One of the five Japanese sports cars American high school boys fantasized about in the early 1990s, Mazda’s RX-7 is perhaps one of the most unique. Unlike Acura’s NSX, it was sequentially turbocharged, and in contrast to the Toyota Supra, Nissan 300ZX and Mitsubishi 3000GT VR-4, it was the only person to not feature pistons or connecting rods. The third-generation RX-7 with its Wankel rotary powerplant that was purchased in the Usa for the 1993-1995 model years epitomized Japanese ingenuity and is precisely what lures people like Vidjai Doerga into owning one.
The body style baited Vidjai the 1st time he saw it down the Miami shoreline more than 15 years ago. With its sultry lines that converge into sleek, pop-up headlamps and its technical marvel of twin turbochargers that result in 255 hp, Mazda’s FD-chassis RX-7 isn’t a person to be forgotten, even though he wouldn’t call one his very own for several years. An initial for any Japanese automaker, the company’s sequential turbocharger system was the makings for automotive legend. Partially created by Hitachi, the design is composed of one particular turbocharger that begins spinning full song at 1,800 rpm and is later joined at 4,500 rpm by its accomplice. The results really are aThe Ideal Specimen
None of this escapes Vidjai, which is why, despite his aspirations for almost doubling his Mazda’s power output, an individual-turbo conversion or eight-cylinder engine swap never happened. Instead, he pursued more power with assistance from matching GReddy TD05-18G turbochargers. Manufactured by OEM supplier Mitsubishi Heavy Industries only for GReddy and used as an aftermarket alternative for pretty much every make imaginable, TD05 designates the assembly’s turbine side and 18G its compressor. A rare RE Amemiya exhaust manifold of which only six exist, according to Vidjai, was also unearthed from the depths of the Japanese tuning company’s warehouse, and serves as a beacon for when this RX-7 build went, in its owner’s words: “haywire”.
“It wasn’t really supposed to go this far,” Vidjai says. “After getting the manifold, everything changed.” Right about now could be when the 22 year-old student’s modest, mid-’90s sports car build turned into something more. The engine was disassembled with a 500whp target in sight, a standalone engine management system from A’PEXi was added, and, through his regular job resources at wheel manufacturer ISS Forged, a one-off group of custom rims was machined solely for his RX-7. “That’s among theit was something special. “I’ve been around cars since I was actually a toddler,” he says. If you ask Vidjai, though, late nights playing Gran Turismo is what really attracted him to Mazda’s last true sports car, and despite internet warnings of how volatile rotary engines may be, he pursued one anyway, “I started off building cars with my father years ago.”. “It had been a Porsche-killer. It was actually so far before its time.” That’s all Vidjai needs to say about why he wanted one. And about those supposedly volatile rotary engines, well, Vidjai sums it best: “People don’t really understand rotaries. You can’t treat them like a piston engine. There are plenty of misconceptions about them.”
Such misconceptions originate not from the shortcomings of an engine design that operates on merits of efficiency and simplicity but from the abuse any 20 year-old factory turbocharged sports vehicle is likely to have endured. Before settling, this is precisely why Vidjai waited nearly three years for the ideal combination of seller and car. “The lady didn’t really know what the car was,” he tells of your previous owner, going on to explain how, right after a thorough investigation, he’d come to the conclusion that it had been a long period since the never-modified engine had spun anywhere past 3,000 rpm or, much less, put its second turbo to use. “The secondary turbo’s valve was sealed shut from never being used. I had to chisel it off,” he says. Still, it was the cleanest RX-7 he’d ever seen, together with only 67,000 miles accumulated, a greater specimen of Mazda’s final U.S.-bound turbocharged sports car there never was, according to Vidjai.A tough-to-find URAS Type-GT bumper was added in the beginning along with widebody fenders all around from FEED. An oversized Garage B.B. carbon-fiber wing and RE Amemiya carbon-fiber bits, like a rear diffuser and taillight covers were also installed-all of which give Vidjai’s RX-7 a look all its own. Even though the entire car was assembled nearly on his own, save for welding and fabrication, he admits that it would not have looked as good as it does now without the assistance of the good people at Miami Autoworks and a couple of other accomplices: “The car’sdesign and layout, and all sorts of-around awesomeness would not have happened without my big brothers Janoy Fuentes and Steven Gietel.”
“I built this car to follow it, and that’s things i plan on doing,” Vidjai says of what’s next. An SCCA-approved rollcage along with a tune good for 500 whp are also in the agenda. Think about the high school fantasy accomplished.