From zero to hero in less than 10 seconds. It did not take more than Tanner Foust’s first run to show the potential that he held in the drifting world with his AEM-built Nissan 350Z.
Advanced Engine Management (or AEM) entered the scene in 2006 with a new 350Z which was built from the ground up in an astounding twelve week period. In it’s second race, Tanner Foust and the brand new AEM 350Z already had claimed their first victory.
The 350Z that AEM acquired was built specifically for drifting competitions. The first step taken was to upgrade the motor, Nissan ’s popular 3.5 liter V6, with forged components (such as JE pistons/rings, Eagle connecting rods, etc) capable of handling their target horsepower. With the help of two of Garrett’s finest turbos and AEM’s top of the line engine management products, the power is bumped from 250 to 450 wheel hp. Some of the products featured by AEM are: their universal engine management system, fuel pressure regulator, wideband O2 sensor, along with a set of Bosch 500cc/min fuel injectors. All of these fuel management modifications help provide the greater need for fuel to balance the added air provided by the Garrett twins. In the suspension department, the AEM 350z sports a custom Tokico coil-over suspension with a combination of JIC and Battle Version suspension links. These suspension components are the reason as to why Foust’s car slides smoothly, with no visible body roll whatsoever.
Surprisingly, AEM trusted Nissan in the quality of their OEM products as two major components in the car were kept fairly stock: the drivetrain and the brakes. The stock transmission has been taking the demanding abuse without any grinds or whines, even with the toughness of a ACT 6-puck, single plate clutch, and the Nismo 1.5-way clutch-type LSD. This combination yielded a good balance that allows the motor to put all of it’s horses to the ground with no hassle. The brakes were also kept close to stock. AEM kept the factory Brembo brake calipers and matched them with a set of Axxis brake pads and Motul fluid. This combination provides more than enough stopping power for the 450whp beast.
To complete the look of the car, AEM moved to work the exterior. The car is painted with a two-tone between black and Lamborghini yellow, to ensure that the car stands out in the crowd. The car currently uses a Versus bodykit, tagged along with Seiben front fenders and hatch, an addition of a Rotora wing, and a custom rear fender design by MOB Works, the shop who put all of this exterior package together and painted in under three weeks.
Since its debut in 2006, the AEM Nissan 350Z already proved to be a great success on the track. This year, AEM is back and determined to win by currently holding the first place in the championship standings for Formula D. Keep your eyes open and expect to see great things from AEM and Tanner Foust this year.