Sunday 24 November 2013

Turbo S.

More of one of my favourites, since a very neat one has recently popped onto the market...

The 70-series Landcru...err.. Starlet!

A 1987 EP71 Toyota Starlet Turbo S.
The top-tier variant of a model produced between 1984 and 1989 - this generation of Starlet on the market for the same years as Toyota's first generation MR2 and 4Runner/Surf..

If the full skirt and spoiler additions are too subtle for you; the large decals on the side are shouting to us that this is the 2E-TE, Turbo 1.3litre version..

Yellow headlights and fogs are cool, yet including 'intercooler' on the Turbo badge in the grille is cooler!
Only car to ever have 'intercooler' in badge (not decal) form? ha

Loving the wheel, cloth pattern, period Alpine audio, and that Kenwood (!) car phone.

..and along with the condition of that engine-bay; does a good job verifying the ~20,000km on the clock! Definitely not much use for over 25 years..

Great example of a car getting very rare these days.

Tuesday 19 November 2013


I've mentioned it before; but along with my fascination with 80s Japanese cars, is an equal interest in 80's Japanese wheels - and SSR's in particular.
Its the quality, detailing, and unique designs that set them apart for me; and in the decade following from ~1985, nothing else came close.

Among the one or two dozen different designs made during that time, none got any wilder than these..

A chrome-plated clutch-fan in the form of a wheel - The SSR McLaren International MS1.
Produced for some time around 86/87, yet far from thick on the ground. These particular wheels have managed to go 26 years without ever being fitted to a car - proof at the very least that the styling was a little bit much for most...!

These are the full-chrome 15" version, and 6.5" wide; although I have interestingly seen two sets in 17" in the past.
They're a 3piece (welded barrel/lip) wheel, with a cast centre, and SSR's Electron Lock system. 

I'm not sure how the McLaren branding came about; why McLaren let Speed Star use the name, or why Speed Star wanted to use the name for this wheel; but it definitely adds an extra element of cool to me.

The locking centre cap

Smaller box contains the centre-cap cap/coins, the key, valves, etc.

The bare wheel, minus the whole cap setup.

Centre assembly..

Threaded collar screws to the face of the wheel, with a rubber o-ring to seat against the cap.

Like all SSR's with the electron lock setup, the cap ratchets on. Really is a nice setup..

The full chrome face, polished barrel, and gold fasteners is hilariously over-the-top. I'm not sure exactly what these would suit (gold Legend Coupe maybe?) but as a wheel on their own, I love this kind of thing..

February 1987 production - almost 27 years.

But some detail shots of my favourite aspect of these wheels:
Its not particularly easy to show; but the whole face is hollow, with the front and back sections of the face joined only at a few areas. It not something I'd seen before, and whether is was cast hollow or joined somehow,  it is an impressive amount of effort.

Thats it for photos of the McLaren's anyway - I'm sure that's enough!
I have no real intention to fit these to anything, and rightly so.. as I have no desire to ever have to clean them!

Friday 8 November 2013

..Because it's always a good time for an FC Cab'..

..well, probably not if it's raining.. or parked.. or..
But no; For someone who doesnt own one, and just likes seeing the bloody things? sure.. any time's good!

Yet another 1986-1991, Series 4/5, 'FC' Mazda Savanna RX-7 Cabriolet. I love these things..

This particular car a 1991, with a lip and sides, lowered on step-lip BBS'...? Looking all the more sinister.

Aftermarket exhaust and no badging, on an already clean design. I've said it before, but I'm all over the flat boot area accentuating the flared rear guard's on the cabriolet cars. The overall look is worth it, regardless of whether you like convertibles or not..

Can just picture this cruising on a freeway at night... series 5 tail-lights lit up, headlights up, and roof dropped. Rad.

Now the camel/tan/brown leather mightn't be first choice on these, but its working well with the dark blue/green exterior. Being different to the usual white/black for these is nice too, despite my love of the blackonblackonblack combination..
The auto? suits the overall characteristic of the Turbo Cab. Can't complain too much.

Lots of cool here.

Friday 1 November 2013

..Been a while..

My mates old '31... and the last of a good dozen or so R31 Skylines he enjoyed the wheels off of over a couple years.
All Australian built models, Series 1 (1986) to Series 3's (-1990), and everything from the Pintara (CA20E 4cyl version), GX, GXE, Silhouette and the Ti.

As you can imagine, that all gets bloody confusing; but from what I remember, this car started as a silver 1987 GXE (Series 2, mid level spec) - and usual fare for an Aussie produced R31 - Single cam 3ltr RB30E, 5speed box, and solid-axle disc rear-end.

This one was modified with whatever the hell he felt like, so while it may seem a little eclectic to some, it fkn oozes personality to me..
The (park bench) front bar is from a series 3 (1988-90), with the 'teeth' cut out to clear the front-mount intercooler, mesh added in its place, and a factory-turboed side mount intercooler cutout added to the side.
There is a R31House (possibly a copy) lip added to the underside of the bumper, and an early Japanese-market R31 grille replacing the shorter australian skyline unit and high-beam lights.
Clear R33 indicators replace the factory orange toblerone-style units, while the front indicators are cut out of clear overhead fluoro plastic covers.

The whole lot was repainted in a gunmetal grey, including the usually-black belt line.

The Autometer Phantom gauge setup that came from somewhere..

8000k HID's, 5% tint, and 17/18" double-stagger wheel setup. Far from on-the-radar when new, but who cares!

The odd-looking wheel alignment is due to the ever-popular S13 coilover setup - which has the much longer S13 lower control arm pushing the bottom of the wheel far out. The strut is then leaned as far back in as it can go, and we're left with huge negative camber on the front - so negative that it almost makes the solid-axle rear end look as if its running positive camber.
I cant remember the brand of coilover used here, but I wouldnt be surprised if this was as high as it could go!
Because the previous photo was a little filthy, a token carwash pic..

All standard Aussie '31 back here, with the exception of the twin dumpies..

After a classic 'Repco-rebuild', the standard high-compression RB30E was fitted with factory RB30ET injectors and ECU, some sort of GT35-copy Hypergear turbo hanging off an RB30ET manifold... which had been modified to run an external wastegate.. which then had a screamer-pipe that kinda pointed towards the side of the cam cover...
..THEN, a front-mount intercooler setup allowed the AFM to move into the cooler piping, which meant it could run with basically nothing in front of the turbo...

..yep, she was a hoot.

Not out to break any world speed records, but made more than enough of the right noises to make me laugh..!

Just bloody fun to cruise around in..

Fkn memories. Had a hell of a lot of seat time in this car over the years..

I miss it all.

After being around so damn many for so damn long, I will always have a soft spot for the '31.