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Nissan Silvia - Balanced Diet

Jason Siu
Jun 1, 2007
Writer: Matthew Lamperd Photographer: Greg Deese

It’s what we’re told keeps the universe together – not zip ties and duct tape after all. From our very own legal system (yep, Justice – the girl with the scales, or Themis, as she was known before we uh … ‘borrowed’ her likeness) to the Eastern Han philosophy of Yin and Yang, balance is key. It’s a healthy way to live your life, and as the folks from Z Fever have clearly demonstrated – a heck of a way to build a car. Some cars we see are heavily loaded with horsepower, while others are built strictly for show. Z Fever however took every aspect into consideration and built one of the most well-rounded S-chassis that we’ve set our eyes on this year. And that’s saying a lot, considering how many Silvia-derived cars we see in a Modified year.

When we were first introduced to this House of Kolors Cobalt Blue beauty, we didn’t know what we wanted to take a closer look at first. The aesthetics were obviously well done and we pretty much figured on a built SR taking up residence between the shock towers. We took a few quick laps around the car to admire the accents to the natural S13 lines. The most obvious modification to the S13’s stock body was the S15 front end. The rear was widened a full two inches per side to make room for the aggressive wheel and tire setup that really sets this S13 apart. Filling the cavernous rear wheel openings in delicious flushness is a pair of black chrome 19 x 10.5-inch RH Pro J5 wheels. Up front is a milder 19 x 8.5-inch set beautifully finishing off the aggressive stance of this S13.5. Z Fever opted to wrap up each of these beauties with Hankook Ventus tires in 235/35-19 and 275/30-19 varieties.

With the S15 front end in place along with the widened rear conversion, this S13 received a complete makeover rivalling anything five Nancy-boys and a truck full of power tools could muster. Call it Clean Eye for the Straight Car, call it what you will … straight from Vertex is a full body kit including an S15 front bumper, S13 side skirts and rear bumper. The Do-Luck carbon fiber wing catches your eye and won’t let it go until you admit, this is one hot looking 240SX. Everything just flows seamlessly from front to rear. An OE-style carbon fiber hood is the perfect finishing touch to contrast the beautiful Cobalt Blue paint.

To balance out the immaculate exterior treatment, this car would have to pack a hell of a punch in the engine bay to not tip the scales too far into the ‘show’ favor. In retrospect, the exterior, by comparison, may be lacking. Z Fever is known for some of the cleanest SR20DET builds around and this is no exception to the rule. Prior to dropping in the SR, Z Fever invested some serious time to help chase some of the SR’s known weaknesses. The entire valvetrain section of the GReddy catalog was enlisted to get the SR20DET ready for some good ‘ol forced induction. GReddy valve springs, retainers and rocker arm stoppers were substituted in while a GReddy metal head gasket keeps oil and water from mixing. Tons of additional fuel has been added to the setup thanks to SARD’s 850cc injectors and a Border fuel rail. On the hot side, Z Fever went on the offensive with a TurboSmart 50mm wastegate, ceramic coated top mount exhaust manifold and turbo outlet pipe. Used boost exits through a Z Fever downpipe and JIC titanium cat back exhaust. It’s hard to miss the massive Blitz front mount intercooler while staring at the car from the exterior, but underneath the hood the view is dominated by a gleaming GReddy intake manifold. Conducting the fuel and air symphony is an Enthalpy ROM tuned ECU.

The drivetrain didn’t see too many modifications, but a SPEC stage 4 clutch was thrown in to ensure absolutely no slippage would occur. With the ‘Go’ and ‘Show’ camps equally represented, Z Fever needed to bring the handling aspect of their build into better balance. A great deal of adjustability and versatility has been applied to the suspension modifications, with a huge part of it coming straight from Z Fever themselves. Recruiting their own manufacturing skills a power brace, adjustable rear camber arms, tie rods, rear subframe spacers, rear adjustable toe arms and adjustable front tension rods were all fashioned for the S13.5. JIC Magic FLT-A2 coilovers give the S13 the winning stance it needs at the shows, and gives the car the sure-footedness it needs on to represent on the track and on the street. Crawling underneath the car, we also noticed a set of Suspension Techniques sway bars.

All that’s left to complete a perfectly balanced build is of course a perfectly balanced interior. Continuing with the JDM trend from the S15 front end conversion, Z Fever had their S13 switched over to righthand drive. Z Fever decided to swap out the front and rear seats for a matched set from the S13s more refined, suit-and-tie-wearing cousin, the 350Z. A MOMO steering wheel along with a carbon fiber Nismo shift knob play the role of gorgeous accents to the custom carbon fiber door panels and rear panels. A series of Blitz gauges display all the stats Z Fever needs to keep their S13 in the game. Bringing the ‘Show’ aspect up nice and level to the ‘Go’, is a healthy dose of ICE. Up front is an Eclipse in-dash 7” LCD while a Viper 5-channel amplifier powers a series of MB Quartz speakers and an Orion 10” subwoofer.

So whether hanging outside the halls of justice, on the quest for spiritual enlightenment, or just trying to decide what to order for lunch, try and remember the lesson Z Fever’s S13.5 has to teach us all. Without evil, there’d be no good. Without the sun, there can be no moon. If not for Ding Dongs and Ho-Hos, we’d have no use for salad. And of course without the Z Fever S13.5, there would be no S13 in this issue.

By Jason Siu
34 Articles

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