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Suspension for Bill’s 350z

Filed under: 370z,Featured Cars and Projects,Performance
by Alvin G @ 6:18 pm on January 16, 2018

 

Bill C has been a long time customer of Z Car Garage. You might remember his 2007 350z as one of the first HR-powered cars at ZCG to receive a Bassani exhaust and minor bolt-ons resulting in over 300whp. That was in 2008! Over the years Bill has enjoyed his Z on fun runs and track days. He even wrote an Ebay article reviewing the 370z and enlisted us for dyno measurements!

 

 
 

The stock OEM suspension on the Z33 had always bothered Bill:  the relatively spongy ride along with ride height and wheel gap over his amazing Volk LE37 wheels had to improve.  We wanted to make sure that he had the ability to autocross, enjoy back roads and daily drive the Z. Bill picked up a very nice set of Ohlins DFV coil-overs for us to install:

 

 

Here is the Ohlins setup installed front and rear:

 

A great complement to coil-overs is our favorite sway bars from Hotchkis:

 

Sway bars installed front and rear:

 
 
 

The Z now sits with a great stance and Bill is very happy with the new suspension setup:

I love the Ohlins!!!  I got EXACTLY what I was hoping for.  Daily driver comfort (Wife couldn’t discern it from stock), but take it into some twisties and it’s a monster. Also, I did not expect my braking to improve so much from the coil-over install.  

 

Enjoy The Ride Bill!

 

 

 

 




EVENTS: The ZONC Annual Car Show

Filed under: Events,Featured Cars and Projects
by Alvin G @ 3:07 am on December 4, 2017

 

Love for the Z is strong in Northern California

The Z Owners of Northern California (ZONC) is one of the oldest Z car clubs in the nation. In its prime they had over 600 members with close ties to Yutaka Katayama (“Mr. K”) and Nissan USA. Of the many events and fun runs they host throughout the year including the famous Blackhawk Museum Show, we had a wonderful time attending their ZONC Annual Car Show in Brisbane, CA held on July 22, 2017.

 

 

This was a relaxed, relatively small gathering of enthusiasts that we shared with a group of ZCG customers and friends. Our Saturday morning caravan to the show began at the shop with seven Z cars, one roadster and a C110 Kenmeri Skyline:

 

Here is a short video of the ride to Brisbane with all of our cars…just Enjoying The Ride on a Saturday!

 

Highlights from the show

Still to this day, 240Zs are the most represented model in the club. Expansion over time currently includes all recent Z models and the GT-R, but also reaches back in time to include the Datsun Roadsters and 510s.  41 cars were displayed this year, each one of them special and showing pride of ownership. The only model missing from the show was the Z31 300ZX and that’s because the only one registered somehow overheated on the way.

 

From showroom stock to wildly-modified the S30 selection was diverse. We are very proud of ZCG customer James S’ 1972 240z. This hot rod sports a Rebello 3.2 L-series engine with boost provided by a GTX3576R turbo and Haltech management.  The exterior is quite menacing with large carbon fiber flares containing 17″ VOLK TE37 wheels wrapped in sticky Kumho slicks. ZCG Big Brakes are at all four corners. Stay tuned for a full report on this beast as we dial in the E85 tuning!

 

  
 

Frank Burkeen’s stunning Series 1 240z is the result of a full rotisserie restoration. We will have a full report on this build soon, but if you take close look at that stock engine bay it’s impossible to tell that it makes about 50hp more than stock!

 

Frank is also a long-time ZCG customer and his wife drove his other Z car, a bright orange fuel-injected canyon carver. We love the Chevlon mesh wheels and they do a superb job of framing our ZCG Big Brakes!

 

Our friend and fellow vintage racer Glenn Chiou’s 1971 Nissan Fairlady 240Z-L is a RHD model with a Rebello heart and a host of period goodies. The original paint is impressive and this car just looks so “right” from all angles.

  
 

260z and 280z

ZCG customer Joe A showed his pretty 260z, fresh from the shop (full report on the blog soon)

  
 

Linda W’s 1978 280z

 

S130

Who could forget the S130 280zx! Black Gold too:

 

People

We like this show because of the laid-back atmosphere and good folks that organize it. You won’t find Drake or EDM blasting through loudspeakers here. No bikini contests.  Just Z-car and Nissan/Datsun enthusiasts simply sharing their love about cars.

Z32

 

11 Z32 300zx cars were displayed ranging from high-mileage survivors with original owners to show-spec pristine examples. Kevin N and Joe K’s Z32 Twin Turbos are both top-level examples of highly modified yet tasteful machines:

 

Jack and Yolanda’s famous widebody Z32s. Jack is the creator of the original “primadonnaZ” back in the 70’s.

 

This 1994 NA Z32 caught our eye because it had 332k miles from its original owner!

 

Z33


If you are a fan of Japanese classic cars there’s a good chance that you have visited Japanese Nostalgic Car. JNC’s senior minicar correspondent and all-around J-Tin guru is Ricky Silverio and he is also a Z-car owner! Here is his pristine, 10k-mile 2003 350z Track model that we will be performing services on soon. Like his other sports cars, Ricky shows impeccable taste in his “OEM+” mods. Check out more pics in the gallery as there are many “easter eggs” in his Z!

 
 

Z34

This is the first show since 2009 that Nissan USA helped support and ZONC was very happy to have a new NISMO 370Z  on display:

 

We spotted this pair of of white NISMO Z’s. Nissan’s final evolution of the Z34 is the best looking, in our opinion:

 
 

510s

 

Three Datsuns 510s showed up, two with KA24s and one sporting an L-series. Datsun die-hards may remember this familiar 510 that belonged to builder Gary Jervis:

 

Our favorite (and the crowd’s too) was Matt’s 510. This boosted KA24DE Dime ticks all the right boxes for our love of low-flying bricks, and he also won 1st place for Best 510!

The Kenmeri Skyline

Alex M lent us his C110 Skyline to participate in the show. It was well received and even won an award!

Roadsters and Best of Show

The lone Datsun Roadster, and winner of Best of Show award went to Dan M’s pretty ’69 Datsun 2000. Dan also brought his ’72 240z!

 

Vanity plates

It’s no secret Z car owners have the best vanity plates! Some notables:

  
 

Parking lot finds

The beautiful venue is also a public park so plenty of folks stopped by to check out the Z’s.

 
 

Award Winners

It is always great to see ZCG customers carrying home awards for their pride and joy.

James S won Best Modified and Super Modified! Joe A won best 260z and Frank M won Best Stock 240z!

 

See you next year!

Spending the day at the ZONC Annual Car Show was a welcome experience that reminded us to, in the words of the late Mr.K, ” Love cars. Love people. Love Life.”  We look forward to the next show keep an eye on our event updates and Z you soon! Don’t forget to check out our picture gallery below! Big thanks to the ZONC organizers and Ricky Silverio for sharing his photos with us.

 

 

 

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EVENTS: The 2017 SEMA Show!

Filed under: Events,Featured Cars and Projects
by Alvin G @ 5:27 am on November 29, 2017

 

SEMA was a blur this year—but that’s really no different than any other year for the most intense sensory overload in car show form on the planet. This trade-only show features all of the latest and greatest builds, technology, and creativity in our industry. While the show has historically been populated by American marques and their aftermarket support, in recent years the influx of Japanese metal (Nissan included) is undeniable.

 
 

We only attended the show for one day and while the crowds were as appalling as ever in the Las Vegas Convention Center, the quality of cars made it all worth it. It wasn’t just “cars” that got us excited, it was the astonishing number of vintage Datsuns/Nissans! The variety was astounding. We counted 16 cars from a 1972 Datsun 510 to 1983 Skyline and everything in between.

 

Year of the Datsun!

Our Datsun-hunting at SEMA started with Datsun 510s. Pro-drifter Chris Forsberg built this hot-rod 510 wagon for his wife. The Mazworx-built SR20DET is backed by an automatic transmission and even sports air-conditioning. Deep-lipped SSR MKIII wheels fill out the box-flares that are part of the “Hakobird” kit from Carbonsignal. This might be the closest thing to Hakosuka Skyline wagon!

 

Our friend and fellow 510 racer Troy Ermish built this ultra-clean 510 2-door for actor Daniel Wu. We dig the bronze Watanabe wheels and subtle paint color. A built L-series breathing through dual-Mikuni’s and stock-ish interior also makes us happy. You can learn more about the build from our friends over at JNC.

 

Our final 510 sighting was the legendary Pete Brock’s personal car in Braille battery booth. Affectionately known as “Datzilla”, we remember first seeing this 450hp small-block V8 beast back in 2008 at the MotoringJ Style show.

 
 

Z Car Fever

A total of NINE S30 Z cars were at SEMA this year. That may not seem like many, but consider just 3 years ago only two Z cars were present. It was hard to pick a favorite but we were impressed with the Gas Monkey Garage 280z and the ChasingJs 240z built by Big Mike and Dominic Le, respectively.

The Gas Monkey Garage 280z

 

Big Mike was commissioned to design/build this 280Z 2+2 for the TV show Gas Monkey Garage. We loved how he took a often un-loved chassis and created a unique car that Datsun fans and American-iron alike can appreciate. Some quick details that caught our eye: the huge void found in front of the 4-cylinder SR20DET was filled with an OEM-like air filer box. The stock interior features vintage buckets with matching rears. The body color choice was perfect against bronze Volk TE37V wheels. Watch for two episodes covering the build airing on Fast n Loud TV on the Discovery channel!
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More Power: Jared’s Vortech Supercharged 350z

Filed under: Featured Cars and Projects,Performance
by Alvin G @ 11:56 pm on October 8, 2017

ZCG 5 10215 038
 

We have been working on Jared C’s 350z since he purchased it. He absolutely loves this Z car but does not get to drive it all the time. So when the occasion arrives and he gets behind the wheel, this Z is driven hard.

 
 

Last time when we checked in on Jared’s 350z it was making above average power/tq both NA and with the Vortech. Recently Jared let us know that he was at a point in his life where he wanted to make as much power as possible. We happily obliged. In June of this year after passing a smog check we began the power upgrades, starting with the Garett 900 hp FMIC assembly:

 
 

We installed our ZCG cold-air intake:

 
 

Jared’s Z had been tuned for 91 octane and for the power levels he wanted this would be a limiting factor due to conservative timing.

 

We proceeded with a 100 octane tune and made 443hp/360tq at the wheels:

 

With more power we also wanted to ensure that rest of the car was safe and in good shape. We changed the oil and replaced the Vortech fluid. The Stoptech BBK from his last visit was a very wise upgrade!

ZCG 5 10215 022 ZCG 5 10215 024
 

Enjoy The Boost Jared!

 

 




First Z, then GT: Ricky’s 2017 Mustang

Filed under: Featured Cars and Projects,Performance
by Alvin G @ 3:13 am on September 29, 2017

 

Hello and good morning Dear Zcarblog readers! We have many customer car and event reports to bring you this week, so let’s get to it.

If you are a fan of Japanese classic cars there’s a good chance that you have visited Japanese Nostalgic Car. JNC’s senior minicar correspondent and all-around J-Tin guru is Ricky Silverio and he is also a Z-car owner! Here is his pristine, 10k-mile 2003 350z Track model that we will be performing services on soon:

 
 

Enough about Z cars let’s talk about the other steed in his stable…Ricky recently visited Z Car Garage with his 2017 Mustang GT:

“Although the public knows the shop specializes in Nissans, I am aware of the broad range in specialty that ZCG possesses. What really stands out in the cars no one knows about is the DSE equipped Camaro that was done a few years ago as well as the myriad race and special projects. That’s what makes me know that ZCG is a misnomer as everything can be accommodated at the shop.”

 

 

The Premium-package equipped Mustang came to us with only 226 miles on the odometer and we happily obliged Ricky’s request to begin modifying it. Ride height and handling were addressed with an Eibach Pro-kit:

 

We discussed Ricky’s driving preferences and intentions (neutral, good turn in, street-use) when choosing alignment settings following the new spring installation. He was stoked:

“Although I chose mild springs I was surprised that brake dive was eliminated, turn in was very crisp and the car became more tossable. Firmness was slightly higher but the difference is huge which surprised me. But I must add the alignment specs really made the difference and ZCG delivered as always!”

 

What’s next for the Mustang? Since Ricky is comfortable with ZCG, on his next visit we will perform a baseline dyno and intake/exhaust mods. Ricky will have joined the ranks of a rather peculiar correlation between Z car owners and Mustangs demonstrated by our customers Jeff V, Kevin B and Scott L. Z/Mustang associations aside, Ricky is a car enthusiast with a love that started with Japanese cars and encompassed all:

“I love all cars and although I have been versed in Japanese cars since the day I was born, I dig everything! I used to have old minis and European Ford escorts and my uncle was into restoring old 60s American cars (Mustangs too) so that’s where my love for muscle cars were born.”

Here is Ricky’s ridiculously clean, 30k-mile NA Miata sitting on Enkei RPF1s and tasteful interior upgrades:

 
 

Ricky and I had some lively discussions about his latest Ford purchase and the new S550 Mustang’s design.

“The S550 Mustang chassis when it came out gave me the best of both worlds. Iconic car and platform but now with IRS and finally true world car engineering and refined elegant and beautiful design. The Americanness of the car can be found in its size (I’m still getting used to its length and width) as well as its V8, typical ford panel fit, rattles and various hard plastic surfaces. Other than that the experience is vastly different as the car really is a now a “normal” globally accepted and designed car. From its IRS, Getrag 6 speed, it feels more European / Japanese in dynamics.”

 

We both agreed that the new Mustang is the spiritual successor of the S15 Silvia, an “S16” if you will or the car Nissan should have built!  Ricky then took it up a notch drawing a connection between an old school Toyota and the Ford:

“Totally agree Alvin that by subliminal design (even chassis code with an S and 5) that with the Ecoboost the Mustang truly channels the S15 Silvia! With the V8 it even channels the true first release of the original Celica Liftback (twin cam 2 liter) which the US never got, especially in white”:

 

“That’s what does it for me. It channels those Japanese cars but also caters to the heritage of the Mustang which is what inspired the Japanese cars in the first place! Imagine Japanese cars inspired by the original Mustang, and now the newest Mustang channeling the qualities and design of the cars that were inspired by it. Mind blown.”

 

Even though we are a Nissan specialty shop we never leave our customers hanging with their other rides. We love the new S550 and Ford is one of those companies that gets it. More to come as we work on Ricky’s Z33 and GT!

 




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