NZ Performance Car - - Inside Line -

The SMS Fabri­ca­tion FD RX-7 which fea­tured on the cover of is­sue 238 had some­thing of a rocky start, thanks to an­noy­ing teething is­sues with the en­gine, ECU, and diff. But with those ironed out the car is start­ing to show some real prom­ise with Graeme be­hind the wheel. “It took us six months to get the car run­ning right. It was ex­tremely frus­trat­ing — to the point I nearly gave up.” But his per­se­ver­ance has fi­nally paid off, and the bridge-ported 13B has shown a record-set­ting pace at both Hamp­tons and Taupo.

The FD ran in the SS2000 fi­nal round at Taupo ear­lier this month and set the lap record for SS2000 twice over the weekend, with a best lap of 1.34.4 along with a pole po­si­tion and race win. The car also went quicker than the SS2000 record at Hamp­ton, al­though not while run­ning in the class.

With the sea­son all but over, the team has set its sights on run­ning even faster. “Right now the car is too quick for GT3, but does not have enough power in GT2, while I can pass un­der brakes and cor­ner­ing, the V8s will just pass again on the straights.” The plan is for CBR— which has re­built and tuned the cur­rent 13B — to build a turbo en­gine ca­pa­ble of around 485kW to 520kW, which he be­lieves will give the car GT1 pace, al­though that is not the real goal, as Graeme ex­plained. “I’m not in­ter­ested in chasing cham­pi­onships or race wins, I re­ally just want to build a car as fast as I pos­si­bly can. I love the chal­lenge it presents.”

Along­side the new en­gine pack­age, the car will also go on a diet to coun­ter­act the turbo’s added weight, to keep the to­tal un­der the cur­rent 1200kg. The cur­rent set-up will go into the old chas­sis the team ran, so Graeme’s dad can get back be­hind the wheel at se­lected events.

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