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Why Are The Toyota Mark II And Nissan Skyline Still Popular As Drifting Cars?

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TEXT: 佐藤 圭(SATO Kei)  PHOTO: AMW

  • Nissan R34 Skyline
  • Toyota Aristo
  • Toyota Altezza
  • Toyota Aristo
  • Toyota Crown
  • Nissan R34 Skyline
  • Nissan R34 Skyline
  • Nissan laurel
  • Drifting with two 4-door cars is very powerful
  • Nissan R34 Skyline

Sedans are still active in drifting competitions!

4-door sedans are popular for drifting. Older models like Toyota Mark II/Cresta/Chaser and Nissan Skyline, Laurel, and Cefiro are still popular. Compared to standard sports cars like the Nissan Silvia and Mazda RX-7, they are heavier and at a disadvantage. But why do they choose 4-door sedans?

Chosen to stand out from the competitors

In the 1990s, when the drifting boom started, the S13 Silvia and 180SX, FC3S RX-7, and AE86 Levin and Trueno were popular. At that time, drifting was mainly done on the streets, and speed and other factors were not measured or scored, but everyone wanted to stand out. The 4-door sedans were the center of attention.

The Skyline had the same engine as the 2-door model. The same RB20DET also powered the Laurel and Cefiro, and fortunately, some models were equipped with a 5-speed manual transmission. The Mark II series had a 2500cc turbocharged 1JZ-GTE that produced 280 bhp, and the body and engine were not in bad shape.

Weight could be reduced and acceleration was increased with tune-up from the engine. Since it was not a race car, powerful brakes were not needed. For street and Sunday events, body stiffness was not an issue.

Advantages unique to 4-door cars were one of the reasons for its popularity

In addition, there are more than a few advantages not found in the two-door model. First, the load capacity was dramatically increased by folding down or removing the rear seat. Drifting was very tire intensive, and many drivers took several sets of tires. The increased power gave them an advantage because the tires were larger. When the rear seats were put back, the car could carry five passengers.

Used rear-drive cars are expensive now, but in the past, AT was preferred for 4-door sedans and MT was less expensive; Toyota Aristo, Crown, Altezza, Verossa, and Mazda RX-8 are also popular for drifting, although they need to be replaced with MT.

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