Author Archives: Ben Hsu

TUNE UP: Remember George Michael with this supercharged Subaru kei car ad

The Subaru Rex Combi VX Supercharger was introduced in March 1988, and along with it came a snazzy new ad campaign. The addition of a supercharger to the 550cc kei hatchback boosted output from 36 to 54 horsepower, which doesn’t sound like … Continue reading

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QotW: What part of 2016 are you most eager to forget?

December 31 is when the Japanese typically throw a bonenkai, or “year forgetting” party, to drink away memories of a particularly crappy trip around the sun. Maybe your ride suffered a horrible mechanical malady this year, or perhaps a favorite racing idol died, or … Continue reading

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Merry Christmas, everyone!

May you enjoy not just your presents, but the box they came in. メリークリスマス from JNC! Image courtesy of Nissan.

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VIDEO: Watch Adam Carolla hillclimb Paul Newman’s 300ZX

The Drive just concluded their video series following Adam Carolla’s journey to England as he enters his freshly restored, ex-Paul Newman Nissan 300ZX in the Goodwood Festival of Speed‘s hillclimb. Restored in the UK (a proper British restoration, not one of … Continue reading

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VIDEO: A street-legal, AWD, 1100hp Celica

At this point Lexus 1UZ swaps into lightweight classic J-coupes that weigh almost nothing are not a new thing. However, squeezing 1,100 horsepower out of the 4.0-liter V8 twin-turbo turned up to 27 psi necessitated a GT-R’s AWD drivetrain for Jamie … Continue reading

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Do you have what it takes to be a Japanese Car Meister?

Two years ago, the a new automotive exam was introduced in Japan and is growing in popularity. Asking 100 multiple choice questions, passing it awards the taker with the coveted Car Meister Certification. You have only one hour to take it, which works … Continue reading

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EVENTS: 2016 NISMO Festival at Fuji Speedway

For 20 years, Nissan’s motorsports division has put on an annual gala for followers of its many racing machines and successes. The NISMO Festival is a Burning Man for Nissan nuts, a mecca for fans of Sunny and Skyline alike. Best of all, … Continue reading

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NEWS: Mazda revives NA Classic Red, introduces Tokyo Auto Salon lineup

It’s subtle, but if you look carefully the ND in the accompanying photos is missing the metallics, blues and purples in Soul Red, the signature color slathered on all modern Mazdas. No, it’s the appropriately named Classic Red, one of the three original … Continue reading

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QotW: What are you asking Japanese Santa Claus for this year?

Pulled on a flying zokusha by eight flying Nara sika deer, Japanese Santa Claus travels the world bringing sweet diecast cars, rare JDM parts and, if you’re really good, possibly entire cars to good little JNC boys and girls everywhere. … Continue reading

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BIKES: Honda reveals retro-styled 2017 CB1100 EX

Honda has announced the 2017 CB1100 EX, a motorcycle styled after the renowned 1969 Honda CB750. That model was the world’s first production superbike and transformed the world of motorcycling when it debuted. 

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VIDEO: Nissan restores 1987 Paris-Dakar Patrol

In 1987, Nissan won the diesel class of the Paris-Dakar Rally with a turbodiesel Patrol. It was promptly retired and languished in a museum for almost three decades. Then, a group of Nissan engineers saw some photos of it in a … Continue reading

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MINICARS: Hot Wheels designer Ryu Asada talks about his cars, career, and his love for Hondas

  “Honda for Life” is the motto of Ryu Asada, star designer at Hot Wheels. Born in Osaka, Japan and a lover of cars since infancy, he’s the man responsible for the Hot Wheels CRX, S2000, EF Civic, 1990 NSX, Integra … Continue reading

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TUNE UP: The Weeknd drives an FC3S RX-7

We thought 1980s Toyotas had a lock on the music video game. Apparently not, as alternative R&B singer The Weeknd has posted to his Instagram feed photos of a flared FC3S Mazda RX-7 with “⚡️” (lightning bolt emoji) as the only comment. … Continue reading

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Honda marks 30th anniversary of Canada manufacturing with its own Monopoly game

In 1986, Honda became the first Japanese automaker to build cars in Canada. The Alliston, Ontario plant churned out Accords first, then Civics, and in 1998 a second plant was constructed to make Odysseys and CR-Vs. To mark the 30th anniversary of Honda Manufacturing … Continue reading

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TUNE UP: Two sexy classics in Justice’s “Fire” video

French band Justice’s latest video stars a pair of classics that are beautiful and seemingly ageless: an A60 Celica convertible and actor Susan Sarandon, who is according to Wikipedia apparently 70 years old (!). It’s no secret that 80s Toyotas have become … Continue reading

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Behold, the new JNC wagon

Behold, the new JNC Wagon. You’re looking at a 1987 Toyota Van in all its two-tone glory, complete with dual sunroof, ice maker, and a big ol’ pock mark smack dab in the middle of its prodigious face. Now for the drive … Continue reading

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A new JNC Wagon is on the horizon

We are headed to San Francisco today to pick up what could be the next JNC Wagon. After nine years of service, our current one, a Cressida, is being taken off the road for some proper care. It has taken us all … Continue reading

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KIDNEY, ANYONE? Plaid-tastic 1980 Dodge Challenger, aka Mitsubishi Galant Λ

A 1980 Mitsubishi-built captive import Dodge Challenger has appeared on Harrisburg, Pennsylvania’s Craigslist. Advertised as a one-owner, garage kept, car, it might be one of the finest examples left in the country. 

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VIDEO: AE86 with historic plates confounds Roadkill host

In a recent episode of Roadkill Extras, host David Freiburger is at Westech Performance in Mira Loma, California when he’s rendered utterly dumbfounded at the presence of an AE86 wearing California Historic Vehicle license plates. Turns out, it’s a car we featured back … Continue reading

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TUNE UP: Rich Chigga is back with another zokusha Skyline

Indonesian rapper Rich Chigga is back with another video and more zokusha sleds. Though his previous video featured a white Kenmeri, his new track titled “Who That Be” features none other than a C210 Skyline Japan. If the car looks familiar to you, … Continue reading

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