There are very few shops like RE-Amemiya in Japan. On top of their activity as tuners, catering to everything the rotor-head may require, they have also proven themselves in the competitive racing world with their successful Super GT team, D1 team and at events like the Hot Version organized Touge Battle series. Amemiya-san understands what a performance car needs to offer the driver to both satisfy and be competitive, but he also gives great importance to looks having created, thanks to his great ingenuity, a stunning and diversified range of full body conversions for the RX-7.
But strangely enough it isn’t an RX-7 we are here to see today at the Tokyo branch of RE-Amemiya.
Before we take a closer look at what has to be one the most unique cars Amemya-san has ever built, I thought I’d be interesting to wonder around the workshop to check out what was going on.
The Tokyo branch is where project cars are developed and put together as well as where Amemiya-san creates his custom body parts. A customer’s FC was in for some random maintenance, a very clean car that has obviously been cared for very well.
Amemiya-san had this 4-story building built back in the early nineties, the small shop and office being situated on the second floor on top of the workshop. The remaining two floors are filled up with mini Tokyo-style apartments. The building bares his name, Amemiya Biru or “Amemiya Building.”
Yet to be completed projects litter the exterior of the building…
…but it’s the inside that houses the interesting stuff. First seen at this year’s Tokyo Auto Salon this new D1 Grand Prix RX-8 will be Suenaga’s new car for 2010, replacing the FD from mid-season onwards.
It’s quite the beast running a highly modified 13B mated to a Hewland sequential gearbox out of their GT300 Super GT race car. M7 Japan will be the main sponsors for the RE-Amemiya team this year.
An FD receiving a thorough check up by one of the mechanics.
I spotted this stack of 20B housings lying in a dark corner of the machine shop. You have got to love the modular layout of these engines, you could potentially create a 6 or 8 rotor engine if you wanted to, although I doubt anyone could come up with an eccentric shaft strong enough to handle the stresses a long configuration like that would develop. Still, it’s a cool idea!
I still regret not grabbing one of these housings lying in the trash outside! It would make a cool…ehm…well I haven’t thought what exactly but it’s definitely worth taking home! Next time…
But lets get back to the car that grabbed the first prize in the Tuning Car category at this year’s Tokyo Auto Salon, the rotary powered Westfield. This is probably one of the best ideas Amemiya-san has ever come up with, taking an extremely light car and fitting it with probably one of the lightest and simplest engines ever to be created. The project has been given a very Japanese feel, starting with its name Furin Kazan, a famous war slogan used by Takeda Shingen, one of the most notorious daimyo of feudal Japan. The four characters in Furin Kazan stand for wind, woods, fire and mountain meaning the soldiers had to be swift like the wind, quiet like the forest, fierce as fire and immovable as a mountain. This obviously explains the graphics on the body, which from this front view depict Takeda Shingen in full war attire.
The four characters are incorporated into the logo on the side of car.
Like all of Amemiya’s cars looks are combined with performance so every area of the car has been addressed starting with the special adjustable Quantum RS dampers joined by 6 kg/mm Hyperco springs up front and 4.5 kg/mm Swift springs for the rear. The stock wishbones were cleaned up and painted.
The stock front brakes are upgraded with 4-pot Brembo calipers from a Porsche 996 mated to 294 mm 2-piece floating discs. Project µ HC pads are fitted at each corner. Wheels are 16-inch Enkei Sport ES- Tarmac, 7J wide at the front and 8J at the rear.
The Furin Kazan project is still not completed, Amemiya wants to make sure every detail is taken care of before the car is tested and set-up. Removing the lightweight custom hood however reveals the heart of the Westfied, which pretty much looks well and truly finished. Everything is so well organized and neatly laid out from the battery and fuse box to the fueling and cooling systems.
The naturally aspirated peripherally ported 13B should be good for at least 250 HP which, with its linear and almost torqueless power delivery, would make the perfect motor to power a lightweight car like this Westfield. The idea is to create a very manageable and balanced car, easy to drive on the limit without any nasty surprises. A Mazda close-ratio gearbox joins the engine as well as a single plate Ogura racing clutch. The driveline modifications are completed with an RE-Amemiya Super Racing LSD, which will make full use of the massive grip the Yokohama Advan A050 tires offer.
The attention to detail is stunning. The custom fuel system feeds the 440 cc/min injectors while the Motec M2R ECU takes care of engine management.
The exterior screams RE-Amemiya from every angle, almost all of the body panels having been custom designed and built. The covered rear wheels and integrated rear spoiler are very JDM! Check out the old-style Japanese city skyline stenciled into the lower part of the rear end. Like at the front, the lights are custom made by RE-Amemiya.
Once again the Furin Kazan logo, this time combined with a samurai sword.
The front spoiler has been covered with carbon-like film, giving the impression of real dry carbon.
The JDM feel continues in the tight interior with a pair of Bride Low Max bucket seats that just barely manage to squeeze inside.
The Sabelt belts are braced onto the chassis and from this angle you can also get a nice view of the custom titanium exhaust.
Loved how the gear lever has been extended to come right up next to the steering wheel. The dash has been rebuilt with lightweight dry carbon…
…and fitted with M7 Japan SMD meters displaying, from left to right, water temperature, oil pressure and oil temperature.
The profile of the car is like no other Westfield, the side outlet there to cool the GReddy 22-row oil cooler and the rear of the car trying to smooth air flow over the rear wheels and create some downforce with that massive wing. I can’t wait to see this car get tested by Tsuchiya in a Hot Version DVD! There is a lot of potential for sure, but only a test around Tsukuba or at the Gunsai Touge course will reveal just how fast the Furin Kazen will be!
-Dino Dalle Carbonare