The Real Bosozoku: Super Silhouette
If these '80s era Nissans look Boso, it's because they are as gangster as it gets. A part of the Fuji Grand Championship Series from 1979 to 1983 (based on FIA Group 5 regulations), there were few restrictions to the type of modifications performed on Super Silhouette machines. The engine block had to be a production unit, the chassis had to have the "silhouette" of the original . . . and that was about it. Thanks to the lax rules, the cars had engineering on par with Formula builds. In fact, famously, many Super Silhouette cars made more power than F1 cars of the era, helping the series garner a huge fanbase and making awkward-looking aero forever cool.
'83 Bluebird Super Silhouette KS910
Weighing in at 1,000 kg, the KS910 Bluebird put down 570 ps (more power than F1 cars) by way of an Air Research turbo bolted to a built DOHC 2,082cc LZ20B four-cylinder engine. Equipped with a Doug Nash five-speed transmission and hefty 16x11-inch rims up front and 19x15-inchers in the rear (290-series front tires; 350 rear), H. Yanagida drove the widebody Bluebird to two championship titles (1980 and 1982), winning three of the four 1983 Fuji GC series rounds and the Tsukuba event.
'83 Silvia Super Silhouette KS110
Sporting the same 570ps L20ZB setup found in the Bluebird, famed Nissan driver K. Hoshino piloted this Super Silhouette Silvia. Despite a chassis shorter and less width, the Silvia weighed in at 50 kg more than the Bluebird that dominated the series (1050 kg total).
Skyline Super Silhouette KDR30
Arguably the most famous of the Super Silhouettes, this Skyline also featured the 570ps LZ20B and hardcore engineering as the Bluebird and Silvia. Piloted by M. Hasemi, the Skyline made its debut in May of 1982, winning two races that year and five in 1983. It weighed in at 1,005 kg-five kg more than the Bluebird and 45 less than the Silvia.
Look for the next excursion into the Zama museum, where we go into Nissan's exploits in JGTC/Super GT, the history of the Skyline, and the mid-engine car-to-be that was pivotal in the development of ATESSA, the AWD system that put GT-Rs on the map.