Reader's Rides: Steven Tafoya


This reader is a Master Tech, loves Pontiac and we have a feeling his son will too one day.

My name is Steven Tafoya. I was born and raised in Albuquerque, currently living in Phoenix, where I work as a BMW Master Tech. I honestly can't narrow my love for cars down to a single moment or person, it was just always a part of me. My first car was a Porsche 944 Turbo, which probably turned me into the mechanic I am today. After the 944, I moved on to a LS1 Trans-AM WS6. This was the car that really got me into modding and racing (Albuquerque has an awesome street racing scene), and from there I moved to my current car.

It's a 2006 GTO, black on black, with a 6-speed. Some performance mods I've done include: full suspension, heads/cam/bolt ons, big brakes, a built drivetrain. Once I get the tune sorted out I should see about 450 at the wheels, but I'm still in the learning process with HPTuners. Some other upgrades are staggered 19-inch wheels, 5% tint all around, spoiler-delete, and full audio with a 12-inch Kicker L7 in my poor excuse for a trunk. Future plans are to finish the 408 iron block I have sitting for it, and probably throw twins or a pro-charger on it. I could never pick a favorite car, too many eras and styles to limit yourself to a single example.

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One combination that I'm pretty excited about though, is taking my current 6.0 LS2 and tossing it in either a E31 BMW or a FD RX-7. I'm 22, with a loving wife and an awesome 2 year-old son. I seriously can't wait till he's old enough to join me in the engine bay, but my only hope is that the GTO will be so fast by then, he'll be too scared to ever drive it.

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