Latest Project 240SX LSR Articles

Bonneville World Of Speed Part II:  200 MPH or Bust!

by Chuck Johnson, photos by Joe Lu

In our last update, we left off having just set a new Bonneville H/PS land speed record at 184.1 MPH.  On the second of the two record passes, Project 240SX LSR and its 600 plus horsepower 1.5 L engine, had recorded a fastest speed of 191.9 MPH.  With more than enough power on tap, our goal of pushing the record to over 200 MPH seemed well within reach. Did we get the coveted infamous red hat? Or did we just spin trying? Read on to find out.


Roll cage fabrication, 240sx, S13, Nissan, Silvia, 180SX, land speed racing, SCTA, Racecar, s14, s15, 200 mph club, land speed records, blown gas coupe, moto iq, annie sam, chuck johnson, joe lu, el mirage, bonneville, team rod riders, Jim Pierce motorsports, KW suspension, SPL Pro suspension, Fastbrakes, energy suspension,

Project Land Speed Racer 240SX: Chassis Prep and Roll Cage Fabrication

By Chuck Johnson
Remember when Project Land Speed Racer 240SX first came into the hands of Chuck Johnson? In this Flashback Friday see where the record breaking first got started...  The beginning of any good sedan type racecar build almost always starts with ruining a perfectly decent streetcar. In the case of Project Land Speed Racer 240SX though, I'm not sure if we are really ruining a perfectly good streetcar. Honestly, from the looks of things, it must have been owned by a series of wannabe dorifto hacks before falling into my hands. 

AEM Infinity EMS: The Power to Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control

by Chuck Johnson

When it comes to building cars, I've always tried to maintain a "keep it simple, stupid" approach. At the center of my dead reliable formula was my factory re-flashed ECU. When I decided to get serious about land speed racing, along with that came an exponentially growing need for more capability. I reluctantly dug my heels in denial, touting my "keep it simple stupid" argument. Ironically, that very argument was what would convince me to finally make the change to a standalone ECU. It comes down to this one question. Is a race car running a re-flashed ECU in tandem with a plethora of standalone systems for boost control, wide band sensors, variable valve lift, and data logging really simple? No. Enter the AEM Infinity 8 EMS.


The Road to World of Speed: A Multimedia Recount Part 1

by Chuck Johnson

The 2014 season has been a tough one for land speed racers in general, with high winds cancelling events at El Mirage and thunderstorms flooding the Bonneville Salt Flats.  On the home front, Team MotoIQ has had its own series of struggles to overcome with Murphy’s Law wreaking havoc every step of the way.  Nevertheless, we managed to overcome the odds and set a new H/PS land speed record at Bonneville.  Recounted through data logs, videos, photos and of course text, here’s our World of Speed story.


Project 240SX LSR Sets New Land Speed Record

MotoIQ Staff Report

Team MotoIQ in conjunction with 5523 Motorsports and Specialty Cars Fabrication set a new H/PS land speed record at the Bonneville Salt Flats during the recent USFRA World of Speed event. Their experience on the salt however was not entirely drama free.


The Road to World of Speed Part 5: From Bearings to Bones, We are Unstoppable

by Chuck Johnson

Each year before Speed Week, it seems like we face some serious obstacles in our speed week preparations. But each year, the team pulls together and manages to cheat Murphy’s Law of its satisfaction. This year has been no different.


The Road to Speed Week 2014 Part 4: Return of the Sheet Metal Whisperer

by Chuck Johnson

I’m greeted by the sounds of classical music as I walk into the garage of Specialty Cars Fabrication which is nestled in a corner next to the Fullerton airport. A bright light strikes out from the torch of a tig welder and illuminates the front of a welding mask. The man underneath the mask is John Kuchta, owner and proprietor of Specialty Cars Fabrication. Calling John just a fabricator though, would be an understatement and a borderline insult in my opinion. Put simply, he’s in artist and metal is his canvas.


The Road to Speed Week 2014 Part 3: Gettin' Wired With Zombie Vampire!

by Joe Lu 

The countdown to Speed Week is well underway, which means that pretty much everything becomes secondary to getting the car put back together.  One of the most important additions to Project 240SX LSR this year is the new wire harness, the sole informational network responsible for making sure that the car is able to operate to its full potential, and also do it reliably.  As covered in a previous update, the old wire harness which was completed as the car was literally being loaded on the trailer accomplished the goal of getting the car to the salt. However, we knew that it would need to be upgraded in the interest of reliability for future seasons.  Well, the future is now, and the new wire harness is built to perform.  


The Road to Speed Week Part 2: The Progress Continues

by Chuck Johnson

When last we left off, Project 240SX LSR was under the knife again, in the midst of an entire electrical system and engine management revamp. In this update, we'll continue to follow 5523 Motorsports, Specialty Car, and the rag tag Team MotoIQ as they continue the build with parts from AEM, Fastbrakes, and Earl's Performance Products.


Road to Speed Week 2014 Part 1: The AEM Infinity 8 EMS and AQ-1 Data logger

Road to Speed Week 2014 Part 1: The AEM Infinity 8 EMS and AQ-1 Data Logger

by Chuck Johnson

If this past year's Speed Week taught us anything, it was that Project 240SX LSR's electrical system needed a complete overhaul.  Our previous harness had been built in haste during the few days leading up to Speed Week 2012.  At the same time, we also knew that if we were going to top the land speed record we set last year, we needed traction control, data logging, and the ability to control any parameter of the engine whether we were on the dyno or on the dry lake beds of EL Mirage or Bonneville.  We found the answer to our needs in the form of AEM's AQ-1 data logger and Infinity 8 stand alone programmable EMS.


Project 240SX Land Speed Racer:  Better Living through Volumetric Efficiency

by Chuck Johnson

After removing more than one cylinders' worth of displacement from an SR20DET, the need to improve the volumetric efficiency of our engine through forced induction became absolutely critical. In other words, if we were going to have any chance at breaking land speed records, we'd need a badass turbo system and there was simply no room for scrimpin' here.  So, we stocked our turbo system with the best components we could find:  A Borg Warner EFR turbo, dual Turbo Smart Hyper Gates, and a stainless steel Full Race Motorsports turbo manifold.  Then, we made all the right connections with Earl's Performance Products.


The Heart of a Record Breaker III: Completing the VVL Head Swap and Engine Assembly

by Chuck Johnson

In this installment of Project 240SX LSR, we'll follow Nick Hunter of 5523 Motorsports as he completes the build of our record breaking engine dubbed the SR15VET 20V.  Read on for more on our de-stroked SR15VET, the VVL head swap, and the completion of our engine. 


The Heart of a Record Breaker II:  The Doctor Is In

by Chuck Johnson

In our last story, we covered the basic design of our land speed record breaking engine we've dubbed the SR15VET 20V.  This time around, we'll take a deep look inside the engine and detail its build with none other than our resident Nissan guru, Nick Hunter of 5523 Motorsports.


sr15vet 20v

The Heart of a Record Breaker Part I: Enter the SR15VET 20V

by Chuck Johnson

In the last three years, it seems that I've said it over a thousand times. When it comes to land speed racing, take most everything you know about racing and throw it away. There are so many generally accepted practices in motorsports and preconceived notions about racing that just don't apply when it comes to land speed racing. In fact, much of the time these common practices are the polar opposite of the practices standard to that of building a car for Bonneville. Where most racers would consider changes in displacement only in one direction (larger), the land speed racer will do whatever it takes to set a land speed record even if it means decreasing an engine's displacement. Why did we choose this route? Read on to find out!


5523 Motorsports: Interview with a Zombie Vampire

by Joe Lu and Chuck Johnson

So here we are on the flip side of Speed Week 2013, epic road trips to Utah and record runs down the Bonneville salt flats were had, but let's rewind a week and pretend that we're just a few days out from Bonneville.  In fact, we're sitting in a swelteringly hot garage at 5523 Motorsports in Escondido, California wondering if we'll make it to Speed Week at all.


Keep Racing Fun- Bonneville Speed Week-2013

By Mike Kojima

Every once in a while we do a behind the scenes story about some of our Motorsports adventures and stuff we do on the road.  Although this might look like we're living the life according to what a lot of our readers think, when you try to perform on a high level, it actually takes a lot of blood, sweat, hard work, and passion to do what we do.  We are often too busy making things happen in the Motorsports world to document our adventures but this time we decided to focus on one of our main projects for this year: Editor Chuck Johnson breaking the H/PS world land speed record at Bonneville Speed Week 2013.'s Project 240SX LSR Claims Another Land Speed Record at the Legendary Bonneville Salt Flats!

By Annie Sam's Project 240SX Land Speed Racer (LSR), driven by Editor Chuck Johnson, secured yet another land speed record this time on the legendary Bonneville Salt Flats.   Facing adversity from seemingly every direction, Team MotoIQ managed to overcome a mixture of freak mechanical and electrical issues to qualify for its second land speed record this year.


Video: Inside Project 240SX LSR's Land Speed Record Pass

So what's it like to accelerate from a standstill to land speed record smashing speeds on the dirt surface of the El Mirage dry lakebed?   Check out the in-car video below to see MotoIQ contributing editor, Chuck Johnson, doing just that in MotoIQ's very own "Project 240SX Land Speed Racer.


chuck johnson, stephen quinn, john kuchta

Project Land Speed Racer 240SX: Ain't No Rest for the Wicked

By Chuck Johnson
Photos by Joe Lu
The last chapter of Project 240SX LSR left Team MotoIQ sleep deprived and malnourished with just a handful of days to spare before Speed Week 2012.  However, the ever persistent team had just completed the install of a donor SR20DET and the fabrication of the Spearco air to liquid intercooler system.  In terms of the powertrain, things were looking up.  On the chassis side though, there was still a long list of modifications that needed to be completed to meet SCTA rules.  While we are currently preparing for Bonneville Speedweek 2013, read on to see the final push we made for last years' Speed Week.

MotoIQ's Project 240SX Sets a Land Speed Record at El Mirage!

By Annie Sam
Photos by Joe Lu and Sharry Lai

After three years of building and chasing a dream, MotoIQ's Project 240SX Land Speed Racer claimed the Southern California Timing Association's (SCTA) H/PS class land speed record for El Mirage!



The Hail Mary: The Build Story Behind Speed Week Part 1

By Chuck Johnson
Defined as a very long, low percentage pass made in sheer desperation, the term Hail Mary is perfectly fitting of Project 240LSR’s journey to Speed Week. While Eric Hsu and "Team America" were making their own Hail Mary attempt to make it to World Time Attack, the perhaps lesser known, yet equally determined team behind MotoIQ’s Project 240LSR were simultaneously in pursuit of their own Hail Mary pass. Let’s face it though; this is par for the course. If it wasn’t for race day, almost every race car would be forever damned to a hellish state of incompletion. This is the story of how we made it.


Project 240SX Land Speed Racer:  Racecar Livery, the Function Behind the Form

By Chuck Johnson  Photos by Joe Lu

I’ve put together a lot of cool project cars over the years and would like to think that with each one, I push the envelope a little bit further and get a little better at what I’m doing.  I’ve learned a lot from building racecars and a good portion of that learning in most recent years I’d say, is far beyond that of just turning a wrench.


240sx, s13, land speed, salt flats, bonneville, chuck johnson

Project 240SX Land Speed Racer:  Flat Out on the Bonneville Salt Flats (Video)

By Chuck Johnson

It’s really easy for people to discredit going fast in a straight line.  Hell, I myself have been guilty of snickering at the thought of "run what you brung" night at the drag races.  I mean how much skill could it really take to hold a steering wheel straight and mash on the throttle for a ¼ mile?  The truth is though, it doesn’t matter if it’s driving in a straight line or around the same damn circle for hours. Click on the link to see the in-car video!


project land speed racer 240sx race dash

Project Land Speed Racer 240SX: All The Right Gauges

by Stephen Quinn - Photos by Joe Lu and Chuck Johnson

Let's face it. There are hundreds, if not thousands of aftermarket gauges readily available for purchase. Most can tell you what you need to know in whatever color, shape, and size you desire. But an array of gauges strewn across the dash and up the A-pillar accompanied by a tachometer the size of your head isn't the most effective way of delivering essential information to the driver. An unorganized gauge setup is distracting and can be even more dangerous than not having the gauges to begin with.


specialty cars john kuchta aluminum dash

Project 240SX Land Speed Racer: The Sheet Metal Whisperer

By Chuck Johnson
Some of us are born to be doctors and others, lawyers and business executives all of which perhaps live in ticky-tacky little boxes. Thankfully for us gear heads though; John Kuchta III, owner of Specialty Cars, was born to manipulate and massage metal into bitchin' go fast goodies instead of spending his days in court.  John’s ability to grind, file, beat, bend, shape and weld metal into something resulting in such graceful form yet purposely functional is simply uncanny.   Simply put, John Kuchta is, "the sheet metal whisperer."


Fear and Loathing in Bonneville (My Trip to Speedweek)

By Mike Kojima

No this story is not a tale about a classic blowout to Sin City but something almost as bad, the conclusion to my 2012 Motorsports world tour which started on the Formula D circuit at the end of July and just ended this last weekend at the Las Vegas round of Formula D.  During this time I have probably only been home for about 7 days with perhaps 5 uninterrupted days being home straight.


bonneville speed week 2012 project 240sx lsr chuck johnson land speed racer

Project 240SX Land Speed Racer: Bonneville Speed Week Results

MotoIQ Staff Report

Against all odds, the team behind MotoIQ’s Project Land Speed Racer managed to execute a Hail Mary play to make it to this year’s Speed Week at the Bonneville Salt Flats.  On the fifth day of Speed Week, Project 240LSR piloted by Moto IQ editor Chuck Johnson, made its fastest pass of the event.  


Project 240SX Land Speed Racer: The Best Laid Schemes of Mice and Men

By Chuck Johnson

In the beginning of this perhaps irrational quest to conquer a land speed record, I somehow rationalized the purchase of another S13 hatch because I just "couldn’t bring myself to ruin another perfectly good street car."  If I could go back in time, I would ask myself, "What the hell were you thinking?" and then follow it up with a swift slap to the side of my own noggin.  In all fairness to myself though, how the hell was I supposed to see this coming?  Even "the best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry."


Project 240SX Land Speed Racer

Project Land Speed Racer 240SX: SPL Pro Suspension Bits and More!

By Chuck Johnson, Photos by Joe Lu

Since the beginning, the plan for project 240LSR was to address the chassis and safety requirements first, and then afterwards, take care of corralling enough ponies under the hood to make it scary fast.  So the first milestone in this project is to get this heap of metal to the point where it’s a caged out roller with the complete suspension and brake bits to suit.  We just need to finagle together a few, small finishing touches… like sway bars, bushings, brakes, a 5 lug conversion, and a smorgasbord of other suspension links.  Who am I kidding?  We’re like eons away from reaching this milestone!  Or are we?



Project Land Speed Racer 240SX: KW Suspension

By Chuck Johnson, Photos by Joe Lu

To accomplish our 200 MPH goal, we need a suspension system that can confidently dampen the imperfections of a blemished, dirt and salt covered racetrack.  On top of that though, we also need a suspension system that can endure the hostile environments that come with land speed racing.



Introducing Project 240SX- Land Speed Racer

by Chuck Johnson

The project mission is simple:  Build a bad ass S13 240SX, conquer a land speed record, and join the infamous Bonneville 200 MPH club.  


MotoIQ Proudly Presents Our Sponsors:

© 2020