239 PS from a little naturally aspirated four-pot is definitely something you can’t argue with. When Kamata-san of Tec-Art’s got started on this N2 Project back in 2001 he had no idea it would have evolved like it has, helping him push AE86 and 4AG tuning to extremes. Tec-Art’s is a small family-run shop in the outskirts of Tokyo, a place that over the years Kamata-san and his brother have turned into one of the most respected hachiroku shops in Japan. While they keep busy doing 20-valve swaps and rebuilding 86s from the ground up, their father takes care of another side of the business, car restoration, which is precisely why I love dropping by their place. On top of all the cool tuned hachis there are always rare classic cars to look at too!
The Hot Version organized N2 battles bring the fastest AE86 racecars together for some of the closest racing out there. Kamata-san really went full out when creating this purple beast, starting off with the exterior.
I really like how the massively blistered front and rear overfenders are riveted into place, just like the front splitter which helps keep the car planted through the corners.
To keep weight down everything is either FRP or carbon fiber while all the glass, except the windscreen, has been replaced with lexan.
To accommodate the massive rear diffuser most of the rear bumper and trunk floor had to be cut away and modified. This helps keep the rear end of the car planted by utilizing the flow of air under the car, and even has three adjustable wings to vary the effect. The carbon GT-wing and the rear hatch lip spoiler further increase downforce.
I don’t think an AE86 can get more aggressive than this!!
Kamata-san often likes to experiment with wheels, but at time of the shoot the AE86 was on 17-inch Work Meister S1s, 8-inches wide at the front and 9-inches wide at the rear. Grip is provided thanks to Yokohama slick tires.
The heart of the N2 Project. This little 4AG can rev to just under 10,000 rpm, but its peak power of 239 PS is developed at 8,950 rpm. To achieve numbers like this the Kamata brothers dedicated a lot of work to the head to make the engine breathe easier, starting with a heavy dose of porting and polishing, bigger valves and seats. To help the valvetrain stay reliable at high engine speeds titanium retainers were dropped in along with special springs, seats and TRD lifters.
As you would expect the camshafts are pretty wild, 300º duration with 12 mm lift on the intake and 304º duration with 11 mm lift for the exhaust, both fitted to HKS adjustable pulleys. The block has been bored to accept the ø 82 mm pistons, mated to JUN lightweight titanium connecting rods and a special cut and balanced crankshaft. To squeeze even more power from Tec-Art’s developed a dry-sump conversion for the 4AG allowing the motor to be mounted much lower in the engine bay now that the wet-sump has been eliminated. Furthermore, the engine rotates with less resistance now that the crank no longer dips its counterweights into the oil contained in the sump.
With the engine sitting lower, the roll center of the car has been brought closer to the ground helping the AE86 handle more efficiently and feel even more nimble, if that is even possible!
Tec-Art’s also fitted their throttle kit which includes very nice billet aluminum funnels. A set of 340 cc/min injectors take care of the fuel supply. On the exhaust side you can see the Tec-Art’s Type-II manifold, which connects to a straight race pipe, making this hachiroku rather loud!
Things couldn’t be simpler in the interior, there is one Juran bucket seat fitted with the obligatory Takata harness, and a Momo steering wheel. The white shift knob lets you select gears, but not in an H-pattern. To cut shift times Kamata-san fitted a Quaife 6-speed sequential transmission, helping him gain a few milliseconds on each cog-swap.
Lots of work went into stiffening the shell thanks to the custom roll-cage and tons of spot welding. They even fitted a video-camera mount!
I know Kamata-san is hard at work making his AE86 even better, I really don’t know how that would be possible but according to him there is always something that can be improved. It will be great to see him finish first at the next race. Gambare Kamata-san!
-Dino Dalle Carbonare