Alain Otero’s ‘89 Mazda RX-7
Alain Says: I bought the RX-7 as a shell for $500. She was a mess — no motor, no tranny, no interior and faded paint with dents all over the place! The car was essentially ready for the junkyard. After four years of hard work and determination, it’s finally paying off; I’m enjoying my RX-7 more than I ever thought I would. She is definitely a head-turner. I went through three rotary motors, though, and got tired of rebuilding them, so I decided it was time to go to the dark side by putting a 1JZ in it. The number one question from rotary heads is, “Oh my god, why did you do that to an RX-7?” I tell them, “for reliable power!” They have no reply to that answer. I’ve had two different turbo setups on this motor — with my latest GReddy twin 18G setup, I was able to squeeze out 463 hp at 16 psi on 89 pump gas. The car is silly fast at 16 psi and I love the power-to-weight ratio. The car still handles well with a bigger motor in the front. These cars are known to be light in the front, so with the JZ motor it about evens the car out to a 50/50 weight distribution. I did all the paint and bodywork myself three years ago. My latest modification was my new XXR 921s 18x10-inch wheels all around. In the future, I plan to install a Cusco 12-point rollcage and stand-alone. I can’t wait!
We Say: Throwing a 1JZ GTE engine into an FC is something we don’t see every day. We can only imagine how fast this now non-rotary-powered RX-7 is, so this car gets props from us on an awesome engine swap and a nice overall package.
Specs & Details
'89 Mazda RX-7
Engine Toyota 1JZ GTE twin-turbocharged inline-6
Engine Modifications 264 HKS cams; GReddy twin 18G turbo kit; Tial 44mm wastegate; GReddy 4-core intercooler, Type-S BOV intake side, Type-R BOV charge side; Kenne Belle ignition system
Drivetrain OS Giken twin-plate clutch; custom lightweight driveshaft; 88 Turbo II LSD rear end
Engine Management Blitz ECU; A’PEXi SAFC II; Innovative LC-1 wideband (Titan Motorsports); Auto Meter boost & EGT gauges; GReddy Profec B Spec II boost controller
Suspension Cusco Type Zero 2Es coilovers; 16-way dampening adjustment
Wheels, Tires & Brakes XXR 921s 18x10” +25 offset (f/r); 265/35R18 Nitto NT05s (r) & 225/4018 Kumho Ectsas (f) stretched
Exterior GP Sports kit; rear roof spoiler; Wangan rear wing; RE Amemiya GT300 carbon bonnet & mirrors; JDM (OEM) window visors; R-Magic 25mm widebody front fenders; House of Kolor paint: Icy Red Pearl