NZ Performance Car - - Demon Energy D1NZ -

“If Fanga can drift a Commy, I can surely drift a wagon”

Sta­tion wag­ons are cer­tainly not the first body shape that springs to mind when you think com­pe­ti­tion race ma­chin­ery (old BTCC Volvos ex­cluded), but that’s not to say they don’t make for one hell of a drift weapon when built right. Pro-Sport rookie — an­other to de­but at round two — Zach Green had ac­tu­ally pur­chased the wagon for tow­ing du­ties for a ex-D1NZ car he planned to buy. But a month into the ownership it was re-tuned, had a hy­dro hand­brake and a lock diff, and could be found slid­ing around Hamp­ton Downs. An al­ter­ca­tion with a wall more or less wrote the wagon off from road du­ties, and it took up res­i­dence as Zach’s ded­i­cated track car.

Drifting a Stagea is not with­out its unique set of chal­lenges. First up, the wheel­base is long — about 60mm longer than a Ce­firo — then there is the front GT-R sus­pen­sion lay­out, aka 4WD. To com­bat a se­ri­ous lack of lock, Zach runs a set of chopped knuck­les to add about 10 per cent ex­tra lock. Weight-wise the wagon is sur­pris­ingly light, com­ing in at un­der 1300kg.

The engine un­der the bon­net is an RB ‘big block’ — an RB30DET with R33 RB25DE head, stock in­ter­nals, ACL bear­ings and an N1 oil pump. The Gar­rett GT35 de­liv­ers 340kW at a very con­ser­va­tive 6000rpm, and fol­low­ing his first com­pe­ti­tion round Zach will drop in a new set of cams to help with mid-range torque.

The car fea­tures a very mild-look­ing ex­te­rior, but what lies be­neath the skin is firmly race ori­ented, with light-im­pact re­pair and safety a ma­jor fac­tor for Zach af­ter that crash at Hamp­ton. The tube fram front built in his shed is eas­ily un­bolted and re­placed, while parts like the fuel cell, oil cooler, and ra­di­a­tor have all been po­si­tioned well out of harm’s way.

You can ex­pect to see Zach swan­gin’ off the G-Tech wheel for the re­main­der of the sea­son as the team works at per­fect­ing the set up, but he is con­fi­dent — “If Fanga can drift a Commy, I can surely drift a wagon.”

Hav­ing a wagon as a track car is not with­out its ben­e­fits. The rather large rear com­part­ment comes in handy dur­ing tran­sit, as it can hold plenty of tools and tyres.

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