Updated: Jun 25, 2022
The AE86 earned its reputation as the underdog king. An affordable lightweight car powered by a modest-yet-capable 4AGE engine. This car has been the stuff of dreams of many as much as it was an iconic part of pop culture, thanks to the popularity of drifting and Japanese racing.
It was also through the undeniable influence of the Initial D franchise that propelled the humble AE86 to cult status. So much so, that one man decided to resto-mod the only AE86 in Uruguay by equipping it with a Ferrari F430 engine to compete in drifting.
In an interview with Motortrend – Super Street Features, Fernando Montero described his love affair with his AE86. He spent the last 13 years rebuilding and modifying the car. The chassis was described to be in horrible condition and was totally wasted when Montero got it. But the owner gradually saved enough resources to not only restore the car, but turn it into a one-of-a-kind dream build.
Montero did not only fix the car for show but to perform well in drifting. The owner explained that the car has had multiple engine replacements, from its original 4AGE engine, which was later replaced by a more potent 3SGE Beams.
It was worth noting that embarking on an AE86 project in Uruguay alone was a difficult mountain to climb. The model was not officially imported to the region, and so sourcing parts for such car was difficult to come by. This was besides the fact that the car was consistently used for drift sessions.
Another factor that makes this build more impressive was the audacity of Montero to buy a Ferrari F430 engine, and bolt it in this drift car. According to the interview, he found a wrecked Scuderia in France and somehow found a way to ship it cross-continental.
With the help of experts, which became Montero’s friends, the car was eventually built to serve its purpose. As much as the car was intended for drifting, Montero also participates in car shows and events that benefit charity.
For the full story, please visit Motortrend's website: https://www.motortrend.com/features/uruguays-only-ae86-corolla-is-powered-by-ferrari/ Article by: Paulo Cuento
January 11, 2022