MINEKERU WORKS S13 SILVIA

It’s a scary thing heading to a new country for this first time. Going there alone and only speaking a small amount of their language, it’s not an easy thing to do. Rewind back to November last year, and that’s just what I did. Got on a plane and headed straight to the motherland itself, Japan! After a few days exploring Tokyo and the surrounding areas, I headed to Osaka where I was lucky enough to meet up with Takashi Mine.

My new Japanese friend Akifumi Yamamoto (Photographer from Yama-channel) picked me up from central Osaka in his daily driver S15 and drove us out to Kobe where we would meet Takashi-san at his garage.

We arrived just before midday, was still cleaning his car so I had the chance to practice my broken Japanese some more. The little Japanese I knew didn’t seem to cause a barrier when you have a common interest in something. We started pointed at parts of the car and used actions to explain what we were trying to say.

All sorts of stickers covered his car from various places around Japan and the rest of the world. Including “HLLOWEEN RACING” and “kobe enjoy drifting THE BREAST”. My favourite sticker that I found on the car would have to be on the rear quarter panel glass stating: We Love Shaved Pussy “TPP” Team Pai Pan. It’s a laugh seeing what the Japanese people create when making English stickers.

I didn’t do much research before coming to Japan, features just kind of fell into place which was rather lucky. I knew Takashi-san’s S13 was red, but that’s about it. I was a little shocked when I saw the engine bay, I’m no expert in engines, but it looked like only the bare minimum! It definitely does the job though, as there are stacks of trophies from drift events that this car has managed to get on the podium, thanks to the driver of course.

The short nature of Takashi-san’s home track Meihan Sportsland really only requires small power, but big balls. Gigantic balls in fact, to use the run up and chuck it back first into the concrete wall hoping that the rear lights gracefully slides across and comes out unharmed.

One thing I came across that was extremely difficult in Japan was asking drivers to maneuver their cars. This was a struggle in English, it was a nightmare in Japanese, next time I’d recommend learning Japanese vocabulary to help with this problem.

Inside Takashi-san’s drift S13 was like most other drift cars, it had the basics, but also it had the little differences that made it his own. Like the carbon door cards, checkered floor mats, painted dash and red dice.

Takashi-san sits in a nice worn Bride bucket seat and is fixed in by some Megan Racing harnesses. The way the Japanese drive at the track, he definitely needs these or else he’d be flying all over the cabin!

Easily one of the nicest colors for a car, and most certainly one of the easiest to photograph. Along with the white and silver wheels it makes for a forgiving subject.

As you can tell from the front wheel setup, this car means serious business. It’s not horribly slammed on the floor, and the wheels aren’t terribly cambered, which could make manoeuvring this S13 somewhat impossible.

The car has heavily worked front suspension components to give the desirable amount of lock that Takashi-san needs to push this light and nimble S-Chassis around Meihan Sportsland.

If you look closely you would have noticed no damage on the car apart from this corner. If you’ve seen videos from Meihan Sportsland you’d know exactly why. The first corner, the drivers throw the rear left of the cars right into a concrete wall usually scraping most of the time.

Takashi-san has opted for a different color of wheels for each side. This side being white and the other being gunmetal/silver. If I remember correctly one was much more to his liking, however as to which has slipped my mind, what’s your favorite?

While going over the car, I would periodically ask Takashi-san where this sticker and that sticker was from. Most of, if not all were friends of his, it seems that everyone knows mostly everyone in the automotive scene in Japan.

At all four corners the wheels fit nicely under a mellow set of over fenders, nothing too over the top but just enough to give the car that extra width and fitment.

Engine:

  • SR20DET
  • Z32 AFM
  • Front mount intercooler
  • Minekeru Original exhaust
  • Trust TD06 20G, L2 turbine
  • Trust exhaust manifold
  • Trust Type-R external wastegate
  • APEX’i Power FC tuned by Nishimura Engineering
  • Koyo radiator

Drivetrain:

  • S14 SR20 five-speed gearbox
  • RG Metal single plate clutch
  • Nismo GT Pro LSD

Suspension:

  • Megan Racing coilovers (F) 8kg spring (R) 6kg spring
  • Adjustable tension rods,
  • MOZE knuckles,
  • Extended LCAs,
  • Adjustable toe, camber and traction arms

 

Wheels and Tires:

  • RAYS TE37V: Front – 17×9 (-10) Rear – 17×10 (-20)
  • Kenda Kaiser KR20 : 235/45R17

Brakes:

  • Front: Voing Special EC33 calipers and rotors
  • Rear: Voing special S13 calipers and rotors

 

Exterior:

  • Re-spray in 2k red
  • Rocket Bunny front bumper,
  • Rocket Bunny side skirts
  • Rocket Bunny spoiler
  • Rocket Bunny front and rear diffusers
  • Origin over-fenders and flares front and rear

 

Interior:

  • Driver Bride Zeta III bucket seat
  • BNR32 Passenger seat
  • Megan Racing five-point harnesses
  • Nardi Classic 330mm steering wheel
  • Defi gauges
  • Blitz boost controller

Power:

  • 298kW (400hp) at the rear wheels

While shooting the S13, to my surprise, Takashi-san drives up the road in his other drift car, a near identical copy of his S13, just using the 180SX instead. So, now we have two iconic Japanese drift cars to shoot. Japan really does deliver!

The 180SX was also fitted with a SR20DET and is his backup drift car if the S13 were to be crashed on the track or have engine malfunctioning issues. Which is your favourite? I’m leaning towards the S13.

You can see here the 180SX doesn’t always just sit in the garage. The rear left is also tattooed with damage from Meihan Sportsland’s most famous initiation point. Sadly I missed out on heading to the track to see it in action, but there is always next time.

On closer inspection it seems that the 180SX runs a set of genuine Volk wheels. After seeing so many fake options in New Zealand, it’s nice to see some genuine, quality gear being used in Japan.

The morning had left us and time was running out, we’d finished our first shoot in Japan with some pretty amazing drift cars. As Japanese culture defines, I handed Takashi-san an Omiyage (gift) and said farewell. Akifumi-san and I were now off to visit a different part of Kobe in the industrial area, don’t miss out on our next feature article where we show you some of the most insane S-Chassis in Japan.

 

Words and Photos by: Shaun Constable

Find him on Facebook: Ambition Works

Follow Shaun on IG @ambitionworks_shaun

Follow Takashi Mine on IG @minekeru

www.ambitionworks.nz

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