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On a day which the ATC held a long-awaited press conference about ESMA's modified vehicle approval process, Kanzen Motorsports coincidently held an event to celebrate their one year anniversary. And, as the rest of Dubai spent the week focusing on the launch of the new KIA Rio or the opening of the new Bugatti show room on Sheikh Zayed Road, we spent the week at Kanzen’s workshop getting prepared for the event.

If getting sideways is your thing or you own a 86/BRZ, or any JDM car for that matter, then you are probably aware of their workshop. If not then who knows where you have been hiding for the past year. Set up almost exactly a year ago by three like minded people, all who have been the driving force behind some of the most interesting projects from this season's shows. They have also slipped into becoming one of the only specialized 86/BRZ workshops within the UAE. Fixing everything from DI failure or the annoying clutch release bearing, they have seen it all. Aside from the usual day to day tasks they are also not scared of taking on a bit of the unusual.

The first time we came across the ugly trio of Jeremy, Faaiq and Yazan was back in August at their launch event (either that or it was when I first took my BRZ for a service). Since then I have personally spent more than a few late nights with the guys whilst watching some of the most interesting projects from this season transform. They were also the key reason the Datsun made it to the Custom Show Emirates - a show which caused the whole team a severe lack of sleep.
One night of which was spent re-manufacturing Jon’s rear end on his widened SRT Charger. A project which featured laser cutting sheeting metal, then meticulously welding them together to reform the rear of the car. Not for the faint hearted and something that required a healthy amount of detail. I’ll be honest, I never thought they’d be able to see it out (nor would any other workshop in the UAE). But Jeremy proved me wrong on this one.

It's almost a year to the day that we shot the entire Stance Kitchen crew's (including their founder Ivan's and co-founder Konan's) cars. Both Ivan's and Konan's were again on display but looking slightly different from when we last featured them. Both of their cars have undergone some major surgery whilst in the hands of Kanzen.

Ivan’s BRZ was one of the first wide-bodies to roll out of their workshop and Konan has a healthy habit of having axles replaced at their workshop. His S14 is back there as we speak after breaking yet another. We are hoping that Kanzen sorts him out with some modified rear knuckles to prevent this from happening in the future. The stance life eh?

The cars weren't the only attraction. In one corner, there was a simulator. But Kazen being Kanzen, it couldn't settle for a normal simulator. This was a drift based simulator. Rob and I were useless but as usual I was still better than him taking the CarCulture.ae simulator count to 2-0 in my favor.
An anniversary wouldn't be the same without a cake. But it’s not every day you see a cake being cut with a set square. I guess knives are rare in your average JDM workshop, still a set square seemed to be the perfect tool for the job.
Anyway, back to the cars. Hidden in the corner was one of the shop cars. A car we haven't given much attention to as of yet. However, its more than worthy of a feature and is one of the cleanest Z’s around which caused a storm in its first outing at Caffeine and Machine.
Next to it sat another shop car, still in the middle of a turbo transformation. A turbo conversion that has seen more talk than action! Jeremy has confirmed that he will use this 86 on track to battle our Supercharged BRZ. Game on!
Gustav’s supercharged 86 was next, sat on new blue Enkie wheels. This 86 has some serious mods on it. Aimed at an all-out track set up with brakes twice the size of Alex’s (our social media expert's) it has set some pretty decent times at the Dubai Autodrome recently whilst being supported by Kanzen at the track.
Firas may as well be a full-time member of our team. Present at most of the shows that we feature, his Aimgain 86 (which is serviced at Kanzen) was found lurking over near the simulator. Getting over his fitterment woes, he has managed to dial in some more camber on his front getting them to tuck - finally giving a near perfect stance. The amount of work that has gone into this (something which only a few of us would pick up on) shows the dedication that we are now getting in our scene.
Jon’s MK5 GTI was parked right in front of the entrance. We have always had a soft spot for this. Your typical VW fan boy based in the UAE, will tell you that a downpipe and a tune (and possibly a sound system) will make you a VDubz legend. Jon however, is one of the very few that has gone down the other route. One which we are far more in tune with. His GTI sits on a set of diamond cut 3SDM wheels. And a set of flares help to tuck them in - something which Kanzen have been helping with.
It would be rude to sign off without mentioning the Datsun. Not sure it we will ever feature this car as it kind of feels a little odd. Still I’m hoping she will see some more time on the road next season.

Outside was filled with a sea of JDM cars but due to poor lighting we were unable to get any decent pictures but there were a few tidy Silvias and one very well put together 86 owned by Lemar. Something we need to see more of in the future.

So, here’s to another year, and another successful season. Who knows what we will see next rolling out of Kanzen’s doors but you can rest assure we will most likely have the low down on it first.