Daigo Saito had some serious issues with his rear end on the Nissan GT-R he brought into Formula Drift. He kept breaking the rear of the car, at least once an event, due to the serious load Formula Drift puts on the car. After the Formula Drift Orlando round of competition, he decided enough was enough and reached out to the guys at Sikky Manufacturing in Maryland to develop a solution that would hold all the power his GT-R puts down. Sikky determined that one of their quick change rear setups would solve the issues and they quickly went to work. After completely tearing down the rear of the car, Sikky scanned the OEM sub frame and sheet metal floor pan with their FARO arm to create a CAD model that would allow them to design the new rear end. The new setup was designed, tested and put through the motions on the computer before any parts were even made. Once the concept was finished and checked out the real fun began.
Sikky started with a OEM R35 GTR sub frame. The new steel pieces that would hold the quick change rear in place were laser cut and bent per their CAD design. Positioned perfectly to account for driveshaft and axles Sikky was able to design a mounting system that would hold this massive rear. The end result is an impressively strong rear that is ready to handle all the abuse Daigo Saito would throw at it the rest of the season. If you just compare the two photos of the rear end you can see how stout they built the new Nissan GT-R rear end.
This buff Sikky sub frame cradles the quick change rear in the proper place and prevented the team from running into any more rear issues for the remainder of the season. The clearance with the sway bar and exhaust are centimeter tight but just managed to work perfectly and fit within the Formula Drift rulebook.
The progression of the Nissan GT-R in Formula Drift has been a slow growth process but with companies like Sikky on the team I can imagine Daigo Saito will be making a championship run sooner than later, perhaps in 2016?