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Friday, August 7, 2009

Lex IS on Steroids

The Lexus IS200 isn’t really known for raw performance but more for being a midrange luxury sedan. However its JDM counterpart, the Toyota Altezza is a whole different story. Being inspired by this, the owner Keith Haw started out with putting TRD parts in his car. These included mostly aesthetic modifications like the bodykit and interior parts.

However, Keith soon found his car too boring and added a Nitrous system to add some juice to his ride. Too much juice boosted sent his stock engine to motor heaven, which fueled his quest for his hybrid project which was supposed to be a 3SG-E engine from an Altezza. But seeing the need for more speed, he later chanced upon a twin turbo 1JZ-GTE engine from a Toyota Supra MK3 at a surplus yard.

The engine was then brought to eRL motorworks for the transplant which took months and a lot of engineering. Soon more parts went under the hood, twin Turbonetics T3 turbines, custom plumbings, manifold, a hybrid intercooler, HKS SQV, and finished off with a RAY’s Gramlights 57 Dragon Muffler.

For the footwork, a set of RAY’s 19-inch Gramlights 57F Pro wheels wrapped with Dunlop tires was the weapon of choice. Stiff-stuff consist of TEIN Super Street Coilovers, and a Cusco strut bar. Additional stopping power is provided by TRD brake pads and TRD stainless steel brake lines.

Inside the car, a pair of Bride XAX2 bucket seats, a TRD instrument panel and a mixture of other TRD and Pivot accessories can be found. For monitoring, a set of DEFI Black Face Gauges and a VFD Basis Heads-up Display were used. For entertainment, it was a combination of Peerless and JL Audio custom installed by Francis Tan.

The IS200 being a heavy car, a little dieting was required. The steel hood and trunk were replaced with light and durable carbon fiber ones. To complement the L-Tuned bodykits, additional carbon fiber diffusers and cannards were installed on the front bumper, while a carbon fiber TRD rear spoiler was also installed. The side mirrors were also replaced with carbon fiber Ganador side mirrors.

This is certainly not very much of Lexus anymore and you’ll see it tearing up the streets quite often with plenty of power to boot.

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