RWB Yoshiwara: To New Beginnings
Creating That Link

Cars as objects? Seriously? If that’s how you classify the concoctions of metal on four wheels we love so much, you are kindly asked to go and surf some other part of the internet. Cars are so much more than that; they are different things to different people, tools that reward you with all sorts of emotions when you put them through their paces, and at the same time like a friend that is always there to add that little bit of something extra to your life.

The RWB Yoshiwara Yūkaku is this and so much more to its owner, Ricko.

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Standing in the warm afternoon sun, surrounded by empty desert and rocky hills on one side and the Vegas Strip skyline on the other, we got down to talking about cars.

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This gold Porsche 911 Type 993 Targa is possibly the least documented RAUH-Welt Begriff build the US has seen. Built at the Fatlace HQ in San Francisco a couple of months back, Ricko didn’t really feel the need to make a big deal about it. After all, this is a car he was building for himself, a creation that would serve as a turning point in his life.

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And on this day that Ricko took time to accompany me to a quiet spot away from the hustle and bustle of the city was as big as a turning point could ever get – the following day he’d be getting married. Ricko and his fiancée had driven over to Vegas with Nakai-san and the rest of the RWB crew to enjoy the SEMA Show and the sights and sounds of Sin City.

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And that’s where the name Nakai-san chose for the car seems to fit in rather well. Yoshiwara was the historic red-light district of Tokyo, back when the city was still called Edo. It’s a name anyone with an interest in Japanese culture knows, an infamous place that was all about sin and lust. Ricko was known as quite the playboy back in the day and that’s where the whole link lies. This car marks the end of his old ways and the beginning of a new life chapter as a married man.

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Each moment he looks at, drives, and spends time with his RWB creation he’ll be reminded of his past. It’s why he didn’t want to cut any corners, even before the master himself picked up the air cutting tools.

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A year ago, Ricko found the perfect base, an unmolested 993 Carrera, but had to make a snap decision to pick it up as there were other interested parties ready to do so if he didn’t. He put his money down and it was his. From that moment on it was all about putting a plan together and having everything ready to go in time for Nakai to fly over from Japan in October and complete the car’s RWB transformation.

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With the idea to go for a full color change, the 993 had to be stripped down inside and out. Ricko also saw it as a good opportunity to address all the trim parts that had aged over the years, and while that sounds simple, sourcing all the correct pieces turned into a $20K nightmare.

The fact that the car was a Targa model made things even more complicated, and Ricko ended up entrusting the whole build process to two Porsche mechanics, Efrain Ortiz and Edwin Zuñiga, after being disappointed by the work of other shops. Sitting low on KW Variant 3 coilovers, the finished result is an RWB with the sort of presence I’ve not seen in a while.

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While the gold color is an integral part of the look, it’s without a doubt the wheels that have turned it into something extra special. These were custom made for Ricko and measure 18×11-inch up front and 18×14-inch at the rear.

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The girth of the back of the car is substantial to say the least, and it’s highlighted with the canards we often see on 993 builds from Nakai. Next to the Yoshiwara Yūkaku name in kanji on the side of the car is an RK-Strong sticker, which is a website supporting 13-year-old car nut Ray Kanda who is currently undergoing treatment for leukemia. Ray, if you are reading this you have all the support from the Speedhunters crew!

Gold On Gold
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On top of the wheels, Ricko had D-LNG Designs in Belgium create custom turbo-fan covers, black on the passenger side and gold for the driver side.

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I have to say, I really can’t decide which color looks better, and I guess Ricko was of the same opinion, hence going for both. It all combines to look pretty damn amazing and the beefy Toyo Proxes R888 tires fit the race-inspired look rather well.

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Go in closer and more details reveal themselves. The custom center caps that D-LNG Designs made up we done so as a nod of respect to James Hunt’s beliefs.

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In motion, the turbo-fans light up the centers of the wheels, enhancing the look further. If C-3PO drove a car, this is what it would look like!

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A lot of work went into the wheels; Ricko told me that it was a constant back and fourth with D-LNG Designs until they nailed the look and fitment he wanted.

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What makes this RWB stand out even more among the many we have seen over the years is the fact that it’s a Targa top.

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Ricko wanted to retain the semi stripped-out feel of the cabin, going as far as to not refit any of the trim to the rear of the car, including what would normally hide the electric motors that operate the big glass roof.

The ability to have the feel of a convertible at the flick of a button is what made Ricko specifically want a Targa; for him it’s all about the experience the car gives you. And trust me, with the glass roof opened all the way, it’s like all the senses intensify; the sound, the wind, the sensation of speed. Blasting through Vegas in this car I totally got it.

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The Recaro seats are beautifully supportive and comfy, something I thought I’d never say about buckets. Mind you, my experience with these type of seats have always been in Japanese cars and always involved lots of pain. These are the biggest versions Recaro make, and I fit like a dream.

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One thing I found refreshing was the fact that Ricko kept the stock steering wheel in an otherwise stripped cabin. The contrasting look somehow seems to work rather well.

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That’s also because Ricko has every intention of using this car as much as possible, which is why he didn’t mind the fact that the perfect car he found for the transformation was a Tiptronic. Nakai put his mark of approval on the dashboard in a well-matched shade of gold.

To The Future & Beyond
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Under the hood, the motor has been left in its stock state, but enhanced to give the sort of sound that one would expect a widened gold 911 like this to generate. For this, Ricko first turned to MFR Enterprises who created custom RSR-style headers which feed a pair of tapered-out straight pipes. The latter stick out so far that I thought I was looking at Stella Artois for a second!

That raspy, unsilenced fury the pipes spit out is mated to a slightly more gutsy intake roar thanks to a BMC panel filter, which is exposed to amplify the effect. An RS-like carbon fiber heater duct bypass pipe shaves a bit of weight off the rear by replacing the blower assembly.

If you look closely you will see that the gold paint has been applied to every surface of the chassis, inside and out, under and over.

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The GT2-inspired front end makes the 993 one of the most striking RWB conversions out there, and Yoshiwara sits so low the trademark rubber front lip almost seems to be scraping along.

Ricko pulled out the carpet that covers the insides of the trunk to show the extent of the paint job. It’s really nice to see cars built properly.

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If Ricko ever gets bored of the look of his car he’s also got a few spare RWB spoiler setups to swap on. I’m thinking a ducktail would go down a treat.

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As is often the case with RWB creations, I not only came away impressed by the car but also the story of the owner behind it all. Cars are indeed more than just lumps of metal – they have the power to excite, bring people together and mark new beginnings. A big congrats to Ricko and his wife from all the team here at Speedhunters.

Dino Dalle Carbonare
Instagram: speedhunters_dino
dino@speedhunters.com

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60 comments

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1

Oh, it's based on 993 Targa.
I really like the turbo fan but find it weird that it's hidden in the dish.

2

That is how they are supposed to sit

3

I meant, I got used to seeing it sit flush with the dish, or even poked out.

Author4
Dino Dalle Carbonare

There are various "offsets" of how your fit them. Somehow I have this image of Audis and VWs running the ones that stick out.

5

What a Beast.... Just stunning Ricko.
@trustbran

6

Call me an elitist asshole if you want, but that automatic gearbox makes it an object to me...
I don'T think I've ever had such a let down like that on Speedhunter before haha
"Oh nice!! ohhh, that looks good! Hum, tasty!! Yes, I like th..... WTF?????"

7

Well for some of us who have automatic cars, it is either our first car, or we live in a place with a lot of traffic, so a manual wouldn't be an option for me, but then again, i wouldn't mind having one

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8

California Plates... do you like to shift in traffic?

9

I don't mind it, no... It's even what I do. And considering California's road condition, I doubt the owner would commute to work in his lowered RWB anyway :)

10

Well Speedhunters ever be allowed to just feature an automatic car without people getting all hurt about it for some reason?

11
Matthew Everingham

Unlikely, but a man can dream...

12

I think it's a theme thing as much as anything else. I don't think you're gonna see too many complaints about a low rider or VIP build sporting an auto box, but on a "sportier" car like this there's a degree of what I want to call thematic dissonance between the rest of the car and the auto box. There's an emotional level on which it just doesn't seem to sit right when you've got a fast car without a stick shift.

That said, far as I'm concerned it's Ricko's car and he is the final arbiter on what's right for him, isn't he? My appreciation for the build is not diminished by choices that I would have made differently- far from it, it's just more incentive to get on with my own projects. I know exactly what I want from my project cars, and I know exactly what I'd say to anyone who disagrees- which is, that's fine, my car's for me, it's not for you. If you want a different car, go build a different car!

13

Definitely not an elitist asshole comment to make. As for people saying "it's L.A., do you like to shift in traffic?" Uh...no, but you don't build a car like this to sit in traffic. Have always found RWB's fenders to look cheap and tacky on Porsches, but the color is awesome!

Author14
Dino Dalle Carbonare

It's actually SF but it doesn't make any sense. There are a few auto RWBs around, so what if people want to attempt to drive them more often than usual and enjoy them in traffic too. Each to their own I say, it in no way takes away from the car and as Ricko told me if he gets sick of it eventually he can do a manual swap!

15

Aye, also true. Like I said, there are choices here that I would have made differently but that's always going to be the case with bespoke builds, isn't it? Everyone's different, so everyone builds their cars differently. A custom car is like a tailored suit in that way- even ones that are externally almost identical have little differences in the cut and the stitching to suit the specific person they were made for. The car looks great, and it isn't supposed to fit anybody else, right? If it fits Ricko (and apparently it really does!), that's the measure that matters.

That's always been my attitude looking at things like VIP builds, drag cars and so on. They're really not my thing and I would never in a million years be interested in building a project like that for myself, but that doesn't mean I can't appreciate a classy lowered car with crazy camber on the wheels or a sub-10 quarter mile. They're no less amazing just because I personally would rather build a nimble little hot hatch pocket rocket, and I love seeing and reading about them just the same.

I can understand that a level of frustration might creep in for someone who is into a particular scene and doesn't see it on SH as often as they'd like or whatever, and OK so if you spot an actual build error that might be a thing (not that many SH feature cars have those), but hating on other peoples' cars because they made a different choice to the one you favour never really made sense to me. If your car is built for you, and built well- then it's built right. Whatever the haters might say.

PS: cover more hot hatches! :p

16

Well, the way I see it, there are two options:

1- Enjoy your manual Porsche while doing spirited driving and track days and suffer a bit when stuck in traffic.
2- Enjoy your auto while stuck in traffic (soooo much fuuuun yeahhhh) and not being able to enjoy proper driving in b roads and race tracks

There is nothing wrong with choosing number 2, is just that you don't deserve to be called petrolhead.

17

Well the way I see it you're dead wrong. The idea that "being a petrolhead" must conform to being /your type/ of petrolhead is arse gravy of the first order. Is a lowrider not part of car culture? Is a dragster not part of car culture? Is a hot hatch not part of car culture? What about jacked-up offroaders? The VIP scene? Manual gearbox chauvinism is no less stupid than the "FWD cars don't count" idiocy. Just because you need a manual 'box to have fun doesn't mean everyone does. Everybody's equilibrium point on the line between awesome and practical lies somewhere different and there's nothing wrong with that. At the end of the day, Ricko's shelled out a lot of his money on a fairly impractical-but-awesome car simply because he is an enthusiast. For me, that enthusiasm is all that's necessary to say he's a petrolhead; simply because I personally might have chosen to make the car more impractical in order for it to be more awesome does not invalidate his choices.

18

I am so tired of this "being politically correct is cool" trend :/

19

I am so tired of this "being an elitist makes me better than everyone else" trend.

20

same bottlerocket effect as the damn viper bmw.


"hooooolllllllyyyyyy shit this is great you guysssss.....!!!!!!! *pop*"

21

Gold side for me, details get lost black side in my opinion.

22

I say mount them such that one color is in front and the other in back.

Author23
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Still tough! I'd have to have both and then alternate haha

24

An honor to a privilege to have Dino-San to shoot my car and to an excellent and personal write up. We met two years ago at carweek. I spotted the white glasses. And ever since we have kept in touch. And finally he flew in from Japan. And I knew it was my moment to strike. These things are never guaranteed. It's all in the fate of schedules. And I got the car ready for him. But it was not a 100% thing. I just hoped.

Till I was standing alone in the dessert with Dino-san, I knew it was real and I was finally happening. Car dreams and so much more. We build the cars for ourselves but also for all to enjoy. Im just a speedhunters fan. Just like you. I look to these pages for ideas and motivation.

Happy holidays speedhunters family - Ricko

25

Happy holidays as well, enjoy the Porsche, thanks for sharing!

Author26
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Was a fun afternoon! Thanks to piking me up and helping make this happen Ricko!

27

Thanks dino for the love!
This car is a amazing build and ricko is the owner this car deserves!

Author28
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Loved your work!!! Getting all these ideas for center caps now haha

29

Ow yeah these were quite a challenge! Hand traces the outline of the original badge to match james his handwritting

30

I know each car is different but roughly how much do your turbo fans cost?

31

Greatly depends on design and options

But base prices are 450€ for a pair and 800€ for a set

32

Awesome job from everyone. My friend has built something truly special here and your team captured it beautifully.

33

What Recaro model are those?

34

Spg XL

Author35
Dino Dalle Carbonare

Finally buckets I can fit in!

36
Matthew Everingham

Amazing build, Ricko! Very Bladerunner!

37

As a purist came here talk shit about another mint 993 turned into another flamboyant street wear hipster RWB......but reading and finding out it was a Targa top and automatic....I don't care anymore.....although the owners logic had me laughing.....wanted a unmolested 993 so he can molest it himself...........makes sense.....fresh victim I suppose.lol

38

You must be fun at parties

Author39
Dino Dalle Carbonare

hahaha

40

Haha! So tasteless.. just horrible

41

Damn what an ugly Porsche, ruined style.

42

Maybe is just me but those fenders looks like shit, the color scheme is nice tho.

43

targas are the cool 911s imho. I can dig it.

44

the fact that it's a targa is seriously the only thing that makes it cool. everything else? meh.

Author45
Dino Dalle Carbonare

I've alway liked the Targas. Current 991 version is so badass

46

Not a big fan of RWB cars, but this is one awesome. Targa + automatic = cruiser/daily driver, I see nothing wrong. Plus I'm sure it has no trouble going through the twisties.

47

The speed in the twisties. Will be loads of fun and it will be documented. To kill all this noise.

48

Tiptronic air cooled=like having the world's best inflatable dartboard.

Otherwise A+


Someone will prob reply "why you gotta be a 'hater' bout tiptronic, its not ur car so don't complain." Im sick of this view. Comments are so we can agree, disagree, and discuss. Thank god we disagree sometimes and don't have to blindly compliment everything. I think if you are gonna build a sweet RWB 993, you should start with a manual.

49

Not the real story with this car but ok. Its turned out better than the old RWB it used to be. Good job on saving it Rico.

50

It's the first time ever that I'll say I like the left side of something.

This is one epic, definitely game-changing build.
And it's a T a r g a !

R e s p e c t !

Ari

51

hows it game changing? it's literally the same exact formula you see on every other rwb build...no different from this lame over fender craze

52

Hey look its top secret gold :> this works really well and I like it :D/

but I fear RWB is becoming the next rocketbunny :D #trends.

But this is still a really cool machine, I like how he works peoples individuality into the vehicle. :3c

RWB is pretty much on the list of greats like HKS, etc.

he doesnt do much engine work, but he does great handling and cosmetics :D/

53

Great car, Love the wheels! But auto box? Crazy....especially that era....

54

why do you guys keep covering these damn RWB porsches. they're all aesthetically the same on the outside. only thing you unique about them is pretty much the engines that vary to one another and some of the interiors

yeah i get it they look great, and are cool cars. but man are they getting beat to death with seeing them over and over.

it's like a great song you hear on the radio that you love after a while, it just drives you nuts when they playing it. these rwb's were at first but man they are not special anymore to me. but then again i'm a nobody so there's that

55

I would like a pair of those fan wheels (maybe 18x9.5) for the front of my RX8 and then get some deep gold 5 spoke wheels for the rear and do a 787B livery on my RX8

56

I wonder how much slower this car is from the factory based just on those wheels. The back ones must weigh a ton.

57

Yay, another RWB build, it's been a few days since the last!

If you feature enough of them is he going to give you a free car? There are so many great cars out there but you feature more RWBs

58

This goes to all the "transmission purists" above me....

This car is automatic with a SIDE MANUAL FEATURE! So what if the bloody car doesn't roll with a syncro, it has the best of BOTH worlds. Auto for the cruising, and if you stumbled ("accidentally" :D) into a race park, you can utilize your free sequential gearbox on the side!\

Sorry for ranting, just surprised at the negativity surrounding a stick.


(Anyway, congrats Ricko for getting married and I hope everything goes smooth! Keep it up man!)

59

Those centre caps are amazing! I don't know why later Targas are so under loved, when the roof line remains the same it only adds to the fun, plus on a 997 you have added functionality.

60

Since there's a lot of 993s sporting wide-body kits,
however, there's one example still remains the best looking wide bodied 993 IMO:
The Almeras 993 GT1. (This IS THE wide body on a 993 should look like!)

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