Article Index
The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13
Page 2
All Pages

The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13

In recent years, Formula D cars have increasingly pushed the limits of technology and complexity in an effort to maximize the grip of the tires they run on. Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire Falken S13 is refreshingly simple, utilizing one of the oldest chassis in the series and a slew of off-the-shelf parts to build a simple yet effective drift car.


The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13 The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13
The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13 The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13 The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13

With the right minds on the team and one of the most experienced drift car drivers on the grid, the car has proven to be one of the best cars on the grid in the past two seasons, scoring four event wins and three additional podiums. Interestingly enough, the car was initially pieced together with a slew of parts from the Falken Tire race car warehouse.

Back in 2009, Dai Yoshihara was driving a V8-powered IS 350 which was the epitome of technology in drift cars. The car featured a fully-built high horsepower V8 motor sandwiched into a modern chassis with rear-mount radiators, an elaborately engineered set of custom suspension arms, yet would finish no higher than the top 32. Unfortunately, the car had an untimely meeting with the wall (the wall won), which left the team with just eight days to find a replacement car to finish the season. Back in Los Angeles, the team resurrected the former S13 coupe chassis from Ross Petty, snagged anLS2 crate motor which sat in Ben Schwartz’s Saturn Sky during the 2007 season (before the car was totaled in a crash), and put together enough parts to get the car running and FD-legal again. Amazingly, after nearly no sleep for anyone on the team during those eight days, the car arrived in Sonoma, California and was competitive right out of the gate. Yoshihara went on to earn a top 16 and top eight in the final two events, proving the car was competitive.

The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13

Over the past two seasons, the car has evolved into its current form, and is now two full rebuilds removed from the eight-day wonder. The only things left from the original build are the VIN number and driver’s name on the door. Over the winter, the car was stripped to bare chassis, mediablasted, seam welded, and rebuilt from bare metal. Scott Dodgion of SPD Metalworks is responsible for all aspects relating to the build of the car, having been a crew chief on Formula D teams since the first year of the series in 2004. Due to the tire-to-weight rule introduced this year, the car had to actually gain several pounds in order to be legal for the 275mm wide Falken tire. Dodgion used that as an opportunity to beef up the roll cage and build additional protection into the tubular trunk and front end supports to prevent damage in a car-to-car collision.

The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13 The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13 The Red Dragon: Daijiro Yoshihara’s Discount Tire/Falken Tire S13

A GM LS2 crate motor (which had been replaced with an upgraded motor in 2010) was ditched for a fully-built LS7 motor from Redline Performance in Anaheim, which pushes out well over 500 horsepower from the 13:1 compression 427 cubic inch naturally-aspirated motor. The motor is mated to a FAST intake manifold, 102mm throttle body, and custom intake with K&N filter. Spent gases are spewed out custom headers and thru the 5” ovular exhaust. All engine vitals are controlled by a Motec MLS ECU. Cooling is managed by the massive Griffin dual-pass radiator. Next to the radiator, a pair of coolers- one for oil and another for power steering- keep everything from boiling over. Putting the power to the ground, a G-force GSR transmission is mated to a McLeod twin-disc clutch, and power spins thru the Winters quick-change rear diff which is equipped with a spool for traction control.



More Vehicle Features

Kung Fu Grip: Daniel Elson's 2006 Dodge Charger R/T

I’m not sure who said it first, but I’ve always stuck with the philosophy that you are only as good as your last project car. It doesn’t matter what you did “back in tha day” but rather what have you…
Read More

Overdrive: True Grit - DTA 2008 Scion xB

What do you do when you have a 2008 second generation Scion xB, and want the car to make 400hp reliably on 91 octane pump gas, as is dispensed in California? If you’re Johan “Yo” Esbensen, co-owner of Rogue Status…
Read More

Sick Wit It: Dennis Som's 1994 Nissan 240SX

Written by Dave Pankew | Photos By Adam Cha - TYC photography I know what you are thinking. “Oh golly gee, I’m so friggin’ ecstatic to see another 240 with Silvia parts, I can barely contain myself.” Don’t worry, it…
Read More

Hidden Treasure: Steve Meade's 2011 Lexus ISF

Brand loyalty is a coveted asset in the automotive marketplace. Every manufacturer strives to craft a following of enthusiasts of a certain sort: people who are well-enough off to be able to afford its vehicles, thus ensuring the company's continued…
Read More

City Slicker

For the money, there isn’t much that can beat the style, prestige and performance of a BMW M3. With hot styling and all kinds of appeal, the aftermarket has pounced on platform with plenty of performance parts. The team at…
Read More