NZ Performance Car

NZ Performance Car No 279 March 2020


Since 1996 New Zealand Performance Car has been the voice of the country’s modified import car scene. It was there to see the first import 10-second quarter mile run, there when the first official drift battle ensued, there when the first show trophies were handed out, and there to bring NZ its very first Super Lap time attack event. Each month the very best of NZ’s modified import car scene is served up. It’s New Zealand’s number 1 selling monthly motoring magazine and is New Zealand’s import performance authority and for good reason…it leaves the others for dust.

New Zealand
Parkside Media


2020 celebrations

Hey everybody, it’s a new year, hip hip hooray! My start to the year in terms of cars was a slow one. I spent more time watching from the sidelines than actively racing as I’d planned to, but that’s race car building; sometimes it just does not go your way. You just have to roll with the punches — not throw your toys out of the cot — and focus on problem solving. That’s enough about my race season shortcomings. What I really want to talk about are some local successes that I think are worth shouting about, and kicking 2020 off with a positive vibe. First of those was the Hoonigan video featuring local wheelman, Carl Thompson. Carl is a talented car builder, someone who knows how to piece together…

the good old days

I won’t pretend I’ve been around It’s fair to say forever, because, compared to many familiar names in the modified car fraternity, I’ve been here for only a blip on the timeline. However, in my 15-plus years of attending the local shows, pedalling cars, spinning spanners, and hosting my own grassroots events, I have seen a thing or two and it feels like a decent chunk of time to me. So it always impresses me when some of the early pioneers start rattling off a good 20 to 30 years of history as if it were yesterday; stories of events that are now household names kicking off with a hiss and a roar of delinquency and public menace; the trial and error of taking whatever you could get your hands on…

kiwi asia le mans trio dnf

Despite a dominant run for the better part of the 4 Hours of The Bend, Kiwi trio Dan Gaunt, Nick Cassidy, and Shane Van Gisbergen were forced to retire early and give up a possible podium finish. Both Cassidy and late call-up Van Gisbergen debuted at Eurasia Motorsport for the second round of the championship alongside Gaunt, with Cassidy qualifying on the front row in a Ligier JS P217. Gaunt led much of the opening stint, and, at the end of the first hour, the Kiwi trio led, with the second of the Eurasia Motorsport entries in third. Gaunt was relieved by van Gisbergen followed by Cassidy getting in for the final stint. The run to the finish was a battle between the Kiwi trio and the G-Drive-run Aurus 01, where…

disgraced nissan ceo escapes japan

Carlos Ghosn was once a giant of the automotive industry, having served as CEO of Michelin North America, chairman and CEO of Renault, chairman and CEO of Nissan, chairman of Mitsubishi Motors, and chairman and CEO of the Renault–Nissan–Mitsubishi Alliance. But it was his time at Nissan that saw him brought up on financial misconduct charges in Japan, and, as of December 2019, an internationally wanted fugitive. The disgraced ex-Nissan boss posted a ¥1 billion (NZ$13,743,960) bond, which mandated a 24-hour camera installed outside his house, restricted access to technology, and a ban from travelling abroad. It was the latter that caused controversy after Ghosn seemingly appeared out of nowhere in Lebanon on New Year’s Eve, stating that he had “escaped injustice and political persecution”. Authorities claim that Ghosn orchestrated the escape…

cmr on the hunt for crew

After chasing big records in 2019 with its SR-powered streamliner, the team at Cook Motor Racing (CMR) is looking towards a whole new set of goals for 2020 and the future. The aim is to crack the 500mph mark — yes, that’s 500 miles per hour, over 800kph — with its streamliner platform. To do this, CMR plans to expand with the build of ‘Wairua 2’, a successor to the current ‘Wairua’ streamliner, and has plans to run its own land-speed-racing event based in Bolivia. What that means is that the team is looking for new additions with a range of skills and that Kiwi can-do attitude. “[We’re] trying to do the impossible. This will not be easy, but it will be [the] adventure of a lifetime,” explains Reg Cook. “The main…

toyota 86 gets boost

Whether you loved it or you hated it, the Toyota 86 was a shining hope in a sea of mundane, economy-driven offerings. Built with a ton of handling and not a lot of go, it was the low-power sports car that drivers had been longing for. Reviews were mixed, with some loving its corner-happy ability, and others slating it for being unresponsive at low rpm and slow in a straight line. The question as to why it wasn’t offered with a turbocharged option has been raised more times than chief engineer Tetsuya Tada cares to answer; however, he explains that, despite being a collaboration with Subaru and there being numerous boosted incarnations of its naturally aspirated (NA) boxer engine, it wasn’t the vision Toyota had for this new-age AE86 successor. Its…