Japan is a country well known for many things. Mention the word Japan to anyone, and initial thoughts may range from Karate and Sushi, to Anime and drift cars. Not many people will say that it reminds them of home. Unless, of course, you happen to be Hajime Maki.

If you live in Houston, TX, and have been to any of the 40+ car meets held by Planet Zero, then you have undoubtedly seen this pearl white beauty before you.

Hot like fire

Hot like fire

Planet Zero hosts one of Texas’ longest running meets and to many, this is where they first saw Hajime’s 1996 Nissan 240sx in the flesh.

But not me.

The first time I laid eyes on his car was not at Planet Zero, it wasn’t even at a car meet. I used to (and still do) buy Japanese car magazines such as Young Version, Carboy, Option, and Drift Tengoku from a Japanese market store on the West Side of Houston called Nippon Daido when I had first met Hajime. I had seen what was then an OEM gold, Zenki 240sx with a GRACER front lip and front mount GReddy intercooler, a far cry from what we now see here. Gone is the old “bubble eyes” 95-96 Zenki front end, now replaced with a genuine C-West front bumper, S15 headlights and Top Secret carbon hood.

Hajime is a multitasker. Check out the cell phone!

Hajime is a multitasker. Check out the cell phone!

It was roughly about 8 or 9 years ago when I had exchanged numbers with Hajime on that fateful afternoon. I was driving my FC at the time, and we had a lot to talk about such as drifting his then turbocharged KA24DE 240sx. He had done all the work on the S14 himself all while attending the University of Houston to pursue his college degree. It wouldn’t be till many moons later that the car had gone through a complete transformation.

Hajime sporting the new Top Secret Japan vinyl scheme

Hajime sporting the new Top Secret Japan vinyl scheme

Unlike me, Hajime reads and speaks fluent Japanese. If you’ve ever stared at an Option magazine, then it’s safe to assume you’d kill to know what exactly the guys in the magazine are saying. I’ve always wondered if Hajime read a DIY guide of how to drop in a Skyline motor into an S14, cause that’s exactly what he did.

Gauges, gauges...

Gauges, gauges...

... and more gauges

... and more gauges

By taking the most vital parts from an R33 Nissan Skyline GT-R, Hajime did what many Silvia enthusiasts dream to do to their S-chassis cars, make it fly. Not only did he take the much coveted RB26DETT motor from the GT-R, he also managed to work in the seats, brakes and even gauge cluster from Godzilla.

Just because its red doesnt mean its an SR20DET.

Just because it's red doesn't mean it's an SR20DET.

Youd think it was meant to be there

You'd think it was meant to be there

With the R33 GT-R being an AWD wrecking ball, an RB25DET transmission was needed to make the RB26 work with the S14’s FR layout. Between the tranny and the legendary straight six lies an ATS carbon twinplate clutch that insures that power is laid to the ground where the Advan SA3R’s wrapped in BF Goodrich KDW’s massage the pavement.

Gold Brembos from a GT-R share the same gold hue as the sun

Gold Brembos from a GT-R share the same gold hue as the sun

The Advan’s were a new addition to the look of Hajime’s car. In fact, visually, the car you see now bears no resemblance of what the car used to look like. The car no longer sports the factory goldmember color of yesteryear, and now has a custom white paintjob with a hint of red pearl that extends to the new ings+1 side skirts and rear bumper.

It was extremely difficult to capture the red pearl in the paint

It was extremely difficult to capture the red pearl in the paint

The car is lowered on all Cusco suspension, and not “slammed” like many other 240’s you may have seen recently, and that has a lot to do with the fact that this car is not a trailer queen, it’s actually a daily driver. The car was built with reliability in mind, but more importantly, comfort. The Cusco type Zero 2’s are adjustable by dialing in your dampening via the Cusco E-con controller, so no more popping your hood and crawling to through the back seat just to make the ride softer for those long commutes to school or work. And for those long, hot days, Hajime has somehow also worked in A/C in this twin-turbo’d 240sx. Yes. Air conditioning.

Rollin through the streets of Houston

Rollin' through the streets of Houston

JohnP on location with Hajime

JohnP on location with Hajime

As the sun started to set, JohnP and Khiem, our photographer, traveled to a different location on the west side of Houston to get some last pictures in while the sunlight faded into the night. They were able to get some pictures of Christmas lights in a nearby neighborhood. Not only were miniture horses prancing around in the front yards of these houses, there were thousands of lights strung across various trees. The effect is stunning.

Tis the season!

'Tis the season!

It’s as if the trees were on fire!

Relax. Theres enough bling for everyone.

Relax. There's enough bling for everyone.

Hajimes S15 front

Hajime's S15 front

We shot Hajime’s car yesterday because he had told us that he was leaving for Japan this tuesday for two weeks. How fun! No doubt that he will be going to Japan for family, friends, food and fun, as I have had the pleasure of visiting Hajime’s home country just a few weeks ago as well. When he returns, I hope that he brings back a magazine or two that Nippon Daido doesn’t carry (EvolutionQ please!!) from the motherland for me!

Hajime with his most gangster-ish pose for the camera

Hajime with his most gangster-ish pose for the camera

Until he returns, I will just have to settle for staring at the pretty pictures in the latest Option2 magazine at our favorite Japanese store by myself.

Have a safe trip Hajime!

If the car could float, Im positive this 240 would sail back to Japan

If the car could float, I'm positive this 240 would sail back to Japan

Official Mod List:

Nissan S15 front conversion
Nissan S15 headlights with HiDs
C-West N1 Front Aero bumper
ings+1 side skirts
ings+1 rear aero bumper
Top Secret Carbon Bonnet

Cusco Type Zero 2
Cusco E-con controller
Cusco Pillow Tension rods
Cusco Rear upper control arms
Cusco Lower tie rod
Cusco Front and rear sway bars
GReddy front strut tower bar in chrome

Nismo 1.5 way LSD
RB25 Manual Transmission
ATS Carbon twinplate clutch

Z32 Brake Master cylinder
R33 GT-R Brembo calipers front and rear

RB26DETT from R33 GT-R
GReddy Airinx intake
GReddy Front mount Intercooler
GReddy Breather tank
Siede ADIC
Apex’i PowerFC
Apex’i N1 Exhaust
McKinney Motorsports Downpipe
SPAL electric fans x2
HKS TwinPower ignition
Splitfire coilpack
NGK Iridium plugs
Koyo Radiator
Blitz SBC-iD
Blitz PowerMeter-iD

17″ Advan Racing SA3R’s
BF Goodrich KDW’s

Nardi Steering wheel
Top Secret Quick Release
Apex’i Multi Checker
Defi Oil Temperature gauge
Defi Water Temperature gauge
Defi Boost gauge
GReddy Oil pressure gauge
GReddy Fuel pressure gauge
Nismo shift knob
R33 GT-R front seats
R33 GT-R gauge cluster

Related Links:
Top Secret Japan
Underground Graphics
Nippon Daido

As usual, the rest of the photos, as well as the HIGH Resolution versions can be found HERE.

All photos were taken and shot by Khiem Pham with a Canon 5D mk2.


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