I remember this like it was just yesterday; sitting right in front of the television glued to my Playstation 2, loading up my newly bought Gran Turismo 2 game. Going through the endless selection of cars in what was in my personal opinion the ultimate car racing game franchise, the experience was truly salivating.
One car however, amongst all, caught my attention, the Altezza RS200. I picked it out in Sunflower Yellow and slapped on some white 5 spoke wheels to go with it and the obsession just took off from then on. Upgrade after upgrade, I honestly couldn’t get enough of it though bearing in mind it was only just a game, the undying passion for cars was real.
It looked great, it drove well and it won me races; well when I say that I meant in a virtual sense but it did not matter really. It started a love or an interest for a particular car that is so immeasurable that till this day I’d still have one, any model, anytime; even if it’s a million years old.
But that’s the thing about the Altezza in my opinion, it has aged but it has aged so well especially if it sports a decent bodykit; think of it as wine or George Clooney for example, that guy is old but with that alluring face he’s still mesmerising chicks half my age! How he’s been able to age better than wine is beyond my knowledge but that’s how the Altezza works, at least for me and the limited number of Altezza enthusiasts.
Speaking of bodykits, this Altezza I think, has one of the meanest “outfits” an Altezza can have. And when it comes to bodykits, C-West’s bodykits needs no introduction and what they have designed to tailor fit the Altezza is simply sublime. With wide front fenders and rear arches, this car looks what the youth call, P.H.A.T (Pretty, Hot And Tempting).
Edging the other Altezzas out are the TRD head lamps which strike fear whenever it appears in your rear view mirror. Other accessories to the bodywork include the Ganador side mirrors, the LED rear tail light and the original sunroof showers sunlight into the interior.
Moving to the specifications of the car we have here, it may not be the ultra-rare RS200 model but it’s nonetheless an Altezza. Front-mounted engine with rear-wheel drive configuration, again there’s just more to love than hate about this car and I’ve not even began to rant about the simple and subtle black interior.
The standard motor has been swapped with a much, much more powerful 1JZ motor with a 2JZ block as it rests in a refurbished engine bay. Fully balanced, ported and polished, a HKS pulley and new HKS 264 Cams have found their place in the motor replacing the old camshafts. The transplant has also been complimented with new HKS pipings and an extractor by HKS linking with a HKS titanium exhaust that makes the Altezza sound like an exploding bear while it makes its way up the revs.
The standard turbine has also been replaced as the motor is force fed with air cooled by a much bigger HKS intercooler via a HKS 3040 turbine which, according to certain forums found on the worldwide web, could allegedly generate in excess of 500 horsepower; hardly surprising for a turbine that’s as big as a human head.
With the potential to generate so much power, not being able to fuel this bad boy constantly is like depriving an infant of its milk, you’re in deep trouble. Making sure this “baby” is well fed is the significantly improved fueling system which includes the six Power Enterprise 800cc injectors, the SARD fuel rail, three Walbro fuel pumps and a custom surge tank to prevent fuel starvation when running at a low fuel level or in certain hard cornering circumstances.
On the rather subtle interior, a noticeable Haltech Racepak Dash digital display proves to be handy as it displays all the engine parameters on a tidy LCD screen. Housing a mean motor like this is by any means no laughing matter. The transmission has to be considerably strengthened to cope with such immense power, to put the power down. An Ogura twin plate clutch rightfully finds its place in this Altezza and while it does help with gear engagements etc. it’s certainly not for the faint-hearted or at least the weak left-legged.
The 4.4 final-drive gives this sex bomb a bit more push on the top end. Twin pot brakes for the rear end are plugged out from the Altezza’s meaner senior, the Supra and that’s certainly assuring for a car that nudges 200km/h without so much of a hassle. Having more power than what the chassis was initially built to withstand is no monkey business.
Top of the line products like the rare Project MU dry carbon anti-roll bar, the Ikeya Fomula adjustable arm and lower bar and Cusco adjustable camber kit all play a role in ensuring that this 400 horsepower monster is as tame as a your Persian cat when the pedal is floored. Massive 18-inch SSR D5R wheels attached with Goodyear tires does the trick in providing the necessary traction to tame this beast.
As a result of hours at the workshop and skillful tuning, this Altezza with a 1JZ+2JZ heart alongside a Haltech Platinum 1000 management system has been able to churn out a whopping 480 horsepower. Not bad at all for a family saloon!
Car: Toyota Altezza
Engine: 1JZ-GTE head + 2JZ block, straight-six DOHC turbocharged
Engine Modifications: convert to 1JZ (JZX100) with bottom 2JZ, Full balancing, Port and Polish, Refurbished engine bay, HKS 264 Cams, HKS Pulley, HKS Extractor, HKS Turbo 3040, HKS piping, HKS intercooler, HKS relocator oil filter, HKS oil cooler, HKS titanium exhaust, Power Belt, Power Enterprise 6 x800cc Injectors, Sard fuel rail, New Oil pump, Custom Oil pan, Custom Surge Tank, Walbro Fuel Pump x 3pcs, GReedy Oil Catch tank, Haltech Platinum 1000 management system
Transmission: Ogura Twin Plate Clutch, 4.4 Final Drive
Brakes: Supra twin pot for rear
Suspension & Chassis: Project MU dry carbon anti-roll bar, Ikeya Fomula adjustable arm and lower bar, Cusco adjustable camber kit
Wheels & Tires: 18″ SSR D5R, Goodyear tires
Interior: Haltech Racepak Dash digital screen
Exterior: C-west Bodykit with wide fender and rear arch, TRD head lamp, Rear LED tail light, Sunroof original, Ganador side mirror