Performance Redefined: Nissan GTR »

The Nissan GTR is a bit of an enigma. It’s one of the rare few that satisfies more than one personality traits. It’s nearly untouchable at the Ring, only beat by the million dollar Porsche 918 when counting series production vehicles.

Life Lessons, Courtesy of Mercedes »

Before we start, I need to apologize for being late. Partly due to real life getting in the way, but mostly due to the fact that I struggled to write this.

Canadian JDM Invasion – Honda Integra Type-R »

This week, I had a chance to check out NRGie’s 1996 Honda Integra Type-R. While GTRs have dominated the JDM imports, the ITR is a bit of a hidden gem out of Japan.

The Track Rat: ESS Supercharged BMW M3 »

This week, I had the pleasure of driving Jason’s (CSMRX7) amazing track weapon, the ESS Supercharged BMW E90 M3. I may be an AMG fanboy as of late [...]

C63 Black Series: Where Stimulation Trumps Stint Times »

This week, I hand the keys of my own car, the C63 AMG Black Series, over to Mibz to rip around in. This car is pretty special for me [...]


August 20th, 2014

illmotion-sunday-school-2014-16

This past sunday, illmotion hosted the 4th annual Sunday School Show and Shine at the Max Bell Arena. As with every year, hundreds of cars descended on the parking lot where owners showcased their rides. One thing different this year however was the weather. Each year, it is normally scorching during the Sunday School Show and Shine, but this year it was a much more comfortable affair allowing people to get out from under their tents to talk cars. Roaming the parking lot it was great to see proud owners talk about their builds with each other and those that came down to check them out.

There were a ton of amazing work, and hopefully we captured a good cross section of the vehicles that were there. With limited time and the number of people checking out the cars in person, it was difficult to get everyone. We’ve broken up the post into two parts due to the sheer number, so check back tomorrow for the rest of the pictures.

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August 20th, 2014

shadows-nissan-gtr-9
I spend a lot of time on various car forums on the internet, and I always enjoy clicking on the car comparison threads because they bring me the most amount of enjoyment. You see, I love watching people argue on the internet, as long as I’m not involved. Car comparisons always have good intentions to begin with, on the internet or in real life, but they typically end in a shit show of fanboys trying to justify why their prized possession is better than someone else who owns a competing model. I have a theory which explains why this happens.

It’s very simple, the theory is that there are only 3 personality types that describe every car enthusiast in the world. While everyone is primarily 1 of these 3 types, they can dabble in the other categories but, in the end, they will argue to the end based on their primary personality. Let’s break it down. Read the rest of this post »


August 16th, 2014

mclaren-p1-gtr-2

It may have took two decades, but McLaren has just unveiled the design concept for the successor to the McLaren F1 GTR at a private function at the Pebble Beach Concours event. Meet the McLaren P1 GTR. The goal of the McLaren P1 GTR is crystal clear: to be the best driver’s car in the world on track. The key to that goal is “on track” as McLaren is not constrained by any pesky federal legislations for road legality, or silly bumper laws, emissions standards, etc etc.

Compared to the road going P1, the front track has been increased by 80mm. The P1 GTR ride height is fixed, lower than the standard car and rides on a race-prepared suspension system. The mirrors have been relocated to reduce drag and be closer to the eye line of the driver. The P1 GTR rides on a set of 19″ wheels, 10.5″ wide up front and 13″ out back wrapped in a set of racing slicks and are secured with quick-release centre locking nuts. Changing tires on the P1 GTR will be made easier with the onboard air jacking system, like the one seen on the McLaren 650S GT3.

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August 14th, 2014

toyota-ft1-concept-pebble-beach-2

The Toyota FT-1 Concept was stunning when it was unveiled in Detroit and was probably one of the few concept cars that some people were genuinely excited to see. The excitement is likely due to the fact that many expect that when the production version of the FT-1 hits the streets, it will bring the Supra nameplate back to the Toyota stable.

Today, what we have here is the latest take on the FT-1 concept. Gone now is the sporty black and red interior of the Toyota FT-1 Concept from Detroit Auto Show (NAIAS), replaced with a much more luxurious looking tan (brown?) interior. I’m personally not a fan of tan colored interiors, but you can’t argue how classy it looks on paired up with the graphite paint job of this second FT-1 concept presented at Gordon McCall’s Motorworks Revival gala in Monterey. My first thought when I saw this particular color scheme was that it was more of a Lexus than a Toyota with its premium look and interior styling.

“From the start of the FT-1 project, we wanted the driver to have a feeling of flow while at the wheel – to be able to focus on the road and nothing else,” said Sellene Lee, the Calty creative designer who proposed both color concepts. “In the color studio we help create the atmosphere of the vehicle, and our aim was to ensure everything supported the driver through efficient choices. The saddle leather maintains that same ‘in the zone’ driving intention, while bringing in a more premium feeling.”

I hope this FT-1 makes its rounds during the auto show season as I would love to see it in person. In the mean time, we have a ton of photos in the gallery go check it out!

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August 14th, 2014

benyl-mercedes-e63s-wagon-1
Before we start, I need to apologize for being late. Partly due to real life getting in the way, but mostly due to the fact that I struggled to write this. My theme for this article was going to be “Growing up and growing old”. I was going to walk you through Benyl’s completely normal car history, where he threw whatever cheap mods he could to make his car stand out, regardless of whether or not they made the car any better. We were going to bring back memories of him crashing at the track (or on the streets) by driving like an idiot. We’d transition into his actual adulthood, where he owns a sensible home and drives a sensible wagon.

Problem is, none of those things are true. Benyl was born a 50 year old man and his cars have gotten consistently more powerful from the factory as time goes on. He didn’t really mod his cars until a money shift destroyed his STI’s engine and he was going to have to pay for a new one anyway. Even then, he built it right the first time. Read the rest of this post »


August 12th, 2014

sls-amg-black-series-15

The 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show is shaping up to be a fine show with the announcement from the show organizers that there are just under 60 debuts (25 world debuts) scheduled. The show is still a ways off (Mid November) so nothing specific has been announced, but we do know that the Chevy Volt that was rumored to be debuting in LA will in fact be unveiled early next year in Detroit at the 2015 NAIAS.

You can expect the AMG GT to make an appearance, although the world debut will likely be a month earlier in Paris. Audi may bring the next generation R8 as well. Stay tuned as this will be another exciting auto show season. Our team will be in LA to bring you photos from the show as soon as the cars are unveiled.


August 8th, 2014

importfest-toronto-2014-models-10

If you missed our Importfest 2014 Toronto post yesterday, we finally got around to posting our coverage of the show from a couple weeks ago. Today, we’ve got some eye-candy of the other sort, the models.

Aside from the official models, Mila G and Maya T (Maya pictured above), there were scores of models in exhibitor booths, on stage and roaming the show floor. Model photographer Steve Bitanga was on hand doing live shoots with some of the models throughout the day which kept many cameras clicking away. Kitty Kayja, Karli Sal, Maya T and Mila G were on hand at the Vossen booth while Jenn Q was repping for wheelsco. Cindy Phan drew a constant crowd over at the Nextmod booth (great booth btw!) and Kaystar was signing posters at The Vapor Movement’s booth.

More Importfest 2014 Toronto Models


August 8th, 2014

2016-chevy-volt-teaser

Today Tim Mahoney, Global Chevrolet Chief Marketing Officer announced that the next generation 2016 Chevrolet Volt will be debuting at the 2014 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit. Rumors had the debut pegged for the Los Angeles Auto Show in November, but a hometown debut makes more sense.

“Volt is the perfect example of the ingenuity that drives everything we do at Chevrolet,” Mahoney said at the Center for Automotive Research Management Briefings. “Volt fully delivers on the promises of Find New Roads and will continue to provide consumers with the transportation solutions they need and deserve in the future.”

Our team will be covering the auto show circuit again this year so you’ll be sure to see coverage of the 2016 Chevy Volt at its unveiling but I’m sure we’ll hear some more news before then.


August 7th, 2014

importfest-toronto-2014-67

As Importfest 2014 Vancouver draws closer, we’re just getting around to publishing some pictures that we shot in Toronto when Importfest 2014 rolled through the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Billing itself as “Canada’s Biggest and Baddest” show, Importfest exhibits everything from scooters to classic muscle cars to exotics and of course, imports. Importfest Toronto showcased a great variety of vehicles (minus bikes) ranging from the usual Civics, S2000s, GTRs, the Deadmau5 Purrari and even a hamster powered Scion xB (I think?). Sadly my shot of that engine bay did not turn out.

The line up to get into Importfest started well before the scheduled noon opening time as exhibitors did last minute touch ups on their vehicles. The lineup snaked through the main floor of the MTCC and went on much further than I wanted to explore. I’m guessing there were probably about 500+ people in line when I showed up. Based on the speed of the line, it was probably going to take me an hour or more just to get in and that wouldn’t fly as I had a late afternoon flight to catch to get out of there (I’m too old for the after parties!). Luckily as I approached the front of the line, some vendors were arriving with some equipment for their booth. As all asians look alike, security assumed I was with them and in I went.

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August 6th, 2014

NRGie-jdm-integra-type-r-1
I remember seeing my first Lamborghini Countach in person like it was yesterday. It was the fall of 1982, and sitting across from the street from our Los Angeles hotel under some lush palm trees was a pristine white Countach that looked exactly like the posters on my wall. This was my first trip to Disneyland, and my parents were trying to rush the two kids into a cab. I refused to budge, I’ve been a car guy all my life, and seeing that Lamborghini in person was infinitely better than seeing Mickey Mouse.

What’s interesting about this Countach was that it looked very different than the later Countachs on US soil. The bumpers were clean, and didn’t have the ugly ass US spec bumpers that were necessary to pass US federal standards in later model years. The US, as well as Canada, have a completely different set of vehicle standards compared to the rest of the world. Almost everywhere else, countries follow the UNECE Harmonized Vehicle Regulations. Introduced in the late 50’s, it was a set of rules that made it much easier for international trade, and thus much cheaper for manufacturers to sell vehicles in many countries. The US and Canada were notable holdouts in this agreement, and have their own set of standards. Low volume manufacturers were effectively shut out of the North American market due to the huge costs in federalizing their vehicles.

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