There are some liveries that you simply simply can’t mess with. Lancia and Martini, and Lotus and John Participant Particular are two that immediately spring to thoughts. However portray your automotive black and white is honest sport. Isn’t it?
Completely, though going one step additional and having ‘Fujiwara Tofu Store’ emblazoned down the aspect might sound a bit ridiculous on something apart from a panda AE86 Toyota Trueno. Fortunately, Toyota Altezza Gita proprietor Joshua Colaco didn’t assume so.
You would simply as simply ship cubes of silky-smooth tofu in an S13 or JZX100, though the latter doesn’t fairly have the best industrial automobile picture. The Trueno in Preliminary D received it proper, as a result of it’s precisely the form of automotive you’d anticipate a Japanese highschool child to be doing deliveries for the household enterprise in again within the mid-to-late Nineties.
However what if the long-lasting anime collection was set 15 or 25 years later? A Japanese highschool pupil as we speak might very effectively be driving his dad and mom’ well-loved Altezza wagon.
Funnily sufficient, the connection between the two vehicles is stronger than you would possibly first assume. You see, Nobuaki Katayama, Toyota’s chief engineer for the Altezza, not solely labored on the MkIV Supra, but additionally the AE86 again within the early ’80s.
As with many nice mission vehicles, this Toyota Altezza Gita wagon began off as a ‘wheels, coilovers and achieved’ day by day driver. For those who have a look at Joshua’s different mission automotive – a drift-inspired fluorescent Nissan Stagea – you’ll quickly perceive that maintaining issues inventory might be wishful pondering for the rest parked in his storage. Joshua is a fan of massive wheels, and it quickly turned obvious that nothing in his most well-liked dimension would match contained in the Gita’s modest arches. As a way to accomodate the 18×10.5-inch +22 Stance Magic wheels Joshua had his eyes on, he would wish to open up some area.
After scouring the web for a wide-body equipment, Joshua discovered one thing he favored in Russia. Throwing his belief and cash into an internet buy was a chance, however a month and a half later a picket crate arrived in Japan with a set of over-fenders for an Altezza sedan inside.
The entrance over-fenders combine fantastically with the physique traces of the Gita’s entrance quarters, however standing across the automotive at a neighborhood prepare station, a heated dialogue was had in regards to the rear part falling in need of the wagon’s additional size. Personally, I want to see the rear over-fenders prolonged again to the tail lights, however Joshua vehemently defended the present aesthetic.
Once I was first launched to this panda Altezza, I mistakenly thought there was one other connection between it and the Hachiroku. That’s as a result of, in sedan kind the Altezza was supplied both with a 2.0L 1G-FE inline-six (AS200 spec) or a 2.0L BEAMS 3S-GE inline-four (RS200 spec). The latter was the most well-liked, bringing 210PS to the Altezza sedan with a 6-speed handbook gearbox (200hp with the 5-speed automated choice). Just like the 1.6L 4A-GE within the AE86, the BEAMS 3S-GE was developed by Yamaha.
Because it seems although, the Altezza Gita wagon did not get the BEAMS 3S-GE. As an alternative, it received the 1G-FE in AS200 spec and the 2JZ-GE in AS300 kind. Joshua’s automotive – an AS200 – has the 1G-FE (160PS inventory), however it’s backed up by a factory-fitted 6-speed handbook.
The 1G-FE was Toyota’s first multi-valve twin cam engine, however by 1991 it was changed by the 1JZ in excessive efficiency purposes. It’s nonetheless an honest engine although, and one which responds effectively to having a supercharger bolted to the aspect of it, as Joshua has achieved right here.
Joshua’s 1G is just not making big energy – across the 300PS mark, I’m informed – however there’s positively scope for future enchancment. Because it sits although, there’s nearly double the inventory energy on supply, which is greater than sufficient to provoke a drift if tofu deliveries are working not on time.
What’s most attention-grabbing about this twist on an icon, is the happiness it appears to carry. Throughout our shoot, individuals of all ages smiled, commented or took a couple of snaps on their telephones as they walked previous the panda wagon. Certain, the black and white livery and Fujiwara Tofu Store insignia are immediately recognisable, however it’s what Josh has achieved with it that sparks pleasure out on the road.