Author Archives: Ben Hsu

Nissan Jam 2017 will honor 50 years of the Datsun 510

In its fifth year, Nissan Jam will be returning to Anaheim, California. 2017 promises to be a very special year because it will honor the 50th anniversary of the 510, which was introduced in Japan in 1967. All 510 owners registered for … Continue reading

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Toyotafest Spotlight: Mike Muniz’s 1972 Sprinter Trueno is one of the finest Toyota restorations we’ve ever seen

Without exaggeration, Mike Muniz’s 1972 Toyota Sprinter Trueno is a paradigm shift in the world of Japanese nostalgic cars. In fact, we’re pretty certain that Muniz has not only achieved one of the most stunning Toyota restorations we’ve ever encountered, but also … Continue reading

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EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 06 — Straight Sixes

With the passing of time, we are seeing more and more cars pass into 25-year classic status from what is perhaps the most epic era of Toyota history — that of the inline six-cylinder engine. From early Land Cruisers and Crowns … Continue reading

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Mitsubishi does not need subwoofers and TV screens

The news that Mitsubishi was seeking West Coast Customs to recreate their first car, the 1917 Model A, was pretty disappointing. Here’s a friendly reminder that Mitsus don’t need useless gimmicks to be cool. That is all.

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NEWS: Mitsubishi Motors celebrates 100 years by recreating its first car

The shipbuilding giant known as Mitsubishi became a car company 100 years ago this year with the release of the 1917 Model A. Only 22 were built, giving Mitsubishi Motors the claim to the first “mass produced” Japanese car. To celebrate a century … Continue reading

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EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 05 — Trucks

Toyotafest is the only Japanese car show that can boast such a wonderfully diverse a mix of both car and trucks. This year, Toyota celebrated the Land Cruiser but there were just as many HiLuxes, Stouts, Tacomas, and other assorted trucks. 

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EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 04 — The rise of the E30 Corolla

There is never a shortage of Corollas at Toyotafest, and for years the best builds in the field belonged to the AE86, TE27, and TE72 contingents, maybe even a front-driver AE92. This year, however, the 1975-79 E30 Corolla has emerged as a new … Continue reading

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Happy Mother’s Day from JNC

To all the moms out there, thanks for doing all that you do. Happy Mother’s Day from JNC!

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Toyotafest Spotlight: Orly Tapay’s Works replica KP47 Starlet

One of the stars of Toyotafest this year was Orly Tapay’s 1974 Toyota Starlet. Not only was it a rare model never sold in the US, but it was a stunning replica of a Toyota works racer from the heyday of … Continue reading

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Toyotafest Spotlight: JZ-powered Celica drag racers

Two of the biggest head turners at this year’s Toyotafest were a pair of seriously mean drag racers built on a daruma Celica chassis. Both were caged, tubbed, and running mills from the legendary Toyota JZ family. 

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EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 03 — Fun to Drive

“Fun to Drive” was the tagline of Toyota Japan for much of the 1980s, and it was absolutely true. Toyota once had a whole portfolio of stylish, slingable cars that were also — and this is a key component of fun … Continue reading

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Toyotafest Spotlight: Richard Pope’s 1977 Celica Liftback

After a decade of attending Toyotafests, the thing we look forward to most are the surprise builds that come out of nowhere. This year, one of the cars that really caught our eyes was Richard Pope’s 1977 Celica Liftback. 

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Happy 510 Day from JNC

Nissan introduced the Bluebird 510 in 1967. Here’s to killing giants for half a century. Happy 510 Day from JNC!

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EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 02 — Celebrating the all-conquering Land Cruiser

Toyotafest this year took the opportunity to honor what could be Toyota’s most legendary model. Sure, a neck-snapping Supra, drifting-birthing AE86, or luxe Lexus may be the dream cars of the first world, but for the rest of the globe the Land Cruiser is the ultimate aspirational … Continue reading

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EVENTS: 2017 All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 01 — New Digs

Like RAV4 sales numbers, the number of cars at Toyotafest is ever-expanding. Now in its 22nd year, the country’s most comprehensive Toyota, Lexus and Scion car show has outgrown its home at the Queen Mary. This year, organizers from the Toyota Owners and Restorers Club … Continue reading

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QotW: What’s your best “3-digit purchase price” car story?

If you’ve been around J-tin long enough, you’ve purchased a 3-digit car. That’s when the transaction price is less than $1,000, and we’re not talking about the so-called “value” you declared to the DMV. We mean money that actually exchanged hands, … Continue reading

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MOTORSPORT: Honda Civic Racing History

The Honda Civic was a giant slayer if there ever was one. Rarely in history has one model done so many things so well. One of those things was racing, a facet of the Civic rarely covered in Western media. … Continue reading

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KIDNEY, ANYONE? This 1980 Honda Prelude is gold, Jerry!

For five generations and 22 years the Prelude was sports coupe of the Honda lineup. Later iterations were some of the best handling front-drivers ever built, darlings of the Tuner Era, but the SN-chassis is where it all began. And when … Continue reading

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REMINDER: 2017 Toyotafest is this Saturday

Just a friendly reminder: The 22nd Annual Toyotafest takes place this Saturday, May 6, at its new location. It’s still in Long Beach by the Queen Mary, but it will now be held at Marina Green Park. Instructions can be found … Continue reading

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QotW: Which car should automakers make reproduction parts for next?

We learned last week that NISMO is going to start making brand new parts for the R32 Skyline GT-R again. This is great news for enthusiasts, who will be able to restore and drive their cars, and also great for the … Continue reading

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