Category Archives: japan

PROJECT B: Owning a classic car in Japan, Part 03 — The Streets

In Part 01 of this series I went in search of my first classic car, a Prince Skyline GT-B. In Part 02 I proved to the city of Tokyo, where I live, that I had space to park it and went through Japan’s infamous … Continue reading


PROJECT B: Owning a classic car in Japan, Part 02 — The Shaken

In Part 01 of this series, I went through the process of searching for the appropriate classic car. Even though I live in Tokyo, it turns out the best way to get the car I wanted, a Prince Skyline GT-B, … Continue reading


PROJECT B: Owning a classic car in Japan, Part 01 — The Search

Welcome to a new multi-part series on JNC, in which we document what it’s like to buy, register, and own a classic car in Japan. The car in question is a Prince Skyline GT-B, the car that started the Skyline Legend, owned by our … Continue reading


The Vintage Japanese “OK” Hand Logo Explained

Few things in life are cooler than vintage racing liveries. The colors, the typefaces, and the long-extinct corporate logos (of often just-as-extinct corporations) capture a moment in time that can never be replicated again. Add to that the rawness of … Continue reading


Occupy Tokyo with your Zokusha on Doukoho Eve

It’s time for our yearly commemoration of Doukoho Eve. On November 22, 1978, over 3000 bosozoku motorcycles and cars swarmed the streets of Tokyo, cruising, parading, revving and generally causing a ruckus. They were out to celebrate the end of an era.


Identify This Rusty Car Found in a Japanese Junkyard

See that wagon lurking behind this hakosuka and Honda Today? All we know is that it’s old, rust, and resting in a junkyard somewhere in Japan. This photo was sent to us by a reader there. Heck, it may not even be Japanese. Be … Continue reading


Best Motoring & Hot Version Era Comes to a Close

The renowned Japanese automotive video series Best Motoring and its spinoff publication Hot Version have been canceled. According to its publisher 2&4 Motoring, the parent company Kodansha could not justify its continued existence citing declining sales figures for the past … Continue reading


Checking Godzilla for Radiation

Apparently Japanese automakers have had to put their customers’ minds at ease, by conducting radiation tests on cars built since the Tohoku quake and tsunami for radiation. At Nissan’s Oppama plant, which is 225 miles southwest of the damaged Fukushima … Continue reading

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What the Tsunami Looked Like from a Car

DONATION LINK. Here are some more harrowing videos of the tsunami, including an in-car video from a Japanese driver who just happened to be driving along the coast the exact moment the tsunami hits. He remains amazingly calm as his … Continue reading


Sportsland Sugo Damaged in Earthquake

Japan is still recovering from last week’s record-breaking 9.0 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami. Sadly, reports say one of the nation’s great racetracks, Sportsland Sugo, has sustained damage.  Located in the hard-hit Miyagi Prefecture, Sugo was built in 1975 by … Continue reading


How the Earthquake is Affecting Japan’s Automakers

In the aftermath of the magnitude 9.0 Tohoku earthquake of March 11, the Japan’s great automakers are mostly at a standstill.  Supply chains, transport and shipping facilities have all been affected by the quake and subsequent tsunami.  There’s also rolling … Continue reading


Magnitude 8.9 Earthquake Strikes Japan

Our hearts, thoughts and prayers go out to all our Japanese friends today. A magnitude 8.9 earthquake occurred off the coast of Sendai a few hours ago, shaking buildings as far away as Tokyo. Even worse, the quake triggered a … Continue reading


New Koreisha Marks Go On Sale Today

Today is February 1, which means the “autumn leaf” elderly driver’s symbol is no more. Last summer, a nation-wide contest selected a new koreisha mark, this four-color clover-type thing, because the apparently drivers over the age of 70 do not … Continue reading


Inside a Japanese Used Car Auction

8000 cars on a slow day, 20 seconds to jab buttons like lab pigeon on cocaine, thousands of yen, and one new ride to take home. Follow the Australian series Mad Mods on a quest to buy a JDM car … Continue reading


Start 2011 Off with a Traffic Safety Omamori

In Japanese tradition, one should visit your local temple for New Year’s. There, for a small donation, you can get a wide assortment of omamori, amulets of silk, wood or metal that will bring you good luck in their respective … Continue reading


A Gaijin Looks at Japanese Modding Culture

We get so used to concepts like takeyari and tsurikawa it’s easy to forget that for some, it’s a mind-blowing world. Here’s a look at AOL Translogic’s tour of Japanese modding culture.


Recycling Old Cars in Japan — With Fire

So you want to recycle the metal from an old Bluebird to satisfy the demand for new 510s. But you don’t want all that pesky rubber and plastic to contaminate your molten steel. What to do? Burn it off on … Continue reading


Meet Your New Koreisha Mark

The votes are in and Japan’s National Police Agency has just announced its new Koreisha Mark. The four-color clover, created by a 31-year-old graphic designer from Osaka, was selected as the winner among four proposed symbols. It will replace the … Continue reading


The New and Improved(?) Elderly Driver's Mark

As we reported last October, the Japanese government is changing the time-honored Koreisha Mark. Problem was, senior citizens deemed the current design — a teardrop shaped leaf in fall colors (center) — rather insulting and complained to the National Police … Continue reading


The Abandoned Cars of Ageo Bedroom Town

Thirty-five kilometers north of Tokyo is Ageo. A once semi-rural area, its main inhabitants are now mostly daily commuters to Tokyo — the famous Japanese salaryman and the odd OL — trudging off via their packed trains to slave away … Continue reading