There’s a huge tuning scene around the Lamborghini Gallardo, but for the most part, involves keeping the V10 and strapping on one or more large turbochargers. Or sometimes a supercharger. The Lambo you see here, though, has a much lower cylinder count: six.
Mounted in the middle is that oh-so stereotypical transplanted engine, Toyota’s famed 2JZ-GTE inline-six with its near-unburstable iron block. The work of Bryce Yeager, owner of Californian firm Street Aero, the transformed Gallardo caused quite a stir at last week’s SEMA show in Las Vegas.
It’s easy to get distracted by the 85mm Garrett turbocharger sitting high and exposed above the engine bay. Or perhaps the first thing you noticed was the very visible pushrod dampers mounted horizontally and longitudinally above the rear wheels (they were going to sit transversely across the top of the gearbox, but this put them in the way of the exhaust). That being the case, you might have missed one of the weirdest things about the Gallardo - it’s longer than it should be.
The combination of the 2JZ, an adaptor plate and the Gallardo’s original manual gearbox (yep, the one with the gated shifter) was so long that it would have pushed into the cabin by 150mm. So, the frame was lengthened to fit this beast in.
Other features include pushrod dampers at the front that are somewhat less conspicuous than the ones at the rear (but still nicely visible through a hole in the newly fabricated dashboard), a bonkers X-shaped diffuser that looks like it’s off a futuristic fighter jet, and McLaren Senna-esque transparent door sections.
Fed by that sizeable turbo, the stroked 2J should be good for 1,500bhp, but Yeager has instead settled for “a reliable 1,000bhp”. How sensible. Soon, it’ll be deploying all of that on one of Hoonigan’s This Vs. That drag races.
A build like this has the potential to delight and disgust in equal measure, but to placate lovers of originality, it’s worth pointing out this Gallardo wasn’t in the best shape when Yaeger got hold of it. He purchased it from Royalty Exotics with no engine and some fire damage, making it the perfect candidate for a delightfully unhinged project like this.