Car Feature>> Garage Saurus 550 Maranello

If it wasn’t for Jeroen I would have almost forgotten about this Ferrari 550 Maranello. The picture he posted up a few weeks back reminded me of this unique creation that Hayashi-san of Garage Saurus put together a few years back. Most people however don’t actually know that there are two cars, two 550s that wear the same all-carbon fiber Garage Saurus body kit.

I went to check out one of them at Fuji Speedway during a set up session that was meant to test the new components the car had been fitted with. The owner, who resides in Kyoto, sent up his Maranello to Garage Saurus to have the car transformed into a more extreme track machine. Like most Ferrari’s the 550 is quite a delicate supercar and even if it can take the abuse an owner may subject it to on the street, it needs some work to prepare it for circuit use.

The first thing that Saurus did was to get some adjustable custom suspension designed and made up, allowing the car to sit a lot lower and make full use of its stiff chassis.

Hayashi-san also took his Z33 demo car to Fuji for some hot laps and to see how the massive 20-inch wheels (remember this was a few years back, 20s were still assumed to be rather big) were like when driving seriously.

While they were busy with the 350Z I sneaked the 550 away behind the paddock for a few quick shots. I am a great fan of pretty much everything that Hayashi-san at Garage Saurus does, he is a respected figure in the tuning world and rightly so, as every car that has ever rolled out of his workshop is nothing short of a masterpiece. The Maranello is much the same, the body kit alone is a work of art, so simple yet functional not to mention very exotic thanks to its carbon fiber construction.

Carbon underskirts help give a lower stance to the car’s profile while the rear bumper adds a GT-look courtesy of that mean diffuser.  And how about the rear carbon GT-wing, what better way to inject some JDM style into an Italian exotic. Of course the big spoiler is functional, keeping that big rear end planted on the faster corners of Fuji Speedway.

Under the hood, the 5.4L V12 has been slightly upgraded with custom cone filters, a larger radiator and the addition of a large oil cooler.

These cone filters and intake pipes join the custom exhaust system, which really makes that V12 sing!

Braking has been improved with AP Racing 6-pot calipers and large 2-piece floating discs. The 5-spoke Speedline wheels wear sticky Yokohama Advan A048 semi-slick tires for ultimate grip.

The Voltex wing was angled to its most aggressive setting for the test session.

Here is Hayashi-san with two of his mechanics standing back and admiring the 550 as the pro-driver hired for the day takes her off for a spin.

So much for the A048’s being sticky! The 550 runs a custom OS Giken LSD that was also one of the parts that was being tested on the day. Looks like it did a good job of locking at the right moment.

The Maranello spent the whole day testing and the only thing that needed adjustment were the suspension settings as all the other mechanical additions, like the OS Giken multi-plate clutch and LSD, worked flawlessly.

The driver gets treated to an OMP carbon-Kevlar bucket seat and a leather clad steering wheel of the same brand.

Now, at this point you may probably be thinking that this 550 is very nice and all, but where the hell is the twin-turbo version that Saurus also built!!

Well, originally I was supposed to shoot that car but it ended up being shipped back to its owner in Indonesia before I could immortalize it with my trusty Canon lenses.

It was a real pity but at least I got to see this naturally aspirated version in action at Fuji.

Hayashi-san was kind enough to send me some pictures of the build of the custom engine, which looked something like this when it was done. If you need to drool all over your keyboard now is the time! To toughen up the bottom end OS Giken created custom cylinder liners and forged pistons, ready to take the boost the twin HKS turbines deliver. The result was a motor capable of 800-900 HP, something that required other custom parts like gears of the dry-sump oil pump, a triple plate clutch and LSD, again all taken care of by OS Giken.

These two 550s are the most unique projects Garage Saurus has created, it’s just too bad we never got to see the turbocharged car in action. Imagine that thing around Fuji or Tsukuba with a pro driver like Taniguchi at the wheel!

Garage Saurus

-Dino Dalle Carbonare



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pic 2,3,5 or 11 for desktop please!


JDM it


Thanks Dino!!!! I've been waiting for this one.


im a huge stance fan but its nice to have a little break, good find this feature is sick


Thank you!!! The Ferrari 550/575 Maranello is my favorite modern Italian exotic and when I learned Garage Saurus had built one (I too didn't know there was a non-turbo charged version) I immediately fell in love. Admittedly, I'd change those orange rims, but it's still a very very cool car and I'm glad you've captured more pictures of it. Now perhaps one day there will be a short film feature with these amazing cars? One could only dream...


"Hayashi-san also took his Z33 demo car to Fuji for some hot laps and to see how the massive 20-inch wheels (remember this was a few years back, 20s were still assumed to be rather big) were like when driving seriously."

You make it sound like 20s are not big, and your right, they aren't big... THEYRE HUGE!!!

And by the way, trying to drive seriously on 20s doesn't work, unless of course you want to become a human/car/tree hybrid.

Jokes aside, great article, very cool car, although I think if I show this article to my Ferrari obsessed friend he may try to kill himself (he believes Ferraris should not be modified, not even a new radio).






beautiful car !!

But it would look even better with some nice wheels, BBS LM or something like that, or at least should those 5spokes be white or black imho.


Amazing pics and great write-up as usual Dino! As awesome as the 550 looks, I'm strangely attracted to the first pic of it's interior; must be surreal just to be sitting in there!


Thank you so much! The maranello is one of the most ellegant, sexy and wild racing ferraris of all time & and of my favorites. I saved most of the pics, hoping for a desktop, too!

Now, if you could also do a review on the testarossa! :)


fucking sex


can we have some wallpapers of pictures 1,9 and 11?

sick car,even thoughi`m a ferrari purist !


Hell, this one deserves me joining the bandwagon...



Wow, this is the best day on Speedhunters!


It doesn't mether what car you give to a Japanse guy, he can make something beatyfull out of it.



color combo and body kit would already be enough..

wow yadida yadida? very nice feature.


very cool, i drove the british made version as used on the 2005 Gumball, that was based on the Prodrive LM car and they only made one as my friend was involved in the build. nobody ever bought one and the original was eventually sold on Ebay for £100k. it was a bit shonky with wood and filler used to acheive the body shape. Id like to see more on this japanese version though. very cool.


*picking up jaw*


damn!...not really words to describe how amazing this car is. great picks as always Dino. could we pls. get pic #5 on desktop?


Dino, I think I might know the owner of the twin turbo 550 Maranello. The owner is a good friend with Garage Saurus's owner. And also he had 2 skyline tuned by them too. R32 GTR for drag with 1300bhp and 4 door R34 skyline with RB26DETT @ 700-800bhp-ish. And both cars is in Indonesia


599s are the shit props to hayashi san for taking them to another level the speed lines look real good one there too anybody know if theres some footage of the car in action both na n turbo


now thats a beautiful race car

LoVe th 12th pic....makes u wonder if the car was in FD1


i'm trying to think up word to describe this car but i can't there are none, garage saurus proving yet again they can take it to another level. Definately like too see a feature on the twin turbo version.

@tim: Got any pics of your 2005 550 marenello? I'd love dino or mike to do a feature on that as well. Got to love the 550/575.


Sweet, maybe I get super super lucky and see the car in Jakarta when I go in December.

Highly doubt it though lol!


@efcivicman Hey, yeah got a few pics, i drove it to Le Mans still in full Gumball livery, I don't think the images would do the justice required on it looked like this... the rear wing actually dropped the top speed down to 160mph 'apparently ;)'


and this is the 'other 550LM road car, running a standard engine with straight pipes...


@tim: seen the video but no that good quality got a better source? How did the rear wing drop at 160 loose bolt? Will any cars featured on here feature in road magazine? Got any road magazine stickers i can stick on my kart?


@efcivicman Hey, well here isnt the place to big up my stuff, id love to feature some of the cool stuff on here, but it is all about getting the contacts!


It's brilliant! They have improved everything! And I thought the standard 550 was perfect :)


So frikin awesome....tricked exotics are so badass


@tim; I hope you get a nice collection of contacts soon and wish the magazine the best of luck.

I personally think this has ben one of the features of the year.because the car is so amazing.I'd love to see this and the RWB natty dread 993 go head to head.


It's cool to see some really exciting different projects. this is deffo one of them


3,5,17 wallpapers!!!!!!


This car is perfect! But, oh wait... how would it look in silver? :)


why the hell are you guys raging? this car is sick


Only the wheels need some work.


Isn't one of these cars running twin HKS FCON's?


That is awesome, and a definite garage saurus creation, i really like the look of that.

Now id like to see this drifting!!! that would crazy drifting a ferrari!!


Amazing work on the 550 Rari.