At the end of last month, I showed you a Dodge Dart, built on a BMW E34 chassis, with classic Nissan Hakosuka-inspired styling. Only in Indonesia might you see such a creation, and there are plenty more custom automotive oddities to share with you from this region.
Although not quite as extreme as the Dart – yet – the work-in-progress project I’ve got for you today is well on its way to becoming something very cool.
The car is owned by my friend Ricky, who you might remember organized the photoshoot with the Dart in Jakarta. Although there’s a long way to go with the one-of-a-kind early-’60s GM Holden Special Station Sedan (EJ) project, it’s running and driving and has a ton of presence on the road – the perfect time to take a quick first look.
While the Australian-built EJ largely resembles its original form – albeit now in a patina-rich state – there’s a lot more to it than first meets the eye. Ricky supplied me with some photos of the wagon when it was undergoing its major chassis and suspension work at Alstein Automotive Design, who were also responsible for the Dodge build. In fact, it was Alstein Automotive Design that came up with the concept for this Holden in the first place.
Another big change has happened under the hood, where the original 138ci (2.26L) inline-six engine has given way to a Toyota 3.0L 2JZ-GE. Despite being a naturally aspirated variant, the 2J almost triples the output of the EJ’s factory fitted engine, and that’s before you factor in any modifications. There’s a K&N filter and custom exhaust already in play, but I can’t help but think how amazing this would be with six open-trumpet throttle bodies… Or maybe a turbo will be added – we’ll just need to wait and see.
In the image directly above, you’ll notice some extra length added to the front fenders and hood. The modification was needed in order to fit the Toyota engine, but the stretch here actually makes the wagon look more balanced than the original.
Alstein’s initial goal for the project was to get it up and running with its chassis upgrades, coilover suspension, and Toyota engine. Next on the list is to finalize the exterior bodywork, which as you can see is now being enhanced with custom steel fender flares. Having the wheels – a set of SSR/Watanabe RS8s – and tires already bolted up has resulted in clean fitment.
When it comes to the interior, let’s just say that it’s far from a priority. It will interesting to see how things turn out in here.
Despite how the wagon looks right now, it really does drive and handle well. Ricky tells me that there’s still a lot of fine tuning to do too.
The project will take some time to finish, but Ricky’s not in any rush. He’s currently using his Toyota-powered Holden as a daily driver, and you can be sure it gets plenty of attention wherever it goes. That said, I’ll definitely be back to revisit it again once the final form is revealed.
How To join the IATS program: We have always welcomed readers to contact us with examples of their work and believe that the best Speedhunter is always the person closest to the culture itself, right there on the street or local parking lot. If you think you have what it takes and would like to share your work with us then you should apply to become part of the IAMTHESPEEDHUNTER program. Read how to get involved here.