NZ Performance Car - - Contents -

Most peo­ple aren’t game enough to drop stacks on a prac­ti­cally brand new car and go about mod­i­fy­ing it straight away, but, for Seng Tran and his 2015 Subaru WRX STi, that’s ex­actly what hap­pened. He ex­plains: “It started out as a New Zealand–new 2.5-litre EJ25 car. With bolt-ons and a Tomei M8265 it made 432hp [322kW] at the fly on around 22psi. The ini­tial in­ten­tion was to thrash it un­til the EJ couldn’t take it any­more, and even­tu­ally it did fail.”

That fail­ure pro­posed an ul­ti­ma­tum: ei­ther sink in a built ex­am­ple of the EJ25 and see what can be squeezed out of it, or in­crease the cylin­der count by two and make some se­ri­ous grunt — you can prob­a­bly al­ready guess which one Seng went for. The EZ30 cho­sen for the task bumps ca­pac­ity up to three litres, hav­ing orig­i­nally been found within the Subaru Legacy–model fam­ily, and has been proven to be good for wild amounts of power with­out hav­ing to lean on it stupidly hard like its pre­de­ces­sors.

Pos­sum Bourne Mo­tor­sport (PBMS) was charged with the con­ver­sion and sunk a dummy mo­tor in place so that Sinco could fab­ri­cate the re­quired com­po­nents to ac­cept boost via a side-mounted BorgWarner EFR 8374. The team also whipped up the in­take plenum that com­mands the en­gine bay, made all the pipework and ex­haust, and re­lo­cated the bat­tery.

Once all the fab­ri­ca­tion has been taken care of, the STi is set to go back to PBMS for the mo­tor to be built the mon­ster re­quired to gen­er­ate the 500kW power goal. It will see Su­pertech forged pis­tons and rods crammed in­side the closed-deck block, with PBMS mod­i­fy­ing the oil gal­leries; port­ing and pol­ish­ing the heads; and adding big­ger fuel in­jec­tors, an up­graded drive-by-wire throt­tle body, and V7 STi coils.

“Af­ter it’s all fin­ished, it will be my daily-driver,” Seng tells us. “And [will see] the oc­ca­sional track day.”

Five hun­dred kilo­watts at the de­pres­sion of the loud pedal on the daily isn’t some­thing to scoff at, and it won’t be sub­tle in the aes­thet­ics department ei­ther. Seng has draped the ex­te­rior in car­bon-fi­bre and wide-body good­ies, opt­ing to run a full HT Auto bodykit with HT Auto wide-body fen­der flares, an APR Per­for­mance car­bon-fi­bre front split­ter, Car­bon Re­pro­duc­tions re­place­ment mir­rors, and APR car­bon-fi­bre ca­nards, all wrapped in bronze — it will sit over 18x10.5-inch Enkei RPF1s at all cor­ners as pic­tured.

You’ll hear it be­fore you see it, and once your eyes are locked, it’ll be hard to pull them off of this GT-styled street-brawler.

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