Video

Turbo V8 BMW vs Police Car

Norbertas Daunoravińćius

Norbertas Daunoravińćius

Norbertas Daunoravińćius is at it again, producing some pretty damn cool drifting videos. I’ve blogged about his Norbe Films venture before, not just because he drifts BMWs but more because his films are beautifully produced and he manages to convey a sense of anarchy whilst doing so.

Norbe Films

Norbe Films

Norbertas Daunoravińćius has some serious skills when it comes to making a car go sideways. Whilst there are many many drifting videos posted on YouTube, Norbe Films are shot for pure entertainment as well as showing off the skills involved in drifting. 

Take one BMW E36, one V8 engine, one turbo charger and one iPad. Once warmed up add copious amounts of oversteer and a police car and… ACTION!

Video

Drifting Explained in 11 Minutes

Chris Harris On Drifting

Chris Harris On Drifting

If you’ve heard of British Hoonigan, Chris Harris¬†you’ll know he likes to give a car a damn good spanking, particularly Ferraris and BMWs. Apart from acquiring the legendary E30 Sport EVO M3 last year, Harris has also posted a rather emotional and fantastic BMW E28 M5 video¬†on YouTube.

Chris Harris - BMW E30 M3 EVO

Chris Harris – BMW E30 M3 EVO

So whilst Chris Harris likes to get to grips with a car, pushing it to its limits on track, the man also known as “Monkey” loves nothing more than going sideways, too.

I love drifting, and those unfamiliar with what it takes to initiate and hold a decent slide would do well to watch this excellent 11 minute tutorial. In fact, although I knew how to initiate a drift in various other ways, I did take away one golden piece of advice concerning seating/steering wheel position that I use in everyday driving.

If you haven’t got 11 minutes, try his older 7 minute drifting an E39 M5 instead. I promise you the next time a little rain falls, you’ll be tempted to try some of these manoeuvres – on a private piece of land, of course ūüėČ

Sideways For The Price of A Smartphone

HeLLga, my E36 325i Coupe

A drift missile for the price of a smartphone? Hmm, sounds a little far-fetched, I know, but trust me on this.

When I first noticed drifting, it wasn’t through the channels of its Japanese origins; drifting made itself known in the form of Hulk Hogan’s son, Nick, and his dabbling with the pros in his yellow Supra – the one he eventually crashed and left his best friend paralysed with.¬†After a stint in jail, Nick faded away from the scene and that was that, but for the few episodes I saw him drift, I couldn’t help but notice the seemingly large sums of cash needed to partake in the sport.

That was nearly¬†a decade ago, and ever since that yellow and chrome monstrosity, I’ve been fascinated, studying the varying styles and cultures surrounding international drifting. The sport has made a such big impression since the States transformed the Japanese parking-lot precision driving into its FormulaDrift series, virtually every petrolhead on the planet has tried kicking out the rear of their car and holding a drift.

That’s what’s so great about the sport – with a little practice, anyone owning¬†a relatively light RWD car with¬†around 150+ bhp and 150+ ft-lbs of torque can drift it (on closed roads or track, of course).

This has led to the formation of drift clubs both big and small, drivers meeting up and getting their missiles sideways. Drifting has managed to knock down barriers and bring different car genres together, from German coupes to Japanese turbos to American muscle, all shredding rubber together on track.

Owning a drift missile doesn’t have to be costly either, as the title of this article suggests. For the price of a leading smartphone (¬£600-¬£999), you can pick up a solid, high-mile BMW E36 325i/323i/328i or a Mk1/2¬†Mazda MX-5. After ripping out the entire interior and installing¬†a secondhand roll cage and bucket seat, you’re virtually ready for some handbrake/clutch kick action.

Although this article comes across as a poor man’s answer to drifting, it actually backs up the original Japanese¬†theory that less is more. I wrote a piece for Motor Ward featuring¬†the drift king himself, Keiichi Tsuchiyai, the grand master and inventor of drifting. He says¬†drifting a car with limited power (anything under approximately 140-bhp)¬†is far harder than sliding¬†a more powerful car, thus throwing a cheap missile around means you’ll eventually develop uber drifting skills – it’s harder to kick out the rear of¬†an old 130-bhp Toyota AE86 than it is ¬†a 400-bhp Skyline.

HeLLga’s Loving Leather Embrace

If the interior is in decent condition, you could sell it and put the extra cash into a super chip or re-map for that extra 25-bhp. Give the car a full service, especially the engine and all of the fluids. Tape up the lights, fix a sports steering wheel and drift brake lever, finally spraying/wrapping your weapon matt black, and you are ready to shred.

Okay, so once you’re hooked and you get the hang of it you’ll ruin yourself spending out on power gains, superior¬†suspension components, racing clutch kits and body panels, but how much more adrenaline do you expect to spill for the price of a phone?

iPhone or iDrift?

Easy…

 

 

 

My New Girl, HeLLga

Hellga

I’ve been very busy of late. My mind has been 24/7 on cars… mine in particular. The picture above is my latest affair, a German coupe that took a lot of searching for and a lot of changing of minds. Up until purchasing her I’ve also been very confused, and now she’s mine, I still am. You see, it’s all to do with drifting…

HeLLga takes the place of my Subaru WRX. I loved my Scooby and it’s surge of turbo but the AWD didn’t allow for drifting unless you entered at high speed, murdered the engine and felt the horrible¬†resistance¬†of Jap technology – a lot of noise and unsettling vibrations – reminding you a trip to the bank was¬†imminent. As we all know, RWD is the only way to go if sliding is your game, so I watched more videos, read more articles and had my mind on something a little different. However, HeLLga wasn’t on the list at the beginning.

I ended up dismissing the RX-8 and S2000 because of their low torque compared to other rivals. The RX-7 and Nissan 240ZX were out of the question, as were the Skyline R32 & 33 because I simply couldn’t bring myself to butcher and abuse such great classics. As for the Silvias, meh, they just don’t do anything for me. Although the S13 could’ve been a possibility, finding a solid example¬†that wasn’t automatic and painted gold was impossible – they’ve all been snapped up, slammed, and had their¬†innards¬†ripped out by hardcore drifters.

So I was 100% sure I wanted an MR2 Turbo, the mid-engined lunatic above I knew could be drifted (albeit with some different approaches and methods). Yeah, I was going to be a little different and the MR2 Turbo was going to be my daily/drift missile…

…until I remembered the late Giorgi Tavzadze and his¬†BMW E34 M5. I then found myself re-watching the E34 325i chase scene in Ronin. I’d seen some mean-looking old-school Bimmers as drift missiles before, and the¬†decision¬†was finally made after witnessing The Ugly Duckling, a stock-engined E36 325i climb a carpark sideways.

Having owned an E46 M3 and remembering how powerful yet planted it was, I did¬†a little research into why the former E36 M3 and 325i models were so popular as drifters. Because they are lighter, have a 50/50 weight ratio and good torque, the E36 chassis was perfect for the job. The 325i seemed the most popular because of its bombproof and revvy 2.5-L inline 6, plus its cheaper repair and¬†maintenance¬†bills over the M3. Many welded the diff, too, something I was thinking of getting done. Although turbos were a popular add-on to the 325i, I’ve seen enough videos to know they can be drifted with the right set-up.

However, after I handed over the cash and sunk into HeLLga’s leather embrace, I realised what a beauty I had aquired. Spotless, 62K miles all accounted for with 8 BMW stamps in the service book. The small white torch, tool kit and first aid kit were all present, and as for the interior, well, I knew I wouldn’t be ripping it out any time soon. I realised all of this whilst driving her home, a car I couldn’t believe was 19-years-old. She was solid, taut and her 6-cylinders hummed and let out that familiar hiss and BMW rasp at high revs.

So what do I do now?

After a rather reserved effort but enough to maintain a slide (this was on a quiet road in the evening with no traffic whatsoever), I came to only one conclusion: Buy a high mileage 325i beater, of course.

 

Ed: If you enjoyed this post or love old school Bimmers, check out the 2nd part with HeLLga.

Don’t Wake The Sleeping Wagons

sleeper

Gargling Gas adores the wagon/estate cars and gets all excited and squirmy over sleepers – because these two trends have been red hot for a few years now, you only have to take a short trip from your front door to stumble across a project or two.

I stumbled across an Audi estate today, the reason for this post and also to touch on a prospect wagon/sleeper build I’ve been thinking of taking on since I saw an old twin-turbo Mitsubishi for sale at the side of a road for peanuts. The Audi wasn’t anything special, a late 90s silver estate, sitting slightly low. I wasn’t sure if the suspension was worn or the owner intended the slight drop, but judging by the reconditioned and freshly painted rims, I guess the former. Simply adding dark metallic grey rims to a retro estate suddenly gave it bags of character and instantly erased any preconceptions about “family runs”, “another baby on the way” and practicality.

Over the past few years, Wagons have gained popularity, partly thanks to the Hipster trend and their penchant for 80s euro estates like the Volvos and BMWs, and partly (I think) because the boxy and retro cars are fast becoming the cool ride to customise. Whether it’s a Volvo drift missile, a GM dragster, or even a Japanese sleeper, the need for angles and sharp lines, simplicity and easy tuning means anyone can stamp their mark on a cool car without breaking the bank.

Despite its spike in popularity, compared to the much sought after 80s Jap hot-hatch turbos such as the Honda City Turbo, the Nissan March (turbo and supercharged) and the Toyota GTI-R Pulsar, the wagon is still a cheaper option. Same goes if you were to compare the wagon to the Nissan Silvia, predominately the S13, as it’s the ultimate choice for drift builds and fast becoming hard to find unmolested and in manual.

However, there were a few desirable wagons before the likes of the AMGs and the Ms took over, cars built for the family man refusing to compromise on power. The BMW 325i Touring (below) and the Audi RS2 Avant (above) are great examples of German engineering, cars designed to transport family and furniture comfortably and at speed – solid examples are few and far between.

The great thing about the retro Wagon is you’re bring something different to the table, its versatility shrugging off any of the labels that automatically come with the hot hatch and drift missile. The fact they mostly come as RWD means they can be adapted for drifting; if you require the stealthy sheep-in-wolf’s-clothing mobile, the wagon is the master of deception, especially if it has a roof rack.

Back to the Mitsubishi. If I remember correctly, it was the twin-turbo Galant VR4 Estate with tinted glass, after-market rims and bonnet vents, very much like the picture above. The thing was dusty but looked menacing, as though abandoned. It’s twin-turbo 2.5-L V6  had covered 89,000 miles and it was up for ¬£2750, but I already had a WRX wagon I was having fun in at the time.

The VR4 produces 280-bhp, and with some tuning and light modification, it could pump out 320-bhp, something easily obtainable with a twin-turbo V6. The one I saw for sale wasn’t exactly a sleeper because it suggested power and menace, but imagine sourcing a clean example with original rims and a ventless bonnet. Picture it, having had a full engine service, a slight boost increase and a re-map, up on a dyno, the readout topping 320-bhp. You could get away with stripping out the interior because tinted rear glass isn’t uncommon with estates. You’d be left with a considerably lighter, 320+bhp twin-turbo family wagon, an ostensibly unthreatening car… until you cut it up on the motorway.

For a third of the price of decent Nissan S13 or a rare Jap hot-hatch turbo you can pick up a car with so much tuning potential and areas of weight reduction, it will come an obsession until you finally hit its sweet spot and see your reflection grinning back at you in the rearview as you glide past a 911 turbo.

Video

BMW E30 Drift Animals

BMW E30

I don’t really need to write much about or justify my reason for publishing this post as the title has “BMW E30” in it. Car guys the world over have a lot of respect for this chassis, especially the E30 M3, a car now quickly becoming a sought after classic, whether it’s a minter or a converted track car.

The title also features the word “Drift”, so combine the two and you have great reason to view the clip below. What the guys have done to these E30s may offend the majority of purists looking to restore a car back to something resembling its assembly line days, however, whilst I respect car restoration Gargling Gas is all about car culture and the trends bringing communities together. Drifting is one such trend that has grown so much over the last decade, many varying car communities come together as one.

I’m not sure I’d go as far and or extreme as these mental E30s, but I’d love to turbocharge one and stick a¬†roll-cage inside.