The South African car scene has exploded in the last decade, and car shows in particular have become a regular weekend pastime. With the market saturated with aftermarket and performance parts, and everyone getting in on the scene, we are a bit spoilt for choice. Having said that, sometimes it can get a tad monotonous and I have heard people complain that “seen one car, seen them all”. This is somewhat true, but every now and then, a car appears that, well, kills the game. Ben Moodley’s RX7 is one of those cars.
I first saw, or rather, experienced Ben’s Series 7 at a drift event about 2 years ago, where the Nardo grey machine was parked off. Since then, after I heard the insane burbling of the Wankel, we’ve been trying to get the car in these pages.
Good things take time, and the car improved dramatically since then. The guys at Titan Customs masterfully fitted the Rocket Bunny bodykit, and unlike other cars we’ve seen, nothing on this car is copied, or replicated. After the original Rocket Bunny kit was perfected onto the series 7bodyshell, it was painted a custom one-off candy purple, or a colour that closely resembles it. Then again, it depends on the time of day, the ambient temperature and the angle from where it is viewed. When we shot this car, I was mesmerised by the different colours, and how it flipped. The bodywork add-ons in the form of the side, front and rear splitters are nothing short of insane, and in true JDM fashion gives the car a somewhat animated feel, like the colour racer toy cars of yesteryear. Rotors are usually mean machines made to go fast, and suspension systems are either tuned for drag racing or for going sideways.
The air ride system, like everything else on the car, is the best of the best, with HKS coilovers and bags over coils. Dual 444c compressors and 3/8 hard lines makes it go up and down, controlled via Bluetooth with Ben’s phone nogal, while the seamless brushed aluminium tank with electronic tank drain seems to be floating when viewed through the rear hatch. The suede floor and piano black inserts match the rest of the interior, and the white interior lighting creates a bit of Japanese nightlife ambiance. The whole install was creatively crafted and fitted by the geniuses at Seven Customz, who also happen to be Cape Town’s only accredited air dealer. The air-ride not only allows the insane splitters to kiss the ground, but it allows the Rocket Bunny arches to hug the huge Yoko rubber, which are stretched onto the most insane wheels ever. You will notice I use the word “insane” often, but that is just what the car is. The Work Meister M13P split rims are in a fitment of 10.5J in the front, with broader than Beyonce 12.5J at the rear, and the centres have been painted anthracite, which kinda accentuates the popping paint. I’m curious to see gold centres though…..
As mentioned before, the suede boot floor matched the Recaro Pole Position seats, and Sparco steering wheel. A short shifter kit is also in play, and there are six Works gauges mounted on the dash. Six gauges to monitor under-bonnet activity? Things must be happening under there then, surely?
While this car looks mental, from the beautiful paintwork to air ride to those mid-boggling wheels, many people see it as one of, if not the best show car in the Cape at the moment, but few realise that it has as much go as it does show. In fact, the engine bay shopping list is so long that it probably exceeds the craziness of the rest of the car.
The peripheral port motor was built by Rotor Excellence and has seen extensive upgrades. The casing was dowelled and reinforced with 3mm Apex seals.
A custom Garrett GT47 turbo is mounted onto a custom manifold, and sends boosted air to the RE intake via a 90mm throttle body and Greddy intercooler, which peeks menacingly from behind the front bumper. As you know, Wankels are thirsty beasts, and the four 2000cc Injector Dynamics injectors deliver copious amounts of fuel, supplied by two AEM fuel pumps. The rest of the fuelling system is made up of an array of very thick hoses and FTF fittings. Ignition and timing is managed by a regular on rotaries, a Microtech LT16 ECU. This enables the usage of a flex fuel system, and when filled with ethanol, I’ve seen how the tailend of the beast get firemen nervous.
Power figures are still a mystery, but it gets delivered via an OS Giken twin plate clutch, to an OS Giken LSD. Did I mention insane?
This car is currently the torque of the town, and I predict it will be for some time to come. It has recently won Best of Show at King of Slam, and won the same coveted award at OTF2018.
Ben would like to thank everyone who had a hand in the build, especially the team at Titan Customs, Rabbit Auto Customs, and Seven Customz. Also a huge shoutout goes out to his wife, Terry Lee, for all her support. Together, they created something so special, that one cannot really call it a car. It is an experience. An experience of insanity!