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Best decade for etc. etc.
Sixties 7%  7%  [ 3 ]
Seventies 56%  56%  [ 25 ]
Eighties 16%  16%  [ 7 ]
Nineties 20%  20%  [ 9 ]
Nowadays 2%  2%  [ 1 ]
Wait til next decade 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Total votes : 45
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 Post subject: ...Golden age of Japanese cars?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:52 am 
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...The seventies may have been when they first gained attention for being any good, the 80s when they really began to innovate, but...

I think the Japanese really had the technological/performance jump in the 90s, as compared to Euro and US vehicles, especially in the early/mid...

...Though 1999 becomes a tempting year, with the concurrent availability (in one market or another) of the R34, S15, Z32, mk.IV Supra, MR2, NSX, Type Rs, S2k, GTO, Evo, 2nd gen Eclipse, WRX, FD RX7, Miata... Tell me if I'm leaving anything out ;)

Pretty much everyone had at least one world-beater in the portfolio. It might not have been practical, but all the awd/multiple turbos/four wheel steering and all that nonsense kept things progressive and interesting.

I view Japanese cars of today as good cars, but not truly interesting, and more in line with what the rest of the world elects to produce... Though there are plenty of newer cars I'd love.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:24 am 
For me it's a tough call. No,make that an impossible one.They're all very desirable eras,for different reasons.I wish I had the money (and parking space) to own representatives of all decades.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 11:46 am 

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I agree with the original poster, the nineties were when all the Japanese companies produced world-leading drivers cars, and were recognised for doing so. The 1990 edition of Autocar's annual Best Handling awarded the podium positions to the Pulsar GTi-R, the NSX, and the MX-5 (Miata) in ascending order. In Japan, there were also the super-cool "ABC" Kei sports cars.

However, I come here to learn about the fascinating cars I know little or nothing about from the eras before I read car magazines. Also, the companies who produced the world-beaters of the nineties were the same ones who developed their understanding through the sixties, seventies and eighties.

Finally, I think there are quite a few interesting cars still coming out of Japan. Nissan have quite a good lineup with the FM platform / VQ motor based cars (FX, Skyline, Fairlady, GTR), plus interesting things like the Cube, while Mazda have the MX-5, RX-8, and a general attitude of making even their family cars 'zoom'.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 11:58 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2007 9:26 am
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Location: Midwest, USA
What about the 50's, 40's, 30's, and 20's?

The trivia question from last week as about the 1925 Otomo.

The early votes seem to read the opposite of the member age poll. and counter to the 25+ year old car age for classic or nostalgic.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 3:09 pm 
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'78-'88, in my honest opinion.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:16 pm 

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the " box era " from ~80' to ~90' stands out to me. I love seeing older j-tin and newer vip cars and such, but I'm partial to the 80s box's :tu:

(may be slightly biased lol) :mrgreen:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:54 pm 
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I would like to think the 70's were, but I want to say the late 80's and 90's were. So many great cars were out, all the Jap sports cars where out. NSX, Z32 TT, MKIV Supra, FD....etc

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:59 pm 

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70's.....all the way! :tu:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 11:56 pm 

Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 9:10 pm
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70's

that is when everything start to get notice, i believe

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 12:11 am 
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I love the 60s and 70s, because it's the era when relatively little was known about what was available and going on in Japan, and it's an era that we're all having fun discovering now.

However...in terms of the era when Japanese cars were better than their counterparts, it's very hard to look past the early to mid 90s.

- Lexus LS400 vs BMW 7 Series and Benz S Class
- NSX vs Fezza 348
- Skyline GTR vs...well, anything really :)
- WRX vs Integrale
- Aristo vs BMW 5 Series and Benz E Class
- MX5 vs er....nothing from Europe? :lol:
- Toyota Chaser Tourer V vs BMW M5
- Supra vs Corvette (?)
- Silvia vs er....second hand Ford Capri? :D
- Honda Civic VTEC vs any Euro hot hatch

If you compare it to the 80s, all of a sudden it was 1992 and JDM cars were as good or better. It really did come out of nowhere and the quantum leap in performance and quality compared to the previous decade was like night and day. Try to compare a 1984 Toyota Crown Royal Saloon with a Lexus LS and it's an incredible advance.

So while I look at the earlier era with fondness, the exact point where Japan got its automotive act together was the 90s.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 1:35 am 
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only 1 vote per person allowed??..
darn hard to choose..
IMO its either 70's or the 80's..
loving the gorgeous body curves of the 70's...
but i can't resist the boxy styling of the 80's either..

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 12:14 pm 

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Has to be the 70's... chrome / sporty agressive looking coupes / reasonable power / able to be tastfully updated and modified.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 12:20 pm 
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Different era's for different reasons. Personally I favor the 60's. Why? It's just a styling thing. And after all, Golden Era eludes to the old days... (I might have even picked pre-60's if it was an option).

(But if your'e talking "best," it would have to be today for technical and performance reasons)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 5:17 pm 
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It's almost impossible to choose... I can't say the 60s definitively, but no one has mentioned this aspect yet.

Japan barely had a highway system and probably over 90% of citizens didn't even own cars.... Despite being new kids on the block, Japan came out with some truly stunning cars in terms of design, technology, and sheer bravado (all under-appreciated at the time, of course): Toyota 2000GT, Honda S500/600/800, Mazda Cosmo 110S, Isuzu Bellet GT-R.

I guess it must have been pretty shocking for them that none of these awesome machines got the recognition they deserved, and it would be a long time before anything like them would be attempted again.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 10:29 pm 
All - okay most - cars now look alike.

Do we really want that?

It's all about the eye candy - the unique look - the unmistakable look of a lifetime - whatever catches the eyes of most buyers, but if there's bad mechanical performance the look means nothing.

That's why the Corvette has survived so much so that they have their own production facility and most employees have been there for decades.

The '70's were still producing that unique look, but somewhere along the way the style of each car changed to where most cars began, and continued, to look just like every other car company's models.

Take the Celica for instance. What the heck happened to them? They started off with a bang, moved to something good with a different look, but then I didn't even know they still made them until 2005, until I was told recently and shown one online. Looks like every other car out there.

Exterior eye candy is the first thing that hooks the customer, interior eye candy is 2nd, then if the mechanics of the car performs well then it's word of mouth and the model is off and running.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 10:52 pm 
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I don't buy into the "all new cars look alike" thing.

US cars of the fifties and sixties all follow about the same template, and "look alike", but my dad would go in depth with the minuteae of how different a Mercury looked from a Plymouth, whereas I have a much better eye for distinguishing a Honda from a Toyota, from mere design cues...

And I think the last Celica was the most gorgeous one since the Mustang Celice, and very distinctive in the car world 8)

My two cents :D


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2009 1:42 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2009 2:57 pm
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For me, the 80s and early 90s are the most interesting eras when japanese cars were most successful!

In the 80s, there were so much different and special models available, al based on everyday-cars. Let me mention the Mazda 323 Turbo 16V 4WD with digidash, the Mitsubishi Galant GTi-16 4WD 4WS, the Subaru Leone RX-Turbo Fulltime-4WD and so much more. All based on "normal" cars, but with special equippment.

That´s not possible anymore. There is the Lancer EVO and the Impreza WRX STI left, but it wouldn´t be possible to buy a Mazda 6 GTi 4WS anymore, even the "normal2 4WD-versions have gone. No Corolla 4WD anymore, no Mitsubishi Lancer Station 4WD anymore, even the 80s-Camry was available as a 4WD-version, many of them had digidash.

For me, this was the best era of japanese cars, now it doenst matter if you buy a car from Japan, from Germany, from Korea or from France, they all look the same and there is almost not special equipment available like in the 80s.

In the 80s, japanese cars had the best market share here, since the mid-90s, the market share dropped steadly.

Lukas


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2009 8:43 am 
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while agree that cars look alike now

I will also say that they looked a lot a like in the 70s and 80s too

as a newbie to the 70s cars I see on here so much I often find myself going "which one is that again?"

and I have several times mistaken a sentra at the u-pull for a tercel and even a subaru.


the stand outs to this rule have always been the sportier 2 door coupes which tend to look much less alike

even the Z and G which are essentially the 2 seater and 2+2 of the same car look different from each other to me.

but an altima and a camry... may as well be the same.

my uncle has a small junkyard and they sit around up there in the office and shoot the shit and they tease me and my dad about having the same car.
his a conquest mine's an XT....

so it's really all in the eyes of the beholder.

(I am really not digging the new trend of slab sides on new cars... yuck!)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 12:06 am 
Dachshund wrote:
I don't buy into the "all new cars look alike" thing.

US cars of the fifties and sixties all follow about the same template, and "look alike", but my dad would go in depth with the minuteae of how different a Mercury looked from a Plymouth, whereas I have a much better eye for distinguishing a Honda from a Toyota, from mere design cues...

And I think the last Celica was the most gorgeous one since the Mustang Celice, and very distinctive in the car world 8)

My two cents :D

Well said! :tu:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 1:02 am 

Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2008 1:25 am
Posts: 110
The results might have something to do with people's age? What's the average age on this site?

The stuff from the 80's and 90's were common every day supermarket trollies that you could buy from a car sales - they might be considered classic's by many people now days, but to me they are and always will be "sensible" cars for grown-ups :lol: Here in NZ, thousands of imports straight from Japan flooded the market - never did anything for me at the time.

The stuff from the 60's and earlier remind me of Grandad vintage cars that don't go around corners (although there are some big exceptions).

The early Datsun 1600/Corolla/RX3/Galant GTO/Celica/Violet 160J-SSS/RX2/120Y-SSS... were the hot rods of the time (as an alternative to the V8's) - a set of 13x7 mags and some extractors and you were in business :twisted: Great memories of hooning around in cheap early 70's coupes... It does not get any better than that! :tu:

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