Alexander ”Alkku” Schüler from Turku has used the last five years transforming his first car into this grassroots drifter. Equipped with Toyota's 4AGE and supporting mods, this light little minx is capable of going sideways in a very flashy fashion.
Alexander bought this Datsun before he even had his driver's license. From the start he had a clear vision of low ground clearance, Jap-style build and small yet wide wheels. Pretty soon he purchased some wheels and installed some self-made coilovers, but both of those installations have been upgraded now. Currently this Sunny has these tasty Bridgestone Stage-4 rims, with 4” lip in the front and 4.5” in the rear, and the car has BC-Racing coils now. The car was driven from 2010 to 2014 without noticeable mods, but after that the little red guy on Alexander's shoulder started whispering nasty things, and that's when things got knocked into 12th gear. Front camber, you might ask? -8 degrees.
In the summer of 2014 the car was dismantled into small pieces. Rasmus Troberg sandblasted the frame and a big heap of other parts. The summer and the fall were spent painting, welding and modifying the body. Every important seam in the chassis was reinforced, and the rear fenders were widened, both rear and front. The fall was particularly busy time, since Alexander also installed a roll cage, a new suspension (aforementioned BC coils), a pedal box and purchased a J160 six-speed transmission from a Lexus IS200..
The spring of 2015 was spent manufacturing room for a new drive shaft and creating all kinds of custom fasteners. In the fall the car was finally ready for a new paint job, and it was coated with a paint found in Isuzu's color chart. It's pretty much the same as the original, though. The Kamei front lip was originally bought for a Datsun 100A, but it looks right at home here. The sideskirts are not OEM parts either, as they are meant for a Toyota Corolla AE86. But it's not like they are the only things borrowed from a hachiroku.
Alexander bought this 4AGE years ago, and started its installation in 2012. The stock four-speed was a breeze to mate with this 1.6-liter engine, but the Lexus gearbox was a different kind of challenge. Alexander and Marko Paajanen manufactured four different adapter plates before a match was found. Alexander had a suitable and lightweight JUN flywheel hanging around, so the clutch also needed to be stock size. After a little research he found out that some version of Toyota Liteace's clutch disc is just the right size, with the same splining as the Lexus gearbox. The installation was a great success, and the whole deal looks and works just great, and the outrageous sound of 4AGE matches the brutal exterior perfectly.
The rollcage is sturdy, to say the least. It not only looks good, but also stiffens the chassis and protects the driver. The car is also equipped with a hydraulic handbrake, and Alexander made the handle himself as his final year project. The seats are also not just decorations, but keep you in place when going sideways. This car really is tailhappy, especially if you give it some lord's wrath. The Pokéball gear knob was installed before all this Pokémon Go craze that went around recently.
It may not be the most comfortable car in existence, with the quick lock equipped wooden steering wheel being nearest to a luxury item. But damn does it make you smile. In fact, Alexander describes it as ”obnoxiously loud and uncomfortable, with drivability of a go kart.” Despite all that, it spreads joy and gathers glances. After the project was successfully completed, Alexander visited the track a couple of times, and his girlfriend summed it all up perfectly: ”this is just like an amusement ride!”
Datsun Sunny 140Y 1980
Toyota 1.6 4AGE, Dellorto DHLA 40 carburetors, DIY exhaust manifold, TRD camshafts, MSD ignition
JUN flywheel, Exedy clutch, custom clutch adapter plate, Toyota J160 six-speed manual gearbox, Toyota/Datsun hybrid driveshaft, welded rear diff
BC-Racing suspension, Mercedes springs in the rear, polyurethane end link bushings (DIY)
Opel Omega calipers and Astra discs in the front, stock drum brakes in the rear, DIY hydraulic handbrake handle
Bridgestone Stage-4 13x8” ET-20 (front), 13x9” ET-20 (rear)
Nankang 165/55/13” (front), 175/60/13” (rear)
Kamei front lip, AE86 Toyota Corolla side skirts, the world's biggest ducktail, rolled arches, widened inner fenders
Roll cage, Sparco and Momo bucket seats, white wooden steering wheel, misc. parts upholstered with broccoli fabric
Pioneer head unit, Focal 4” speakers in the front, Phase Linear 6x9 speakers on the parcel shelf
People at Poikon Paja ja Patentti: Väinö Lemu, Mikko Rantanen, John Mäki, trusted painter Niilo Hakala, technical support Marko Paajanen, Heavy Artillery crew, Motonet repair shop's guys, Eero Koski, Tomi Kalevo, Aleksi Ylä-Rautio, Rasmus Troberg, Tomi Sainio, Janne Mattila, Janne ”Junnu” Thusberg, everyone involved in this project, and of course my girfriend Kata and my parents