New or old German cars? Which does it for you? It’s a question I always ask myself when going through shows like SEMA or the Tokyo Auto Salon. You are constantly bombarded with the latest sportscars, dressed up with the newest bits and pieces that everyone must have – wheels, spoilers, overfenders, exhausts, suspension, you name it. It’s all paraded in front of your eyes and while it’s cool to see it also gets a little too much. But then, every once in a while you are treated to the unusual – a breath of fresh air that gives you down to a more accessible outlook on things.
The M2-Motoring M3 was just that. There’s no denying how much love the E46 M3 continues to get – and rightly so as it was one of the finest interpretations of the BMW sports coupe formula. But what the owner of this car has achieved is something very special. It will stop any enthusiast dead in their path as it just looks imposing from pretty much any angle. A variety of aero additions from Voltex have been mated to a ton of smoothly executed metal work courtesy of Oink Fabrications – including those mean blistered fenders. Work took care of the wheels and Brembo the brakes.
The racecar-inspired aero culminates at the rear with the bumper-mounted wing stays that support the carbon Voltex wing, all joining up with the diffuser treatment and those DTM-like louvered air outlets behind each of the wheel arches.
The interior is well appointed with Alcantara and carbon covering most of the cabin. The whole JDM feel about the build is further highlighted with the deeply-cupped KEY!S Racing steering wheel, which really emphasises the overall motorsport theme of the build.
A breath of fresh air it definitely was!
That said however, how could one possibly turn down the lure of a car like the Vörsteiner M4? The reason this F82 was generating so much interest is that it took a different route to the whole widebody look, doing away with the bolted-on overfenders that Liberty Walk has released and going for a more OEM-like look.
The front widening is definitely pretty aggressive, but it’s so well integrated to the overall shape of the wheel arch that it almost tricks the eye. The same, however, cannot be said for the rear.
Again, it depends what angle you view the car from, and dead-center from the back, the girth, while noticeable, doesn’t really stick out much.
Move off center and that changes! This thing’s rear end is seriously wide – a 7-inch boost over factory to be precise. What makes the effect more obvious is the fact that the widening doesn’t fade out into the doors, but instead ends abruptly at their openings.
The best part of the car for me at least was the extended trunk lip. It gave a kind of E46 CSL feel to the M-Car, something I criticised the M3 I drove last month for not having.
Next up is another BMW, this time a 5 Series E61 wagon that has followed suit with the current world trend for widening fenders. But the reason I had to show it, is that it steers away from the norm and exhibits a very unique flavour starting out with that F8X M3/M4-styled lower section to the front bumper.
That’s followed up with custom fabricated blistered fenders – all in metal – blending into an emphasised lower skirt section. If you’re sharp-eyed you will also notice an M3-style bonnet ‘power’ bulge, as well as louvers on each side to help rid hot air from the engine bay.
The car sits on air suspension controlled by an AccuAir management system, which allows the big German wagon to look its best when dropped right to the ground. VIP Modular wheels complete the package.
These guys took their time to fade that rear widening right onto the rear doors, resulting in a more progressive feel.
The nicest touch are the openings that have been cut out and meshed right behind each of the fenders, making it all look even more aggressive from the rear.Racecars For The Street
Nakai-san has done great things with his RWB Porsches in Japan and around the world, but it looks like there is another new contender when it comes to widening 911s: Fastes.
These guys teamed up with 1048 Style from Osaka to develop their own wide body kit for the 997, and the idea behind it is pretty cool. The owner of Fastes is a GT300 driver in Japan who’s piloted a 911 RSR in this year’s championship, and he wanted to bring the feel of the racecar into a kit that was adapted for road use. That’s how this car was born.
Under the fender flares are 3-piece Work Meister M1s finished off with black painted centers mated to black anodized outer lips.
The idea to use a big GT wing was scrapped in favour of a more subtle RS-type spoiler, which is held up by a pair of stays that are integrated into the vented engine cover.
Seeing Nakai-san doesn’t really do – or should I say, has yet to put his touch on more modern Porsches – this Fastes kit might satisfy 997 owners wanting their cars to stand out from the norm.
Okay, you guys must be really angry with me right now. Since our 2014 SEMA Show coverage began, all I’ve been doing is posting pictures of cars running overfenders. But trust me – it’s what SEMA this year was all about. Japan has led the way, and the rest have followed, but along the way there have been some pretty cool and interesting interpretations – like this Audi S4 from Enlaes, which was sporting the company’s new EB8X aero kit.
What actually stopped me and made me take special attention was the fit and finish of the all-carbon kit. It looked more OEM than something you might find in the aftermarket.
But it was mainly the combination of the carbon fiber fender flares matched to a set of RAYS Volk Racing ZE40s that really set it off. And you know me, I have a soft spot for Japanese wheels on German cars!
There’s no denying that this is one of the freshest expressions of this popular style.
But it all brings me back to the same question I came to while looking at the Japanese cars that were present at the show. What will the next big thing be? Will we see a return to narrow bodies? Have we gone too far with all of this? What other ways are there to make cars and the products they’re modified with with stand out as much as possible? While it’s the future that ultimately holds the answer to that question, something tells me that this widebody thing isn’t quite done with yet…
What do you all think?
Dino Dalle Carbonare