The engine is also an important tool for drifting, the engine must have decent power to be able to break the rear tires loose at will, yet must be responsive and lag free, allowing the driver to have as much throttle control as possible. In drifting, control is preferable over brute force. First, the heavy, iron block KA24DE was replaced with a lighter, all-aluminum SR20DET from Gspeed Corporation. The swap was performed by Howard and Richie Watanabe of Technosquare. As SR20's are built like brick shithouses, the engine remains amazingly stock. The head gasket was replaced with a Tomei 1.2mm metal gasket for improved reliability under brutal drifting conditions.
Jim Wolf Technology was called upon for a set of its excellent C1 cams and valve springs. JWT cams have tremendous amounts of lift for their short duration which gives an exceedingly wide powerband, great for turbo motors and drifting. The exhaust cam is advanced considerably to help the turbo spool quicker. JWT adjustable cam gears are used to adjust the cam timing. Unlike bolted together cam gears, JWT's gears will not slip under the most trying rev limiter pounding conditions. In drifting the engine is often repeatedly pounded off the rev limiter.
One of the weak points of the SR20 engine is its tendency to throw rocker arms at high engine speeds. To prevent this Tomei rocker blockers were installed. These spring clips help prevent the rockers from bouncing out of place if the rpm get too high.
As far as turbos, the car runs two different setups, depending on the course. For tight, close work where maximum throttle response is required a Jim Wolf supplied Garrett ball bearing GT28RS Disco Potato turbo is the weapon of choice. For high-speed events where peak power is needed at the expense of a little spool, a Garrett GT2871R from Turbos Direct is brought into the battle. No matter which turbo is used, an HKS EVC 5 electronic boost controller manipulates the internal wastegate.
A Phase2 Motorsports 02 sensor extension is bolted to the exhaust housing. This piece separates the wastegate flow from the turbine discharge. Testing from Garrett has shown that the two flows should be kept separate for at least 3 turbine exducer diameters for best performance. Separating the flow from the turbine and the internal wastegate boosts overall flow and helps speed turbo spool. Another unique feature of the Phase2 part is that it clears the steering shaft of LHD USDM cars, something the JDM versions of this part from GReddy and others don't do.
The turbo is coupled to the engine by a DC Sports all stainless-steel turbo manifold. The manifold features all 321 stainless construction, equal length runners and a merged collector. The latter is a feature not seen in many SR20DET/240SX manifolds. The manifold contributes to rapid spool while retaining good gas flow.
This car spools very fast, creating boost even while being slowly driven around a parking lot during the photo shoot. The exhaust starts with a GReddy 80mm downpipe leading to a free flowing full stainless 5Zigen ProRacer exhaust system.
A Tomei high-flow fuel pump and Tomei 550cc injectors fuel the engine. A large Z32 airflow meter measures the air going in while engine management duties are handled by the new AEM EMS. This newly released system is a direct drop-in, plug-and-play unit for the SR20. A powerful AEM C2DI handles the ignition chores.
A big Skyline GT-R R33 front-mount intercooler chills the pressurized air before being ingested. From there the air is fed through an East Bear Hardpipe kit, fitted with a Sheepdog recirculated BOV with Hose Techniques silicone couplers and clamps, and into the engine.