Crunch Time: One Week Till SEMA

The countdown is on! With less than seven days to go before the 2016 SEMA Show opens its doors to the automotive industry, it’s crunch time for those gearing up to unveil new builds at the Las Vegas Convention Center. All around the country right now, months of planning and hard work is coming to an end (hopefully), and in just a week’s time we’ll get to see the results of a whole lot of blood, sweat and tears.

SEMA brings out the best of the best, and during the lead up to this year’s event we’ve been privy to a number of high-profile cars that will making their debuts in Vegas. One of those is Chasing Js’ Datsun 260Z .

Louis_Yio_2016_Speedhunters_260Z_SEMA_Teaser_02

Chasing Js is no stranger to the ‘SEMA crunch’, and we’re pretty sure you’ll remember their Hakotora Datsun Sunny Pickup revealed at last year’s show. Perfectly marrying vintage and modern, the Hakosuka-faced, SR20DET-powered and TE37V-equipped truck ranked as one of our SEMA 2015 favorites.

For 2016, Chasing Js’ Dominic Le and John Esteban have teamed up for another SEMA build, but this time around it’s a Z car for their mutual friend Johnny H, which will take pride of place in the Toyo Tires booth.

As you can see from the render above, the S30 260Z is taking on a shakotan meets period race car look, complete with large flares, millimeter-perfect wheel and tire fitment, and a classic JPS-inspired color scheme and livery.

Given that the Z will be unveiled at SEMA we can’t reveal too much right now, but the guys were happy for us to share a few details with you when we dropped around for a look late last week.

Louis_Yio_2016_Speedhunters_260Z_SEMA_Teaser_14

The Datsun’s transformation has consumed untold hours over the last two and a half months, and pretty much every weeknight and weekend day has been spent in John’s driveway bringing the vision to life. That’s because both he and Dominic have full-time day jobs, so this is a very much a part-time build.

As you’ll already be able to tell, the Z’s running a G-nose conversion, but those flares you see are authentic Datsun works items. Because details matter.

Louis_Yio_2016_Speedhunters_260Z_SEMA_Teaser_13

Of course, wider fenders mean more room for wider wheels and tires, and the guys are taking full advantage of the opportunity in front of them with a custom set of Work Meister M1s wrapped in beefy Toyo Proxes T1 Sport rubber. The dish, the stretch – perfection.

Louis_Yio_2016_Speedhunters_260Z_SEMA_Teaser_17

Peeking into the engine bay reveals that performance has definitely not been left out of the equation. Yes eagle-eyed readers, that is a Toyota 2JZ-GTE with a big single turbo! The conversion also includes a host of parts from Nuke Performance and some accessories from our friends at CSF.

As the SEMA deadline looms closer, Dominic and John are pulling out all the stops to get the car ready for its Vegas reveal – a scene that’s being repeated all over the US right now. Given what we’ve seen of this build so far we can’t wait till it’s finished, and you can bet we’ll be bringing you a full feature on the Datsun as soon as possible.

Until then, check out Toyo Tires’ Road To SEMA Episode II teaser above for more behind-the-scenes action from the creation of this epic Z.

The Speedhunters

Photos by Louis Yio
Instagram: lusciousy
louis@speedhunters.com

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39 comments

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1

From following them on Insta, its more like they have 2 full time jobs. Not just a full time and part time job.

2

Loving everything except the mentally-handicapped stretch tires.

-Alex

3

Oh if only it were SR or RB powered

4

I need a set of those flares on my s30 badly

5

Great photos Louis. Looking forward to seeing this car next week. Respect to the the home built vibes, too.

6

This would make a GREAT model kit.

7

JohnTruitt JohnTruitt

Why is that? 

2JZ makes so much more sense on so many more facets. With an RB or SR, the exhaust routing is way more inconvenient and parts require shipping just to name a couple.

Is there some reason otherwise then the same company makes the engine?

8

370 Hemi Agreed.

9

Would look best with a period correct set of wheels.

10

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11

Stunning build

12

revivaldnb I might be a bit biased but Techno Racing (Hayashi Racing) just did a limited repro run of the classic Phantom wheel which you could get up to 12J in.. That would've been stunning..

13

While there is simply no denying the ease and practicality of making power with a 2J, personally I would prefer an RB or even a VQ swap, simply because there is something to be said for heritage with restomods like these.
Forsberg will have his RB-swapped 280Z at the K&N; booth, definitely looking forward to seeing the Carbon Signal Moonbeam kit, CPC carbon/billet plenum and OCD Works goodies.

14

revivaldnb  agreed and in 15"

15

Loved the Hakotora last year... right up until it featured on Jay Leno's Garage and the tyres rubbed the fenders over every pebble in the road. Hopefully this one is being put together to actually work well as well as just looking good.

16

To correct myself (just gone back to it) it was the driveshaft rubbing. But the point still stands...

17

Turbology I'm really looking forward to the CS Moonbeam kit. I was honestly looking to buy the kit as well. But then it came with a $3600 price tag with shipping

18

It's always funny to see car enthusiasts arguing over wheel and tire choice... It's like arguing about who's hotter - Jessica Alba vs. Scarlett Johanssen... or Canon vs. Nikon... or Rocky Road vs. Chocolate Malted Crunch... Whatever floats yer boat, man...

19

seattlejester JohnTruitt Literally just for the purpose of heritage

20

What an idiot. Builds a beautiful Datsun/Nissan, drops a 2JZ in it. Don't get me wrong, great car, great engine, but not together. Plenty of great power producing Nissan engines.

21

seattlejester JohnTruitt No it doesn't. They put all that time, money and energy into the build only to go with a 2JZ because its easier? that makes no sense. Keep it Datsun/Nissan. Wouldn't be hard at all to drop an RB26 into it. Much better choice.

22

Why? What's wrong with putting a 2jz in it. Is it simply because of a brand name.

23

aaaaaaand the purests scream bloody murder with the thought of a 2JZ being shoved in an old school Datsun Z..... Personally I would have gone with an RB, but hey it aint my car so who cares.

Honestly just really looking forward to see how this thing looks, JPS inspired colour scheme!! 10 out of 10 already in my book!

and seriously, how much negative offset on those wheels????? sick...

24

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25

TurboHippie I've seen enough 240z swaps to the point where I think the purists have just given up with that car. But if someone swapped the engine out of a Hakosuka or Kenmeri, well... better gear up for an all out war.

26

antonyingram I still think that car is really cool. It garnered so much attention at the show and it was a 100% original idea.

27

Thommo Why? If they're both great, why not? Please explain.

28

LouisYio TurboHippie Nothing is sacred. Speedhunters should know that!

29

LouisYio antonyingram Hardly think that was the first Hakotora build so not sure about the 100% original claim... I don't care what engine gets swapped into what, but when someone wants to do a "SEMA build" it's usually done more for maximum attention in minumum build time. Anything not sponsor-paid gets the shortcut/budget treatment. The driveshaft sounds like a detail overlooked in that build.

30

MAN l like me some Z-fender flairs >:)

31

Lots and lots of these cars get built and never tested, just made to look the part and earn a fresh name for the shop.... like a 32L motor in a car, it's carzy and just gets the shops name out there...you can't drive a 32L car, like a car...

32

F1Fan426 me too man! All things considered, the price isn't that bad comparatively-speaking with TRA/Rocket Bunny, but it's not lunch money, that's for sure.
There's a guy named Bill Brinkworth who offers a pretty cool flare kit for a reasonable cost, though the look may not be for everybody.
https://www.instagram.com/saisei_db240z/

33

The hostility is unwarranted and unappreciated. Plus automakers rarely care about the same things enthusiasts do these days, so that's not really a valid argument.

34

For all those complaining about different engines in cars, heritage etc... NO ONE CARES except you, seriously, no one, not even the automakers... see below fromToyota-Suzuki partnership could result in a Japanese Big ThreePosted (http://japanesenostalgiccar.com/news-toyota-suzuki-partnership-japanese-big-three/)

"It basically means there will be three major alliances: Toyota-Daihatsu-Hino-Subaru-Isuzu-Mazda-Suzuki, http://japanesenostalgiccar.com/news-nissan-now-controls-mitsubishi/, and Honda. Poor Honda, so lonely.

A little over a quarter century ago, Ford bought Jaguar. Suddenly GM bought Saab and stakes in Subaru and Suzuki. VW ended up with Bentley, Lambo, Bugatti and Skoda. BMW ended up with Rolls Royce and Mini, and Ford ended up with Land Rover, Volvo, Aston Martin, and a controlling stake in Mazda. DaimlerChrysler was formed, and bought a stake in Mitsubishi. It’s also what prompted the Renault-Nissan Alliance.

Today, it may be http://japanesenostalgiccar.com/news-nissan-now-controls-mitsubishi/ that prompted Suzuki to reach out to Toyota. When one larg automaker moves to consolidate, others follow. No one wants to get caught without “economies of scale.”"

35

No he's right.... all you people look at cars like it's a person cutting up natural body-parts in hopes of looking like a movie star or something.
Let me say this very clear... it's JUST A CAR.
oh snap........really???!?!
It's cool and they like it and I would have put a 360ci Chrysler v8 in there.

36

Yeah same here, I'm a bulge guy myself....

37

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38

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39

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