Author Archives: Ben Hsu

That new life-size Gundam robot in Japan is basically a 22nd-century Mazda RX-7

Giant robots are serious business in Japan. Construction has just finished on a 59-foot Gundam robot in Yokohama, and it’s not even the first. If you’ve been to Odaiba, Tokyo where Toyota’s MegaWeb showroom is located, you have probably seen … Continue reading

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Why Toyota’s Heritage Parts Program for the 2000GT was so challenging

Toyota announced in 2019 that it would reissue parts for the A70 and A80 Supra. Last month, they added the 2000GT to the GR Heritage Parts Program. The initial list for each model is pretty short, to be honest, and a … Continue reading

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JCCS to go virtual and worldwide for 2020

Of all the events on the auto show calendar, the Japanese Classic Car Show ranks as one of our favorites. Unfortunately, it cannot be held this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the organizers have something special planned that … Continue reading

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Here’s what modern cars would look like with their predecessors’ wheels

There’s a new Facebook page that seems to have nothing but photochops of new cars with old wheels. Specifically, the images on the aptly named Unnecessary Wheel Swaps are of modern vehicles wearing the wheels of their predecessors. The ND … Continue reading

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QotW: What’s your best story involving a small car?

Small cars are going the way of the dodo. Toyota has killed the Yaris, Honda has killed the Fit, and Mazda has killed the 2. Only in the US market, of course; all those cars are alive and well in other … Continue reading

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How Hondas from the S800 to the NSX have inspired our greatest living supercar builder

Gordon Murray, perhaps the world’s greatest living supercar builder, came out with a new car this week, the GMA T.50. This isn’t typical JNC fare, but we are very much admirers of Murray’s car-building philosophy. Murray’s notions of ideal car … Continue reading

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VIDEO: Can you identify 100 years’ worth of Mazda interiors?

Mazda has released a video called “The Evolution of Mazda Interiors” as the latest installment of their 100th anniversary celebrations. As you might expect, it’s a series of driver’s-view shots from Mazda cars over the decades. While I can do … Continue reading

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NEWS: Subaru has stopped production of the BRZ

After eight years shining a bright ray of sports coupe hope into the a bleak crossover world, the Subaru BRZ has ceased production. The lines at its Ota, Gunma Prefecture plant have churned out their last BRZs as they prepare … Continue reading

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NEWS: 2021 Mazda 3 Turbo will destroy all comers with a $29,900 base price

There are few new cars more hotly anticipated around the JNC offices than the Mazda 3 Turbo. The non-turbo is already an absolute hoot, and on paper the forced-induction version looked to be even better, with 250-horses, 320 lb-ft (on … Continue reading

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Toyota is building a Motorsports Village at Fuji Speedway

Toyota, which owns Fuji Speedway, is planning to turn the facility into a world-class motorsports destination. It has announced plans to a motorsports village that will include a luxury hotel, museum, and facilities for both racing teams and privateers to … Continue reading

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QotW: What’s your fondest Pajero/Montero memory?

The death of the Mitsubishi Pajero has hit us pretty hard here here at JNC. So, we’ve been watching old Dakar videos and trying to remember the fond times we had with Pajeros. For me, it was the time a … Continue reading

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There’s nothing more satisfying than using the right tool for the job

Japanese tool company KTC has developed a new gadget to help ease the act of pulling out a relay. If you’ve worked on any car with a cramped fuse box, you know that what should be an easy task is … Continue reading

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Mitsubishi ending Pajero production, closing down dedicated Pajero plant

Mitsubishi announced yesterday that it is ending production of the Pajero and shutting down its plant, Pajero Manufacturing Co., Ltd., responsible for building the legendary SUV since the model’s inception in 1982. This is not exactly surprising, as Mitsubishi announced … Continue reading

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SHOWA SNAP: A fleet of convertible Toyota Crowns are ready for the 1964 Tokyo Olympics

We would be in the first week of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics if the coronavirus hadn’t thrown a giant pole vaulter’s bar into the entire world’s plans. The first time Japan’s capital hosted the Olympic Games was back in 1964, … Continue reading

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QotW: At what point do you fly instead of drive?

On this day in 1949, the first commercial jet made its maiden test-flight in England, ushering in a new age of travel by dramatically shrinking the time between two points. Fast forward 71 years, and flying is about as glamorous … Continue reading

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Now you can get classic Nissan coronavirus face masks

If you want to protect yourself (and others) from transmitting a harmful virus while simultaneously expressing your love for classic Nissans, there is now a face mask for you. In Japan, you can now get two types of masks, one … Continue reading

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Official Initial D 25th anniversary store opens in Japan

On July 23, a pop-up store celebrating the 25th anniversary of Initial D opened in Tokyo. It will be open for just over two weeks in the capital city before moving onto Osaka. The shop features a small gallery of … Continue reading

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BRIDE racing seat face masks now come in red

Last month, our story about face masks by Japanese racing seat maker BRIDE became one of our most-shared items of the year on social media. Why? We have no idea. But since you loved them so much, it seems only … Continue reading

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Happy 720 Day from JNC

Today is Ugly Truck Day, except the 1981 Datsun 720 King Cab GL was anything but. With an elegant shade of 80s brown and a stripe kit to die for, it was a beaut. Plus the GL trim had amenities … Continue reading

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QotW: What does your dream truck look like?

Today is Ugly Truck Day but, as we all know, that’s kind of a misnomer. Even ugly trucks are actually good-looking trucks, because while dents, scratches, or rust ruin a car, those same imperfections give a truck character. That is, … Continue reading

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