The ceiling of the Nissan is home to a custom panel that houses a heavily modified Denon DCT-Z1 head unit and a DEQX 2.6P from DEQX Australia. Uniquely, the panel is shaped in such a way that it allowed for acoustic absorption panels to be installed directly above the listeners’ heads. The DSP unit is trimmed in stainless steel that was laser cut with the JK Labs logo. Who is JK Labs you ask? They were responsible for more than 1,500 hours worth of modification and upgrades to both the source unit and the processor. They also provided the electronics profile that runs the audio system, as well as links to the button control panels around the car and the source unit remote control. Upgrades to the source unit included upgraded timing circuitry, the installation of a 75 ohm silver coaxial digital output and the removal of unnecessary hardware that would not be part of the final installation. The digital output then feeds through a proprietary interface into the processor. This allows the processor to observe the function of the head unit based on track selection and volume level and apply specific tuning features that further maximizes the system’s performance.
I mentioned that the car was completely controlled by a dedicated computer system. Some of the highlights of the computer include Voltage monitoring at 24 different points in the vehicle, Fuse status monitoring at 24 points, temperature indication at 8 locations with integrated warning levels, Security system control and vehicle control for windows, locks, lights, etc. A panel was created that extends from the floor behinds the seats and slopes gradually upwards to roughly where the car’s parcel shelf would have been. In this panel is a 84-location fuse array, the HKS CAMP system, an Angel Trax AV44 matrix switcher and the vehicle’s external air conditioning system. The electronics are mounted in illuminated tubs that are covered with activated plasma glass. These glass panels go from opaque to clear when voltage is applied to them.
Audio signals from the DEQX processor are fed to four massive McIntosh MCC602TM amplifiers that were mounted on a custom tubular steel rack. Because each amplifier weighs about 50 pounds, the amplifier rack features 6 points of contact with the vehicle to ensure it is rock solid and stable. Each amplifier, just as with all the other fasteners in the car, was mounted with hex head stainless hardware.
Power connections for each amp were routed to the power center, located under the panel behind the seats. IXOS Professional GTI 1/0-gauge and 4-gauge cable was used. There are four individually fused 1-Farad stiffening capacitors in the power center that are connected together electrically by custom machined brass buss bars. There are two Kinetik Racing KR5112 Power Cells in the trunk, one on each side. These are recharged by a modified PowerMaxx Ohio Generator alternator with an external voltage regulator.
Each speaker is connected to a single amplifier channel– one pair to the tweeters, one pair to the midrange and one pair to the mid-bass drivers. Both channels of the last amp are connected to the dual voice coil subwoofer, providing it with 600W of effortless power. Signals for the amps are fed using IXOS IX-3 short run interconnects. Two of the amplifiers are mounted above the rear seat panel, and the other two are visible when the motorized ‘rear window’ is open.
Wrapping up the rear of the car is the trunk area. In addition to housing a pair of Kinetic power cells, the trunk is also home to the top of the fuel cell that was mounted to a custom steel platform on the floor. The braided fuel feed and return lines are visible on top, but a false floor also exists to provide an OEM appearance. You can also see the nitrous tank through an opening in the trunk’s front wall.
If you are getting the idea that building this vehicle took an incredible amount of planning and thought, then you are starting to get the idea of the intent of the build. Attention to detail was the mantra, and even if it seemed like a particular step of the project was going to take what seemed like forever, Buwalda didn’t back down from the challenge.
Helping build the car was Dwayne Blackwood who assisted with fabrication, Jeremy Carlson who helped with electrical engineering and Clay Howard who assisted with the computer engineering. The sponsor and supporter list for the project is topped with Buwalda’s company, Hybrid Audio Technologies, who provided not only the speakers, but significant financial support as well.
When Buwalda set off on this project, his intent was to build the world’s most complete vehicle in terms of speed, style and sound. In terms of power, almost 1,000hp and an exotic drivetrain covers all the go-fast requirements. The attention to detail around the meticulous bodywork and the blacker than black paint without any graphics more than takes care of the style factor. The audio system, built from no-holds-barred equipment and techniques has garnered itself the highest score ever in IASCA (or any car audio competition format for that matter) with 996.5 points. That puts a check mark beside the sound column for sure.