Our Lexus GS300 giveaway car started life as a completely stock car, that had been previously loved for 20 years by the same family.
Since then it has come a long way to what it is today, with almost everything from the original vehicle having been replaced, upgraded or repaired.
If you haven't entered the competition to win this vehicle, check it out here:
This car was originally purchased by us as we had a spare set of HSD coilovers laying around that weren't being put to use. So the plan was, buy the car, lower it and make it a cheap, reliable daily-driver.
After owning it a few months, we had decided that this was going to be our next giveaway car and started planning what we wanted to do with it.
Originally we planned to do a mild build on the car, with a fresh paint job, wheels, suspension and a bolt-on turbo kit as the 2JZ-GE that comes in these cars are quite strong as they are. We set out on our mission to transform the car into something unique, a representation of what we do at FAF Automotive.
We started by stripping the car down to a complete bare shell. This included removing the powerplant, interior, rear subframe and cleaning everything we could, ready for its makeover.
Quite early on in the build process, we decided we weren't going to stick with the stock 2JZ-GE internals, and decided we were going to build it. This is where things started to spiral out of control!
We settled on a Nitto bottom end and Kelford head for our 2JZ, which meant everything else would need to be upgraded accordingly to suit the power the engine was capable of.
Along came the Plazmaman intake plenum and fuel rail, 6Boost manifold, Garrett GTX3584rs turbocharger, Haltech engine management and a host of other goodies. To supply enough fuel, we opted for a multi-pump Radium surge tank mounted in the boot, with 3 x Walbro 450's and were going to have to make our own custom fuel lines. With all that boost, we had to make sure the fuel could keep up.
At this point in time, the engine bay had been painted and the car was sent away for its fresh coat of BMW Chestnut Brown. In the meantime we decided to ditch the stock A340 gearbox and opted for a Turbo 400 and custom torque converter, a much more capable package for the car. Early on we knew we wanted to keep the car automatic for two reasons; keep the car as an easy to drive, luxury cruiser, and to make sure whoever wins the vehicle was able to drive it.
As well as this, the rear differential was upgraded to a KAAZ 1.5 Way LSD and had a custom tail shaft made. At this point we were shooting for 600HP and wanted to make sure the power got to the ground efficiently. There's no point having massive power and no traction.
Once we received the car back from paint, it was time to start reassembling the interior. To fit our luxury theme, the factory seats, door cards and steering wheel needed a complete makeover. We sent all parts off to Platinum Trimming to be reupholstered in custom leather to match the rest of the vehicle.
The sound system was also upgraded at the same time, so the owner can cruise in style listening to their favourite tunes. New speakers, an amplifier and a boot mounted sub to polish off the sound system were fitted by Gold Coast Car Sound.
With our Haltech IC-7 Dash now mounted in place, the interior was something special. Luxury, discreet, 5 comfortable seats, with a hint of race car.
With the interior back together, the engine was now ready to be put back into its home and start working on the fuel setup. With all of the ancillaries bolted onto the engine, we could run our new Aeroflow braided fuel lines from the surge tank to the fuel tank and fuel rail. If you've never built your own fuel system, this was possibly one of the most frustrating parts, as you always miss fittings or judge angles incorrectly and end up needing more parts.
Not long after, we had our tyres fitted and the new wheels were mounted to the car. We setup the suspension as low as possible, sticking with the luxury/baller theme but also knew the car was going to squat considerably under load. After a few refinements to make sure there was no rubbing, we had our final height set.
With the car now rolling and the engine set in place, we sent the car over to our friend Mitch from MFAB Custom Fabrication to have our custom exhaust, intercooler piping and general fab done.
To maximise exhaust flow, we ran with a 4 inch downpipe and cat, which splits into a twin 3 inch system at the rear diff, with two mufflers at the rear and a cheaky screamer pipe coming off our Turbosmart 50mm gate. The system features v-bands the complete way through for easy removal for the new owner.
Seeing as GS300's didn't come turbocharged, we needed to have custom aluminium piping made to mate our turbo to the Fenix 4 inch intercooler and up to our Plazmaman throttle body.
After all of the custom fab was complete, the last thing to get done was the wiring to our Haltech Elite 2500 sorted, so that we could install our base map and turn the car over. Our warehouse neighbour and good friend Travis from ProSpark Auto Electrical tackled this task in record time and we had the car running a day later.
Once the car was running, it was time for the tune. We ran a little late with having the car done on time, but the legends up at Cleveland Exhaust were nice enough to squeeze us in on a weekend and got the car tuned to absolute perfection.
We were all quite surprised to see the car make 704HP on 21psi of boost, with plenty left in it. Due to the power limitations of the geabox, and wanting to keep the car reliable and head-ache free, we decided to cap the power at that and drive away happy as Larry.
The end car you see today has been the result of 6 months of blood, sweat, tears and stupendous fun from our team and those who helped us along the way. We couldn't be happier with the end result as the car turned out to be much better than we ever dreamed of. Honestly, we kind of wished we weren't giving it away!
We'd like to thank everyone who has been apart of the build because without the help we had, the vehicle would still be another stock GS300 that no one notices on the road.
If you haven't seen our Youtube feature video or the build series, head on over and check it out. Our good friend Josh from Dated has filmed the entire process from start to finish as we knew this would be something others would love to see.