Last month we took a look at some of the projects underway at this body shop in Oklahoma City. This time around, they've continued work on Bryan Tilson's 20AE. As pictured here, it's painted Lamborghini yellow pearl. He plans to replace the wheels with a set of wide, dished 19" billet or Porsche wheels.
The GTI has Revo stage 2 software along with a 3" TBE, intake, etc. Future plans include a more ambitious GT28RS upgrade and FMIC.
Even its current form, Bryan debuted his 20AE at Import Face Off in Noble, OK and beat out many killer BMWs, Audis, and Mercedes to be crowned Best Euro.
There's a rather sad story behind the Scirocco you see here. It looked great this time last year, but apparently during the winter the car was knocked off a dolly while being towed, slamming into a parked car. Owner Rob Romine, along with a few friends, replaced the core support, fenders and hood. After the car was sanded down, they drove it 500 miles from Kansas City to Shifty's to have the final metal work, bodywork and paint done. We hope to have more details on this car next month.
Hammer's Rabbit V8
"I have little progress to report this month and, apart for removing the front end, this probably marks the end of the first stage of my build's deconstruction. Next is all reconstruction and assembly," Bill Hammer told us in the latest installment of the Rabbit V8 project.
After bracing the body, he cut more material out of the rear so he could fit the Mazda Miata rear suspension under it and set it down to ride height. After finding the Miata setup in a junkyard, he had decided to ditch his original plans to use Nissan rear suspension, which he told us about last month. "For next month, I'll work on the frame sections so I can physically mount the suspension," he continued.
Although his latest focus has been primarily on the rear, he hasn't forgotten the serious work ahead of him on the front suspension. "As it sits right now, the body is almost resting on the tires," he explained, "and the problem will only get worse once the new tires are mounted. I expected this to happen from the beginning, but didn't plan to go this route.
"I think my only option is to cut off the front end and build new frame rails so I can mount my own short/long arm suspension and still have room for some suspension travel and clearance to turn the tires," Bill said.
It looks as if our man will be building a tube frame car with a Rabbit body on it. "There goes my slightly-modified factory look," sighed Bill.
The advantage of this is there won't be any compromises to the front suspension design. He's happy because he won't have to work around restrictive factory geometry, but design it to fit the Miata's rear suspension instead.
During the whole process, Bill came up with a theme for his project. "I've decided to give it a toned-down, street-driven, DTM look," he proclaimed. "This means it'll get some aerodynamic aids I'll build myself. I'm also going to raise and widen the wheel apertures to create a low, but street-worthy stance."
You can see in the photo how Bill has adjusted the height of the wheel apertures. "I'm not aiming for some gaudy body kit," he assured us. "Instead, I'm going to build a subtle front air dam and side skirts that should blend nicely with my new flared and raised wheel apertures. I might even throw in a simple rear diffuser to complete the look."
After trying to decide on a suitable wheel and tire package, Bill chose a set of 245/45-16s all around, mounted on 16x10" wheels. With almost 9" of tread on the road, he's hoping these will help with traction.
As for the next installment, progress could be a little slow since he's out of money. He's hoping to buy the steel he needs to start constructing the front and rear frame rails soon. We'll keep you posted on this new development at a later date.
Widebody conversions are fairly common in the BMW scene, but this M3 project by DTM Autohaus in El Monte, CA is one of the more extreme examples. We first looked at it in 2/07, and since then the factory fenders have been extended 3" front, 5" rear. The bumpers were also stretched to align with the fenders. A Schnitzer front lip was also modified and molded. The factory hood was ditched for a DTM carbon piece, while the trunk became a CSL item. Once the bodywork was done, the team at DTM chose PPG True Blue candy paint to make it really stand out.
Those enormous wheel arches house gigantic 20" DPE wheels, measuring 10" wide front, 20x12" rear. Before the car leaves the shop, DTM plans to install a VF-Engineering supercharger kit as well.