The One That Didn't Get Away

Joshua initially spotted this exact RX-7 in its original condition regularly, having attended both middle and high school with a classmate whose family owned it, and years later the car continued to haunt him while attending college. He adds, "After seeing the car around countless times, I was eager to own one eventually. I would often see the owner out and about around town— and I would press her regularly on selling the car." At one point, after it had been sitting untouched for an extended amount of time, the family finally offered to sell it to Joshua and he jumped at the chance. The RX-7 meant a lot to their family and they wanted the car to end up in good hands, and after seeing his previous projects, they were excited to see what Joshua would do with the FD.

Adding to the Resume

The previous projects that the sellers were referring to are a Genesis coupe and an 820whp Subaru STI on Joshua's resume that he proudly refers to as "proper and complete builds." What differentiates this particular build from his previous efforts is the restoration portion of the project. He notes, "The RX-7 pretty much fell into my lap and was completely stock upon receiving it. It sat in a garage for years on end. Since then, I have arguably done a full restore. To me, this is something I hadn't done in the past."

1993 Mazda RX 7 Touring Edition M Sport Japan Side Skirt Photo 20/20   |   '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up

The restoration or, more specifically, the restomod included a color change to Millennium Jade borrowed from an R34 V-Spec edition Skyline. In addition, 1999-and-up model JDM fog lights and Final Form Japan LED taillights update the front and rear, but it's the M-Sport Japan complete aero kit that defines the car's look. A rare find, Joshua states that as of last year he was the only stateside owner of a complete kit, though, in more recent days, additional versions have shown up in the U.S.

Rotary Power Only!
White on white '92 RX-7
Thai-built widebody '93 FD3S

As bold as the side skirts and bumpers are, you won't find the expected huge rear wing perched out back; instead a mild carbon-fiber trunk spoiler to finish off the car's lean, muscular look. And where you were probably expecting bronze or white wheels that most everyone opts for these days, Joshua went with 18-in. Kansei Roku wheels in chrome—an option seldom used and a bit of a break from the norm.

Rotaries Gonna Rotary

Getting back to that rotary heart, one of the main reasons people move away from these engines is due to their known issues with apex seals, and wouldn't you know it, that's exactly the issue that Joshua's ran into along the way. "The only major setback I had on the build was the car warping the apex seals and losing fuel pressure on the dyno. This called for a motor out and disassemble prior to making some adjustments."

1993 Mazda RX 7 Touring Edition 13B Engine Photo 20/20   |   '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up

The powerplant now consists of an Eccentric Motorsports Bridgeported 13B with CHIPs LBC rotors and Goopy Apex seals to avoid a repeat performance. An EFR 8374 turbo, backed by a pair of TiaL 38mm MVS wastegates, hangs off of a custom manifold, also by Eccentric Motorsports. Taking the shortest route possible, painstaking pie cuts snake from both the hot and cold side of the v-mount intercooler, and when 15 PSI is reached, that intercooler takes a hit from the Sake Bomb Racing methanol kit.

To feed the custom turbo setup, ID1050/2000 injectors joined to Radium fuel rails and a Walbro 525lph pump deliver enough fuel while being overseen by a Haltech 1500 to pull a healthy 540whp and over 400 lbs.-ft. of torque without issue.

Military Precision

The custom engine coatings and intricately detailed, one-off fab work is highlighted by a contrasting Liquid Candy Red engine bay that offers a stark departure from the sleek Jade exterior body panels. Organized and purposeful, everything from the AN fittings and lines to the MSD ignition cables are neatly routed and any potential fat has effective been trimmed. Combining style and 500-plus-hp functionality can be a burden for some builders, whereas in this instance experience with previous builds has helped shape Joshua's execution.

1993 Mazda RX 7 Touring Edition Recaro RZ Seat Photo 20/20   |   '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up

The eye-catching red that radiates from under the hood plays well with the rare factory red cabin. One of just 250 FD RX-7s ever produced with red interior, the majority of it still remains and is in excellent condition. The sole departure from the original red leather falls on a Kevlar-backed Recaro RZ bucket seat which, coincidentally, is also a limited-edition model. A splash of wild in the form of a Mean Streets/Vertex/Fatlace collaborative steering wheel sits just in front of an AEM CD-7 digital cluster.

1993 Mazda RX 7 Touring Edition Final Form Japan LED Taillights Photo 20/20   |   '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up

This build has been a journey for Joshua, but it's certainly not finished yet. He adds, "Over the last two years, I've poured my blood and sweat, frustrations and triumphs into this car that I've proudly put in motion. I've gained a lot of experience along the way." As for what's next, he recently picked up two sets of Blitz Type 3s, one of which he'll be refinishing for this car, and he plans to add a few more failsafes to the engine setup. Also, another hunt is underway; "I plan to run custom door cards with Vaded Mob logos and also find another Recaro RZ for the passenger seat. Due to rarity and demand, it has been a tough one to source...but that's the fun of it!"

1993 Mazda RX 7 Touring Edition M Sport Japan Rear Bumper Photo 20/20   |   '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up
1993 Mazda RX 7 Touring Edition Kansei Roku Wheel 02 Photo 20/20   |   '93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up
By Rodrez
941 Articles
'93 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition With The Looks, & 540WHP To Back Them Up
Tuning Menu
Car: 1993 Mazda RX-7 Touring Edition
Owner: Joshua Freeman
IG: @theraflu / @vadedmob
Engine: CHIPs LBC rotors, water pump delete; complete rebuild; Goopy Apex seals; Eccentric Motorsports Bridgeport, custom turbo manifold, prototype V-mount intercooler kit; Roiel head & T4 flange; Tial 38mm MVS wastegate x2, Q blow-off valve, blow-off SS flange; Turbo guard; turbo blanket; EFR 8374 turbo 1.05 AR w/SXE front cover; oil pan brace; GReddy compression elbow; custom catch can, water pump mount, remote fill with cap, water lines and fittings, intercooler piping, air deflectors, intercooler core, end tanks; downpipe, midpipe; Reinhard Japan semi-titanium dual exit exhaust; Davies Craig EWP; Radium fuel rails, pressure regulator; Injector Dynamics 1050/2000cc w/48mm top hats; Aeromotive fuel filter; billet filter mount; Walbro 525 fuel pump; modified fuel lid for larger pump; Setrab oil cooler; billet oil pedestal; upgraded turbo oil feed, fill tube; wire tuck; ABS delete and wheel well lines
Drivetrain: ACT HD 6-puck clutch kit and lightweight flywheel
Electronics Haltech 1500 w/Prem loom, ignition coils fuel level box; HT 4-port CAN BUS; HT WB1 wideband; FFE; trim pot switch; MSD plug wires; upgraded MAC valve, holder; custom coil mounts
Suspension: Custom BC coilovers with 16K springs rates; Megan Racing upper control arms; powdercoated GReddy shock tower brace
Wheels & Tires: 18-in. Kansei Roku; Toyo Tires Proxes Sport
Exterior: Millennium Jade paint; M-Sport Japan complete aero kit; 99+ JDM fog lamps and housing; Final Form Japan LED taillights; Shine Auto carbon fiber low-profile trunk spoiler; Ganador carbon side mirrors
Interior: Recaro RZ (1 of 2,500 produced);Worksbell x Nightrunner Rapfix 2 quick-release (1/100 produced), short hub adapter; MeanStreets x Vertex x Fatlace steering wheel (1 of 100 produced); AEM CD-7 digital display
Thanks: Big up to Jon Gabrenya for executing the Millinium Jade paint job so well, he even surprised me with newly printed paint code stickers with the VIN. Not only that, but he stuck around with me through pulling the motor, shaving and spraying the engine bay with a tri-coat Candy Apple Red. Special thanks to my Vaded Mob fam for always pushing me to create intricate builds and executions, Special thanks to Toyo Tires for always being so quick to be a part of my projects and providing only the best rubber for my vehicles. Last but not least, a big thank you to Eccentric Motorsports for pretty much teaching me everything I know about rotaries. Zachariah & Klint laid down some awesome welds for my custom turbo kit set up & v-mount intercooler, making me a custom wiring harness, custom bridge-porting for ultimate braps, and assembling my motor as a whole!



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