Browsing: The Cars

It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s a Mitsubishi Starion. When it comes to the ‘80s, we think of wide-fenders, pop-up headlights, and hard-lines. The Starion was exactly what that era represented. When the Mitsubishi Starion debuted in 1983, it hit the roads running as a performance competitor to the Mazda RX-7, the Toyota Supra, and some even described it as a budget rival to the Porsche 944. Originally equipped with a 2.6-liter motor that delivered 145 horsepower, Mitsubishi’s original advertisement read, “It ain’t the one you learn on.” Aesthetically, the Starion was offered in a widebody configuration that quickly…

You may recognize the Civic as one of the most popular cars in the world, but the story of Honda wasn’t always as smooth as its sales numbers today. Founded by Soichiro Honda, he started his first company named Tokai Seiki in 1937. He began crafting piston rings for a familiar company called Toyota. After giving up all control to the War Ministry, the destruction of one factory during World War II, and another factory tragedy courtesy of the Mikawa earthquake, the beginning years were nothing short of a struggle for the Japanese founder. In 1963, Honda began the production…

At some point in your project building career, you are likely to come to a realization that having a tow vehicle is a good idea. Back in 2005, DSPORT purchased a RAM 3500 pickup with a Cummins diesel. This vehicle proved to be an excellent choice for hauling merchandise to trade shows and events or trailering a project car. However, it’s only during those outings that we really use “the truck.” Since it doesn’t make sense for everyone to have such a specialized-use vehicle in their stable, we started thinking about the concept of a budget-oriented, luxury vehicle that could…

Lightweight, beautiful, and timeless, the Mazda RX-7 is arguably Japan’s purest sports car. The RX-7 FD has won over many fans with its cutting edge design that features few straight lines. Its rigid chassis and capable suspension provide sharp handling. Its 2,800 pound curb weight and 255 horsepower sequentially turbocharged rotary engine delivered impressive performance. Yet, as with all things rotary, the FD does have its critics. The rotary engine showed many flaws, from a lack of torque to failing seals, and even catching on fire at times. Text by Bassem Girgis // Photos by Khiem Pham Long Life Dream…

The tires will only go so far, but the memories will last forever. Building a car is a dream for many, but for David Crowchild, it was simply a mission. For many years David’s older sister, Tina Crowchild, told him to always follow his heart. In November of 2014, tragedy struck when Tina passed away. Filled with sadness and grief, her famous advice to him kept nagging on him and left him wanting to deliver the promise he once made her. To keep her memory alive, he revisited an old dream he’s had since he was a child: building a…

One thousand horsepower. Only an elite few can claim to this performance milestone. Even fewer can make this claim from behind the wheel of a fully-streetable Nissan 350Z. While a number of “pure drag” cars have achieved the “1KWHP” figure, most sacrifice the response needed to make the car fun to drive on the street. Chris Shively’s plan for his project 350Z didn’t include compromise. Instead, this second-generation car fanatic would set out to build a Z33 that would impress performance, show and car audio enthusiasts. By Richard Fong // Photos by Michael Ferrara Since purchasing the 350Z in 2003,…

When LA Sleeve tasked us with building a company demo car that would have broad appeal, the Scion FR-S/Subaru BRZ/Toyota 86 platform was the obvious choice. The aftermarket support for these models is second to none. It’s a great platform that can be made to do just about anything. When LA Sleeve also asked us to make the project both unique and impressive, that’s when things got interesting. Text by Michael Ferrara / Photos by Joe Singleton Let’s Force It While we could have explored building an all motor FA20 engine, a great deal of effort and expense may have…

While many have encountered challenges with FA20D development, we’ve experienced the exact opposite. Our Club DSPORT FA21D (2.1-liter stroker variant) engines are thriving with turbocharged examples delivering over 560 horsepower to the wheels on E85 or Japanese premium pump gas (98 RON). In fact, Phoenix’s Power recently used one of the Club DSPORT FA21D short blocks in a street car to set the top speed record for an 86/BRZ in Japan. While the Club DSPORT FA21D engines use the original 86mm bore size (and no sleeves), Club DSPORT concurrently developed its FA225D engine program that features a sleeved 89mm bore…

The smell of burnt rubber and the high-pitch squeal of tires sliding through the turns accompany the roar of four turbocharged cylinders. Through the smoke, a sleek, bold and aggressive statement could be seen and heard as a fiery-red Silvia drifts by. Its driver, Nobuteru “NOB” Taniguchi, is a skilled pilot navigating the course with surgical precision in the HKS Silvia S15. Text and Photos by Richard Fong High-profile builds like the HKS Silvia fueled America’s faith in Nissan’s “S” chassis at a time when few had any interest in the US-spec 240SX. While Japanese versions of the “S” chassis came…

Manufacturers may label their performance vehicles as “sports cars,” but 99-percent of the time these cars are hardly ready for a performance driving environment. What does everyone tell you to do before you take any car to the track? They give you a checklist, usually suggesting at minimum to replace the brake fluid and brake pads, then swap out wheels and tires, then suspension, and the list goes on. When the receipts start adding up, no one can blame you for feeling cheated that your sports car required so much money and effort to just survive a track day. Very…

If you decide to do it, do it right! When it comes to demo-cars, companies cannot afford to cut any corners. Such builds are made to be the cutting-edge of what can be done with that platform. There are no limits. Every part for that car is intended to be the best one possible, showing that the company is only in it to outdo everyone else’s build. To display the essence of its business, LA Sleeve asked DSPORT to build a demo-car that will represent them properly. LA Sleeve has been in the business of sleeving engines for both performance…

One of Subaru’s latest just made one of the Nürburgring’s fastest cars list. “Fastest” in this case refers to the quickest lap made around the Nürburgring by a four-door sedan. It’s way off of any Formula One record, but even in the world of performance sedans, this is still no small feat. This accomplishment was made with Subaru and Prodrive’s latest project, the 600 horsepower WRX STI Type RA NBR. While this race car may not be fit for daily driving, Subaru developed an inspired version of the STI that is the WRX STI Type RA. In the development…

You can’t think JDM without the Supra popping in your head. The Japanese performance market introduced a great deal of legendary cars over the years, and the Toyota Supra is amongst the top of the list. The Supra quickly stole the show in its debut in 1979 with its 2.6-liter inline-6 engine; the first Toyota production motor with electronic fuel injection. In 1993, the Supra took a fast turn to compete with other supercars, like the R32 GT-R, when performance became Toyota’s main focus for their Supra, and the style we all know and love was born. We can talk…

What started as Honda’s 50th year anniversary celebration quickly became an undeniable force to be reckoned with. The Honda S2000 was introduced in 2000, and while many think it was Honda’s attempt to compete with other roadsters, the S2K stood on a special stage of its own. Debuted as the successor of Honda’s S500, S600, and S800 roadsters, the S2000 exceeded all expectations. With the first generation rear-wheel drive F-Series 2.0-liter engine, the S2000’s pistons’ speed were able to move faster than almost any other production car in the world. Son Vo was no stranger to the legendary S2K, and…

Japan has introduced some impressive machineries over the years, but none more impressive than the GT-R. Sharing the same platform as the R32 and R33, the R34 GT-R is considered by many to be the last of the legendary line of GT-Rs. The R34 era was over five years before the debut of the fancier R35, and although the R35 offers the best of all worlds, the R34 GT-R is one of the iconic Nissan Skylines. In November of 2016, Charles Wong picked up a 1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R, and the rest, as they say, is history. Text by Bassem…

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