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JDM Speed Demon: Who Is Smokey Nagata?

Nagata returned home to Japan as an international celebrity, with his modified Supra being snapped up by a Middle Eastern collector who’d seen the media coverage soon afterward. For Nagata, this meant a chance to move on to his next project. Rather than using the RB26DETT from the Nissan Skyline GT-R as a powerplant, this time he would modify Toyota’s V12 engine. He bought a new Supra and fitted the V12 from the Toyota Century, which produced 276 horsepower in stock form. This was more than enough to hustle along the luxurious sedan in which it was first installed, but of course nowhere near powerful enough for Nagata.

Before long, the Top Secret V12 Supra was making more than four times its original output, thanks to a laundry list of modifications with parts sourced from a variety of suppliers. The Century V12 engine was far from a common tuner engine before Nagata began working on it, but he quickly proved its potential by taking the Supra to a record speed of 222 mph at the Nardo Ring in 2008.

He continued to work on the car for long after that, even proclaiming it his favorite car in 2010. However, in recent years, his attention has turned to a wider range of models, and he now works on both golden-era tuning classics and more modern JDM cars.

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