WANNA start an argument? Ask a bunch of car guys what constitutes a streetcar. In our minds, there’s no doubt Terry Seng’s HDT275 is Australia’s quickest true streetcar after it ran 7.42 at 180mph yesterday at Willowbank Raceway. For a car that sees the streets on a regular basis, that’s an amazing performance.
“I just can’t walk past it,” Terry says. “I go out to the garage to drive somewhere in the family car and I find myself going back inside to get the keys for the VC. I drive it every chance I get. After we ran the 7.58 a few weeks back we actually drove it down to the Gold Coast to see Furious 7 at the drive in, but it was so miserable down there with so much rain and lightning that we ended up driving it up to Brisbane to a mate’s place for dinner instead.”
Just in case you’re wondering, Terry and Anita live in Toowoomba where they operate Paramount Performance; not really near the Gold Coast or Brisbane.
The VC HDT lookalike runs a twin-turbo 6.0-litre with a cast iron truck block and a pair of diminutive 62mm turbos. With the boost set to a maximum of 32psi, and methanol in the tank, the 3300lb Commodore is producing somewhere in the vicinity of 1700hp.
“I still use E85 on the street, but I’ve switched to methanol for the track now because I’ve been getting some inconsistent fuel from the pump,” Terry says. “I decided that if I need to buy E85 in drums to get good fuel, I might as well buy methanol. It’s more consistent and safe to tune with at these levels.”
But making the car quicker isn’t just about making more power. Terry has been spending a lot of time under the rear end, getting the car to hook up, with changes to shock and suspension settings, as well as tweaking the power delivery with the boost control.
“We did 12 passes yesterday and only two of them got past the 60-foot mark, and for one of those I had to pedal it,” Terry admits. “I ran the 7.42 on the second last pass and put the chutes out early. On the last pass the car wheelstood on me and I had to back off, but it still went 7.50 at 184mph, so there’s probably a little more in it. My aim is to run 300km/h in the quarter mile, and we’re not far off – I think that would be pretty amazing.
“Even so, I’m over the moon with the car’s achievements. After we do that my wife Anita might have a go. She used to race my Torana occasionally and it would be great for her to enjoy the car like I do.”