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SP Rides: A Different Kind of Ride

December 6, 2013
 
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By MICHAEL KITCHENS

Name: Coelan Jacob Dumlao
Age: 20
Occupation: Apprentice plumber
Hobbies: Cars
Year/Make/Model: 1990 Mazda Miata
Color: Eclectic
Engine: Fully rebuilt, bored to 1.8L, Greddy Catback, Garagestar engine lift plate
Exterior: Custom vented hood, front lip, custom side skirts, trunk rack, rolled fenders, Garagestar skid plates
Interior: Hard Dog roll cage, Bride LoMax seats, Crystal Bubble shift knob, drift button, 12-inch subwoofer
Wheels and Tires: 15×7 SSR Vienna Dish II with Federal Formoza FD1s at 165/50R15

The cars that grace the pages of StreetPulse are often highly polished, immaculate works of automotive art. In contrast, this week’s featured ride — a 1990 Mazda Miata — may not win any import shows now or in the future, but it does have character and style to spare. Owned and operated by Coelan Dumlao, this automobile is a daily driven battle machine in the truest sense of the word.

“My car is different … everyone’s perspective on cars is the same it seems, (with) clean, nice rims, all decked out. My car has character,” says Coelan.

With the absence of an asphalt track here on Oahu, having an interest in drifting is probably one of the hardest motorsports to enjoy unless you’re watching YouTube. Coelan is still young at age 20, but he’s already picked his passion and has jumped headfirst into following it. He was first introduced to drifting by his friends, and became absolutely enthralled with the motorsport.

“Drifting is the craziest thing you can do with a car,” says Coelan.

He chose this Miata because the platform is incredibly nimble and was blown away by the way it tracked the road. You couldn’t pick a better choice. Thousands of Miatas are raced on a daily basis and the car is the best-selling two-seat convertible ever made with more than 900,000-plus models pulled off the assembly line so far.

In many ways, our cars are a reflection of our personal style. Coelan prefers to leave the show-queen-car-ornaments to others, and drive his car like it was meant to be driven. It looks the part in traditional drift style as well, as zip ties hold on the bumpers, the lights are taped, and the car sports some gnarly graffiti all over it. Stickers adorn the car while a polished rack fits the trunk and is used to haul Coelan’s drift tires when heading out. Custom side skirts add a bit of flair along with an aggressive vented hood.

The motor has been rebuilt and bored out from 1.6 to 1.8 liters and features all OEM Mazda parts in order to prepare for Coelan’s future participation in SCCA. Installed alongside the motor is a full racing transmission fitted with shorter gearing. A Greddy catback exhaust provides some low-end growl while the Garagestar engine and skid plates have been added.

The fenders have been rolled to fit the aggressive drop provided by the full spec Megan track-prepped coilover suspension with aggressive spring rates. A Hard Dog roll cage has been installed to protect the occupants in case of a rollover and the interior features Bride LoMax racing seats. Also installed is a trick drift button, and a Crystal Bubble shift knob has been added to aid drifting the corners. For some tunes, a monster 12-inch sub fills the trunk.

Some absolutely mad 15×7 SSR Wheels Vienna Dish IIs provide some street credential. They’re fitted with Federal Formoza FD1s at 165/50R15s on all four wheels. Each wheel is spec’d at a -14 offset and the rear wheels have 1-inch and a quarter spacers to add more wheelbase.

With no legal place to drift, learning the skills necessary to improve your abilities is difficult. But as this car shows, sometimes you just have to hang it all out to get where you need to go.