Swap Insanity: Meet Victoria – Manila’s Finest

Over here at LSXMag, we like imports – a lot – more specifically, imports swapped with LS engines!

The folks over at Car Porn Racing out of Manila, Philippines just happen to have one of the most beautiful RWB Porsche 993’s around, and yes, it has an LS1 swap! For those of you that aren’t familiar with the knee-weakening RWB Porsches, they have a pretty awesome background.

Photo by Joey Godinez for Fresh Produce

RAUH-Welt Begriff, meaning Rough World Concept in German, is a Japanese Porsche tuner founded by Akira Nakai that started off as a small countryside body shop in Kashiwa-shi, Chiba, Japan. Every aspect of every RWB Porsche he creates is crafted by hand, not mass produced, so whenever you see one of these cars in the flesh it is an amazing feeling. Just being around the cars is an experience in itself, and knowing that all of that hard work came from one man. Nakai-san’s works of art can be seen commonly around the streets and circuits of Japan, but recently, he’s been traveling all over the world to build customers their own piece of RWB history.

Image Source: Fatlace

In 2011, RWB was brought to the states by none other than the man behind Fatlace/Illest, Mark Arcenal. The first RWB Porsche that was built for the United States, by Nakai-san in the United States, was Arcenal’s Green (now black) Porsche 964 and goes by the name of Pandora One. Arcenal conveniently opened up the US division of RWB right next to the Fatlace Paddock. It’s pretty awesome that Arcenal opened up a dedicated garage next to his own business for Nakai-san to build US customers their own custom RWB Porsche.

Ian King, owner of Car Porn Racing and the lovely RWB “Victoria” wanted his car to be a collection of a bunch of firsts, and that’s exactly what he got. Victoria started her life as a stock-body Amaranth Violet 1994 Carrera 2 993, but as soon as Nakai-san came into the picture, he worked his magic by building a hand-crafted body kit consisting of front and rear bumpers, side skirts, front and rear over-fenders, and a GT2 style trunk with a championship wing to give her that runway-model appearance. Aside from being the first RWB Porsche in the Philippines, Victoria is the first RWB Porsche in the world to be on air suspension, and the first ever RWB Porsche to have a burly American V8.

To Porsche purists, this might be wrong, but to us, it’s just so right! We’ve seen Porsches with LS swaps before, but Victoria takes the cake – just look at her! Utilizing Renegade Hybrids‘ LS V8 mount kit, King and his crew muscled the 550 horsepower LS1 under Victoria’s deck lid and fabricated some custom headers, which are connected to an XForce x-pipe and remote-controlled Varex mufflers. The Varex mufflers are pretty cool and act just like the exhaust valves on the C7 Corvette, except they’re not controlled by the ECU, but by a little remote on a keychain – instant sound increase at the push of a button. Originally, the car had an automatic transmission mated to the factory 3.6L engine, but that was ripped out when the LS1 was dropped in. The car has been converted to a G50 5-speed manual Porsche transmission with a 2-way LSD for ultimate drivability.

At Car Porn Racing, King and his crew like to slam every vehicle they get their hands on to the ground with Airrex air suspension, and Victoria was no exception. Airrex struts in all four corners paired with Accuair‘s i-Level controller allow Victoria to tuck her massive custom three-piece Work Meister S1 wheels to the arches of the custom crafted over-fenders in a matter of seconds. Seeing Victoria aired out is an awesome sight, but the Airrex air suspension isn’t just for good looks and a smooth ride. Each strut has fully adjustable dampening settings just like conventional coilovers, which allow for manual adjustment of ride stiffness to suit different driving situations. One thing that we love about Victoria’s air setup is how it’s incorporated into the build – the five gallon tank and VIAIR 400C compressor fill the space in the trunk quite nicely. 

In addition to the air suspension, the underside of the car got some much needed performance goodies which include steel-braided lines for the air system, Tarett tie rods, H&R front and rear sway bars, Rennline Kinematic rear control arms, Elephant Racing Monoball kit for the front, and some Porsche 911 GT2 spindles. We love the fact that Victoria has go and isn’t just all show.

As you can see, this photo was before the G50 5-speed manual conversion. Photo by Matyas Fulop for DownshiftAUS

Victoria’s interior was lightly modded with some Recaro SR7 racing seats, a MOMO Drift wheel, and a Pioneer radio to give the 90’s-era cabin a little bit of a refresh. The interior was already really clean to begin with, and not much was needed to please King.

To see a Porsche showcase Japanese styling and American power while maintaining its European flare is really refreshing. We don’t expect to see a lot of RWB Porsches with LS swaps, but it would definitely be nice. Car Porn Racing and Nakai-san did an absolutely amazing job with this build and it’s nothing but the best quality – We can’t wait to see the other projects that King and his crew churn out.

Keep a look out for updates on Victoria as she will be receiving a new heart transplant in the near future, and yes, it is still an LS, but we won’t spoil the surprise. To see more from Car Porn Racing, check out their Facebook page!

About the author

Josh Kirsh

Born in Van Nuys, Raised in Murrieta, Joshua Kirsh is a SoCal Native. With a love for anything on wheels since the ripe young age of two, Joshua Managed to turn his love for automobiles into a career. As Power Automedia's newest writer, he plans to bring you some of the industry's hottest news topics while he's not out in the shop wrenching on some of our badass in-house project builds.
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