Speedtech EVO 9 DRAG: 8.63 @ 164MPH in NZ

Andre from Speedtech Motorsport in New Zealand sent me an email a week ago about a 1001whp EVO 9 they recently built and tuned. The car went 9.59 in the 1/4 mile last year in full weight street/drag trim, but recently their customer Dave decided to cut out the half ass bullshit and build a dedicated drag car. Then just last weekend, Andre sends me another email with more pics and news that Dave pulled a 8.63 @ 164mph! Dave and Speedtech aren't messing around.

Obvioiusly a car of this magnitude requires a lot of blood, sweat, and tears from the shop that builds the car. Well beyond what is actually paid for in my experience. But there's a certain kind of synergy (I like this word. I learned its meaning from Dennis @ Sierra Sierra) that comes from working with your passionate co-workers (or employees), vendors that are down for the cause, and people who help out in general when creating a car that kicks ass. Oh and let's not forget about working with a customer that respects your abilities (and financial requirements). It sounds like the Speedtech team and Dave are experiencing that synergy as they approach the AMS drag EVO record. Actually I don't know if it counts or not since it's not a CT9A chassis, but Andre's EVO III ran a 8.29 @ 179.5mph. It's still an EVO right? Also for you GT-R nerds, Speedtech is the shop that handles the tuning on the Heat Treatments R32 which is CRAZY BUFF.

So here are excerpts from Andre's email so I don't screw it up trying to rewrite it all:

“I thought I would send you an email regarding an EVO 9 drag car we have built over here for one of our customers. We built it up as a fast street car last season and went 9.59 in a pretty basic trim. This season we got serious and turned it into a dedicated drag car. We are using a GT4508 turbo and Q16 fuel. On the dyno we ended up with 1001 whp at 42 psi. Currently we have been running it at the strip with much lower boost (28-32 psi) until our customer gets to grips with it. We are expecting it to go mid 8's once we run it at full power.”

Above is Andre's first email from Jan. 7, 2010. I was busy catching up with all kinds of stuff and suffering from a dumb ass head cold so I didn't get a chance to reply, but then 3 days later I get an email on the 10th that included a press release from Speedtech:

“Here is another update on our EVO 9 drag car project. We had it out again on the weekend and had an amazing meeting culminating in a new PB of 8.63 @ 164 mph. We are running it again at the end of the month and we hope to push a little closer to AMS's record.”

Here's the press release from Speedtech:

Fresh from his success at the Taupo Summer Drags, Dave and the STM team took Project DS9 to the Xmas Drag Wars at Masterton Motorplex this weekend. The weather was looking promising, and by 9am the high cloud was burning off to leave a perfect summers day. The track crew had the track at its best and a fresh coating of VHT had been applied.

Dave’s first run was a pretty exciting one, as the car well and truly overpowered the track, smoking the tyres right through first and second gear. Despite almost using both lanes, and pedalling the car hard for most of the pass, Dave rolled through to card a 10.35 @ 141 mph.

For the first qualifying pass, we dulled down the launch significantly to suit the track conditions. It got the job done as the next pass was what we all came for, an 8.73 @ 163 mph! The car looked rock solid and left the line hard with a 1.33 60’. We had built the car to run into the 8’s and Dave didn’t just nudge into the 8 second zone, he demolished it! While we now had cause for celebration, there was still work to be done.

For the second qualifying pass, we didn’t touch the car other than the usual between-round maintenance. Dave set about backing up his 8.73 with an 8.70 @ 163mph. The run was basically a mirror image of the last run, with another 1.33 60’. This had Dave  top qualify in the Sport Mod division.

For the first elimination round, Dave scored a bye run as Nick Reid had gearbox issue in his Mazda R100. We made some minor changes to try and get the car to the half track quicker, however we had made the decision that we didn’t want to increase the boost until we felt the combination was maxed out. The next pass blew us all away with an 8.63 @ 164 mph! The car was getting a little bit loose now as the track was loosing some of its bite, meaning Dave was pretty busy behind the wheel.

Analysing the data after this run, we can see that there is still more in it. The car ran a 1.34 60’ on the 8.63, however it has run a best of a 1.280 to the 60’. On its own, this would drop the ET into the 8.5X region. At this stage we have only seen around 32 psi boost in 3rd and 4th gear, so we are still a long way off the potential of the engine. It is pretty obvious though that with the small 24.5 x 8” slicks we need to run for the Sport Mod class, that we will need a pretty good track to put more power to the ground.

After analysing the video from the runs, we also need to revise the parachute mount. When Dave deployed the chute at the end of the pass, it was pulling the rear end of the car off the ground and causing the car to get very loose, and a few heart-pounding moments for Dave.

We turned up on Sunday with the hopes of nudging Dave’s PB a little lower, however it was not to be. On the first practice round Dave launched and the car turned right pretty hard. Dave aborted the pass and cruised to the end of the strip. After an inspection in the pits we found that Dave had flat-spotted both front tyres pretty badly when he locked up the wheels at the end of his 8.63 pass. As this was obviously a safety concern we made the decision to withdraw from the final, handing the win to Ben Moorcock in his RX3.

Needless to say, Dave and the STM team are stoked with the results so far, and we look forward to improving on them in the near future. Considering the car has only completed 6 passes since its rebuild and it is already within two tenths of AMS’s world record, the potential is obvious. Dave’s next outing will be at the 4 & Rotary Nationals in Auckland. The car will also be on display at the show. We look forward to seeing you all there.

Holy shit, what a ride right?!? I dig the rotary idling in the back ground too. Notice the “kind of air shifter” which the Speedtrends guys call a “ghost shifter” since it does look a bit eerie. More specs on the car from another email from Andre after I asked him for more details. I especially liked their shifter idea for Time Attack (read below):

Car was built and tuned by Speedtech Motorsport (STM), New Zealand
Engine is a 4G63 using a 94mm (2.2 Litre) Tomei crank
Alloy rods
STM-spec JE pistons
STM ported head with oversize stainless valves
Double vavle spring kit with titanium retainers,
STM billet drag cams (solid profile)
Adjustable solid lifters
HKS head gasket with O-rings
Custom head studs
the turbo is a Garrett GT45 with a Tial Sport stainless exhaust housing, and we are using a Turbosmart 60mm wastegate. The manifold is 321 stainless, and incorporates a burns stainless merge collector. All fabrication was done in-house by STM.
We are running a Motec M400 ecu with an E888 expansion unit. The dash is a Motec Sport Dash Logger (SDL). We are using an M&W PRO Drag 4 CDI and sparktech COP CDI coils.
The fuel system consists of a 3 gallon fuel cell mounted in the engine bay. It feeds into twin SX pumps and filters before heading to an HKS fuel rail. The injectors are 1600 cc Indy blues, and the regulator is SX. We are running on VP Q16 race fuel. We ran upto 42 psi on our Dynapack chassis dyno to produce 1001 whp (our initial desing criteria). While the driver has been getting his head around things we have been running the boost a lot lower (on the 8.63 it saw a maximum of 32 psi in 3rd and 4th gear). We are restricted to a small 24.5 x 8″ slick for our class, which means getting the full 42 psi to the track may prove difficult and we are going to need a pretty amazing track to do it. We are confident we will get there though!
The gearbox is a PPG 4 speed dog engagement drag set with front and rear spools, and we are running Drive Shaft Shop axles [I bet they had to hack the shit out of them to make them fit because DSS shit NEVER FITS!] all round. The shifter is a Japanese Ikeya unit which converts the H-pattern into a sequential. Before the last meeting, we custom designed an air-shifter arrangement that we have nick named 'Ghost Shifter' (its quite eerie watching the shifter move in the in-car vids!). This uses an air ram to actuate the ikeya shifter. The shift is requested into the Motec by a push button. The Motec then performs an ignition cut before actuating the air ram. It worked better than we expected, and we are using a gear change igntion cut of 50 ms which is about half what we were using on the maual shifts. The shifts are a lot more positive and consistent which can only help the dog life.
Its a bit early to say how the air shifter will effect reliability as it has only seen 5 passes in total. We are stripping the box for an inspection before the next meeting so I may have a better idea then.
We are using some light weight fiberglass doors we sourced from the UK, and a locally made fiberglass bootlid [that's a trunk lid for us Americans]. The car is also fitted with lightweight Wilwood callipers and rotors all round. We haven't had the car weighed yet but expect it to be around 2400 lb with driver.

While Andre summarized the car in several paragraphs, I can imagine how much time and effort it took to execute it all. The Speedtrends guys certainly deserve a pat on the back. Good job guys!

Look out for an update when the Speedtech EVO 9 goes even faster.

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