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Bridgestone last won the day on March 7 2016

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  1. Bridgestone

    Guide to Buying a Second Hand Car

    Buy a not so second-hand car The goal to buying a second hand car is to buy one as un-second hand as possible. What we mean is getting the one you want, in the best condition, for a good price. Here are some tips to make the experience a smooth ride. Not just auto alley With the amount of choice at your disposal, buying a used car has never been easier. You’re no longer restricted to a few car yards down the road, there are a boot full of used car sites, private sales and reputable dealerships. It really is personal preference, however searching online will quickly narrow down your choice. Too small, too big Search for the type of car that fits your lifestyle and don't be tempted to stray. You'd be surprised how many people end up buying a completely different car that's totally unsuitable. Inspection time Once you've narrowed down your options, it's time to kick a few tyres. But before you go, do some research on the car, read reviews and find out what to look out for in the used car you're after. Set yourself a budget and try not to stray too far from it. Just remember, you’ll have registration and stamp duty fees and probably a servicing to add to the cost of purchase. It’s not a new car you’re buying and there’s a chance some mechanical repairs will pop up. Here are some other considerations when inspecting: Ask more questions. Try and find out as much as you can about the car's history. Are you speaking with the first owners, where did they buy it from, how long have they owned it, when do they mostly use it? Four eyes are better than two. If you can, bring along a trusted friend who knows more about cars than you to check things you’re not sure of. They might spot things that you didn’t even think to look for. You can't see in the dark. No matter how eager you are to see a car, never carry out an inspection in the dark, bad light or rain, they can all hide scratches, dents and rust. Tyre tick. You can check the tread depth by looking at the tread wear indicator bars moulded into the tyre tread. These are found at the bottom of the tread grooves around the tyre. When the tyre is worn to the point where any of the bars become equal with the adjacent tread, it’s time to replace it. Body check. Run your eyes along all panels and carefully check the paint job for scratches or dents. Check the joins for uneven matching, welding or variation in gaps as this could mean crash repairs. Look under the bonnet and carpet for rust and signs of welding or paint overspray. Leaks are messy. Check the engine block and under the engine and on the floor for any oil leaks. The engine bay should be clean and tidy. Check oil levels are correct on the dipstick and the oil is clean. Transmission oil should be a clean pink or red. Worn Belts and rubber. All belts should look new and not shabby. Look for tears, nicks or frays. Feel all the hoses - they should be firm and not rubbery or loose fitting. Go under. Bring a torch. Take a crawl and stick your head under the car (as much as you can). Check the exhaust system is clean with no rust spots or holes. Service please. Always ask for the service book and see if all the right rubber stamps are on the right pages at the right time, especially the big services like timing belt replacement. Get behind the wheel If it passes your first inspection, it’s time for a test drive. Take a seat and look around - you should feel comfortable from the start. Here's what you should look for on your test drive: The car should start first time and settle into a smooth idle. Keep the radio turned off and listen for any clunky engine or suspension noises. Test the air con to see if it's powerful and cold on maximum setting. Test the brakes on a quiet road to ensure a firm and smooth stop. Test the handbrake on a steep hill to make sure it’s correctly adjusted. Drive through all gears in a manual - they should engage smoothly and quietly, with no clutch slip. An auto should also change gears quickly and smoothly. Drive the car at highway speeds if possible to give a better impression of handling. Ask for the spare set of keys. If you need to buy another they can be surprisingly expensive. Shake on it Your nan will have advice on how to negotiate a car deal - everyone does! But it all depends on how much you want the car and how eager the seller is to move it on. Best advice - be fair and reasonable. Some other points to remember if you buy: Do a REVS check ( to see if there's any money owing on the car. Ensure registration and service history details match seller and car. Consider stamp duty and transfer fees in the price. If you feel comfortable with it - pay with cash. It's a great bargaining tool! Organise insurance before driving away. Make a car “less second hand” with new tyres If you have any doubt about the quality or roadworthiness of the tyres on your used car, one of the best things you can do is replace them. New quality tyres can improve performance, comfort, handling and above all safety. Have an expert at your local store advise you on the right tyres to make your used car feel good as new. Had any good or bad experiences buying used cars? Do you prefer buying from a car dealer or owner? Share them with us and let us know in the comments below, or join the conversation on
  2. Bridgestone

    Get the 4Th Tyre for Free

    Click here for more information about Bridgestone’s current offers. *Conditions apply. All offers valid between 01/03/2019 and 31/03/2019 and are redeemable in store. +Available on Bridgestone Turanza Serenity Plus tyres, only at Bridgestone stores. Full terms and conditions here. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  3. Click here for more information about Bridgestone’s current offers. *The 4th tyre free offer is valid on purchases of four selected Bridgestone Ecopia and Supercat tyres in one transaction. ^The $80 cash back offer is valid on the purchase of four Firestone car tyres in one transaction. All offers valid between 01/02/2019 and 28/02/2019 and is redeemable in store. Offer excludes wholesale purchases and all other tyres manufactured or distributed by Bridgestone. Not available with any other offer and while stocks last. Full terms and conditions here. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  4. Bridgestone

    Lexus ISF V8 Build

    The Blue Suit: Lexus ISF Build If you’re looking for me in my happy place; that would be in the garage until the wee hours of the morning, tinkering with carburetors, rewiring some gadget or painting something. My name is Kevin San, and my hobby is restoring old cars. But when it comes to motorsport, I don’t tend to use my project cars. Old cars need more skill to push hard, and having things wear out faster due to track days tends to make a restoration that little bit harder to complete. And if things do go pear-shaped, the consequences are much harder to resolve. So rather perversely, when it comes to motorsport, it’s the cars that I use for daily driving that get pressed into active duty. In recent years, I’ve been pretty lucky to have some nice cars to drive to work everyday. The MX5 was the friendly, approachable sweetheart that everyone knows and loves and felt equally at home in Super Sprints or drift events. The 911 that replaced it was a superb road car, whilst slightly tricky to tame on the circuit. While I loved it, I never quite felt like I came to terms with driving it on the limit. The beautiful RX-7 that replaced it was the most wonderfully pure and focused drivers car, which got better the faster you went. It might come as a surprise to learn that the car that I’m driving today is the fastest of the lot, and it’s an automatic family sedan. It’s a 2011 Lexus ISF. The ISF evolved quite a bit during its 6-year production run, and the 2011 model got some tasty upgrades compared to the launch edition; specifically a torsen LSD and a revised suspension that made it a much faster proposition on the circuit. So when it was time to move on from the RX-7, it was a 2011 or newer model that I was looking for. It’s a pretty nice package out of the box, and unusually for a Japanese car, doesn’t feel like it’s crying out for a round of ‘necessary’ modifications. So the modifications it does have are pretty light; just an X-Force dual exhaust to let more of the V8 snarl out, an intake tube and some better Endless brake pads. When I first got the car, I eagerly took it to its first track day and came away pleasantly surprised at how much fun it was. The handling balance is dominantly power oversteer, and you could really make the most of the monstrous brakes and 420 horsepower of brute force coming out of corners. Going fast was quite easy, but nailing the perfect lap was a real challenge, as the car starts to feel its weight at the very limit. You have to be very precise to manage its momentum, especially when getting it to pivot into corners and in the esses. Go a little too hard and it’s easy to spill the car over into messy oversteer, which looks and feels great but isn’t so flash on the stopwatch. So when the opportunity arose to try the new Potenza S007As, I jumped at the chance. It’s been my experience that modern supercar tyres are really very impressive. They do everything a good road tyre should do, offering good wet grip, quiet operation and long tread wear life…but then they also are capable of surprising lap times on a circuit. There’s no free lunch though, and the catch comes in the form of a relatively small window before they get too hot and the grip levels start to fall. Whereas track day tyres are designed to stay consistent and nail identical times lap after lap, the high end road tyres can’t keep it up for too long before starting to lose their edge. You can’t have everything! The OEM tyres that were fitted when I bought it were great on road and reeled off an impressive 1’10.2 lap time around Wakefield Park, just a smidge shy of the RX-7’s best time and a couple of seconds faster than the 911. But as expected, they had a sweet spot of a few hot laps before you had to back right off and let them cool down again. I eventually replaced them with the a different brand, this time opting for a track spec tyre, which brought the PB down to 1’09.6, beating the RX-7s best time and as expected of a track day tyre, they had the consistency to do lap after lap with largely identical times. As expected, the gap in ultimate performance between a really good road tyre and a track day tyre wasn’t that big. But the consistency of a track day tyre comes at a cost of reduced lifespan, greater noise and unpredictable wet grip on the road. I’d had the Bridgestone Potenza S007As fitted for a few weeks before the track day, which allowed me to get a feel for how they performed as an everyday road tyre. The initial verdict was that they were very good indeed; the ride had a plusher edge to it and they were impressively quiet. On a winding road, the steering was less darty and as you approached the grip limit, the breakaway was very soft and progressive. This meant that you had a lot of feedback as to where the grip levels were, and it instilled more confidence to allow you to really lean on the tyres. The big question was how they would perform on the track. The S007A’s compound is somewhere between a track day tyre and a sports road tyre in terms of softness, and that bodes well for the grip. Rolling out of the pits into the first corner, they kept their softer edged characteristics from the road, and instead of messy and fidgety stabs into oversteer, they settled into long and gentle powerslides which were easy to manage. Compared to the other tyres, these had less understeer and more of a tail-out balance. Grip levels were high, and immediately the lap times tumbled into the 1’09s, eventually settling to a best of the day of 1’09.3. It’s the fastest the ISF has ever gone around Wakefield. The S007As seem to like softer pressures, so they have that in common with track day tyres. So notwithstanding the stellar lap times that they’re capable of, the S007As are excellent road tyres that are more than capable of doing a track day. For those looking for outright track speed there are a few more dedicated tyres in the Potenza range like the RE-71R that I would love to try out and would probably recommend for those who spend hours lapping round their local circuit chasing extra 10ths of seconds. I really do like them as road tyres, and considering they’re quiet and ride well they are a good option over daily driving race rubber, and have excellent winding road manners. The fact the S007A also has the potential to run with the big dogs at a track day is a mightily impressive bonus. The stopwatch doesn’t lie. View my trackday video here Now that I felt I’ve extracted the very best out of the standard Lexus ISF (albeit with three very different tyres), it’s time for me to start the major modifications. I will be ordering coilovers, wheels and as well as installing a very tasty WALD carbon ducktail to fit. Keep and eye on all my build thread updates More information on the Bridgestone Potenza S007A can be found here LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  5. Click here for more information about Bridgestone’s current offers. *The 4th tyre free offer is valid on purchases of four Bridgestone Turanza Serenity Plus tyres in one transaction. ^The $100 cash back offer is valid on purchase of four Bridgestone Dueler or Alenza tyres in one transaction. #The $80 cash back offer is valid on purchase of four Supercat passenger or LVR tyres in one transaction. All offers valid between 26/12/2018 and 31/01/2019 and is redeemable in store. Offer excludes wholesale purchases and all other tyres manufactured or distributed by Bridgestone. Not available with any other offer and while stocks last. +Available on Bridgestone Turanza Serenity Plus tyres, only at Bridgestone stores. Full terms and conditions here. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  6. Bridgestone

    Mighty Car Mods

    If you followed the build of our Mighty Car Mods "240Z" you would have seen that we bought a classic 1975 Nissan/Datsun S30 240Z Fairlady off the internet. Then we flew over to Japan to service it, throw it on a race track and then and imported it back to Australia. Due to Australia’s import laws relating to asbestos, we couldn’t easily keep the original 2 litre engine so with the help of some mates we installed a turbocharged RB26 engine from a Nissan Skyline GT-R, and replaced pretty much every piece of drivetrain, suspension and braking componentry to ensure the vintage machine could handle having more than three times its original power. Our final power figures came out at around 330kw at the wheels in a car that weights around 1100 kilos. To put this into perspective, the power to weight ratio is similar to that of a Bugatti Veyron. A large part of this upgrading process was replacing the Japanese tyres with modern high-performance Bridgestone Potenza RE003 rubber. Although the bias ply tyres which came on the S30 looked to have decent road-legal tread depth, the age of it made it necessary to install some new rubber. We also got a good look at just how far tyre technology has come in the last 45 years when we discovered the Zed’s original spare wheel in the boot, which was still wrapped in the original Bridgestone Super Speed-5 bias-ply tyre! The Super Speed-5 is the same model of tyre which was fitted to the highly desirable Z432 high-performance variant of the S30 Fairlady when it was launched at the 1969 Tokyo Motor Show, and is a thoroughly out-dated piece of equipment today thanks to evolutions in tyre construction that make tyres safer and able to handle higher power and speeds. While the first commercially successful pneumatic tyre appeared in 1888, and the first pneumatic car tyre was released in 1895, the largest leap in tyre technology happened in 1946 with the development of a new type of tyre construction, called the radial-ply. Traditionally car tyres had been made using bias-ply (or cross-ply) construction, which offered smooth ride but wore out faster and were more prone to sudden, catastrophic blow-out failures. The key difference between how a radial or cross-ply tyre is made comes from how the piles of cord in the tyre’s carcass are arranged. The cords give the tyre carcass form, and radial tyres run their cord at 90-degrees to the direction of travel to provide lower rolling resistance, improving fuel efficiency. Radial tyres also feature woven steel belts as part of the carcass, to help strengthen the whole tyre. While the radial tyre was quickly picked up in Europe, the UK and Asia by the 1950s, American automobile manufacturers resisted until public pressure peaked in 1968 to switch over to the safer, better-performing radial tyres. Bridgestone had launched its first radial tyre, the RD10, in 1967, although many Japanese cars still featured cross-ply tyres if they were being sold into the American market. This is why it is highly likely the Super Speed 5 tyre found on the MCM 240Z’s spare wheel is the original item. While it may be tempting to fit a vintage tyre for 'period correctness' the reality is the rubber will have dried out and be unsafe to use at speed, risking a blow-out occurring. After all the hard work we put into our classic Fairlady, we’re definitely not going to risk destroying it for the sake of one old tyre! The RE003s have worked brilliantly on the road and on the track with so many of our cars, and with the power available from the RB26, we might need some wider ones soon! Marty & Moog LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  7. Bridgestone

    Aston Martin V8 (002)

    The Aston Martin V8 Vantage – The Secret Agent My name is Chris, and this Aston Martin V8 Vantage is my weapon of choice. I’ve always lusted after the Vantage ever since it was released in 2006. The design was inch perfect; it was a bespoke Savile Row suit personified in automotive form. The delicious 4.3L V8 that roars into life then settles into a throaty purr at idle. I can’t help but feel superbly classy whenever I drive the car. When you press the start button, and the exotic instrument cluster says Power, Soul, Emotion, you can’t help but feel you are driving something special, and yet quintessentially British. Let’s start from the beginning, from when I first purchased the Aston Martin. Exterior The Aston Martin was originally obsidian black, but I had a respray in Lamborghini Grigio; a special kind of grey that’s eye catching yet subtle. Black paint is really hard to maintain anyway, and an Aston Martin looks best in steely, stiff upper lip silver or grey. I then had an expensive carbon fibre lip kit and front grill fitted, to add some aggression to that dapper front end. A carbon fibre ducktail wing was also added for that extra curvature on the rear. All the indicators and UK-spec reflectors were blacked out, along with the factory diffuser, to ensure the monotone look. The red rear tail lights were swapped out for clear versions to keep colour uniformity throughout the car. Engine and Suspension The V8 doesn’t need more power, with 380hp on tap from the factory. However I thought it could sound a lot better, so I had the factory exhaust system replaced with a custom made one. Now it makes a thrilling noise every time the throttle is applied. With the roar of the V8 up front and the intoxicating exhaust note behind me, it was aurally captivating to drive. When the V8 Vantage was released, the press gave it very favourable reviews in terms of looks, styling and power. However, in the handling department, most people favoured the Porsche 911, its rival. I could see why, as the Aston wasn’t built to be an out and out sportscar. It’s actually pretty comfortable on stock suspension, and I’d happily drive long hours or through traffic with it. That meant it wasn’t as capable as I liked on the twisties, so I had the shock absorbers replaced with custom Bilstein ones, and fitted H&R lowering springs to suit the setup. Coupled with black 19in Brixton Forged WR7 monoblock wheels, the transformation was visually dramatic. Tyres With the wheels, I ordered the brand new Bridgestone Potenza S007A. I love anything James Bond related now I have an Aston, and the 007 inclusion is spot on. It replaces the previous S001, meaning it’s a quiet, sophisticated premium tyre that’ll eat up miles in silence and comfort, yet has high performance grip. The difference was immediate the second I drove the car out from the Bridgestone tyre centre. Gone was the previous tyres’ chundering road noise, and despite the thin sidewalls, cat eyes’ on the roads were no longer spine damaging. Combined with the Bilstein suspension, the steering became quick and laser focused, responding to every input immediately. The original suspension made it a bit lazy off centre, but now the Vantage is alert, ready to carve a line through corners or traffic. Future mods Where to from here? As is, the Vantage is currently perfect for me, but I think I can do with more power. That entails a lot more planning and budgeting, as miscellaneous items such as brakes and more suspension work will be required for the car to handle more power. In the meantime, I’ll just enjoy driving around this very special piece of British engineering. For more information on the Bridgestone Potenza Adrenalin RE003, click HERE. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  8. Bridgestone

    Planning a Long Road Trip

    The open road awaits Road trips are as much about the journey as they are about the destination. The further we travel down the long stretch of highway, the more it clears our minds and sets us free of the trivial worries of our domestic life. Road trips are just simply good for the soul and this country calls out for them. Although you want to embrace the unexpected and spontaneous, it’s a good idea to have a loose plan in the back pocket. Here're a few things to keep in mind before you hit the road. Set course Set your route and stops along the way. Have an idea of when you'll reach your destination. Check your GPS and map to see where the stops are for sight seeing. It's always good to have an old traditional map in case your GPS lets you down. If we're talking long road trips, which may have you driving for days, plan when you'll be passing towns and sleeping. Drive no more than 10 hours a day and book accommodation in advance, as you don't want to roll up to a town in the evening and find every camping site/motel with no vacancies for weary travellers. This can easily happen during summer school holidays. Saddle-up Start with a check list before piling everything in the back or on the roof. This will hopefully stop you from taking more than you need, especially if you're travelling with kids. Pack the big items first like suitcases and boxes and get as many things into each one to save room. Then fill in the gaps between with other essentials. With wagons or SUVs, dont pack so high that it blocks your rear vision. Keep things like shoes, coats, blankets, toys and snacks in easy reach, so you're not pulling out everything to find them. For a long road trip here are some essential you should make room for: First aid kit Torch Map USB mobile device charge Lighters Duct tape Tyre pressure gauge Jumper cables Water Toilet paper Snacks Emergency numbers You're good to go. Make sure your car is There are plenty of other memorable moments you’d enjoy looking back on, rather than having your car break-down by the side of the road between towns. So you need to make sure your car is up for the trip. If you have any doubts about the reliability of parts of your car or find yourself nearing a due service, do yourself a big favour and book it in with your mechanic. Also, make sure your roadside assistance membership is up to date. Here are the car essentials you need to check before hitting the long open road. Fluid levels: Check brake, coolant, engine oil, clutch, transmission, power steering and water. You don’t want to run dry of any of these vital fluids. Coolant hoses: Ensure your hoses are in good condition and secure, with no coolant leaking. Check where they're joined and make sure they're tight and the rubber not brittle. If you’re heading into the outback, pack a spare radiator hose. Belts: Check the tension on your belts and look for tears or loosening of belts. It’s not a bad thing to carry a spare fan belt so if it needs to be replaced, you’re not relying on a garage to have one for the make of your car. Tyre pressure: Ensure your tyres including the spare are inflated to the vehicle manufacturer’s specification for your journey. An under or over-inflated tyre can affect comfort, control and fuel economy. Read more about tyre pressure. Lights: Check all your lights - headlights, high - beam, reverse, indicators and brake lights. Spare keys: It’s not a bad idea to take the spare keys along. You’ll pat yourself on the back if ever you lose the original set. Tyres are a biggie One of the most important things to check before rolling out of the driveway is the condition of your tyres. Look for any cracks, tears or bulges in the sidewalls. Make sure you have sufficient tread on all tyres (including your spare) by looking for the tread indication bars found at regular intervals around the tyre. If the tread pattern is equal to the tread bar, it means you only have the legal minimum of 1.6mm of tread left. When you consider most new tyres start with about 8-9mm of tread, it’s probably a good idea to have them replaced. Especially when you consider the safety of all in the car depend on your tyres. If there’s any question about the roadworthiness of your tyres, please consult an expert at your local Bridgestone store Give yourself a break Remember to give yourself a break at least every two to three hours or whenever you feel like it. If your driving along one of our long, straight stretches of highways, just be aware of mental fatigue. It can be easy to lose focus and concentration. If you’re feeling in any way that driving is becoming too much of a task, then give yourself a break. What’s your all time long road trip? Had any memorable mishaps along the way? We’d like to hear them. Tell us in the comments below or join the conversation on Facebook. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  9. Click here for more information about Bridgestone’s current offers. *The 4th tyre free offer is valid on purchases of four Bridgestone Ecopia, Bridgestone Potenza, Bridgestone Turanza Serenity Plus or Supercat tyres in one transaction between 01/11/2018 and 30/11/2018 and is redeemable in store. Offer excludes wholesale purchases and all other tyres manufactured or distributed by Bridgestone. Not available with any other offer and while stocks last. +Available on Bridgestone Turanza Serenity Plus tyres, only at Bridgestone stores. Full terms and conditions here. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  10. The heat is on Australia seems to be getting hotter every Summer. Those soaring temperatures that stifle the months of January and February have become merciless. It’s over this time your car requires a little more summer loving to keep cool. Here are a few things you should know to make the Summer holidays trips a breeze. Keep cool Overheating on hot days is one of the most common causes of cars spoiling your fun in the sun. That’s why it's crucial to check the radiator for coolant to help keep the engine at low temperatures. Carry extra coolant if you need to top up on a long road trip. But remember, wait till the engine has cooled before opening the radiator cap. Give your belts and hoses a good once-over for signs of wear and tear. If they look brittle, dry or loose have them replaced. Depending on the age of your car, you may want to have your water pump checked by a mechanic. If you’re planning a road trip or two on the Summer holidays and are in-between services, it won’t hurt to have your oil replaced, as it plays a big role in cooling your engine. If you notice your temperature gauge rising, turn off your air conditioning to relieve the strain on the engine. If you can bear it, turn the heating on full, as it will divert the heat away from the engine. It could be the trick that gets you to the next town. Otherwise pull over somewhere safe, don’t open the bonnet and wait for help or until the engine cools down. We all want to jump into our cars and blast the air conditioning. But try and keep your cool, as there are ways to make your A/C work faster and more effectively. Open the windows and drive for a few minutes to allow hot air to escape If not using the automatic mode, start with a lower setting, as turning it up to maximum levels will lead to faster wear and tear Always use the recirculation option to ensure hot air from outside isn’t being pulled in. With the interior cooling, the air conditioning won’t have to work as hard to continue cooling It can be a long time between service stations and towns depending where you're heading. So, keep plenty of extra water and a few snacks in the car for the trip. You'll be thankful if you ever find yourself on the side of the road. No summer holiday for tyres While you're making yourself comfortable and cool in the car, outside your tyres are feeling the heat. Long distance driving in searing temperatures and a heavy holiday load can be testing on the rubber. There are a few simple things you can do to check your tyres are up for the ride. Walk around the car and do a visible check for any cuts, tears, bulges or worn tread. The legal minimum tread depth for cars is 1.5mm across the central three-quarters of the width of the tyre, and across the entire circumference. Before your tread gets as low as this, or even with the wear indicator bars moulded at the bottom of the tread grooves, you’ll need to replace the tyre. Make sure tyres (including your spare) are properly inflated to vehicle specification. Under-inflated tyres on long high speed freeways in the heat can cause a blowout. Check your owner's manual or label inside the driver's door for correct pressure. If you are heading off on a bit of a journey and clocking up the kms, it's not a bad thing to rotate your tyres before heading off. It will give them better, even wear on the open road as the front pair tend to wear out faster. Your tyres are hugely important when it comes to keeping you and your family safe on the roads. If you’re ever not sure of something, it’s best to consult an expert at your local Bridgestone Store. Summer madness Like some sort of summer migration, caravans, jet skis, boats and trailers towing all sorts of things suddenly appear on the road. Your path to rest and recreation becomes congested with families and car loads of friends travelling at the same time, so be extra cautious during summer holiday time. And as a last tip - never drive with your arm out the window, apart from being illegal, it can get badly sunburnt in a very short time before you know it. Ever broken down in the scorching Australian sun? Have any favourite tips for long Summer drives? Tell us your experience and join the conversation on Facebook. For more information on the Potenza RE003, click HERE. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  11. Bridgestone

    Why SEMA is a bucket-list must

    Every year one of the world’s largest aftermarket vehicle trade shows kicks into gear in Las Vegas. While SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association Show) is open for trade only and not the public, if you can get in, it is a must-see for any car enthusiast. Home to thousands of the latest and best bits of car gear going around, the show attracts over 70,000 visitors every year…yes, it’s huge! Because so much new kit is premiered you’ll get a first-in look at SEMA before anyone else. Suppliers put on some of the best shows in the business and there’s literally millions of dollars’ worth of gear and custom hot rods, street and dragsters on display. The show caters for all and any into aftermarket modding. There’s the latest and upcoming products from well-known to small start-up brands such as K&N, Holley, Diablo Sport, Edelbrock, Derale Performance, Moshers, Hamburger’s and Optima. And their bits of exclusive kit is fitted to one-off show cars such as a chrome Nissan GT-Rs, monster trucks, rock-crawling Jeeps, drag cars, jet fuelers, classics, hot rods, muscle cars and more. Needless to say, SEMA shapes up as one of the must see events that any enthusiast should try and see at least once in a lifetime and if you really want to get yourself in there’s a few ways to do so: Become a supplier Have a good idea for a new product? Get to work. SEMA is open for registration to any supplier of parts or goods for vehicles from cars to bikes. And you don’t have to fabricate the world’s most efficient manifold; there’s tens of thousands for suppliers showcasing everything from paint protection to car art. Once you’re up and running you’ll need to apply to SEMA for a seller’s badge and you’re good to go. Work in the industry if you don’t have the time to start up your own business, you’re eligible if you work for one that’s in the automotive industry. As long as you can prove that you should be there, you can apply to attend - even if the company doesn’t have a booth. If you work in the media you might be able to apply for a media pass. Beyond just the cars, SEMA is also a great place for networking and seeing the future direction of the industry. But if you’re just there for the show and can’t get in, you’ll still get to see most of the best cars putting on a display for the general public outside the centre at the end of the week. For more information on the Potenza RE003, click HERE. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  12. Bridgestone

    Toyota 86 Build

    The White Wolf Toyota 86 Build My name is Brad, and I am really excited to own my Toyota 86 GTS. I fell in love with them when it was first launched in 2012. Over the course of five years, my yearning for them grew and grew. I’d keep up with the latest news and available modifications, and when the circumstances were right, I bought one of the first facelifted models in Australia last year. Top of the range, it came with leather seats, HID headlights, bigger brakes and all the trimmings. I’ll be writing this in a timeline format, as I’ve made a lot of changes with the car through the year I had it. Stage One In the one short year it’s been with me, I’ve never stopped tinkering with the Toyota 86. Within the first few months, my 86 received a Invidia N1 exhaust, Tomei exhaust manifold, Pedders Xtreme coilovers, and Rays 57 XTreme SP wheels. They were the basic ‘must have’ modifications that most car enthusiasts start out with. Immediately the Toyota 86 felt more agile thanks to wider wheels, better tyres and stiffer suspension. The N1 exhaust had really livened things up, with an intoxicating exhaust note every time I prod the throttle. It was then tuned by IXA Battle Garage, which dramatically improved torque throughout the rev-range, thanks to the more efficient Tomei exhaust manifold. Inside, I changed out the plastic rings on the climate controls for blue metal ones, and I mounted a CarJoying head unit that’ll not only play music, but provide gauges for my car’s engine, so I can keep an eye on temperatures and oil pressure. I topped it off with a Rocket Bunny GT Wing, so not only do you hear me coming, you’ll see me going past with that massive spoiler on the rear hatch. Oh, and I had to add aftermarket Valenti tail lights and rear fog lamp set. It is a must do for all Toyota 86 owners. Stage Two Stage one was short lived though. While I loved the noise, attention and the dramatic transformation, I soon got defected for the exhaust and outlandish wing. To clear the defect, I got rid of those, and decided to go with a more subtle approach for stage two. Swapping the noisy N1 for a more subdued MXP Competition RS Ti catback, my ears finally stopped ringing after every drive. To keep the excitement of a noisy exhaust, I had Cosmic Performance add a pop and crackle tune. Every time I get off the throttle after pushing the engine hard, the exhaust will, you guessed it, pop and crackle. I loved hearing that noise, as it’s a sign of a good hard drive. A short shifter kit from IRP was added to improve shift gate action, important in a car where the feel of driving was more important than going fast. The car looked more sedate without the wing, too sedate. In that case, I went with Ewing Concepts to create a custom diffuser and lip kit for me. The front splitter comes with adjustable rods to vary the attack angle. Overall I’m quite satisfied with the looks for now. Stage Three While the 86 made a great noise and goes rather well, I soon needed more firepower under the bonnet. Sydney Motor Engineering provided a complete turbocharger kit that promised 300kW with the right modifications and tuning. Named the Spec R kit (R for Race, I think), it featured a massive GT3076 turbocharger mounted right up front, and came with precise mandrel bent piping and a huge intercooler. To get it running correctly, the stock injectors were replaced with Injector Dynamics 1000cc versions, and the fuel pump replaced with a DeatschWerks DW300C. The MXP exhaust was deemed too restrictive for the turbocharger, so I upgraded to a custom titanium 3in exhaust made by PSI Factory. Parramatta Vehicle Services tuned the car on 98 RON fuel and it made 208kW at the wheels, with a conservative 5lbs of boost. Although finally happy with the power levels, the grip from my tyres weren’t keeping up. As there was a Bridgestone Service Centre up the road from work, I wandered in and asked for recommendations. My Toyota 86 is a daily driver, so I’d need tyres that’ll have decent tread life, yet grips well in dry and well. They recommended the Bridgestone Potenza RE003, a tyre I’ve heard a lot about from my mates, but never had the chance to try out. On my daily commute, I didn’t think too much of them. The RE003s were quiet and comfortable, and there was no increase in ride stiffness. I soon discover why the RE003s are the choice of car enthusiasts once I took it for a good drive on the Old Pacific Highway. The grip was astounding, holding on for life even if I pushed the throttle hard. Even with the extra power, the traction control barely needed to intervene. The steering came alive, and with my modifications, it finally felt like the sports car Toyota should have built from the factory, and then personalised for me. Stage Four? Where to next? I haven’t thought much about this, as I am just starting to enjoy the turbocharger kit and Potenza RE003s. Once I’ve gotten used to the newfound power and handling, I’ll make another decision. Perhaps a change of wheels, or a wide body kit. Before that, I’m planning to take my Toyota 86 on epic drives and maybe a couple of track days, where I can safely unleash all the power! For more information on the Potenza RE003, click HERE. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  13. Bridgestone

    Volkswagen Golf R Mk7.5 Street Build

    Hi, my name is Brad, and welcome to my build thread. As a fan of sleeper cars, the Golf R really appealed to me with its passive aggressive looks, while providing incredible performance and daily useability. I went with the facelifted Mk7.5 as it has the latest features and updated exterior all around, as well as the EA888 engine and MQB chassis. My build focuses on getting the handling and power of the Golf R into supercar territory while keeping every day useability and anonymity. I will also attend a few track days this year as well, so it needs to be reliable as well. Suspension As I work for a suspension specialist, the Golf R’s handling received the first few upgrades shortly after owning it. Bilstein B16 Damptronic coilovers were installed as I wanted something firmer and stiffer for the track. While they are firmer than stock shocks, the ride is still great for everyday usage. The Damptronic feature lets the Golf R keep the factory Dynamic Chassis Control system, allowing me to switch damper settings on the fly or leave it up to the computer. I also set the ride height lower for a more aggressive look, while also lowering the centre of gravity. Alloy front control arms from SuperPro were then fitted to get a more aggressive caster and camber setting on the front, for better steering feedback and front end grip. The rear sway bar was swapped out for a thicker, adjustable H&R version to improve corner turn-in. Tyres With the suspension setup sorted for now, I found the OE tyres couldn’t support the new aggressive camber and caster settings. The sidewalls were too soft, causing unpredictable handling at the limits. It also overheated during track day sessions, resulting in understeer and missed apexes. To remedy this, I ordered a new set of Bridgestone Potenza RE003s, which were highly rated for street/track use. Not surprisingly, the RE003s lived up to their reputation and then some. From the first turn of the steering wheel I could feel the difference. The turn in is immediate, and the traction is abundant. I would brake hard into the corner, nail the apex, and the tricky DSG and turbo motor would rocket the Golf out of the bends, with the RE003s holding it all together. On stock tyres, I could feel the traction control kicking in on corner entry and exit. The RE003 is also very communicative; it’ll let you know about any camber, uneven tarmac, potholes, and how much grip is left. This feedback is provided through the steering wheel, and it makes every drive highly involving. Around town, the RE003s are quiet, and grip brilliantly from cold. It handles the rainy days easily too; all those grooves eject water out of the way very efficiently. Power With handling and traction sorted, it was time to focus on the power side. I had a chance to ride in a high powered Golf R, and that torquey push into the seat was addictive. My turbo was swapped out for an International Autohaus one, and it gulps air via an Eventuri intake. A bigger Milltek dump pipe was fitted to help the turbo expel exhaust gasses quicker, and an APR intercooler was installed kept the charge air nice and cool. Fuel system upgrades were also included to make sure there’s enough juice for the engine. The DSG was tuned to make sure it coped with the newfound power and to shift even faster. With all these parts, it was tuned to 300kW at the wheels. I was ecstatic. The newfound power rush is still as addictive, yet utterly docile in traffic. The all-wheel drive, suspension mods and Bridgestone RE003s ensures all 300kW is transferred on to the road efficiently, without traction loss. Future Mods For now, I’m happy with how the Golf R performs. It’s unassuming when in traffic, but when the road opens up, there’s no other car I would rather be in. The Bridgestone RE003 tied all aspects of the car together; without it I wouldn’t have the traction to fully enjoy the suspension setup and upgraded power. Next, I’ll take the Golf R back to Sydney Motorsport Park, and set a new lap time. After that, I’ll start focusing on cosmetic and functional mods, such as a bigger brake kit, lighter wheels, and some aerodynamic upgrades. For more information on the Bridgestone Potenza Adrenalin RE003, click here Follow Bridgestone on Facebook.
  14. Click here for more information about Bridgestone’s current offers. *The 4th tyre free offer is valid on purchases of four Bridgestone Ecopia, Bridgestone Potenza, Bridgestone Turanza Serenity Plus or Supercat tyres in one transaction between 01/11/2018 and 30/11/2018 and is redeemable in store. Offer excludes wholesale purchases and all other tyres manufactured or distributed by Bridgestone. Not available with any other offer and while stocks last. +Available on Bridgestone Turanza Serenity Plus tyres, only at Bridgestone stores. Full terms and conditions here. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -
  15. Bridgestone

    5 Most Iconic Muscle Cars

    Fast, loud, some might even say brutish, but there’s something about the classic muscle car that strikes a chord in the hearts of so many revheads. And while the days of a big V8 engine might be numbered, these classic muscle cars have stood the test of time, proving themselves some of the most iconic. 1. 1967 Ford XR Falcon GT The XR Falcon GT was the first model GT Falcon and also the first Falcon to win at Bathurst. It effectively replaced the Ford Cortina GT500s in the 1960s when they were no longer eligible to race. Developed by Ford but with input from the police force which required a new pursuit vehicle, the XR GT was powered by a 289 cubic inch small-block V8 topped with a four-barrel carby that produced 168kW and was mated to a close-ratio four-speed transmission. It was a little cracker of a motor. Available only in bronze-gold paint, the XR GT also gained some extra gear such as improved suspension, lower ride height, Stewart-Warner gauges and some other interior bits. Only 596 were built, and it’s one of Australia's most iconic classic muscle cars. 2. 1969 Holden HT Monaro GTS 350 The Holden HK Monaro was a big success and so Holden kept on going in the same guise with the HT Monaro. But the 327ci V8 of the HK was replaced with a larger and more powerful 223kW 350ci V8 mated to a 4-speed manual transmission. It enjoyed racing success but was the last Monaro to race at Bathurst before the Holden Torana took to the grid. The 350 GTS differentiated itself with racing stripes, different alloys and bonnet scoops. HT Monaro fans that wanted a self-shifter could rely on GM’s venerable 2-speed Powerglide. 3. 1972 Chrysler VH Charger E49 To the uninitiated, the Chrysler Valiant Charger might not strike fear in to the heart. Unlike its Ford and Holden rivals with their burbling V8 engines, the Chrysler relied on a stove-hot six pack – so hot, in fact, that it was the quickest of the lot and a fierce competitor on the track. The VH Charger came with a ‘Six Pack’ triple Weber carburettor manifold fitted to its 265 cubic inch straight six motor. It was matched to a 4-speed manual rather than 3-speed which hindered the earlier 1971 E38 Charger. Producing a powerful 225kW of power and 434Nm of torque, it was capable of accelerating 0-100km/h in 6.1sec and running the quarter mile in almost 14sec flat. It was the fastest Australian muscle car for many years. 4. 2002 Tickford T3 TE50 In the late 1990s Ford Tickford’s counterpart, Holden Special Vehicles was winning the big engine race. At the time, compared to Ford's 5.0-litre V8, HSV had a larger and more powerful 5.7-litre LS1 to play with. So, keeping up with the Joneses, Tickford lengthened the stroke of the Windsor donk and increased capacity from 5.0 to 5.6-litres. The bigger engine produced 250kW at 5,250rpm and 500Nm at 4,250rpm and was mated to a Tremec five-speed manual transmission. It was good for 0-100km/h in 5.9sec, but most of all it is one of the best sounding V8s ever fitted to an Aussie muscle car. Other inclusions for the TE50 included a body kit and extra features inside, but it was the engine that stole the show for this Blue Oval. 5. 2017 HSV GTSR W1 Priced at $169,990 new, the W1 is not only the most expensive muscle car on this list but also the most powerful and sophisticated bits of automotive engineering ever to be produced Down Under. Shoehorned into the front via myriad modifications is a Corvette-sourced LS9 producing 474kW and 815Nm of power. It’s the most powerful Aussie muscle car ever and it rockets 0-100km/h in 4.2sec and completes the quarter mile in just 12.1sec - a fair improvement on the 14.4sec record set by the E49 Charger in 1972. The GTSR W1 is also fitted and developed with many other bespoke bits and pieces but only 300 will be built. What do you think, are there more deserving muscle cars that should have been on the list? Let us know in the comments below, or jump in on the thread on Facebook. LINKS: Bridgestone Australia - Bridgestone Australia Facebook -