Toyotafest Spotlight: This mint Starlet was once part of the Toyota USA Museum

We’ve already covered the Starlets from this year’s Toyotafest, but there was one particular example we had to point out. It’s not that it was bone stock, or flawless, or a rare 3C5 Coral Metallic color, though it was all those things. It’s that this car was once part of the Toyota USA Museum — emphasis on was. Continue reading


Happy 620 Day from JNC

It’s time to celebrate the little pickup that was fit for a King. Or a King Cab, at least. Happy 620 Day from JNC!

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NEWS: Honda restores a Chevy pickup

It is an extremely rare event for us at JNC to feature a non-Japanese car. Even more rare is when an automaker spends its hard-earned money to restore a car made by one of its competitors. But that’s exactly what Honda has done with this 1961 Chevy Apache pickup to celebrate its 60th anniversary. Continue reading


VIDEO: Watch the first Honda car built for the US get restored

The discovery and restoration of the first Honda car ever built for the US market is like an Indiana Jones story for car nuts. Not only did the car find its way to the right owner, Honda N600 and Z600 restorer Tim Mings, but it sat in his treasure trove of Honda artifacts for 10 years before he even realized what it was. Also, Mings actually says the words, “It belongs in a museum.” Continue reading


QotW: What’s the best JNC for open-top cruising?

As of yesterday, Toyota became the only Japanese carmaker to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans twice, but when it came time to escort the colossal trophy around Circuit de la Sarthe, they had to go with a 1987 Toyota Celica. Now the T160 Celica is a fine car, but it highlights the rarity of the open-top cruiser among JNCs. A Miata or S2000 is a different animal, built for canyon carving rather than relaxed wafting on a cool summer night. Compared to Detroit, they are so uncommon that we’ll have to include roadsters, targas, and T-tops just to get a diversity of answers.

What’s the best JNC for open-top cruising?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What is the Best Japanese Automotive Trilogy?Continue reading


MOTORSPORT: Toyota’s Celica Convertible Le Mans Trophy Car

As is tradition before each year’s running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the previous year’s champion gets to do a little parade lap showing off the towering trophy they have. The prize then gets delivered to FIA officials so it can be passed on to the next winner. Of course, one must find the appropriate chariot for the presentation, and in Toyota’s case it was a 1987 Celica Cabrio. Continue reading

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Every once in a while you run into a car that simply drops your jaw. At this year’s Toyotafest, one of those cars was Gary Toomer’s 1984 Toyota Celica Supra. It looked as it it had rolled straight out of the showroom 35 years ago, and time-warped itself to Long Beach. Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest, Part 05 — Big Sedans

There’s nothing like a big Toyota sedan, and Toyotafest was full of ’em. Whether you’re talking about the brilliant luxury of a Lexus LS or the deadbolt reliability of a Camry, each one had its fans and fastidious owners. With sedans going the way of the dodo thanks to the crossover takeover, let’s take a look at this class where Toyota has excelled. Continue reading


BIKES: Kawasaki re-releases retro W800 motorcycle

Kawasaki has re-released the W800, a vertical-twin motorcycle inspired by the original Kawasaki W-series built from 1965 to 1974. The W800 is said to not only take its layout and look from its predecessors, but its riding feel and sound as well. However, like many nostalgic vehicles, a huge part of the Kawasaki’s fame comes from an memorable appearance in pop culture. Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest, Part 04 — Starlets & Tercels

Over the years even traditional, Camry-hating mainstream car enthusiasts have come to appreciate some Toyotas, your Celicas, MR2s, and FR Corollas. However, when it comes to the marque’s most diminutive compacts, the love still tends to emanate only from the dedicated Toyotaku. Continue reading


SHOWA SNAP: Nagoya, 1972

The Nagoya TV Tower was completed in June of 1954 is one of the key landmarks of the central Japanese city. In this photo from 1972, a lineup of taxis before it have the typical Toyota Crowns and Nissan Cedrics, but also a rare Isuzu Florian (in yellow and white). For its 65th year, the current was closed for renovations and will reopen in July 2020.

Image: eBay


QotW: What is the Best Japanese Automotive Trilogy?

The new Supra is finally here, and Toyota has been parading a lineup of previous-generation Supras whenever possible in order to remind us that the new one is definitely a Toyota-and-not-a-BMW Supra. But for all the flack Toyota’s been getting about its partnership with BMW, at least they’re trying. Trilogy here is defined as three consecutive generations of a particular model. Year gaps are allowed (A80 -> A90 Supra) as well as name changes (Integra, RSX).

What is the best Japanese automotive trilogy?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What should we do with the Subaru X-100?Continue reading


Happy 610 Day from JNC!

To celebrate 610 Day, here are two of our favorites from last year’s JCCS. Don’t forget to mark your calendars for this year’s event, which is on Saturday, September 21st! Continue reading

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VIDEO: Dirt track oval racing in Japan

Dirt track racing is stupid fun, doing with real cars essentially what every kid does with Hot Wheels. That, apparently, is true no matter what country you’re from. Back in the day, with plenty of big, rear-wheel-drive cars available for peanuts on the used car market, Japan even had a Dirt Track Stock Car series. Continue reading


EVENTS: 2019 All-Toyotafest, Part 03 — Classics that Started It All

It’s hard to believe, but this year’s Toyotafest was the 24th of annual shows held by the Toyota Owners and Restorers Club. It’s been almost a quarter century since the first one took place, and at that first one all the Supra Turbos, MR2s, and Lexuses that populate the field today were still brand new. The heart of Toyotafest has always been the cars of the Showa Era. Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2019, Part 02 — Fun Fours

This year’s Toyotafest was headlined by the many generations of Supra in support of the A90’s debut. With all the focus on the new six-cylinder sports car, let’s not forget that Toyota has built plenty of fun fours. More and more of these specimen from the 80s and 90s are appearing at Toyotafest — Celicas, MR2s, Corollas, and more MR2s. Continue reading


MOTORSPORT: Three Paris-Dakar drivers are reunited with the Mitsubishis they raced to victory

The sun is setting on the Mitsubishi Pajero, but before the legendary nameplate enters twilight, the company is honoring its many successes in the Paris-Dakar Rally. A new video released by Mitsubishi Motors titled “The Spirit of Pajero” highlights the model’s 26 years of competition in one of the world’s toughest off-road races. Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2019, Part 01 — Real Supras

The theme of this year’s All-Toyotafest was, unavoidably, Supra. The 24th gathering of the Toyota Owners and Restorers Club featured generations of this one model on the offiical merchandise and promotional materals this year. Toyota gave many of the attendees the first in-person look at the new A90. And the owners of 100 percent Toyota-built Supras came out in great numbers. Continue reading


VIDEO: 60 years of Honda at the Isle of Man TT

The Isle of Man Tourist Trophy is perhaps the world’s most famous motorcycle race. Honda won its first constructors’ championship there in 1959, thanks to their RC141 and RC142 race bikes. It’s been 60 years since, and today the marque with the most victories at the TT — 183 in all — has been Honda.  Continue reading

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QotW: What should we do with the Subaru X-100

Recently, we wrote about the Subaru X-100 concept currently in the care of the Lane Motor Museum in Nashville, Tennessee. Subaru has decided to loan Fuji Heavy Industries’ record-setting 100 mpg experimental car for a whopping five years. The museum director would like to display it at concours events. As the guy who keeps the cars running at the museum, I can tell you we’re planning on going through the car mechanically so that it’s safe to drive in a closed setting — at least by the standards of experimental three-wheeled cars, a genre in which we have more than our fair share of experience. Personally, I would like to do something with the X-100 and another of our Tremulis-designed cars, the 1967 Gyro-X.

What should we do with the Subaru X-100?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “Has anyone tried to buy your JNC?Continue reading