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Here Is What You Need To Consider If You Would Like to Build a Drift Car
Professional drifting has been around for almost 30 years now, and over the past decade it has seen an increase in popularity on a global level. While some of the lucky few enthusiasts have managed to climb all the way to the top of existing drifting series, most sideways fans will probably stick to grassroots events and the occasional street action if we're talking about certain parts of the world - especially Japan.

Here Is What You Need To Consider If You Would Like to Build a Drift Car

Mazda RX7 Drifting at EbisuChelsea Denofa drifting in Ford MustangBMW E92 driftingChelsea Denofa in the Ford MustangJames Deane drifting BMW E92Nissan Silvia S14 DriftingChevrolet Corvette DriftingHountondji Drifting BMW E30Toyota Nissan and BMW Drift car
If you're reading this article you've most likely considered the idea of emptying your wallet toward building a drift car of some sorts, or perhaps you're actually involved in the drift scene already. The most basic thing you need to know when starting a drift project is that you're going to need a car with a FR setup - front engine, rear-wheel-drive.

Sure, if you aren't planning on winning any championships, a RR layout (rear-engine , rear-wheel-drive) will be able to go somewhat sideways too, but over the years people who have tried building such cars haven't managed to really go very far with them.

When trying to locate a car for a drift project, we suggest you look over your budget for the next 12 months. Don't just go and spend all of it on purchasing the car. You need to consider the cost of the build and the cost of actually driving the car. Some people usually make the mistake of spending everything they've got on the actual car, and then can't afford to go through 10 tires per weekend so that they may actually practice. The more seat time you get, the better. Don't worry about how much horsepower you've got at first, just focus on driving as much as you can.

There are plenty of options on the market, although they may vary in terms of price depending on the part of the world you're based in. Over the years, Japanese cars have definitely dominated the drift scene, as they have proven themselves in professional Japanese drift events.

You can look at Nissan (S-chassis, Skyline, Cefiro, 350z), Toyota (AE86, GT86, Supra, JZX, Soarer) , Mazda (RX7, MX5) and even cars like the Mitsubishi Evo and Subaru Impreza STI, which can be converted to RWD relatively easy. Prices for these cars have gone up quite a bit due to the increasing demand and somewhat rarity of the cars, but there are always cheaper options on the market.

Euro cars - especially BMWs- are a good starting point as well , and there are multiple generations of the 3 Series and 5 Series than can be a good base for a drift project. Obviously, if American Muscle is your thing, look at the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro or even the Corvette, or any kind of RWD Dodge of your choice. There is a large selection of cars from various manufacturers available, so feel free to explore the market when getting involved in a project like this.

Buying the car is just the first step, and while you can expect to pay anywhere between $1000 to $50,000 on one, the next payments you'll be making will be pretty similar no matter the base model you chose. Suspension and drivetrain upgrades should come first, and depending on how far you want to take it, you can expect to pay at least $5000 to $10,000 on just the basic mods needed to make the car somewhat competitive while going sideways.

Most professional drift athletes do recommend starting off with lower horsepower, and even the Drift King himself, Keiichi Tsuchiya, first started drifting in an odd-120 horsepower Toyota AE86 - this way you get to learn how to actually control your car effectively, and not have to rely on horsepower to do the job for you.

You can choose to build a car yourself, or you can go for a fully built car according to your specs, at the end of the day it's all a matter of how much you're willing to pay to go sideways in your project car. A basic BMW E36 build , running a 6 pot engine, with a total build cost of under $10.000 can get the job done, but it won't win any races soon. At the other side of the spectrum, why not look into building a professional drift car, with 1000 horsepower, a sequential gearbox and all the other goodies a pro drifter will look for, but that can and will take costs up, as much as 10 to 20 times higher!

Let us know if you'd like to get more indepth knowledge and advice on how to start a drift project, and we'll cover the basics over a series of articles in the near future!


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