EVENTS: 2019 Osaka Auto Messe

Everyone knows the Tokyo Auto Salon, the massive annual car show where the big brands and tuning houses of Japan’s automotive aftermarket goes all-out to show its wares. But, there’s an equally big show that’s not quite as well known, the Osaka Auto Messe, which was on from 9-11 February this year. Continue reading

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VIDEO: Watch this amazing Skyline restoration unfold in three minutes

A Nissan Skyline KGC110 that looked to be beyond hope has been brought back to life in Kuwait. The video starts out with a decrepit Kenmeri that looks like it had been left in a field to rust for decades. It looks like it’s beyond hope, but by the end it’s transformed into a gleaming gold example good enough for any car show. For Valentine’s Day, it’s a true labor of love. Continue reading

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Happy Valentine’s Day from JNC

To celebrate Valentine’s Day, here’s a collection of red cars for your viewing pleasure. The theme is the early days of Japan’s post-war auto industry. Can you name them all? Happy Valentine’s Day from JNC! Continue reading

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MOTORSPORT: Long-lost Mazda RX-7 Le Mans racer rediscovered after 35 years

A Mazda race car long thought to have been lost to history surfaced. The Mazda 254i not only competed in the 1982 running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but represents the last of its breed. It was the final iteration of  Mazda’s Le Mans race cars based on a production RX-7, and now the last surviving example has been rediscovered. Continue reading

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ORIGINAL CONCEPT: 1987 Subaru BLT

If there was a single concept car that summed up what optimism 1980s and the upcoming digital revolution, it would have to be the relatively unknown Subaru BLT concept of 1987. As you may have guessed, it didn’t stand for Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato, but rather the somehow even more bizarre Business and Leisure Transport. Introduced at the 1987 Tokyo Motor Show, the BLT imagined the perfect vehicle for the working professional, and served as a rolling office for the high-powered businessperson. Continue reading

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VIDEO: The first-gen Celica was decades ahead of its time

When people talk about sporty Japanese cars from the 70s, the Datsun 240Z usually gets first billing. The Toyota Celica, however, was just as compelling, even with its Malaise Era safety bumpers. In fact, when compared with its competition from that post-oil crisis period in America, the Celica is decades head of its time. Continue reading

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QotW: Did you spend your youth dreaming about someday owning a Nissan or Mitsubishi?

This week’s question comes from an unlikely source — Porsche. Spotted in a Macan forum, the print ad features a 964-generation 911 and thus would have run sometime between 1990 and 1994. Of course, by then Nissan and Mitsubishi had sent forth plenty of incredible cars into the world. Z-cars, Skylines, GTOs, VR-4s, and so on. So thanks, Porsche, for giving us an excellent Question of the Week (for the sake of argument, let’s open this up to other JNCs as well).

Did you spend your youth dreaming about someday owning a Nissan or Mitsubishi?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What’s the best JNC you can find for $1,000?Continue reading

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NEWS: Parts from Mazda’s Roadster Restore program in Japan are coming to the US

Mazda’s headline at Chicago Auto Show was all about the 30th Anniversary Edition Miata — and its subsequent selling out four hours later — but CEO Masahiro Moro buried an even more exciting Miata revelation in the press conference. Mazda will be bringing the official reproduction parts developed in the Japanese Roadster Restore program to the US. NA Miata owners, rejoice! Continue reading

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Chicago Auto Show: 30th Anniversary Miata sells out in four hours

Looks like a lot of people wanted an orange Miata. The entire allotment of the 30th Anniversary Edition models, announced this morning, that were destined for the US have already sold out. To be fair, that’s the US market’s 500 units so you still might be able to get one, you’ll just have to import one of the other 2,500 from other markets. Continue reading

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Chicago Auto Show: Acura celebrates 30 years of the NSX

Honda didn’t introduce a new model or updated trim package at the Chicago Auto Show this year. Instead, with champagne-filled flutes passed around to the assembled guests, they celebrated 30 years of the NSX. Honda’s unleashing of its mid-engined wonder forever changed the automotive world. There’s a clear line of demarcation in the supercars that came B.N. (before NSX) and those that came after. Continue reading

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Chicago Auto Show: Mazda reveals 30th Anniversary Edition Miata

Mazda has returned to the site of the NA Miata’s debut, the Chicago Auto Show, to announce the arrival of the 30th Anniversary Edition Miata. Offered in both soft-top original and RF retractable targa flavors, only 3,000 will be made worldwide, with 500 coming to the US. Also, it’s very, very orange. Continue reading

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Chicago Auto Show: How Honda broke the rules with the NSX 30 years ago, and how Ford never forgot

Thirty years ago, Honda went to the Chicago Auto Show to introduce a concept it called New Sports eXperimental. As we all know, the Acura NSX would become one of the best cars ever to emerge from Japan, or from humanity, really. But long before anyone even drove the thing, it was already causing a stir. Continue reading

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Happy TE27 Day from JNC

Whether you’re a thunder or lightning type of person, today is the day in which we celebrate the original Corolla Levin and Sprinter Trueno. Here is a particularly tasty specimen from the Kiryu Classic Car Show‘s 2016 parade. Happy TE27 Day from JNC!

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VIDEO: Mythbusters continues its classic Toyota destruction streak by crushing an MR2

Last week, the Mythbusters once again found themselves on the receiving end of some pretty angry car enthusiasts for destroying an innocent, first-gen Toyota MR2. The internet’s response was swift and fierce, but this wasn’t the first time virtual pitchforks have been taken up in response to their wanton Toyota destruction. Continue reading

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VIDEO: This Toyota Van excursion looks like a load of fun

The Barlow Pass near Mt Hood was one of the final sections of the famed Oregon Trail. And while our ancestors may have died of dysentery in a covered wagon, in modern times you can navigate from the comfort of an imported Japanese van. Continue reading

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Happy Year of the Pig from JNC

Today, February 5, is the Lunar New Year for much of Asia, and according to their zodiac it’s the Year of the Pig. Therefore, please enjoy a butaketsu (pig butt) Laurel to ring in the year 4717. Happy Lunar New Year from JNC!

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Toyota remakes MR2 pinball commercial for Superbowl

During last night’s big football game, Toyota ran a rather unexpected ad for the new Supra. In it, stunt driver Greg Tracy wheels and drifts an A90 through a giant pinball machine. It’s not a new concept, because not only is Toyota remaking old sports cars, it’s remaking old commercials as well. Continue reading

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A new Nissan ad depicts the auto industry’s last 30 years

While most of America was watching the commercials between a big contest of Jeep crossovers and Dodge pickups, Nissan released a new advert tracing the arc of automotive trends of the last 30 years. Using only Nissan cars and a jaunty music accompaniment, the ad capitalizes on 90s nostalgia and tricky camerawork. It begins innocently enough — a couple starts out with a Nissan Cefiro in their garage, a cathode-ray television, and a pile of VHS tapes. Soon the Cefiro is replaced by a Skyline GT-R, and life seems great at the height of the Bubble Era. Continue reading

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QotW: What’s the best JNC you can find for $1,000?

Despite the rising prices of Japanese classics, there are still plenty of cars that can be bought on the cheap. A quick browse of Los Angeles’s local Craigslist reveals Maximas and Accords, and even some upscale cars like Lexus LS400s and Infiniti J30s. Sure, they might have more outstanding tickets and fees than the car is worth, but that’s why you ask questions before you buy. Or, you can go nuts and get a project, something like a somewhat rare Mazda 626 GT or even a 510 shell. The point is, you can still get into a cool JNC project without having to shell out Supra money.

What’s the best JNC can you find for $1,000?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “Drive, Sell or Garage? Toyota AE86, Nissan S13, or Mazda NA Miata.Continue reading

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Honda celebrates Golden Anniversary in Australia literally

On February 4, 1969, Honda established an official subsidiary in Australia. Honda Australia was founded for the purposes of selling cars, but naturally Honda’s expansive lineup of thoughtfully engineered motorcycles, power equipment, and generators soon spread across the continent like rabbits. To celebrate its 50-year anniversary, Honda Australia created a fleet of golden examples of its high-performance machines. Continue reading

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