Unlike Subaru, Scion is still a relative newbie to the Rally America scene, having only raced in the series for one year before this season. But now that it’s got its maiden experience out of the way, Scion is preparing to be more of a factor in the series’ two-wheel-drive class.
Championing their cause is the new 2013 Scion xD Rally Car, an innocuous model that has been turned into a full-fledged rally car with a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that has likewise been force-fed with a GReddy turbocharger. Add some rally-spec components, redesign the interior for rally purposes, slap on the obligatory sponsor logos, and you have a race car that’s primed and ready to get down and dirty.
The make the xD Rally Car more competitive this year, scion bumped up its horsepower – the amount remains undisclosed, of course – added in an all-new suspension system and better balanced the awkward-looking xD’s weight distribution.
Of course, Scion has no illusions of being a straight-up contender to the mighty Subaru team. But considering that they’re just entering their second year of competition, we’d be very disappointed if Scion doesn’t build on the foundation they set last year and get some winning results in the two-wheel-drive class.
Click past the jump to read Scion’s full press release
Matt Farah understands what makes for a sick race car. The host of Tuned has probably even seen and driven it all, yet there’s no mistaking the excitement in his voice when he was afforded the opportunity to check out VCMC Motorsports’ turbo-packed Scion FR-S at the Chukwalla Raceway in California.
As for the car itself, it was made in Canada by VCMC and Shift Auto Challenge as part of the Canadian version of the FR-S Tuner Challenge (the U.S. versions were all on display at SEMA). In achieving the 350-horsepower output on this FR-S, VCMC installed a motorsports-grade turbo kit, added nine pounds of boost and fitted KW Variant 3 coilovers, all while stripping down the interior to get rid of all the unnecessary components that don’t have a place in a full-blown race car, thus reducing the weight to about 2,400 pounds.
As you can imagine, Farah was impressed with the car after taking it out for a few laps at Chukwalla. We’d probably be as impressed too, if we had a chance to sit behind the wheel and go for a few laps, but we trust in Farah’s judgment. If it’s good for him, it’s good for us.
Besides, when you put 350 horses on that boxer-four engine and strip down the weight in the process, you know you have a pretty darn good weekend racer to play with.
The SEMA Auto Show has come and gone, yet some aftermarket companies are still in the process of unveiling their project cars on the Web. One of these companies is Vivid Racing who has finally released details on its SEMA Scion FR-S project car.
We don’t mind getting information about this car so late because it’s pretty sick to begin with and proves that some things really are worth the wait. For this program, Vivid Racing took the task of giving the FR-S a far more aggressive look and it accomplished that by first giving the sports coupe an INGs aero kit. The kit includes a new front bumper, side skirts, rear spats, and a carbon fiber GT wing which makes the FR-S look like a bonafide road warrior.
A new carbon fiber hood and a carbon fiber trunk were also added and come courtesy of Seibon. With these new materials in tow, the FR-S already weighs 40 lbs less than its standard trim. Add the carbon mirror covers and carbon fender inserts from Agency Power, two sets of 19-inch Niche Wheels — the driver side features a tinted brushed and gold multi-spoke with polished lip design, and the passenger side features a matte black thick 5-spoke design with a dark smoke brushed lip — wrapped in Toyo tires and a set of upgraded Brembo GT brakes, and you have the full breadth of Vivid Racing’s exterior package for the FR-S.
Meanwhile, the interior of the car received its share of upgrades, too. Ring GT-X carbon fiber bucket seats in black ultra-suede with red stitching and 5-point, red, FIA-approved harnesses all come by way of Status Racing. Agency Power also supplied a bolt-in harness bar and a billet shift knob to round out the interior package.
Last but certainly not least are the engine upgrades. Though no official numbers were given, Vivid Racing, together with Agency Power, really went to town in giving the FR-S improved power, highlighted by adding updated versions of the sports car’s headers, overpipe, and cutback. They also installed a short ram Agency Power intake kit and a lightweight aluminum crank pulley, as well as dual 4.5" titanium exhaust tips. To help keep the power under control, a large sway bar on the rear, full CNC-machined adjustable control arms, and sway bar links were installed.
Okay, we all pretty much figured that the BRZ and FR-S would likely have a strong presence in SEMA this year, as it was only one of the most talked about cars all year. To boot, with Toyota and Subaru dragging their collective feet about releasing higher-performance models, aftermarket companies have been working double-time to develop performance parts to hop up its 200-horsepower 4-banger engine.
Our colleagues over at Rides magazine managed to compile a gallery chock-full of just about every BRZ and FR-S at SEMA. We’re not too sure if this is a complete list of the examples at SEMA, but the total count in the gallery is 50 different examples – all but one or two are of the FR-S. We’re not too sure exactly how many cars showed up for SEMA this year, but we can say with some confidence that the FR-S takes the trophy for most heavily represented at the show.
Check out our gallery to see all of the examples that Rides provided us.
The Scion FR-S has stolen the show at SEMA and not just because the company set up a tuning challenge for three companies to compete in. It looks like most of the tuning packages seen in Las Vegas were based on the tiny sports coupe, with some of the most impressive ones being the FR-S GT by Daniel Song and the FR-S Evasive Motorsports.
Along with the other tuning packages released, Ken Stout Racing (KSR) has unveiled the FR-S Pirelli World Challenge Race Car that will be raced in the Pirelli World Challenge GTS class starting March 2013. Their FR-S has been fully equipped for the race track, receiving a full roll cage, a five-point safety harness, an OMP flat-bottom steering wheel, and a Racetech racing seat. The car sits on a new set of 18" wheels wrapped in Pirelli P Zero tires and features a huge APR carbon-fiber wing that helps improve aerodynamics.
Under the hood, the car’s standard boxer engine has received a TRD supercharger, a C&R radiator, and JE forged pistons. Other additions include a new Vertex exhaust system, a new suspension, and new racing brakes.
At the 2012 SEMA Show, we got a look at a few Scion (Toyota) sponsored FR-S models featuring superchargers strapped to the tops of their 200-horsepower boxer engines. With that, we began wondering if Toyota was planning to add a supercharger to the FR-S mix and if this was a way to see how the FR-S would respond to it. Sure, Toyota played the denial game in terms of a turbocharged model, but nothing was ever said about a supercharger.
A new report from Car and Driver, following a sit down with TRD at SEMA, is showing that there is interest in adding a supercharger to the line of manufacturer-backed performance upgrades. While there is still no official confirmation, the pure fact that TRD would confirm that there is interest pretty much locks it in. Manufacturers will rarely offer up information on unconfirmed products, let alone let loose that there is an interest.
There, of course, are no specifications to release yet, as TRD is obviously still in R&D mode with this experiment. Given Toyota has to strap a warranty to this package; we wouldn’t expect to see much more than about 6 pounds of boost. While there are too many variables to be accurate on estimate output, this would likely equate out to a 60 to 70-horsepower gain from a supercharger on top of the Scion’s engine.
For now, we are simply speculating, but a 270-horsepower, supercharged FR-S sure does sound like load of fun to us! We’ll keep a very close eye on this situation and get you updates as soon as they come out.
Known mostly for their works on promulgating the hip-hop, break dancing, and graffiti scenes in San Francisco, Fatlace has evolved into acompany that’s also dug in deep in the aftermarket auto industry. At SEMA, they took a project Scion FR-S that they’ve been working on for quite some time, back when it was completely bone stock, and turned it into a stunning sports car with some of the zaniest aftermarket work.
The objective for Fatlace was to build a car that would showcase the right combination of aftermarket offerings into one exciting sports car. The first order of business, apart from disassembling the FR-S, was to give it a new aero kit, which they did by way of Rocket Bunny. With the new Rocket Bunny kit, Fatlace managed to channel the FR-S’ aggressiveness and added bolt-on fenders, a redesigned front and rear bumper, and a new rear diffuser. Lightwerkz LED headlights were also part of the package, as were the new set of Limited TE37SL wheels in gunmetal grey wrapped in Toyo Proxes RS1 tires and complemented by Brembo Gran Turismo front and rear brakes.
Inside, Fatlace kept the modifications at a minimum, opting only to install a pair of their Illest x Bride Zieg III Type R carbon fiber - and FIA-approved - bucket seats. These seats come with Bride’s Low Max seating position, enhancing the view of the road for the driver. Takata Racing’s new harness system, in black with Takata Green accents, was also installed, to keep the driver in their seats when things get a little hairy.
It’s no secret that the FR-S isn’t exactly a powerhouse on wheels. So to give the car an added roar, Fatlace installed Vortex’s new bolt-on supercharger system to go with a Koyo radiator to help keep the engine’s mechanics cool. A Cusco power brace was also installed, as well as a new stainless steel dual exhaust system from Greddy that gave the FR-S the kind of deep growl it deserves.
Daniel Song’s FR-S GT was pretty sweet, but we think it ultimately failed due to the fact that it was a little to, shall we say, “Ricey” for the true enthusiast. We’re sure it performs admirably, but the massive wing on the back and matte black paint just screams “circa 1996 Civic DX ‘racecar.’” John Toca’s project was definitely up there, but he ultimately skimped out a little bit on the engine, resorting to an air-to-air intercooler and a cat-back exhaust system. On the inside and outside, however, Toca’s creation was gorgeous.
This leaves just one car left as the winner and that is good old “minty FReSh” by Chris Basselgia. Chris installed a smooth exterior package and covered it in an awesome paint color, then tinkered just a little bit with the audio system. Inside, Chris made some mild styling changes to set off the FR-S, like distressed leather, leather-trimmed floor mats, and a wood-grain steering wheel. Where we think Chris really made his victory a sure thing is under the skin of the FR-S.
As with all of the other competitors, Chris installed a supercharger, but he took great care in making sure that forced air remained cool, by installing a water-to-air intercooler and a heat exchanger. On top of that, he also fitted it with a CNC-milled intake manifold upgraded the cooling system, installed a full exhaust system, added in an air-ride system and upgraded the brakes. He really stretched that $10K a long way and came out with an extra $15K in prize money in his pocket.
Congrats, Chris. Hopefully Scion lets you keep the FR-S you built, but we doubt it.
US tuner Evasive Motorsports has built a reputation as one of the most dynamic auto tuners in the country and they’ve accomplished that by doing things their way. Whereas other tuners prefer the tried-and-tested method of slapping as much horsepower in a car as it can take, Evasive has adhered to the Japanese way of aftermarket customization, one where overall balance is the most important thing.
We bring this up because Evasive Motorsports is coming to the 2012 SEMA Auto Show with a custom-tuned version of the Scion FR-S and it looks deliriously stunning.
So stunning, in fact, that it hurts to think that we probably wouldn’t see this car outside SEMA. We could be wrong, and we certainly hope we are, but for now, we’re going to enjoy this finely-tuned FR-S at the 2012 SEMA Auto Show. If there’s one thing this race-spec sports car has shown us, it’s that Scion and Evasive Motorsports make for a pretty darn good team.
Find out more about the Scion FR-S by Evasive Motorsports after the jump.
The second entry in Scion’sFR-S tuner competition, which competitors have $15K to build the most bad-ass FR-S for a change to win $10K, is Chris Basselgia’s entrant “minty FReSh” – you see what he did there? This custom FR-S creation, much like the “Carbon Stealth” before it, takes a much calmer approach to tuning.
Much like his competitor, John Toca, Basselgia left off all of the gaudy bodywork and focused mainly on a clean design. That’s not to say that his “minty FReSh” concept is free of any additions to the body, he was simply more careful and calculated with where he placed them. This ultimately brings the focus to the performance interior styling and sound system in the “minty Fresh” FR-S.
So, is Chris’ “minty Fresh” Scion FR-S up to the challenge of beating out its other two competitors and taking home the top prize of $10K?
Click past the jump to read our full review and find out.