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Posts tagged “Puerto Rico

Tunnel Vision

The loss of peripheral vision with retention of central vision…  At least that’s what doctors say.  Something along those lines is what has happened to Nelson Vincent with his WRX project.  See, it is very seldom that you get to see WRXs being built to this extent and with this level of detail and authenticity in Nelson’s homeland (and mine also), Puerto Rico.

There are a lot of different styles of modifying a street car within the Island’s car scene, and you can get distracted rather easily if you don’t have that strong of a focused mindset.  There are two larger and more mainstream groups: those that only think about street and/or track Drag Racing and there are those who only aim to succeed in the car show scene…  The drag guys usually build their cars for power and nothing more, they are only concerned about dyno charts, 1/4 mile times and trap speeds and go to all sort of extremes to beat the next guy or at least try.  The show guys are more into either loading their cars with expensive and rare parts (or cheap replica ones) with two things in mind hard parking at meets or dodging potholes on their daily commutes.

This is not what Nelson had planned for his bugeye.  What makes this car special is that he built it for himself, no for street cred, not for anyone’s approval, and to this date he has kept his project as low key as possible.  Only his mechanic and tuner knew what he has done to his GDA.

On the rolling department, Nelson went with Enkei’s Limited Edition satin black NT03 in 18×9.5 wrapped in Falken azenis rubber size 255/40/18.  Behind this combo, a set of STi Brembo brakes take care of the stopping.  On the handling department he installed a set of BC Racing coilovers and to further improve on the chassis’ stiffness he went with top of the line Cusco strut bars:  Titanium up front and Carbon Fiber out on the back.

Engine-wise, Nelson left no rocks unturned and went all out with JE pistons, Manley rods, ACL bearings GSC cams and Supertech valves on dual springs, all bolted on a completely revamped block and heads.  Air now gets shoved into that new engine thanks to a Garret GT37 HTA turbo which then pushes it through an APS intercooler.  An HKS SS blow off valve and Tial waste gate do their part on managing the pressurized air.  Exhaust gasses make their way through a cat-less up pipe and down pipe, a Perrin header and finally through a Greddy Ti-C cat back exhaust system which is responsible for the WRXs growl.

The cooling system has been improved using a ZeroSports radiator cap and an APR radiator shroud.  All this is now mated to a 6-speed STi Type-RA tranny with a short shifter kit.  A Walbro Fuel Pump, well, pumps the fuel and a set of Ultimate 1000cc injectors deliver it.  All the power that this setup makes is controlled by a Hydra stand alone ECU tuned by the pros at Predator Performance and Transmisiones PR.

Other goodies like Tein hood dampers, wrinkle red powder coated piping and coolant tank and a trick aluminum oil catch can/wiper washer reservoir combo unit finish off the engine bay.

Outside, the bugeye was given the STi treatment which includes an STi front grille, hood scoop, front splitters and side skirts.  The rear has been updated with a much nicer 2004-2005 WRX rear bumper and tail lights and to finish it all, that infamous STi wing.  Other pieces that help complete the exterior package are the APR front splitter, rear diffuser and side mirrors, JDM window visors and JDM front parking lights delete carbon inserts.

Inside, the STi theme continues with a complete STi interior swap including front and rear seats and blue carpet.  To control his creation, Nelson ditched the OEM oblong WRX steering wheel in favor of  a perfectly round Momo steering wheel and hub.  Behind it, a red backlit STi gauge cluster does it’s thing.  To keep track of all the vitals a matching set of STi Genome gauges by Defi now replace the OEM WRX clock.  An AEM wide band gauge joins the mix on top of the steering column while carbon fiber accents wrap things up for the interior.

So there you have it.  This has got to be one of the best executed Imprezas and certainly one of the best kept secrets on the Subaru scene in Puerto Rico.  My respects to Nelson Vincent for sticking with his vision of what his Impreza should look, handle and perform like…

Thanks to Nelson for the pictures and for sharing his project info with me.


Reader Car of the Year

I came across this while I was getting my daily dose of Speedhunting.  The guys at SH have posted their candidates for Reader Car of the Year Award and on that list I found Carlos (Charlie) Nissan Sentra.  I, as a local Puerto Rican car forum fan, have witnessed (from a far) the evolution of Charlie’s Sentra from being his daily driver to being his toy, project car and now full-on race car.

In this car-guys world of ours, sadly, not very often you cross paths with people as down-to-earth and as willing-to-help as this kid.  Best of luck Charlie!

Be sure to visit Speedhunters site and cast your vote for one unique, great car built with pure blood, sweat and tears…  …and while at it, visit Charlies web site, C3 Garage.


Cars & Coffee

Last Sunday morning and with the help of the guys at SneakyClub.com, we were able to celebrate our first Cars & Coffee meeting.  People started arriving at the Krispy Kreme  parking lot around 7am.  The meeting lasted about 3 hours and easily, more than 50 cars got to be part of the fun.  Great people, great cars, a great way to start a beautiful Sunday morning…  Oh, great donuts and coffee too…

Here are some shots:

SneakyRacing’s Dyno Day at Predator Performance

Yesterday The guys at Predator Performance allowed a group of big boys to come by and play with their toys at their Mustang Dyno.  The day was progremmed to start at 9:00 Am, so slowly but surely, people started to arrive at the shop.

Predator Performance is one of the most complete performance shops in Puerto Rico, they do all kinds of upgrades to almost any kind of car out there, from small maintenance jobs, to racing parts installs, to full builds and of course expert and specialized pro tunning.  They are also one of the few places that have a decent amount and variety of quality parts in stock, gauges, engine components, suspension bits, brake kits even high end wheels…

The guys at Predator are the exclusive distributors of AMS products and even though they have made their name tunning Evos and recently GT-Rs, they are always willing to tackle everything that comes through their shops door.   In fact the Shop’s main showcase car is a Hyundai Genesis Coupe V6.

This is probably the most complete Genesis around and that is no surprise as the two guys that run the shop are long time Hyundai fans.  They Actually have brought the Hyundai tunning guru at Seoulfulracing to come and custom tune this and other Hyundais.

The variety of cars that got to the event was amazing.  There were all sorts of cars: Japanese, Korean, American and Euros, FWD, AWD and RWD, turbo, N/A and bottle fed.

Here’s an example of a clean FWD that attended the event:  Eduardos Lancer RalliArt.

Not everyday you see a clean FWD Lancer sporting Buddy Club wheels and other meticulously chosen quality parts, at least not in Puerto Rico…

I have no idea what type of Mustang this is, but it was CLEAN!!! and just one of the few ones present…

Representing the Eurocrew, there was this 400+ AWHP Audi S4, sporting a set of Volk Racing LE37 wrapped in Sumitomo tires.  Behind the front pair, there was a StopTech BBK ready to stop the madness…

SneakyRacing’s own Kike had his turn at the rollers with his 2011 Corvette Z06.  The rear 345 Nitto Invos kept on spinning out of control while he was trying to make a few 1/4 mile passes…

Then there was this subtle 2000 Camaro Z28, tamed and well behaved looking…  until that engine was started.

More on this one later…



Evolutionary Road

NIce shot of Irving’s red Evo VIII, his long term, ever evolving project and one of the cleanest Evos around here…

picture: Irving@ sneakyracing.com

El Yankee @ Speedhunters

I’m by no means a Drag Racing fan, but as a Puerto Rican I can’t just pass by a feature like this. A rotary powered drag car hauling our flag down the 1320′ while doing 7-seconds passes…

Nothing could be more emblematic of Puerto Rican Motorsports than that…


Speedhunters feature