Nobuteru Taniguchi, NOB (No One Better), The Pimp. A boyish racing driver and a drifter from the land of the rising sun. He was born on May 18th 1971 in the province of Hiroshima. Some interesting facts, Taniguchi-san began his motorsports career quite late in life. At about the age of 30. Prior to that, he started out racing minibikes and won a Honda sponsored All Japan Mini Bike race.
As soon as he hit 18, he got himself the legendary AE86 Hachiroku and all the common antiques of a Japanese Racing Driver began. I guess many of you would have seen the clip on Option Videos or Best Motoring where Taniguchi-san went all balls out on the Touge with his trusty little hachiroku.
Back in the day, Taniguchi-san worked with Car Make T&E, a bodykit company owned by a well-known drifter, Takahiro Ueno. Until today, both Taniguchi-san and Ueno-san are still good friends and they are actually neighbours!
Back in 1999, Taniguchi-san caught the attention of HKS when he won a Suzuka Clubman Race in a Honda Civic sponsored by Bride. HKS then proceeded to signing him up as a test driver for HKS as well as sponsoring his S15 Silvia Drift car. He won the first season of D1 Grand Prix in 2001 for HKS and also campaigned in USA while driving the HKS USA Mitsubishi Evolution Car & Driver Super Tuner Challenge against top US contenders beating his nearest competitor by 3 seconds.
He then went on to set the day’s faster quarter mile, 0-60 and road course times at the same event! By 2004, he set a 54.37second lap time around Tsukuba Circuit with the HKS Time Attack Lancer Evo 7 and broke his own timing again in 2007 while driving an all carbon fibered body HKS CT230R Mitsubishi Evolution which set the bar high at that point of time with a record timing of 53.589 seconds.
During that point of time, Taniguchi-san switched his S15 for an Altezza, which he campaigned but did not go well for him. (I fell in love with the Altezza then!) It is safe to say that HKS and Taniguchi-san has a very strong relationship throughout the years. Which leads to this car, the HKS R35 GT1000+.
This is HKS’s reason built time attack beast. It aims directly towards the WTAC. Till date it is still the fastest R35 to lap circuits around the world eg; Fuji Speedway & Sydney Motorsport Park. HKS is a company that encompasses its specialties in building engines and tuning parts. It is also a company that puts total balance of a car first when developing parts.
Their three important points in racing fast; Acceleration, Cornering and Braking. HKS always pride themselves in tuning their cars to a high level while maintaining a balance of these three elements. They do not just blindly increase power but tune their cars so as not to destroy the balance of the vehicle.
The GT1000+ was designed to compete on the international stages, specifically in the R35 GT-R class of the World Time Attack Challenge in Australia (Sydney Motorsport Park). Taniguchi-san managed to pull the fastest GT-R time around Fuji Speedway during the HKS Premium Day making this monster another success story that came out from the company’s Fujinomiya factory.
With a strong partnership with HKS, Taniguchi-san is HKS’s driver of choice to manhandle this beast as we have seen just recently during ZTH TTA 2015 final round. With an impressive timing of 2:07:193 under harsh conditions, it is safe to say that this combo partnership is lethal.
The car is kitted with a BenSopra front bumper and spoiler section that keeps the front wheels planted firmly on the ground. Proven again as we saw the car flying by the main straight at 290km/h. The bumper is connected to a wider and vented fender that helps to house the massive 20×11 Advan Racing GT Wheels!
Seeing that HKS and Yokohama has been in a long time partnership, it is just natural that they came out with the wheels and also GT-R specific performance tyre; the A005 for the GT1000+. To stop the rocket from an acceleration of 290km/h, HKS fitted the car with a 6-pot monoblock Endless calipers at each corner with E-grooved Endless floating rotors. The Hypermax IV, a refined version of the adjustable coilver system that HKS has been evolving along with car was paired up along with the impressive wheels and tires.
The rear of the car is also fitted with a BenSopra rear bumper and diffuser. That is then coupled with a Miura-special bumper-mounted GT Wing. Besides that, HKS extended the diffuser fins and cut out the center section to accommodate to the custom single-exit exhaust.
As mentioned previously, HKS has always focus on total balance hence putting the GT1000+ on a strict diet. The heavy rear glass was stripped and replaced it with a lighter FRP cover. The roof was stripped as well to give way for a carbon roof. Craft Square came onboard with their famous and mean looking carbon side mirrors.
Moving on to the engine department, HKS’s goal for this build was to juice out an immense power out of the VR38DETT. So much power that never been reached in any time attack car before. 1300hp is mad figures even for HKS standards. Hence the spectacular timing only GT300 / 500 and F1 cars can surpass. Being of a total balance wasn’t just enough.
HKS wanted to create something powerful yet at the same time reliable. Something that they do not need to pull out and rebuilt after every single event. The engine is stroked up to 4.1L. The bottom end was made to take the abuse of 2.0bar of boost for long periods of time. The engine currently runs on a 9.0:1 compression ratio.
The heads were given a healthy workout and matched with the best cams to give the best response at mid range. With 130kgf-m of torque, Tanaguchi-san will definitely enjoy all the response. All six cylinders are being fed by better flowing HKS intake plenums.
It also provides mounting places for the additional injectors that were used along with this setup. 12 575cc sprayers to keep the electric throttle response going and all of this was handled by an HKS F Con V PRO which Tanaguchi-san can control with the cabin-mounted EVC 6 boost controller. The car is basically oozing with power and torque. With such immense amount of torque on the tap, the driveline will definitely suffer. This is where HKS’s brainiacs came into play. A strengthened gearbox upgrade was developed. With some stronger wider billet gears and an upgraded twin-clutch setting, the car could fully utilize all the power it is making.
The interior also went on a strict diet course. Not only was the roof switched out for a carbon fiber piece, the bonnet and doors got the same treatment as well. With the Lexan windows replacing all the glasses, the entire weight of the car dropped a whooping 210kg to 1,530kg.
HKS fabricated a one off roll cage for rigidity and safety. All the trims and carpeting were stripped revealing more carbon that seals off the cabin from the trunk area. The dashboard is the same one as Daigo Saito is using for his Formula D GT-R.
Not only does it look sweet but also it doubles up as a good way to hide all the nasty Japanese spec wiring that the monster is coiled up with.
A Bride full race bucket has been mounted in a fixed position.
No heavy seat rails to be seen anywhere. And given that this car is only meant to be driven by Taniguchi-san and him alone, there isn’t a need for any adjustments. Check out the cool driver name embodiment on the seats!
HKS has done a marvelous job with this car. But many would still compare the timing of this monster to a GT500 machine. In my opinion, with the right aero package, I would not doubt that this car couldn’t hold its place with the big boys. But that isn’t what HKS has in mind for this car. So let’s just enjoy this beautiful creation and all its marvelous punches the car brings.