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The hardest car to replace is the first car you truly fell in love with. Could the next car top it? Will you love it as much as the first? Many people had willy-nilly picked their next rides, only to sell in regret and wistfully look at versions of their first cars being driven around. When Adam revealed that he had a Toyota MR2 SW20 as his first car, breaths were sucked in ..along with a bit of jealousy too.

“I wanted a mid-engine sports car that would great to drive,” he admitted when he settled on the MR2. Although it was only the naturally aspirated version, Adam had a lot of fun modifying the Toyota. The tail happy MR2 developed his taste for mid-engine rear wheel drive cars, so when it was time for Adam to part ways with it, there was only one choice.

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The Mazda RX-7 needs no introductions.. but for the uninitiated, these two letters and a number represent one of the most iconic sports cars to ever come out of Japan. Over a span of 20 years, Mazda has continuously fettled the RX-7 to become the legend it is today. The RX-7 Bathurst R FD3S that stole Adam’s heart was everything the MR2 was.. and more. The compact 13B-REW 1.3l rotary engine allowed Mazda to mount the engine far behind the front axles, allowing for 50/50 front and rear weight distribution. Combined with a low centre of gravity and independent suspension front and rear, the RX-7 was blistering fast in corners. On the straights it was no slouch too, with 276 ponies to unleash thanks to the complex sequential turbochargers bolted on to the 13B-REW.

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So we’ve established the RX-7 was faster, more nimble, and still possess that lovely mid-engine weight distribution. Adam would love it more than his MR2, right? Yes, but you’d be silly to think he’d leave it well alone. He picked up this mint, unmolested RX-7 Bathurst R and immediately got to work. Rotaries aren’t what you’d call bulletproof, so the 13B-REW was lifted out and rebuilt with RA Super apex seals and received an extended street port while opened up. The rotary glugs 98 octane down thanks to bigger Denso injectors, with a SARD 280lph pump making sure the amber nectar keeps flowing. All the aging hoses were changed, and the engine breathed better courtesy of HKS’ dual air intakes. A bigger GReddy side mount intercooler was fitted for better air flow, and then custom exhaust work by Hakan at Performance Exhaust Centre takes care of the noise makers. The whole shebang is overlooked by the A’PEXi Power FC with a hand commander, and resulting tunes by Rotormaster and Rick Shaw sees the stock turbos push out 240rwkw at 15PSI. “The throttle response is fantastic…” Adam pauses, “…but I’m looking at a big single turbo setup at the moment,” he grins. Yeaaaaaah buddy!

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Adam then found a set of matte black Advan RS-Ds and fell in love with them. And as you do, he bought them without thinking.. of how it’ll fit his stock bodied RX-7. To remedy the fender to rim ratio, the RX-7 went to the body shop to beef up for the wheels.

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A FEED wide body was chosen to accommodate the 19×10.5 wide rear wheels and 19×9.5 up front, with +10 offset all around. The FEED wide arches are fronted by a rarely seen Knightsports Type 7 bumper.

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Instead of rocking the FEED bonnet, Adam opted for the even more aggressive Scoot item. A Sanai Works carbon rear diffuser, Origin black lamps and a Shine Auto Project carbon tail adorns the rear end of Adam’s RX-7. Final details like the rear wiper delete, blacked out indicators, and rare RE-Amemiya carbon door handles round out the exterior mods.

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Dropping the whole package to the ground was a set of BC Racing BR coilovers. A host of AutoExe braces around the front and back enhanced the already sharp handling, along with a custom transmission tunnel brace. Project Mu SCR Pro rotors peek out from the gorgeous Advan wheels, giving a hint that this car is not just a showstopper.

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This wasn’t a problem free build though.. once the wheels went on and the height dialled down, the RS-Ds were too sunken this time. Too late to change back, Adam sheepishly admitted spacers were needed to sit the wheels flush. We forgive you Adam, for the finished 7 looks just fapulous (Editor: not a real word).

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With the exterior finished, Adam moved on to the cockpit. The mediocre front seats were replaced with a set of Bride ERGOs in dashing red. Chosen for comfort and quality, the red leather seats stood out in the cabin dominated by ubiquitous black trim. The white Bathurst R dials are accompanied by the Power FC hand commander nestled in an R-Magic holder. FEED floor mats add that final JDM flavour to the cabin.

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Adam’s Mazda is a reminder that one can move on to bigger and better things.. if you pick the right car and stay true to the principles. He loves the handling, the power, the pedigree, and how little boys crossing the street just stop, stares and yells out “That’s the Batmobile, mum!” We can’t wait to see what’s next for this fine example of an RX-7. More pictures in the gallery below!

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Specification List

Engine
Rotormaster extend street port 13B with RA Super Seals
HKS dual air intake
TRUST/Greddy Side Mount Intercooler
Mishimoto red radiator hoses
Mishimoto red silicone couplers
Hose Techniques red silicone vacuum hoses
Black T-Bolt clamps
Ric Shaw light-weight flywheel
850cc Primary and Secondary Denso Injectors
NGK Premium Platinum spark plugs
Sard 280lph fuel pump
HKS Twin Power Ignition Booster
APEXI Power FC and hand controller UIM, LIM,
intercooler and pipework coated in ceramic heat dispersant
Custom Exhaust by Hakan at Performance Exhaust Centre: SMB 3.5” dump pipe Custom mid section, V-band clamps SMB cat/resonator/muffler Custom dolphin exhaust tip
Tuned on BP98 @ 15psi making 240rwkw

Exterior
Knightsports Front Bumper
Type-7 FEED widebody fenders
FEED carbon fibre side steps
Scoot vented bonnet Sanai Works
Carbon fibre rear diffuser
Origin black front lamps
LED Blacked out indicators & rear light array
Autoexe wipers
RE-Amemiya carbon door handles
Spoiler/rear wiper/spray nozzle/antenna deleted
Shine Auto Project Carbon Ducktail

Interior
RE-Amemiya weighted carbon shifter
Bride red leather ERGO II bucket seats and rails
OEM optional arm rest
R-Magic PFC Holder PFC Commander Focal Speakers (6 splits, 6×9, 10” custom sub enclosure)
FEED floor mats

Suspension/Handling/Brakes
BC Racing BR series Coilovers
Autoexe tower strut brace
Custom Diff Brace/Girdle in Autoexe Red
Project Mu Pads Project Mu SCR Pro Slotted Front & Rear Rotors
Powdercoated OEM Brakes
Red/Black Custom braided brake lines

Wheels/Tyres
Advan Racing Matte Black RS-D
19×9.5” +10 F, 19×10.5” +10 R
Toyo Proxes T1R 235/35/19, 255/45/19
Rays black lock nuts

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About the author

Howdy guys, your Ed here. I’m currently studying a bachelor of Industrial Design, but have a love for all things design. The automotive industry is my life blood and I’d love for you all to join along for the ride!

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