Category Archives: Random

Flashback: Akira Iida’s $100k AE86 Build

One car. One man. One hundred grand. This AE86 is the result of one of the most expensive semi-street, semi-race AE86 projects ever undertaken.

JGTC GT500 driver Akira Iida’s “Passion of the Levin” is to build the ultimate AE86 which included a full TRD Group A AE101 with dry-sump, MoTec M4, generating 217PS and complete body restoration. Estimated cost for the project was 10million Yen ($100,000) to complete!

The centrepiece of the build is the TRD 20 Valve 4A-GE. With the VVT on inlet eliminated, the engine runs IN/EX: 288/294 duration (10.2 lift) camshafts. Although the TRD race engines with 304/312 (10.8) were capable of 250hp revving to 11000rpm, Iida’s is limited to 9000 redline @ 210hp for engine preservation and improved street suitability.

But why did a champion GT racing driver choose to start such a project? Doesn’t he get enough from driving 500hp circuit monsters at 300 km/h day in and day out? Love for the AE86! Check out the whole build article over at Club4AG.

The Iida AE86 project was featured in many volumes of Video Option in Japan throughout 1999. The car took nearly one year to complete with many of the processes labored by Iida himself between his busy race schedule.

The VHS series was originally titled ‘Akira’s Work Box’ but is now available on DVD from Video Option under the title of ‘V-Opt the Best #2: Tuned AE86 by WORKBOX’.

An upload of the original VHS are on YouTube in two parts:

(Check out Bee-R’s youthful Imai-san!)

What The!? Scale 4A-GE Model

Mike Vilenna is a no mere mortal. He is a member of scale modelling forum 4x4RC has started a project to build a scale 4A-GE engine for what he says will be an AE86 concourse modelling project.  Not only is the engine superbly detailed externally but it has fully-functional internal components too! Not just the pistons, but a crankshaft, rods, valves and even valvesprings!! The level of worksmanship is beyond crazy – it’s insane!

Check out the progress pics by this super-human modeller here.

FNATZ AE86 Trueno Coupe

Due for a full feature in HPI issue #95, (on the stands any day now) this little AE86 was prettied up and shot by resident Japanaholic and motoring journalist Alexi Smith.

Owned by a mechanic from the renowned FNATZ workshop in Tokyo, this daily driver (no i’m not kidding, she’s a daily…) rides on semi slicks powered by a 150kW naturally aspirated 4A-GE with 11.7:1 compression, Cosworth pistons and the rest of the power package goodies you’ll have to pick up the mag to check out.

Not to mention its GX71 power steering conversion and killer trademark Longchamp XR-4’s, this is one feature you dont wanna miss!

Photo: Alexi Smith

Ever Wonder Why AE86’s Are So Rare?

This is one reason… Ouch….

Photo: NZAE86

Initial D Coming To PS3

With a title like ‘Exteme Stage’ it’s hard not to crack up laughing but the game looks pretty damn good!

Check out the video care of YouTube

Initial D Manga Translations

A couple of very keen Initial D fans have been busy at work translating the latest happenings of the Project.D team. Since the conclusion of the Anime’s run of the Fourth Stage, our ’86 driving friend Takumi’s epic saga has been developing into something quite interesting. There was a slow building of momentum back into full swing by the artist Shuichi Shigeno but that has now ended with a whole bunch of newly released editions which in turn have been quickly translated to English.

Check out Issues 32, 33, 34, 35 and 36 over at ClubCarisma, while you are there you may notice the rabid translators are also anticipating the release of Issue 37 any day now.

Taking Lightweight Too Far…

Apparently the guy driving this boro AE86 was one of the fastest on the track at a recent day at Ebisu Circuit. The car looked like this when he got there! Only in Japan folks!

Photo: Paul Dean

A Convoy of Epic Proportions

It always make me happy to see this kinda stuff. I love the pristine condition of the cars but the dodgy rustyness of the neglected trailer! Only in Japan i suppose….

A Beer Baron’s Japan Photo Diary

Our Godzilla taming friends over at Skylines Australia have got one of the more entertaining and visually rich ‘Japan Diary’ threads i’ve ever seen – and trust me I’ve seen a few. Long time member (and now admin) Beer Baron, has some great photography skills and as such likes to shoot at all the best JDM hotspots. The pics have a great deal of Nissan’s but well worth a look regardless.

We’ve taken the liberty of posting some of the AE86 ones here, but visit the site for ALL of the Japanese pics – it’s a freakin’ good way to spend an hour or so!

Images after the jump.


D1 86’s for Export!

Want a sweet JDM AE86? Want it full of the best parts? Want it looking like it just came from a day at Tsukuba Circuit? Well now you can have everything you want!

We’re not at all sure of the legitimacy of service these guys provide, but their website has some DAAAAMN nice hachis on it.

Hit up this link for more insane D1 spec AE86 Love.