Driven 2017 – Part 4

Hey everyone, for this evening I have the final group of photos from Driven Calgary! This set won’t be as large as those of parts 2 or 3 but serves to conclude the photo coverage and also has a few additional shots of cars seen previously.

As with the previous posts I have also indicated some of the winners from Driven Calgary but not each and every one; if you are curious, the entire list can be found on Driven’s website (drivenshow.ca) under the tab for the Calgary show!

Let’s get into it then; I hope you enjoy this final set of photos!

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I really liked the subtle Porsche cues on this MkV R32. You probably noticed the Porsche calipers first given their bright yellow finish, but look along the bottom of the door and quarter panel and you’ll also spot “R32 RS” graphics. Very nicely done.

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Here’s one for the Skyline fans – but perhaps not the purists. This bright yellow R32 GT-R (remember that last bit) had a surprise under the hood; RB28? RB30? Gallo 24? Nope; it had a 2JZ swap! Yes, you read that right.

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Call it awesome, wrong, interesting, whatever (I’m sure this one will definitely split opinions); Driven called it Best in Show Skyline!

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While we’re speaking of 2JZs, I made sure to quickly grab a shot of the one hiding under the hood of the Rocket Bunny S15 seen in Part 2. There was definitely not a shortage of 2JZ-powered cars at the show!

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As we had them all lined up, I made sure to get a shot of the ST noses together. All similar, but each one unique in its exact setup.

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Brandon made sure to show off the sub box in Le Yeti to the judges as well as showgoers as it’s definitely a cool feature, but there was another unique change which I’m sure went unnoticed by most – the OEM European tail lights, which are actually from Ketchup! Longer-term readers of the site may remember that these went to live on Mayo following the collision last year.

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With a massive turbo up front and massive-er (yup, using that) diffuser out back drawing my attention, I had forgotten to check out the cockpit of Jackie’s ITR in greater detail when I first saw the car so I went back; the main update was the switch over to the digital display, which will offer him far more information than the factory cluster ever could.

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Another winner – Steven’s Varis STI took home Best in Class Subaru. I’ve seen it a couple of times now and I must say that I really like the combination of the Varis widebody with the factory wing. As crazy as the kit is, it doesn’t overpower the wing at all and ends up looking really balanced.

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When it comes to styling I’m not sure Varis can do anything wrong anyway though.

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S14.5, next to the Boss S14. Maybe it’s partly because we’re so used to them by now with how long owners have been swapping panels around, but it still amazes me that 240 noses can be swapped across the generations and still look right at home.

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While I was going around grabbing the last photos of the day I naturally went back to Mark’s Liberty Walk Granturismo since I didn’t know when I’d next get to see it in person. Having the body colour continue as a pinstripe on the front and side splitters was a nice touch.

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If you read last year’s Driven Calgary coverage, you’ll probably remember this Stardast widebody 350Z; incredible quality and detail all around, with a heavily-reworked engine bay which is something we don’t see enough of here.

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As crazy a car as it is though, it was (obviously) hard for me to ignore what was sitting next to it; this stunning Rocket Bunny S15 with basically everything done to it. This car had actually shown at SEMA last year, and was brought into town for Driven.

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For those wondering about the ‘go’ aspect, like the other Rocket Bunny 15 this too was swapped but instead of a 2JZ had received an RB25 from its big brother!

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I would have loved to see this fully opened up, but there was still no shortage of details to take in. The wheels and brakes alone dropped our jaws; carbon fiber lips and neochrome calipers?! It ended up taking home Best Overall and if I had to pick a favourite of the day, this would definitely make the short list.

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Another candidate would be – perhaps ironically – a completely stock car; the 400R. Being parked the way it was, getting a good shot of its backside wasn’t going to be possible but I wasn’t going to pass up the chance to get this at least. I hear that we may get to see it come out to a Cars and Coffee event this year and I really hope it happens; to see it driving on the road would be even more surreal.

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Across from our group was this beautiful 60’s Mustang, though I had just finished binge watching 13 Reasons so all I could think of when seeing it was the similar coupe from the show. Haha

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Being a little later in the day, the sun was coming in at just the right angle to show off the crazy sparkle of the purple paint on this Rocket Bunny S13 – and show that it was indeed purple, not black.

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I feel like I’ve written “Rocket Bunny” way more in this year’s coverage than in years prior…sitting next to the 2JZ R32 was this RB-kitted 350Z with a very appropriate plate. Hey Dustin, since you won’t widebody the S15, I have an idea for you…

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When I grabbed this shot there was one thing I immediately thought of – Wekfest Japan. The Olympic Oval’s and Port Messe Exhibition Center’s roofs are not exactly the same but close enough I felt that this photo gave me a strong feeling of Wekfest. The fact that the subject matter consisted of a couple of Skylines, a Boss S14 and a Silvia only further enhanced the feeling that I was looking at a photo taken in Japan…

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…but behind me was the giant Canadian flag to suggest otherwise.

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Starting to circle back to our group I passed by Adrian’s and Alex’s Civics again so I grabbed another shot. Adrian’s red EJ won Best in Show Honda, and Alex’s EM1 took Best in Class Honda; definitely a strong pair of Civics and not just in regards to their track capabilities!

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I had shown this FR-S from another angle earlier and said that there should be an engine bay shot later on to go with it – and here it is! Yes, that is a BRZ front bumper you see but it was indeed an FR-S. Lots of people seemed to be focused on the sea of carbon fiber but my favourite part was that ARC induction box sitting up front.

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New F-350, lifted way up to the point where it probably wouldn’t have been hard to find a car at the show that would have fit underneath. That would have been a fun (if cliché) photo to get!

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With this shot of Alex’s TL-S we are now through the photos of the cars, but the day wasn’t over yet so neither is this post. By this point it was time to head over to the stage with everyone else to see how the auction would go, and ultimately find out who the judges had selected as the winners for Driven Calgary 2017. We wandered over, found a spot, and soon the names started being called. At the end of it our little group walked away with two awards, so I set up the camera for a final shot before we all packed up and headed home.

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And when I say final shot, I mean I took this and then the camera battery finally died after all of the photos and video that day!

What you don’t see just outside of the frame here was all of the activity as everyone was quickly packing up and leaving; there was the clattering of displays coming apart, the sounds of cars firing up and tires squeaking on the floor, and the smell of exhaust filling the venue. With all of the commotion going on around us, we took a minute to reflect on the day and everything we had seen and experienced, and perhaps most importantly, all pose together to get one more photo with which to remember it all.

As the judges worked through the list of award winners I was called when Mustard took home Best in Class Focus, and my mother’s name was announced when the 240 won for Cleanest Survivor! During the awards ceremony one of the judges actually took the time to explain the category as it was a brand new one they had added to the list for this year: they had been so impressed with the convertible that they decided it had to be honoured with something and so the Cleanest Survivor class was started. I really hope that, moving forward, more original examples of cars like the 240 will be found and brought out to events like this; they’ll provide some nice contrast to the crazy, fully-built up cars and just as classic car enthusiasts are treasuring original and untouched examples more and more, it’s a logical next step for this section of the automotive world too.

In any case, it was a perfect way to end the day. Mario and I can proudly say that together we’ve won our class three years in a row – Ketchup in ’15, Mustard in ’16, and now our Ketchup/Mustard mashup for ’17 – and my mother was incredibly happy to see her little convertible win at its first ever show.

A big thank-you goes to everyone involved in putting on what was another great event, to everyone who joined our group for this year, and a final congratulations to all of the winners. I hope that all of you reading this have enjoyed the photos from the day and are excited to see everything else lined up for the site; the Driven video, meet coverage, 780 Tuners season opener, and part installs/reviews; there’s lots more to come!

-Bill

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