Car Spotlight>> Menacing Lexus

With all the different theme months going on at Speedhunters it is sometimes hard to keep up. But luckily for me I have a vast collection of magazines to look for cool features and friends in the automotive industry that can point me in the right direction. When I was reading through some old Banzai magazines I came across this Lexus IS and remembered it made a real impact when it was introduced to the public. Engine swaps are all the rage these days but back in 2005 it was all about pioneering. One of those pioneers was Torque Developments International (TDI) located in the UK. I immediately contacted them and they were happy to provide me with all the information I needed.

What makes this car special is it's engine, TDI transplanted a twin turbo Supra engine into its ‘small' engine bay. But I always like to save the best for last so I will start at the exterior. At the front you can see a modified bumper made by Hipposleek, the middle has been enlarged to provide a better airflow towards the intercooler and oil cooler behind it.. The most eye-catching modification are the sides of the bumper, they have been cut off to get the most out of the airflow to cool the brakes.

Don't you just love white on white? The TE37's are 18"x7,5 in the front and 18"x 8,5 in the rear. Tires are by Toyo sized at 225/40 and 255/35 respectively. Behind the wheels you can find a set of 4 pot Stoptech calipers with 332mm grooved aerorotor discs. The HKS Hipermax II coilovers are responsible for the drop.

On the side we continue with the Data Systems arch flares and Wald side skirts. It's just cool to think that this car started out as a family car but after all the medications it is far from it.

When you look at the car from the rear you wouldn't have a clue as to what power lies white skin. The only small hint could be the dual HKS exhausts. The spoiler comes from TRD as are the rear skirts.

This is what's it all about, don't forget that this engine swap was done back in 2005. The engine has seen a lot of work thanks to TDI and HKS. It sure looks crowded in the cramped engine bay but TDI managed to put almost everything in it expect for the battery that went to the trunk. Here is a small list to give you an idea of the extend of modifications to this engine;

 2JZ-GTE, HKS front mount intercooler, Up rated fuel pumps and lines, HKS superfire spark plugs, HKS GT28/35 hybrid turbos, HKS turbo heat shields, HKS 1000cc injectors, HKS EVC V boost controller, HKS F-con ECU, HKS SSQV dump valve. And that's not even half of all the things that make this engine tick. The engine has been rated at a healthy 600ps to give more than enough grunt.

Thanks to people who push boundaries we can learn and build even better and amazing cars. Not everything is accepted but without these innovators we would be nowhere. You can contact the guys at TDI here.

-Jeroen Willemsen



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A true sleeper.


The front bumper and the hood are SICK, proper sized TE37's too, and i really like those fender arches.

Not feeling the trunk spoiler though... Kinda sticks out a bit, and not in the right way...

I would've gone with something on the line of a duck-tail spoiler.


kill all that aero and tacky crap except the hood. put normal freakin headlights on it, and bump those wheel widths a good inch outwards with concave TE's in silver. just my opinion. anything done to the headlights on these cars is worse than "altezza" taillights on almost anything.


Change the front bumper and it is good to go! I am all for cooler brakes but that design looks ugly IMO and I can't pretend to know first hand but what does that do for the aeros? I mean there's going to be major washup around those front wheels and I am just wondering if creates any sort of odd behavior at high speeds. Anyway that's my $0.02, change up the front bumper and I think it is the cleanest IS I have ever seen!


damn this altezza is fkn hottttt! I love these cars.


i kinda hate the front bumper too. not to sound redundent but it looks a little too boy racer and weird. the skirts and rear lip look great. smooth than sexy, i don't hate the hood and absolutly love what's under it. looks sick in white too.


I think its a good start but 18x7.5 adn 18.8.5 are not proper enough. It needs more aggressive fitment to match that kit and drivetrain. I do like white and white.


the front bumper is junk...totally agree with F3INT. those cuts surely affect the stability.

but in general its quite cool

(love the filters color! :p)


What feisar said.


What's so special about it? It has a ricer bumper, yes I said ricer. Some TE37 and a 2JZ engine.....not much going on....


that front bumper is ricer... but hey, imo thats what most euro cars are... anyway.. itd be quite nice without the weak fender flares and front bumper... perhaps bn sports aero and better offset wheels could save this car.. the engine is a good choice minus teh color matched stuff, i wouldnt be suprised if half the interior is painted white as well on this car, yuck


what is that shit, a honda fit on steroids?


i'm all with you guys about that bumper


sweet car but its in need of some gangster wheels.


This is embarrassing to me as a fellow IS owner. Yucky yuck. Dollars wasted.


You guys are forgetting this was build in 2005, :)


Yeah, can't agree more on the front bumper. Should have looked better if they hadn't cut a big gap on the side. Other than that it looks pretty clean for an Altezza.....


Did Hippo Sleek do the hood for you?


wheels need to be wider with lower offset, but clean car, esp. with all this being done in 2005.


Rememer seeing this car in the same Banzai magazine, instantly loved it and i still do!

This IS means buisness!


Oh, And if im not mistaken those headlamps and the rears are oem Tom's or TTE items.


The exterior is all wrong. The motor is mediocre. Doesn't represent IS300's or Altezzas well. C & Y Sports RB26 swapped Altezza much more.


Walter, we did'nt get the IS300 in europe, we only got the IS200...


that front bumper is hideous, as are the rear lights. arent lexus lights bad enough


I don't understand: the car has a UK number plate, but is most definately somewhere else in Europe.


True sleeper? Hahahhahaha...


True sleeper? Yea... Nah...