Car Spotlight>>1jz Drag Celica

Here's another one of the many great finds from this year's Toyotafest.

The car you see here is what you get when you combine one of Toyota's most classic designs with one of its most potent engine for an awesome Frankenstein drag machine.

Obviously it took a lot of work to shoehorn a 1JZGTE into the bay of the RA21 Celica. You can see that the rear of the motor is well into the stock firewall. The cut up hood must be a good for a little weight savings as well!

As if the power from a stock 1JZ wouldn't be enough, the builder saw fit to swap out the twin turbos for a giant 72mm single snail.

It's clear this car was built for some serious quarter mile duty. A glance into the cockpit reveals a full roll cage and a B&M shift lever which is hooked to a GM Turbo350 automatic.

It has a pretty mean profile from the rear with those big meats tucked in the fenders. Underneath you'll find a custom four-link rear suspension under there with a heavy duty pickup truck rear end. I'd assume that a paintjob is in the works, but even in primer the car doesn't look all that bad.

If there's one word that comes to mind when I imagine this thing spooling up and launching down the dragstrip, it's "scary".

-Mike Garrett



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Im not too sure about the wheel choice but the height is spot on.

Im loving that hood and a dark candy grey would suit this car perfectly as it would complement the immaculate silver JZ


What kind of numbers do this thing produce?

Sick ride!


Awesome !


Googled on the tranny model and found that it's just an old stock automatic.

Stock cars usually accelerate faster with a manual than with an auto, right?

So why is it that (some) drag racers use these old production automatics?

How much are they modified to be suitable for drag?



one word........ AWESOME


this looks awsome.. even with the eclectic paint job! - love that engine bay too.


automatics use torque convertors which can be tuned to transfer full power at higher rpms......thus you dont have to do the clutch dump to take off.....then the automatic will shift very quickly when you tell it to and it's impossible to misshift.

google it


i think this its finished badass paint scheme its been this primer style for a little while now. makes american muscle cars look tame.


I almost thought that was a custom paint scheme going on. crazy set-up this for real.


Because a 1jz stock is soooo powerful, give me a break.


I would daily drive that thing...what kind of numbers is it putting down?


Best thing about that car is the Momo Race steering wheel.


Bunta - The wheels look like Welds, and are made for drag racing, in other words form over function.

X-willer - While this does have a turbo 350 behind it, and while alot of production vehicles came with a turbo 350, it does not take to many mods to make them fully drag ready. A proper shift kit will make it shift by selection like a manual, but be more consistent in the 1/4 mile. A Transmission break will allow his to simply hold the throttle where it needs to be while sitting at the tree, and on the release of a button be on his way. No worries about having to slip the clutch just right. I doubt this car is built or would be legal for any set drag racing class, so it most likely runs Bracket Racing, so consistency is the name of the game.


desktop on this one?


car is owned by a guy named car up in sacramento. alota hard time and work has gone into this thing. you guys dont even see maybe half the details hes put into this thing. such as how mike says that the engine is put back into the stock firewall... thats awhole new firewall he made =) if you guys wana see more about this car join and look up the project thread for Cary's 1jzgte RA21


Thanks for the write up guys. Yes its my car. The paint is just in progress so thats not the final color it should be a gloss Black when all is said and done. The tranny though is far from stock it is a fully built TH350 tranny with a 5500 rpm stall converter with a Full manual valve body and a transbrake. So yes get to the line push the button and floor it wait till 5500 and let go on the green. Much faster shifting and very consitant. The wheels I have had since the early 90s and they are Centerline ProStreet wheels. And this is more of a street car than a race car. Though I will bracket race it some. The car is not tuned with the new setup so no power numbers yet. I run a AEM2 so it needs some dyno time. I did drive the car 15 miles to the show from a local shop in town though. Rolling the 405 and the 110.


this car is at all the shows but doesnt race....trailer queen...have not seen it at irwindale or fontana racing in any class..or even for fun...i hope he going to race it sooner or later...looks pretty but what are the numbers? rwhp 1/4 mile times...


Odd this might turn into a double post but Zulu posted after me by a couple of hours and his is there and mine is not so here goes again.

I am the owner of this Car. I built it to be a street car first and a track car second. Its very drivable and good mannered on the road. I drove it 15 miles to the show from a local shop down the 110 and the 405. The engine has not been tuned with the new setup since it was running for a day or so before the show and I just flat ran out of time. I had it tuned so as to not knock birds out of the sky to get to the show thats it so far. The Hood is a show hood only I got tired of opening and closing the hood at the shows. The wheels have been around since I bought them in the early 90s and are Centerline ProStreet 15z12s in the rear. The tranny is fully built and has a 5500rpm stall plus a full manual Valve body and a trans brake. So its as stated pull up push the button floor it let off the button at 5500 rpm and hang on. Zulu is right there is so much involved in the fabrication of this car I would not even know where to begin. The detail that you cant see in these pictures or even in person is just huge. Intake, master cylinder, The Lack of visable wiring which is all new done by Wiredworx!! The Center console blended from 2 to look like one but stretch the extra 12 inches, The front crossmember fabricated from 1.25 tubing, 3/4 chassis and sheetmetal, 4 link, narrowed rearend, etc etc. All done in my Garage by me with lots of help from all of my Friends. Thanks for the write up and come see us at 1stGenCelica

Cary Miller


The car is ok it looks good and I like it but i like my son. I have never see the car in the track. Out all the Celica in the show "TORC" Like my son Jesse Blue 84 GTS JZGTE He did all the work not bad for a 21 year old and I know what the car can do.



Really? I dont live down there its has been to the track 400 north of you where is your car I never see it here? I have been to 3 shows in 2 years, all the shows? I have several hundred miles on it since built. it ran 122 with a slow 2.4 60ft even and on the rev limiter for the last 300 ft on its trial see if it goes straight pass with the 60mm and stock ecu 2 years ago. The car has been apart for the last 16 months changing tons of stuff in the drive train the new combo has not been tuned for power but is safe to drive out of boost thats it. Man relax a little bit lifes to short to be so angry. Some day I will come down and run it down here. Trust me its not a trailer queen by any stretch. I did trailer it down the 400 miles for the show but thats because I5 sucks!!!!


i have to say, your "show hood only" and "paint job in the works" are really some of the unintended better details of this car...maybe i'm just into the current trend of rat-rod inspired cars, but painting it shiny black like you say and putting a full hood on it in my opinion would turn this spectacular and original work of art into just another sick pro streeter.


this thing is sweet!!!!


So, how powerful is this 1JZ?