Constant news coverage and the social impact of COVID-19 is a stark reminder of how this global pandemic turned our world upside down. Exactly one year ago, the automotive industry was on the road to the SEMA Show, calling Las Vegas, Nevada home for the next two weeks. This year, for the first time since 1967, the SEMA Show was canceled, in the same way that many other 2020 automotive shows or social gatherings were.
“SEMA announced their show was canceled three months ago. But even if it had continued, we, as a company, decided to forgo this year’s event regardless of their outcome and would evolve with the times,” mentioned GReddy Performance Products President and Managing Director, Kenji Sumino. According to Sumino, GReddy began laying out a game plan to create a virtual car show hosted live, nearly three months before the SEMA announcement.
On October 29th, GReddy Performance Products took to its Facebook page to host its first annual GPP Live 2020 virtual event. This two-hour event showcased everything you’d expect to see at this year’s SEMA Show. Still, it was centric to deliver more in-depth coverage that included new product reveals, special guest interviews, and various product giveaways. During a unique segment, live feed followers were given a chance to interact with the GReddy staff and special guests by asking questions or leaving comments.
The event also highlighted several featured vehicles and special guests, including Jun Imai from Kaido House Garage’s Datsun 510, Dai Yoshihara’s AE86 R, Evasive Motorsports’ Pikes Peak-winning 86, Sung Kang’s Fugu Z, and Daniel Wu’s Honda S800, to name a few.
If you recall, Front Street Media was one of the first to bring you coverage of Dai Yoshihara’s K20C1-powered AE86 R machine from its initial build to near-final completion.
When I last saw this car, Chris Eimer of Eimer Engineering and Dai Yoshihara were scrambling to complete this controversial Honda-powered AE86 before its 2019 SEMA debut. Fast forward one year later, and I noticed numerous upgrades have taken place since. The valve cover was now shod in bright Spoon Sports yellow and topped off with an Ignition Projects coil pack conversion kit. A Turbosmart internal wastegate actuator regulates boost pressure while a GReddy Type 24 intercooler keeps air inlet temperatures in check.
A GReddy 10-row oil cooler sits front and center, regulating oil temperatures and excavating excess heat from the oil.
The factory intake manifold was replaced with a custom Eimer Engineering plenum and larger injectors.
This simple yet clean interior utilizes a carbon fiber dash and custom door panels.
Yoshihara was a no-show at the event due to a previous engagement — Formula Drift Round 5 and 6 in Texas. Before his departure, he did mention that the AE86 R will commence additional test and tunes before being shaken down at the race tracks.
The 25-year countdown to legally import the Nissan Skyline BNR34 GT-R V-Spec is upon us as value and demands have multiplied many times over. Evasive Motorsports brought out one of their customer’s immaculate Midnight Purple II R34 to showcase at this event.
Under the hood, the venerable RB26DETT engine is equipped with a full GReddy suction kit, Type-29 intercooler, and Type-FV blow-off valve kits.
GPP’s Marketing Manager, Mike Chung, showcased his Nissan R35 GT-R loaded with a slew of GReddy products. Modifications under the hood included a GReddy piping kit, DTC intercooler kit, and turbo upgrades.
Additional horsepower gains were unleashed by a GReddy RX35 intake manifold with billet throttle bodies. The GReddy RX intake manifold’s three-piece design with large 58mm diameter runners was engineered to equalize airflow. The design also improves efficiency by routing airflow more evenly to each cylinder. At the same time, the spent exhaust is exited through a Supreme Titanium exhaust.
GPP’s Type 24 intercooler kit could be seen peeking out from behind this Civic Type R’s bumper. The GPP FC1/FC3 Civic Si front-mounted intercooler upgrade kit offers improved cooling efficiency and is 50-state street-legal.
GReddy offered a glimpse into the new FC-style oil cooler from our friends at Koyorad, scheduled to be released early ’21 for the FK8 Civic Type R and late-model Subaru WRX/STI. This all-aluminum constructed cooler measures in at 23x4x2.5-inch and features -10 ORB inlet/outlet ports and a 1.25-quart oil capacity. Comprised of a tube and fin design, the unique design allows for front-and-center engine bay placement — a nifty trait for applications where side mounting is not possible and ducting can be simplified.
During the research and development process, GReddy engineers found that the 2020 FK8 Honda Civic’s front bumper area differs from the previous generation’s models. A distance sensor in the driver side duct prevents it from using the GReddy street oil cooler kit. GReddy will offer the new Koyo race cooler for the 2020 and newer FK8 GReddy turbo kit, in conjunction with a redesigned bumper support to replace the factory piece. Koyorad Sales and Marketing Manager, Scott Oshiro, mentioned the company will be releasing universal intercooler cores in January, so stay tuned for that, too.
Daniel Wu’s ’68 Honda S800 restomod was the talk of last year’s SEMA Show. Ask the majority of onlookers during the Vegas show if they had ever witnessed an S800 in the wild, and chances are the answer would be a resounding “no.”
DG Vintage Coachworks massaged the exterior before applying a fresh coat of paint. The interior was reskinned in red leather for a more modern look.
Under the hood resides the factory 791cc DOHC powerplant with its 8,000 rpm redline. According to Wu, he opted to retain the factory engine to pay homage to the vintage roots. The only modification was a custom Remark/GReddy stainless-steel header and center-exit exhaust system.
Kei Miura of Pandem created a one-off front fascia, rear wing, and fender flares. These items enable squeezing a set of re-barreled OEM wheels measuring 13×7-inch in the front with 13×8-inch rollers in the rear and wrapped in Toyo R888R tires.
As an actor, director, and producer, Wu spends most of his time behind the cinematic screen but has always been loyal to the automotive scene. Wu dubbed his customized S800, “Chimpira,” after a Japanese Yakuza henchman, an individual that’s willing to go against the grain.
Speaking of subcompact cars, GPP Live 2020 co-host Mickey Andrade brought out his Suzuki Cappuccino, recently purchased from Top Rank International. This JDM Kei car roadster continues to remain popular in Japan for its compact design and sporty appearance. The rear-wheel-drive platform is motivated by a turbocharged 657cc (0.66-liter) DOHC engine and weighs in at a scant 1,598 pounds.
Andrade purchased his Suzuki already equipped with several upgrades, including Blitz coilovers and custom exhaust. Upon purchase, he decided his Kei car needed a slight bump in power. GReddy came to the rescue and supplied his Suzuki with an intercooler, Type-FV blow-off valve, and Airinx intake kit.
Yes, your eyes don’t deceive you. Those intercooler charge pipes are equivalent in diameter to a radiator hose! Andrade mentioned a hefty list of future modifications, including a full audio system and custom wide body kit to accentuate the Cappuccino’s narrow hips.
The name Sung Kang — also known as Han from the Fast & Furious franchise — needs no introduction. Still, those who have been following his life outside of the Hollywood glitz and glamour know his true passion lies within cars.
The world noticed Kang’s automotive prowess when he teamed up with GReddy to build an award-winning 240Z back in 2015. The fast and furious (no pun intended) build was birthed into reality in less than 26 weeks. Nicknamed the Fugu Z, it was rewarded by taking home the Gran Turismo Awards top honor at the SEMA Show. Since then, he has built many cars while sharing his experiences on his social channel and podcast called Sung’s Garage.
Kang decided a few months back to reunite the Fugu Z with Kenji and his team for a makeover. The original naturally aspirated high-compression RB26 with individual throttle bodies was plucked from the engine bay and rebuilt — this time around with a lower compression piston in preparation to return to its twin-turbocharged roots.
We asked Kang why he opted to retain the twin-turbo configuration, and he said, “From day one, the intention was never to build a high horsepower machine. I want the engine to be responsive and enjoyable when driven on the street.”
We look forward to seeing Fugu Z V2.0 and his latest project, an East-African Safari Rally 240Z tribute car, in the upcoming months.
Kenji Sumino’s infamous EF Civic Super Treasure Hunt was surprisingly absent during the media event. Still, as an alternative, he brought out his newest ride. According to Sumino, this CRX was purchased in its current pristine condition to be used as a daily driver. Current modifications consist of custom coilovers and super rare Mugen CF48 wheels.
Under bated breath, I caught myself mumbling, “what the heck is this Porsche 914 with all these GReddy, student driver, and Erick’s Racing decals doing at the live event?”
As I looked closer, I noticed under the front bonnet was a clean setup consisting of an aftermarket radiator, Davies Craig electric water pump, custom Dyme PSI PFTE inner liner with Kevlar braided lines, and AEM Performance Electronics 400LPH in-line fuel pump.
Surprise, surprise! Peeking from under the rear bonnet sat a 327ci Chevy small-block V8. With the current setup, we learned the vehicle weighed in at 2,300 pounds. It was only then that I learned that this project is part of Sung Kang’s collection that was purchased back in May of 2020 that he dubbed project 914-8.
Inside, the cabin features a RECARO PRO Racer RMS full bucket seat developed for the Japanese market. Future plans call for a custom MCS coilover conversion and 911 suspension setup by WWR Will Wattanawongkiri Racing. A Porsche 993 brake upgrade and safety equipment will make this 1974 handle and drive more like a modern vehicle.
Both Kenji Sumino and Sung Kang took a break from their busy GPP Live preparations for a quick photo op.
Jun Imai of Kaido House Garage — and former Hot Wheels Chief Designer — teamed up with GPP to rebuild his 1971 Datsun 510 wagon.
Owned since ’09, Imai’s 510 had gone through various modifications, including swapping out the solid rear axle in favor of an IRS setup found in the US coupe version 510. Additional improvements include Refresh 60 fender flares and Techno Toy Tuning suspension modifications with custom KW Suspensions coilovers. The wagon rolls on a set of Work Equip 40 wheels wrapped in Yokohama Advan A052 tires to deliver the perfect stance.
Inside the engine bay, a KA24DE twin-cam powerplant built by GReddy provides the potential. The GReddy team also fabricated a custom subframe to move the engine as far back towards the firewall as possible for improved weight distribution.
The cold side consists of a custom GReddy intake manifold plumbed to a soon-to-be-installed GReddy Type 24 intercooler kit. Koyorad also supported the project to keep temperatures down.
A TD05-H 18G turbo is mated to a custom manifold and force-feeds into a port and polished cylinder head on the hot side.
Sparco USA was in attendance to introduce their newest QRT Performance racing seats. The company’s Sales and Marketing Director, Alan Viado, mentioned that these FIA-approved seats feature a new design meant to allow a lower seating position. These new seats will benefit wider and taller drivers while still keeping exterior dimensions that can fit into smaller vehicles. The QRT-R Performance fiberglass composite seat weighs only 9.9 pounds, while the QRT-C is constructed of pre-preg carbon fiber and weighs even less. The QRT-K features a carbon and Kevlar material construction and was engineered for a superior mechanical strength-to-weight ratio.
GPP’s General Manager, Philip Chase, stood in as our official seat model to show that you don’t need to be 100 pounds with a petite build to utilize these buckets.
Evasive Motorsports’ Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Unlimited Class-winning Toyota 86 was displayed at the event. We covered the background of the nail-biting run in detail in our article. However, for those who didn’t hear, Dai Yoshihara and the Evasive team finally eluded the Pikes Peak demons by successfully finishing the 12.42-mile, 156-turn mountain road course — but not without several close calls.
The 2JZ engine looks at home in the ZN6 chassis. Powering the Toyota 86 with a 3.4-liter stroker kit’s assistance and outfitted with a new Garrett G42-1200 turbocharger, Ignition Projects coil pack set, forged internal bottom end block, and GReddy intake manifold, it delivers a wild 700 whp at 20 psi of boost.
The Evasive Motorsports 86 remained essentially the same as last year’s PPIHC event with a few changes, including a larger Garrett turbo, Artisan Spirits wide body aero package, and Titan 7 T-S5 forged two-piece prototype wheels, along with prototype race compound rubber from Toyo Tires.
Battle scars from the PPIHC race remained. The incident in question occurred when a malfunction caused a shift lock in first gear. The 86 stepped out and tapped a guardrail midway through the Devil’s Canyon portion of the hill climb. Yoshihara recovered and continued to ascend the peak with a time of 10:05 while capturing First Place in the Unlimited class and a Top 10 PPIHC finish. If not for the mishap, data showed the car would have crossed the checkered flag in under ten minutes.
Although the R32 chassis Nissan Skyline is over 25 years old, it remains one of the most popular. Ed Liu’s R32 continues to be a test mule for GReddy as new products are developed.
The most recent product to be released, an aluminum intake manifold, was designed to replace the OEM cast unit with updated runners and plenum design to improve performance. Liu and GReddy took things one step further by replacing the factory individual throttles with a single throttle setup and MAF-delete using a MAP sensor base.
Additional upgrades include a full GReddy intake kit, Type 28 intercooler kit, Garrett 2860R-7 ball bearing turbo, GReddy Type-FV blow-off valve, Ignition Projects R35 coil pack conversion kit, and prototype DDR exhaust. A set of Alcon calipers and rotors peek out from the gloss black Volk Racing TE37SL wheels measuring 18×9.5-inch with a +22 offset.
Titan 7 fully forged one-piece wheels offer style, durability, and performance at an affordable price point. Using a 10,000-ton press for manufacturing ensures each wheel is lightweight and strong for street or on-track purposes.
Eddie Lee of Titan 7 Wheels mentioned that motorsports techniques were applied to each wheel, including their off-road series lineup.
“We designed our wheels with side cut machining to reduce weight, reinforced inner flange, knurled bead seat for tire-to-wheel adhesion, and a limited lifetime warranty,” said Lee.
“Forged, strong, and lightweight wheel designs are what separates Titan 7 from our competitors.”
Evasive Motorsports’ PPIHC 86 is equipped with a set of prototype two-piece forged T-S5 18×12-inch wheels with a -12 offset designed to be more robust.
“We exercise our research and development in race wheels and Titan 7’s full capabilities to develop and bring ‘Forged for all’ to our consumers,” mentioned Lee.
A large portion of the GPP Live 2020 virtual event was held inside GReddy’s showroom, which housed many new and soon to be released products.
GPP’s event offered consumers around the world an opportunity to see many of the newly released and special projects in the works.
Here’s a close-up look at the RB26 intake manifold plenum with a 3.5-liter surge tank with longer intake runners designed to increase low and mid-range torque.
GPP’s Type-FV “Floating Valve” blow-off valve eliminates compressor surge and boost leak while its durable cast and billet frame offers reliability under all types of grueling driving conditions.
The Type-FV is available in various sizes and spring tensions, depending on your performance needs. GPP will also offer its Type-FV with Cerakote’s protective ceramic coating available at the end of this year as a limited run.
Turbocharged owners can relate to the frustrations when attempting to adjust their blow-off valve’s preload with tools. GPP came to the rescue by designing a BOV with ease of adjustability. This prototype FV2 BOV offers quick on-the-fly adjustments to dial in your setup without the need for tools.
GPP Cerakote shift knobs and radiator caps will also be available at the end of this year as a limited run.
GReddy RS Ti turndown tips in various sizes and styles are available for the Revolution RS and RS Race exhausts.
The all-new GReddy RS Ti Titanium oval exhaust offers performance in a compact design. This universal exhaust will be available in both 2.5 and 3.0-inch inlet/outlet high-flow design that will be available next year.
My favorite spectacle among the GPP showcase was the various engine displays equipped with turbochargers.
Honda S2000 F20C and F22C owners can rejoice with the knowledge that GPP introduces its new and improved turbo kit at the end of this year. GReddy’s GTX 2867R Gen II turbo kit features a new cast stainless steel exhaust manifold, 3-inch downpipe, and includes a 3-inch air inlet pipe with an Airinx filter. The exhaust was designed with a special adapter to bolt to the factory catalytic converter.
F22C owners will appreciate the true bolt-on nature of this kit. It will even include a Hondata Flash Pro engine management system optimized for 91 octane fuel. Dyno testing revealed this kit makes approximately 300 whp on low boost and is currently under consideration for 50-state CARB-legal status.
With the previous generation Nissan 350Z turbo kits being discontinued, GReddy teased GPP Live onlookers with a glimpse into their VQ bolt-on turbo kit. The new kit shares similar features to the original kit but now consists of a turn-flow type intercooler and improved cast stainless steel manifolds.
New to the VQ kit is the GReddy T517Z turbos and mandrel bent downpipes with factory catalytic converter compatibility.
GPP even announced its upcoming complete engine programs and billet CNC accessories, starting with the RB26 and 2JZ engine platforms.
Based on technological knowledge gained through drag, D1 GP, Formula Drift, and time attack motorsport history. GPP can now integrate this into its engine programs custom-tailored for their customers.
Also available, an exclusive head package program with CNC ported cylinder heads, custom camshafts, and valvetrain packages to suit your performance and horsepower goals.
Throughout the day, any on-site media were offered the opportunity to test drive GReddy’s Honda S2000 demo car equipped with its newest turbo kit.
This kit featured optional add-ons that included a Cerakote coated intake, manifold, exhaust housing, downpipe, intercooler charge pipes, and blow-off valve.
With an increase in horsepower, traction became the name of the game. A set of off-the-shelf T-S5 17×9.5-inch wheels with a +57mm offset resides on all four corners. Titan 7 boasts that these wheels are also fully forged and only weigh 17 pounds each.
The Honda S2000 has been known to be one of the more spatially complicated roadsters when installing aftermarket seats. The Sparco QRT Performance racing seats provided the perfect fit and cleared the door panels without any issues.
Dustin Williams from Legends’ BNR32 Skyline GT-R was one of many vehicles in attendance.
A Comp Turbo upgrade, Vibrant Performance clamps, GReddy intake manifold and throttle body, tubular exhaust manifold, fuel rail, and upgraded injectors represent the powerplant changes under the hood. Dyme Racing was able to sort out the turbo plumbing on the GT-R, with its Superleggera Carbon PTFE/Aramid hoses installed for feed and drain operation.
If you missed the live feed, visit GReddy Performance Products’ Facebook to watch full coverage that includes GPP’s new products, the special guest interviews, and feature car footage.