MY.IS forum has been greatly helpful building our race cars, so I would like to share our project.
We are located in Korea, and my friend and I have been building two IS200 race cars since Nov. of 2011.
Since Lexus IS200 were one of very few FR import car that were imported officially thru Lexus Korea since late 90s, it was one of cheapest FR cars you can buy in Korea market.
(For those who wonder, RHD JDM Altezza was NOT officially imported.)
As you know IS200 is pretty sad car with 155hp I-6 & 4-speed auto.
So we planned to swap the 3S-GE engine with 6-sp.
Due to displacement regulation of the league we are attending, we didn't bother with 2JZ.
2JZ would also increase the running cost this car in our country much higher due to its displacement.
Overall, we are building amateur club race car that won't break the bank.
Also car has to be driven on the street time to time.
(mostly on the way to the track)
Here are specs of the car we planned.
We are aiming total of US$35k for each to buy/build the complete race car.
(The budget is extremely subjective since we are located in Korea)
-. 3S-GE w/6-sp swap.
-. 6-point welded roll-cage.
-. Stripped Interior.
-. The car has to be "street-able" since we have to drive the car to track. Has to retain AC/Audio.
-. FIA approved front seats.
-. FIA approved 6-point harness
-. Wheel/Suspension work to be run competitive time in our class.
-. Reliable/low-cost running race car for at least next 5 years. (Maybe I will buy used FT86 later.
-. Tires : Radials (no slicks). Our class has spec tires, so we have to run Hankook R-S3 or TD.
I will be posting/updating the thread periodically as we proceed.
1. Buying IS200 from used car market.
It only costed us about US$5,000 to pick up MY01 IS200 with 100k miles on it.
It's extremely low price considering high price import car market that Korea has. (for example, brand new GS350 goes about $65k+)
Both cars(Grey-mine, White-friend's) were extremely clean condition.
Front end had some minor accident.(no frame damage) which is expect-able for 10+ year old car.
White one had been riced out by previous owner with LED tails and replica wheels. lol
2. Take it to track.
I know it's lame to take IS200 to track, but I had a chance to take it to track the day I bought the car. lol
I was also very fortunate to run the car in F1 track in Korea.
I didn't have a chance to take good pictures of the IS200 running at track.
This is only one picture I got right before I get into track.
Although the IS200 was light and nimble around the corners, it was seriously lacking power esp with 4-speed auto.
Also the steering pump was over-heat very quickly. 1-2 laps were enough to make PS whine.
As I expected, engine swap with some diet on weight will make this car very competent in our class.(2.0L NA, 1150kg, No-VTEC)
I have started to order goodies such as engine, suspension, etc from US, Japan, Italy, HK, Taiwan, UK.
While parts are being delivered, I have planned to start taking interior apart for roll-cage work.
The 1st race is being held on March 11th.
So the car needs to run by end of Feb.
Here are last pictures of the car in "stock form" lol