What makes automotive aesthetics so important to the modified car scene in Australia? Who plays with JDM hardware like no other panel sculptor? The man who blessed this awesome street-stalking FD RX-7, Danny Hoang of Sydney's Cyber Motorsports. He's a philosopher of sorts of modern car styling. If you can dream it up, it can be built, as far as Danny is concerned.
Danny's skill with designing and handcrafting vehicle body kits is astounding; he probably has one of the most overloaded trophy shelves we've ever seen. Dating to when Danny created a first-gen CRX named CYBER1, he's wooed crowds and has continued with a long lineup of Hondas, including his jaw-dropping Honda Prelude CYBER2, which in its first iteration earned itself front cover of British magazine "Max Power." That's not to mention how many times his own and his customer's cars have been front and center on Australian magazines.
Meet CYBER. Not only is this one of the nicest looking FD RX-7s to shed rubber against bitumen in Australia, but this is the first time it's been featured in a magazine. The car belongs to Danny's younger brother, Ben. He'd seen Danny's collection of Hondas grow and shrink over time and wanted something different for his own parking space. Danny didn't complain about it not being a Honda; he was always fond of the RX-7's awesome factory styling. Ben wasn't after a top show award winner, but rather a car that could be driven daily, yet with looks to make anyone green with envy.
Subtlety wasn't the game plan with the wheels as Ben skipped the normal 17- and 18-inch rims available for the FD. He wanted big, expensive and sexy looking rims and given that a large percentage of Danny's cars had been fitted with MOMO rims, he opted for the same.
Following a visit to Sydney's leading MOMO importer, Roman Autotek, a set of four 20 x 9-inch MOMO Magnums wrapped in super-grippy Pirelli P-Zero rubbers were fitted. Danny says that although the offset was perfect, without a few minor body modifications and a set of Tein HA coil-over struts accommodate the wheels perfectly with a 1.5-inch suspension drop. Had they not done this, Ben would have been scrubbing the tires every time he turned the wheel or went over a bump.
Next was the body work. As the car is a 1995 Australian delivered RX-7, Ben was keen to freshen the look, yet not mess with the panels too much. Yet when it came to paint, Danny gave Ben two options: PPG or PPG. As all of his own cars were beautifully soaked in the gloss, he wasn't about to deviate. When prepared, Paul Wellington from PPG Paints sprayed the car in several coats of PPG silver/green Harlequin followed by multiple layers of clear. The finish is superb and combined with the rims, Cyber side striping and Japanese Ganador aluminum mirrors, the car looks perfect.
When Ben first purchased the car, the original engine was getting low on compression so he insisted on buying a replacement import unit. With the new engine installed, the car was going great for a couple of months before encountering a slight engine problem (it stopped running). It was found the extra boost he'd been squeezing into the engine wasn't making it happy, thus causing to one of the apex seals in rear rotor to get into an argument with the housing. It was time to either rebuild it or replace it.
Ben found another engine, but had Rick Shaw Racing rebuild the 13B before it went in in order to handle more boost. With Rick himself behind the die grinder, the engine was given full race porting in both the intake and exhaust while also receiving five extra dowels for engine rigidity, two-piece 3mm Mazda apex seals and custom windowed rotor bearings. On the outside, the REW engine still retains the standard intake manifold, but just to the left of that sits a much sexier single GCG XTR trim GT35R turbo and XTR 55mm wastegate mounted on custom manifold built by Liverpool Exhaust. Boost leaves the turbo and is cooled by a custom front-mount intercooler fabricated by Mick's Metalcraft and is expelled when the throttle blade snaps shut via a Tial blow-off valve. Spent exhaust gasses exit the turbo via a custom 3-inch exhaust system and are toned down by a HKS Dragger muffler.
So far the car hasn't been pushed hard. Ben doesn't like admitting he's got to get used to the power. He also says the current 200kW at the wheels is with the car running a very mild tune. Having up-rated the fuel system with two Bosch 044 pumps and replaced the factory engine management with a plug-in APEX'I Power FC unit, there's no reason the RX-7 shouldn't be able to produce a comfortable 300kW.
While the engine was out, Danny grabbed the opportunity to sneak the RX-7 back into the workshop so he could strip and prepare the engine bay for paint to match the exterior of the car.
There were no real intentions for the car to be drag raced and the factory cog swappers in the FD RX-7s are more than capable of holding a reasonable amount of punishment. Ben only opted for an upgrade to beefy-but not ridiculous-OS Giken twin-plate clutch mounted on a lightened flywheel. The rest of the drive-train is also standard, although Ben is considering a Torsen diff center conversion for just that extra bit of oomph out of the corners.
Inside, the interior hasn't been treated to a full re-trim, yet has been fitted with a pair of Recaro SPA Kevlar fixed back buckets, a MOMO wheel and gear knob and a brilliant sounding Rockford Fosgate sound system. Danny has plans for further upgrades inside. But for now his silver highlights and the additional Defi daisychain gauges are looking the part.
As for 2004, Danny says he'll either take over ownership of the car or Ben will sell it. Either way, the car will be tuned to full boost and unleashed on an unsuspecting public. Yes, the Aussies understand the meaning of show and go.
1995 FD RX-7
13B REW Mazda Rotary
Race ported and dowelled, 3mm apex seals, windowed bearings, GCG GT35R turbo charger, XTR 51mm waste gate, custom front-mount intercooler, 2x650cc primary and 2x850cc injectors, APEX'i Power FC engine management
Factory Mazda five-speed, OS twin-plate clutch, short shifter
Suspension & Brakes
1.5-inches lowered Tein HA coil-overs, Std FD RX-7 brakes fitted with EBC Green Stuff pads
Wheels & Tires
Momo Magnum 20 x 9-inch front and rear, 255/35-20 Pirelli PZERO tires front and rear
200rwkw mild street tune
Recaro SPA Kevlar fixed back buckets, Momo steering wheel and gear knob, Silver highlights
Rockford Fosgate, twin 8-inch sub tubes, rear mains and front splits