I hear it all the time. Yes I’d love for you to shoot my car, could you wait until I finish up and fit so and so parts. We all do it, me included which is also why I’ve never really properly shot my own car. But as far as perpetual-projects go, nothing and nobody could ever touch Under Suzuki and his Scorch Racing S15. This is the epitome of a project car, but unlike most of us out there that spend a little bit of free time now and again with our respective pride and joy, Suzuki devotes ALL of his spare time to his car and when needed makes extra time to get stuff finished. This is what happens when you build a car for a true purpose; obsession unavoidably sets in. Only then would you come close to reaching the level Suzuki now stands at with his car.
Since we looked at his Silvia years ago you will notice the drastic change the car has undergone. By bringing in Andrew Brilliant as a consultant Suzuki gained the necessary advice to start to seriously address the car from an aerodynamic point of view. As Andrew says “…balance is important. Too much rear downforce you understeer out of high speed corners and too much front downforce you oversteer. With a production car, the rear downforce is where you can adjust because it’s a wing. So the progression for his car last year began with some advise on how to increase front end downforce.”
“We ended up maxing out the wing so came up with an all new design with more headroom and less drag.” You can sew the new adjustable wing above.
To boost front end downforce a lot of work went into creating a more thought out path for the air hitting the S15, not only around the side of the bumper and over the canards but also the air travelling into the engine bay, through the radiator and intercooler…
…and up, out through the louvered hood. As Andrew told me, what makes Suzuki-san stand out is that he has dedicated himself to learning the black art of aerodynamics through advice and lots of experimentation. Suzuki didn’t study aero design, he didn’t work in a pro race team, but continues to take small steps learning along the way. That’s why his car is always changing and now that he has become quite the master at making his own carbon fiber body panels, it does give him lots of scope to harness all this advice and experiment continuously.
Up front the front fenders are an area he has really changed, from the actual design, width and shape to the portion of the chassis aft of the wheels that he just hacked away at (you will see what I mean further down in some of the interior shots) “…from here he wants to continue growing the front downforce…” and that is precisely what he is working on at the moment. Don’t think for a second that now that he has the record at Tsukuba he is going to stop trying. Quite the contrary, he knows that his car still has a ton of potential left in it and will see it out until the end…whenever that will be!
For his 52-sec lap attack, Suzuki even got rid of the Craft Square mirrors as he was the only guy out on track, so no need to check behind the car!
As you move further rearward you an see how the carbon treatment extends to the doors(these have actually been on the car for a while), side rear “glass…”
…the rear window and of course those huge overfenders we first saw when he was shipping his car to Australia for last year’s WTAC. Everything is there to either improve or smooth flow over the car and in the process use that air to create more downforce, less lift…and whatever else these crazy aero guys are thinking!
Here is a look into the elongated extractor sections that wrap around the rear of the car. If they have stayed on the car until now it probably means Suzuki-san has deemed them functional. That’s how aero experimentation is pretty much approached on this car!
This view of the rear end gives a better look at the sheer dimensions of the rear wing Andrew designed, something that will be providing as much rear downforce as Suzuki will need for the foreseeable future.
This car defines functionality in ever way, nothing is there without reason. And if you are wondering if Suzuki-san runs an underfloor, the answer is no. Maybe it will be something he will start working on this year, but the fact that he has achieved what he has without the use of one further adds to car’s capabilities.
On to the engine. This part has been worked on with close assistance and advice from Takemura-san at Scorch and the basis remains similar to when we saw it before, except it has been rebuilt after the failure it had back in 2011. The 2.2L Brian Crower stroker is joined by a…
…reworked head from NAPREC boasting ported and polished intake and exhaust tracts and special “high-response” valve gear . Of course the head is off an SR20VE so has variable valve timing allowing for a broad spread of torque.
One of the main differences throughout last year was the adoption of a GCG turbo which replaces the previous KKK/Blitz K27 unit. The larger GTX3582R allows for better response and higher flow which has helped bump the power of the SR up to 800 HP. The turbo has been pretty much pushed to its limit, ran at 2.5 bar when Suzuki goes for serious time attack laps. He, along with Takemura-san, are looking to step it up to a Borg Warner EFR turbo to get more power, so 2013 will see quite a few changes under the hood too.
A horizontally mounted Blitz intercooler takes full advantage of the air the air dam and carbon shrouding directs through its core…
…before passing on the compressed intake charge to Hypertune throttle and plenum.
Specially set up and valved Ennepetal/Bilstein dampers are what Suzuki-san runs…
…with the car having received quite an evident brake upgrade. The older Brembo Racing forged calipers it was running have been replaced with these all-new items, boasting better construction…
…lighter weight and better performance.
Wheels are courtesy of Rays Engineering, a nice and light set of Volk Racing 10.5Jx18″ RE30 Club Sport wrapped in the stickiest Advan A050 rubber available. As most time attack cars out there, Suzuki’s S15 is running the new 295/30R18 size all round.
Much like everything else the interior oozes functionality; the chipped paint on the cage’s crossbars and wear and tear of the Recaro seat hints that this car gets used, and often.
The suede-trimmed Nardi steering wheel has a little trigger button to actuate an overboost function…
…allowing the Blitz SBC-iD boost controller to unleash full boost on the GCG turbo.
Suzuki keeps this little Nobi-Nobita character from Doraemon on top of his Racepak IQ3 dash/data logger as a good luck charm.
Since I last properly shot the car the interior has been cleaned up a lot, partly thanks to the carbon fiber dashboard…
…which hides all of the wiring and electronics. Suzuki has recently gotten rid of the HKS F-Con V Pro ECU and moved on to a Motec unit which will not only allow him a ton more scope for more refined tuning but give him the option to run some sort of traction control in the first two gears to help him shoot out of Tsukuba’s tightest corners more efficiently.
The whole interior has been completely gutted out, so one peek through the doors and you can see right through to the trunk area where the surge tank is located. You can also see the subframe that was fabricated to hold up the massive rear wing and transmit all that downforce onto the chassis.
The SR20 has been dry sumped and the tall oil tank feeding the pumps has been located inside on the passenger side for best weight distribution.
I mentioned that the sides of the chassis right behind the front wheels had been hacked up to allow better airflow. This is what it looks like from the interior.
The whole area is of course strengthened up and gusseted to the roll cage to guarantee enough stiffness, but it’s a good example of the extent Suzuki-san is prepared to go during his “experiments.”
His year looks pretty busy; he has two more Battle Evome sessions to participate in and then lots of work to get the car upgraded and set up for the 2013 WTAC, which has been moved to the 18th and 19th of October. I think from now on I will be shooting this S15 at the end of each year, such is the advancement of upgrades, alterations and improvements that Suzuki and his team keep applying.
Thanks to Suzuki-san for sticking around at Tsukuba for a couple of hours to allow me to shoot his car and Andrew Brilliant for the comments about the car’s aero.
Max Power: 800 HP
Max Torque: 736NM (542 lb/ft)
Max Boost: 2.5 kg/cm2
Best time Tsukuba: 52”649 sec
Engine: Brian Crower 2.2L stroker kit, Nismo bearings all round, dry-sump lubrification, P12 Primera crank pulley, custom aluminium pulley for water pump, alternator & power steering pump, low-mount bracket for power steering pump, Denso lightweight alternator, SR20VE variable valve timing head, P12 Primera stock cams IN 228º~278º 12 mm lift, EX 244º~280º 11.15 mm lift, NAPRED high response head with: strengthened double valve springs, sodium filled EX valves, bronze valve guides, race cut valve seats, ported and polished head, Tomei t=1.8 mm metal head gasket ø 87 mm, Tomei head bolts, GCG Garret GTX3582R turbocharger, Turbosmart 40 mm comp gate external wastegate, custom ø 90 mm stainless steel front pipe, custom ø 90 mm exhaust system, custom intake pipe and Blitz mesh filter, custom intercooler piping, Blitz Type-J intercooler, Turbosmart Race Port BOV, Hypertune intake plenum & throttle body, Hypertune fuel delivery pipe, Blitz 1000 cc/min injectors x4, Blitz Type-D oil cooler, Tabata triple core racing radiator, Custom twin electrical fan set-up, NGK Racing Plugs #9, Odyssey 925 dry-cell battery, HKS F Con V-Pro ECU
Transmission: ORC triple plate clutch, ORC lightweight flywheel, Hollinger H6S 6-speed sequential transmission, Nismo GT-Pro differential (4.08 final)
Suspension & Brakes: Ennepetal/Bilstein adjustable suspension, Hyperco springs 12 kg/mm front, 10 kg/mm rear, pillow ball arms, solid/welded members, Brembo Racing 4-pot front calipers, ø 340 mm 2-piece Garland slotted disc, 2-pot Brembo rear calipers & slotted discs, Endless Type-R brake pads
Wheels & Tyres: Rays Engineering Volk Racing RE30CS 10.5JJx18”, Yokohama Advan A050 295/35/18 GS compound
Exterior: custom carbon bumper, custom carbon canards, custom headlight dummies, custom carbon vented hood, custom carbon fenders, custom carbon doors, custom carbon rear overfenders, T&E Vertex dry carbon roof, custom carbon side & rear glass covers, custom carbon trunk, Craft Square carbon mirrors, custom designed adjustable rear wing
Interior & Chassis: 14-point ø 40 mm cromoly racing roll cage, spot welded chassis, Recaro SP-G bucket seat, Nardi racing steering wheel, Racepak IQ3 data logger dash unit, Blitz boost controller, Lap-Shot LP-03 lap timer, oil reservoir catch tank
-Dino Dalle Carbonare
Despite the craziness of the modification done. I love the way the car is 'personalised' through the Nobita on dash. All the best Suzuki-san! Ohya. So traction control is allowed in time attack racing? I thought it wasn't.
Can anybody explain the aerodynamic benefit of cutting away the rear of the front wheel arches? Is it to reduce pressure inside the wheel well?
These cars are getting ridiculously fast. I wonder where the absolute limit for a car is!
Wow great car and article. I wonder what is his ultimate goal. 48, 46 , or sub 45 if possible. But then again anything is possible with as much dedication this guy has. Is he married because kids and a wife will only slow him down.lol jk.
Best of luck to him. I do remember this car years ago, and has changed dramatically!!! The motec swap was a much needed exchange (not that the aero wasnt either). Interested to see the results in the near future.
best of luck to him this 2013, although I don't think he needs it. He puts in a lot of work and dedication to his vehicle. I love how this car has progressed over the years. I think it's a shining example that with some smart engineering you can make anything fast. I remember the days when people only thought built GT-R's, NSX's, RX-7's, and carbon EVO's could be the time attack champs.
Brad_S Haha no it isn't. It's a nickname that came from when he started the whole time attack thing with his S15. He used to get a lot of understeer and people started calling him "under" Suzuki because of it. These days however, understeer is something he does not get lol
Amazing car, love the change from homegrown innovations (I remember seeing this car in a magazine when he was using extensions on the bottom of the stock front fenders to run wider tires) to the true beast this thing has turned into. Cracks me up that the stock pedals are still in use :)
wow! its crazy to see how much this car has changed in 2 years!!!
give another 2 years and i think another feature will be required!
If he takes all those stickers off I'm sure there's some wieght saving to be had there! It's nice to see this rocket ship up close! Nice post!
It has been said many times that Daijiro Yoshihara's car was the most developed s-chassis in the world. Now we all know this is not true :D
awesome feature guys! much respect to Under Suzuki and his team. well, theres only 2 of them on his team! lol! also, huge congrats again to my good friend Andrew Brilliant for being part of Suzuki-san's success by using his Aero design. and this S15 is probably my only favorite Nissan (coz Im a Toyota and Mitsubishi guy) lol! all the fastest Time Attack cars in the world are supported by AMB AERO!!
KBR Yeah it's just him and a bunch of friends that help out moving things around lol True inspiration
thank you for the nice feature, this is such an inspiring car.
do you know if he already had the new traction control system set up when he recorded the 52.6 lap?
any news on the prostock r34? i mean suzuki already smashed their target times but i still see that car as a serious contender.
No he didn't, I shot the car straight after that so still on the F-Con
The Pro Stock R34 is up for sale, still never been used!
This man is quite simply an inspiration. I was glad to see that he had gotten the lap record after reading about him, and now seeing more of the level of dedication he has only makes it all the better.
It'll be cool to see what Suzuki-san can manage with an underfloor- I would have thought that's the first place he and Andrew Brilliant would have been looking for front downforce improvement, so maybe there are some difficulties with installing the floor that aren't instantly obvious? (~4inch exhaust maybe?!)
But anyway, given the dedication he shows in chasing performance it so far it can't be far away! Well done on progress so far Suzuki-san.
JonathanW I think it was probably more fun to achieve these results without the floor...
speedhunters_dino I'm not sure fun has much to do with it really does it? But definitely Suzuki-san has had plenty to keep busy with before thinking of a flat floor, and from the look of how willing he is to get out the angle grinder and give something a punt, he's probably not about to run out of tuning possibilities/ideas either!
JonathanW there isnt much in the way of getting flat floors onto cars, especially with oval piping getting cheaper. its just getting them on at the correct height and angles that causes issues. Flat underbody panels are incredibly influenced by the cars pitch and roll under loads. there is somewhere up in the car for the air to "go" when the car leans for a turn or dives under braking. with a flat floor, the air pressure difference of either side of the car creates ill effects. Flat floors and giant wings also totally change how normal production cars suspensions work. what settings gripped without aerodynamic aids will probably handle like shit as soon as the car hits any worthwhile speeds. Flat floors are also incredibly susceptible to foreign object damage, especially big ass sheets of CF.
weasel yeah you can see the squat under acceleration (800bhp and a relatively high c of g compared to formula / prototypes will do that I guess) would be messing with the aero a lot, and it'd take a lot of re-tuning of other parts of the car, but would definitely be a benefit I think. The main flat sections can be made of something tougher- no reason that aluminium sheet or alloy skinned composite can't be used, or kevlar for leading edge components. I'm sure being a resourceful chap Suzuki-san could figure it out!
JonathanW weasel I am sure he will come up with something that works, but as you say the floor will require the whole suspension to be rethought. You would be surprised how many kg of downforce some of these time attack car generate at speed. Spring rates need to be carefully chosen
You're right, that rear wing and front downforce to balance must create some huge loads!
By the way, In the photo 5th from bottom showing the fuel swirl pot - is that sunlight reflecting off an alloy fuel tank, or is that the sunlit tarmac visible where the floor has been cut out?
I always love to see the evolution of this car. And how he chips away at every tenth of a second. Love it.
This is really dedication. He works on the car, spends almost all his free time on it, DRIVES it and gets the lap record ! Imagine if Nob was behind the wheel ... Well known japanese tuners, when will you react to this ?
tipiak That would be fun to see...wonder if he would actually be quicker? Let's take bets! haha
That S15 is sick!!!!!!!!! I love the aerodynamics design of the Silvia! So much carbon! Nom Nom
Really awesome car, this guy's on a mission! I noticed the doors still retail the inner skin; time to gut the crap out of the doors.
I wish him luck for the rest of the season!
what a boss, seriously. i know pedants will say HUR HE IS NOT AN ONE MAN TEAM BECAUSE HE HAS HELP but that's different from some rich dentist commissioning amemiya to build him an RX7 or whatever else
ComJive He's getting help from Takemura san, whom offers him a hand and a place to work on his car, and store it.
The dentist you're talking about ran the Cyber EVO :) and he didn't get help from Amemiya san. I think you are confusing Aoki san from Garage Revolution which ran the RE Amemiya full dry body kit (for the GT300).
JDMized i wasn't talking about a real dentist, just the stereotype of "rich man gets everyone else to build him car, somehow gets credit" into which under suzuki does not fall
I remember he a few years ago when he was started to featured on the web that he was still running the stock silver s15 fenders that were extended and he still had a front splitter made out of wood. Now it is really a monster. Thats what happens when the competition gets caught sleeping. HKS set the bar really high with their time attack monsters starting from their Track Attack Altezza to the TRB-02 then to the CT230R. Also we had the Cyber Evo. For a privateer to have determination to beat all those by building his own car at the same time driving it is just pure inspirational. Best of luck to Suzuki-san and his future endeavors with the car! I hope other tuners and parts manufacturers will also step it up this year!
has he gone back to the 2.2, from what i remember he was running a 2.3or4 setup for more mid range a few aero generations ago.
777 Indeed he has, fixed now after asking him to clear it up. It's so damn hard to stay up to date on this car LOL
Just like the hole in the front fenders hat he have cut for Battle Evome.