Track Day GTVi - South Australia

Thought I’d merge this across to the Project side.

The main goal of the car is to have fun at some track days, and have friendly competition with mate with similar power-to-weight ratio cars (Proton GTi and S1 RX7). After owning and tracking a 300kw Evo VI - it is going to be a massive change!

Current Modifiations:

  • Coilovers & Guard Roll (BC Racing)
  • Wheels & Tyres (SSR 265 15x6.5+34 and Advan A052 195/50/15)
  • Minor Bracing (Boot/C-pillar Brace)
  • Supersprint 4-1 Headers
  • BRAVE 2" exhaust.
  • Copen stock rotors, Copen Calipers, Dixcel Z-Type Pads, D-Sport Braided Lines, Motul RBF600
  • D-Sport LSD
  • Copen 5.545 Final Drive
  • Siberian Bushing - Front Sway Bar, Control Arm, Rear Torsion Bar
  • Custom 2 1/8" (54mm) intake (throttle body ID) and DNA Motorbike Air Filter and Air Feed from Front Chrome Trim
  • Fullriver HC20 Battery Relocated under front passenger seat
  • Various Part Removals (rear wiper blade and motor, steering dampener, rear seats and interior trim etc)

Previous Modifications:

  • D-Sport S-type Rotors & Project Mu Pads
  • Kumho V720 195/50 R15

Future Potentials

  • Storia Touring ECU
  • New radiator & throttle body cooling loop removal.
  • Oil Cooler (+thermostated block)
  • Race Seat + relocating it rearward and lower
  • Oil temp & pressure gauges
  • Further Braking Improvements (Honda 262mm rotors & Wilwood calipers)

The first outing will be at Mallala on the 20th of August.
Since this is a demanding circuit on brakes, I have incoming: braided lines, rotors and pads that should be up to the task. I’ve not yet done anything about the rear braking setup as I’m not sure which rear drum it has as a lot of sites reference different widths. I probably won’t do much here - hoping that the fronts will do most of the work.

Along with the braking, the other items I hope to get done before the 20th Aug are: ECU, exhaust & seat modifications (possibly a low-mount rail and friends LS (Proton GTi) Recaro.


Keen on any feedback when/if you get an lsd in. Also looking forward to hearing about your first outing.

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The engineer that built the factory Daihatsu GTVi’s for Rick Bates years ago is still operating. His engines had 75kw at the wheels. He approached me at a recent hillclimb and told me everything that would break on track in time with the GTVi. If this is going to be a serious track car might want to track him down. His name is Neil Trama.

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Having raced a GTVi it would be great to lower the seat… my helmet rubs the roof constantly.

Yeah, lowering the driver’s seat. If you ask a few friends of mine that was my number one grip the first time I drove a GTVi. In the position I like my head touched the roof lining.

I had trouble with heel-toe due to my knees hitting the steering wheel. A lower seat or lowering the stock one was high on my list after the first track day.

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Anything in particular you did to lower the seat?
The Proton Gti driver went to the degree of a fixed back bucket seat which was bolted to customer brackets that were welded to the floor pan / box section that was welded to the floor pan.

There are some aftermarket rails from Japan which suit various recaros (just reclinables at this stage). This seems like a bolt-in option that should net me a ~30mm drop. And seems like a nice gateway before going down the path of a more custom setup.

Unfortunately, I never got around to doing anything as the engine bottom end let go. My plan was to get some fixed back seats and take them to an engineer to make a bracket. I wanted to mount them a little back and lower than stock for a better seating position for me in general.

So, a couple of pieces of the puzzle have fallen into place:
Both sets of headers arrived; so out with the old (seems to be the ‘better’ stock designed ones):
And in with the new 4-1 from SuperCircuit:

At the moment it is just mated up to the factory exhaust, not sure if I’ll have time to do anything prior to the 20th August. Perhaps cut the factory exhaust prior to the large muffler??

To change these out; i tried removing the front bumper - but something was preventing it from moving. So i just removed the radiator support bar and out they came. Other than a sneaky bracket connecting the Cat convertor part of the headers to the engine mount, that had me fooled for a bit as to why the headers weren’t budging.

Unfortunately the D-Sport rotors didn’t make it from Japan, but the Braided Lines and pads did - so they’ll go in, along with some new fluids.

Won’t get done for the 20th:

  • Anything to do with the seat
  • ECU
  • Radiator

Let’s see how it all holds together!


Did the rotors get lost or just didn’t make it in time? Once you get a full exhaust sorted would love to see/hear a clip of it.

The rotors just didn’t make it :frowning:
I usually go through Buyee - i’ve heard mixed reviews, and some people indicate they’re expensive. But the service they’ve provided is excellent, so I’m not opposed to paying a bit more for it.
They’re emails, links, info are all spot on.

Basically had the 3 components ordered and was going to consolidate the freight. But then they informed a change of ETA for the Rotors till sept. So I clicked consolidate on the Pads+Lines and 5 days later they were in my hands.

I’ll get a clip once the rest of the exhaust is done for sure. You can tell there is more ‘engine’ noise up front in the high rpm range ~4/5K onwards - but the stock exhaust is doing a great job making it sound the same at the back end.

Oh - I did buy an O2 Sensor earlier in the year that I was going to install at the time of exhaust manifold change.

Despite ordering what I thought was the right one - I have a 2-wire O2 Sensor existing in the exhaust, yet the new one I purchased was a 4 wire O2 Sensor.

However, when I undid the wiring loom to meet the new O2 Sensor location, there was a bare ended black wire in the loom…Surely there would be an error if someone butchered the car at an earlier time point from a 4 wire to a 2 wire O2 Sensor??

In any case I’ll look into it later, I just reinstalled the O2 sensor that was there.
For what it’s worth - all 4 exhaust ports were similar in appearance.

Hope the rotors do eventually show. I am no help with the O2 sensor, sorry.

The car survived - but needed oil top-ups between each session.
A longer review will come soon, with some on-track pictures.
But the quickest time I managed around Mallala was a 1:36.9
There is a link to the GPS data file which can be viewed in Race Chrono.

Heading out in the morning:


So the “race weekend” started on Saturday with the plan to:

  • Flush engine oil / change oil, filter etc.
  • Install brake pads, lines, flush/bleed with Motul fluid.
  • Late decision to change spark plugs.

Everything went to plan on the engine oil side. Threw an engine flush in for fun due to the car using oil and feedback on here about the K3 oil ring issue. The late decision to change spark plugs was actually quite needed. In the engine was 4 x Champion Iridiums - but i think someone took their ‘longer life’ a bit too far and they were quite deteriorated - although all 4 looked similar.

The brake pad change was quite simple, it was the brake lines on one side of that car that slowed everything down. One side was simple, the flare nuts off the lines were tight but easily undone. Those on the driver’s side took a lot of force, became rounded and only a combo of the flare nut wrench and vice grips managed to get the mangled nuts off and done back up. At this stage brakes were ‘bled’ and I drove home.

And quickly realised i had no brakes at all.

So Sunday was another brake bleed and it was the rear drivers that wasn’t done properly. Once that was done - brakes seemed ok. Although without the rotors I’d hoped for.

During the oil change i noticed (and noticed on the drive) I had an exhaust leak, and it was simply the sprung joint from front pipe to manifold that i’d not done up enough to keep proper tension on the springs. So that was tidied up.

With that, the car was at the ready point for the Monday.


The format is similar to the track days outlined here: My Sirion M101
3 groups, grouped by relative track times, though not a competition they’re timed via external GPS units and Race Chrono. I was in the slow group :slight_smile:

I had no major issues with the car all day - ran up to the 7.5K redline all day, despite a plume of oil smoke following me about. Just needed a 200mL top up between each session!

First session out was learning a bit more about the car and not stressing it too much - came out of it with a 1:42 best time. Also not being on the track for a couple of years, re-familiarising myself and not wanting to go out too hard (a Skyline had already tipped it into a wall in the first session).

The next session was about leaning on the engine and taking it up to redline / understanding where to shift. The long gearing of the Sirion meant only needing gears 2 and 3. The back straight or ‘kink’ at Mallala is the highest speed section and I entered the braking zone around 145km/h in the very top of 3rd.
These changes brought about a drop in time to 1:40

During the lunch break the interior was stripped track side to reduce the weight as much as possible, confidence in the car was growing and had the chance to follow some other people through the different corner complexes (low power FWD reacting different to a powerful 4WD). The real challenge is keeping that momentum up. So pushing deeper into the braking zones, trying to keep the momentum up, and not over braking I dropped a lot of time through to a 1:36.9

Race Chrono also outputs a ‘theoretical’ best from 3 sectors - which in my case was a 1:36.5 - so not far off where i was. Despite this, there is more in the car/driver.

Regarding the dynamics - I felt the car was pretty neutral. I didn’t feel a lot of understeer as is discusses when harder spring rates on the front are used. Despite not picking up a rear wheel, I could rotate the car and get the nose pointed in with a sharper steering input. But never to the point of feeling like loosing the rear.

Putting power to the ground was difficult in the couple of slow-mid corners where the inside wheel just wanted to skip and spin. So no doubt an LSD would be an ideal upgrade; any thoughts on 1 way vs 1.5way? Although another technique a guy in a civic was using was left foot braking, so perhaps I should work on myself first and car second.

Hard to tell on the braking situation - i couldn’t brake as late as some (mates Proton). Not sure if it is the stock rotors, limitations of the brakes due to their size, or if I needed to do bleed them more and there was still some air in system. The brake pedal did have a large dead zone at the start - but the feel towards the end was good.

All in all, the car survived, put a respectable laptime down for what was the lowest engine capacity out there. And i had a huge grin throughout the whole day!

Pictures to follow:



Wow, love the story and the pics. Great work.

One way diff is perfect for drags. I prefer 1.5 way as it feels better in the transition between on and off throttle. The one way will go from feeling tight to completely open as you come off the throttle and then come back on strong as you accelerate. If you get a 1.5 way Gilken they will work with you to change and send parts (at your expense) to tune it. In fact they may even talk to you about setting it up before shipping. (update- the Gilken my mate was playing with never came good. It was sent back and replaced by a Cusco).

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I’m responding to a little late but what good photos! 'm very excited to see another Sirion on track.

I also think it’s necessary to have an LSD although I also feel that the gearbox it’s very long … I would like to be able to play with them to make them shorter.

You’re 100% correct.
I only needed 2nd and 3rd gear on the track here in Adelaide (Mallala not TB), as on the longest straight I was at or near the rev limit before needing to brake for a hairpin. I played around with changing into 4th at some point along that straight (realistically a kink), but saw no benefit on the times.

There is the option of the Copen final drive gearset (5.545), to drop all the ratios. Alternatively there is a final drive gearset for the Copen that is longer (4.933) for the copen, but still represents a shorter ratio than the factory Sirion set. Either should shorten the ratios and speed up the acceleration. Current theoretical top speed is simply unrealistic!

A couple of the low speed corners on the track (and on the road) causes the inside front to spin/skip. When we have such little power to play with, I’m sure it is best we get it all to the ground.