Posts Tagged ‘4AGE’

GEAR DRIVEN> Brian Crower Toyota 4AG Stroker Kit

NICE! I just got my hands on a brand new Brian Crower STROKER KIT for the 4AG engine! I can't wait to put my engine together with this beauuuuuutiful forged crankshaft and lightweight connecting rods!

Before I elaborate on the details of my engine build, check out this new video from our friends at Brian Crower, highlighting some of their sponsored racers. I'm honored that my own AE86 is going to have a heart transplant that includes engine internals from the same manufacturer that's responsible for the success of these pro drivers!   Read more...

PERSPECTIVE> Ten Years Of Formula Drift Atlanta

This past weekend at Road Atlanta in Braselton, Georgia, the Formula Drift Championship celebrated its Ten Year Anniversary. It's hard to believe that the sport of professional drifting has already been in existence in the United States for ten whole years! Crazy - it certainly doesn't feel like it's been ten years.

Over the past decade, there have been a ton of new faces in the traveling Formula D circus - new drivers, new photographers, new teams and sponsors, new models, and new fans. When the very first Formula Drift event was held at Road Atlanta back in 2004, drifting was very much new to the United States. Most people didn't even know what it was. Most of the drivers and teams were very grassroots in appearance; we certainly didn't see the big corporate event activations and sponsor logos that you find at Formula Drift events nowadays.

Many of the original drivers, models, and teams from the inaugural Formula Drift event in 2004 have moved on to pursue other things. However, there are still a few OG Formula Drift heads (like me) still around. Man, we're getting old!   Read more...

COVERAGE> Bay Area AE86 Meet Redux In Oakland

As you witnessed in the first part of coverage from the Bay Area AE86 meet at One Toyota of Oakland, the gathering was a great mix of both hachi rokus and other machines. While more and more cars rolled in, it became harder to pay attention to each car individually. And, although it seemed as if there was almost an equal ratio of AE86s to dope non-AE86s, everyone remembered what car the day was commemorating.   Read more...

COVERAGE> The Bay Area Celebrates the AE86

In the tuner world, the AE86 platform should be considered one of the most important and influential gems that has come from Japanese engineering and research. Even with today's sophisticated technology being used to develop high-performance machines with more than twice the power of a Hachi-Roku, it's hard to forget what this amazing little car did for the general public. Despite the fact that the machine didn't have some of the better features and strengths of some of the other cars its age and younger, it had one great sense of appeal to it: the price.

The common man didn't have to settle with just dreaming about the AE86 and gazing over pictures of its bodywork in magazines. No, instead, the common man could actually get behind the wheel of one since a new, fully-loaded Corolla GT-S would cost on average $12,000 at the time. And though AE86 became the last generation of the affordable front-engine, rear-wheel-drive compact from Toyota (until the FR-S/FT-86, we hope), it is still remembered, still used and still loved by the common man. And that love is why the Bay Area joins together each year to celebrate this iconic vehicle. I give you The Bay Area 8-6 Day meet!   Read more...

CENTER STAGE> Team Tekno AE86 Crew in Ireland

Late last month my girlfriend and I hopped on a plane and flew to Dublin, in Southern Ireland. However this wasn't your typical romantic getaway, instead, one of the main reasons for the trip was for another kind of love - of the Corolla kind.

When it comes to Japanese cars from the 1980s, I've never quite seen one that evokes as much love, nor as enthusiastic a following, as the AE86 Toyota Corolla. To some people they're just weird old hatchbacks that look more suited to being driven by elderly ladies to the supermarket and back; but to others they are lightweight, rear-wheel drive cars with fun engines that beg you to drive them hard - not to mention a certain character and style that you only get from 1980s Japanese design. It's just crazy to think that, when I was much younger, these cars could be picked up for a few hundred pounds. Nowadays, you can see some examples going for over £10,000!

On that note, if there's one country (excluding Japan) that has the biggest love for the AE86 as far as I've seen, it's got to be Ireland. I'm not sure what it is, but people the Irish are nuts for them and it always impresses me how such a small country can contain so many. There are more in Ireland than in most of the UK combined.

My personal love for the AE86 came about, like many others, through drifting. There's just something so right about seeing an AE86 being thrown sideways, foot to the floor, with the driver giving it everything he has. It's just RAW, and it's always been my dream, since I started shooting cars, to shoot an AE86. Not just any old 86 - it had to be the right one. So, when I came across some new photos of Killian O'Brien and Kevin Reilly's Levin and Trueno, I knew they were the ones I had to shoot. So, after organising things with Killian and Kevin, I and my girl (who happens to be a big fan of Corollas, too - luckily for me!) headed over for a taste of Team Tekno style!   Read more...

GARAGE LIFE> JSP Fab K24A Powered AE86 Build

When it comes to drifting, whether it's professional, grassroots, or even street, the AE86 Toyota Corolla GT-S is one of the most iconic cars around. The AE86 'hachi roku' and its 4AGE engine are a staple when it comes to drifting. However some more adventurous and fabrication savvy people have opted to swap in different engines. Not everyone is a fan of cross platform engine swaps, but I think pulling off a swap from a pure engineering standpoint is a feat of its own. One of the most desired AE86 cross platform swaps is the F20C/F22C engine from the Honda S2000 as it is one of the most powerful 4 cylinder N/A (normally aspirated) engines available.

About a week ago, JSP Fab's John Russakoff contacted me about an exclusive update to his Megan Racing/Nexen Tire Formula Drift competition car. For those of you who don't know John, he is one of the first in the AE86 community to perform a F20C engine swap into the AE86 Toyota Corolla Chassis - stateside at least. He has once again broken the cross platform swap barrier by putting a Honda K-Series front wheel drive engine into the AE86 while retaining the RWD platform. Going to be the very first fully completed and running K-Series AE86 in the US (and maybe even the world), he definitely had some hurdles to jump over when it came to engineering and fabrication.   Read more...

PAPERCUTS> Project Car Magazine w/ AE86

Project Car Magazine AE86 Special with Taka Aono Corolla Drifter

I just realized that I haven’t posted up a “Papercuts” story in quite some time. To tell you the truth, it’s because I haven’t even bought any car magazines in quite some time. There was a time in my life when I would go to bookstores and hang out, just to check out all the car magazines that were out. My friend Kenta and I would meet up at Barnes & Noble or Borders (or better yet, the Kinokuniya Bookstore in Little Tokyo or Torrance) to check out the latest car magazines every single month. I miss going to bookstores just to chill and check out magazines… I’m not sure if I haven’t been going because I’ve just been busy, or if the magazines these days don’t intrigue me…

Whatever the case may be, I stumbled upon this copy of Project Car Magazine at the CVS Drugstore in Studio City. This issue caught my eye because I saw my friend Taka Aono on the cover; after all, he is the USA’s undisputed top AE86 driver. I thumbed through it really quickly, and decided within 20 seconds, “that’s it. I’m actually gonna buy this issue.” While my 10+ years of Living the 86 Life have led me to own just about every AE86 book or manual that has ever been produced in Japan, it’s honestly pretty rare to see magazines that actually produce good stories about AE86s stateside. I definitely think this magazine was worth the $6 or 7 (ouch!) that I paid at the cash register.

Even though he’s probably the one Source Interlink magazine editor I don’t really know, I really gotta give props to Project Car editor Gary Narusawa and his crew over there. (more…)


CENTER STAGE> AE86 Inspiration: Running Free

This past week, all the key members of the Motor Mavens Crew have been extremely busy, working on developing some cool new website features that our readers will enjoy. I recently had the opportunity to hang out with some of my AE86 friends from out of town also. MotorMavens contributor and AE86er Pedro Velado came all the way from El Salvador to hang out at my garage and talk about AE86s; and on the same day, my close friend, Osaka-based AE86er Taku Machida came to visit on his last day in the United States before he and his family moved back to Japan this past weekend.

Since all these AE86 friends have been coming by to hang out and look through my photo albums, filled with old school AE86 photos from over 10 years ago, I felt that it would only be fitting to dig up some old school AE86 photos for our website too. You see, I have to exercise extreme control in order to avoid posting up AE86 photos and stories every day on the MotorMavens site. Hell, if it were solely up to me, I could make it a site that only had AE86 and old school Toyota content... but we wouldn't want to alienate all our readers who own other car marques.

Today though, I'm going to indulge and share images of one of my favorite AE86s from a stash of photos I took FIVE YEARS AGO. Yes, I took these photos way back in 2005. The red Sprinter Trueno in the photos is the famous "Yama red" AE86, owned by hachiroku driver Yamashita Koichi from the legendary Kanagawa-based drift team, Running Free. Running Free has a small handful of original members, but Yamashita is definitely the most famous in the group.   Read more...