EVENTS: Monterey Historics, Part 05 — Sights & Sounds

138_Nissan Skyline C10 hakosuka

The Monterey Historics car week is one of the world’s great automotive events, and 2014 was a milestone year for Japanese classics. After all, seminal Nihon steel made strong showings at auctions, iconic Japanese cars raced at Laguna Seca, and Japanese automakers even held news-making unveilings there. All of that, however was merely a blink-and-you-missed-it blip on the larger radar of the traditional classic world.

Though there’s a lot of non-Japanese content in this article, we think it’s important to show some of our younger readers the larger scope of what goes on at an event like the Monterey Historics and how the J-tin figures into the big picture. Continue reading

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QotW: What’s the rarest common car?

172_ToyotaCoronaT80

There are some JNCs that you just don’t see, and it’s a mystery as to why. We’re not talking about kenmeri GT-Rs or Black Limited AE86s and the like. Those were never produced in large numbers or were special editions to begin with, so it’s no surprise you don’t see them that often. In fact, you’re more likely to see a Toyota 2000GT because it was rare to begin with. Some cars, no one ever thought to preserve.

What’s the rarest common car?

We remember a time when Datsun B210s were everywhere. The alphanumeric jumble of a name is so ingrained in American culture many non-JNCers default to, “Is that a B210?” when they see any Datsun that’s not a 240Z. Trucks, built to be workhorses or tackle harsh terrain, were often used up and discarded when they’d outlived their usefulness. Then there’s cars like Toyota’s post-barikan Corona, which ToMoCo positioned to be the Camry of its day. Now you rarely ever see them, even at shows like Toyotafest or JCCS.

What say you, dear reader? As always, the most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “Which JNC commands the most respect?”  Continue reading

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MOTORSPORT: Happy 30th Anniversary, NISMO

1988 Nissan R31 Skyline racing

In September 1984 Nissan Motorsports was established in Omori, Tokyo. It’s been 30 years of top-level racing on an international stage under the NISMO banner and the company is celebrating. Continue reading

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EVENTS: Monterey Historics, Part 04 — Running a Datsun 240Z at the Rolex Motorsports Reunion

07-AG8135_Datsun 240Z IMSA GTU

Today’s guest writer is Alvin Gogineni, a member of the Z Car Garage team that restored and worked as pit crew for Joel Anderson’s No. 49 IMSA Datsun 240Z at the Rolex Motorsports Reunion. —Ben

If it’s the smell of 110 octane, straight-piped exhausts and vintage wheel-to-wheel action you desire than look no further than the Rolex Motorsports Reunion, one of the keystone events of the week-long Monterey Historics. This is what it’s like to bring vintage Datsun 240Z to this the world-renowned event and run it.
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MUSEUMS: The Petersen has a 130 Datsun Cedric in its Vault

Nissan Cedric 130 Custom Six Petersen 05

So the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles apparently has a Nissan Cedric 130 Custom Six. What’s more, it’s is a LHD example badged as a Datsun, with black California license plates. Was this staple of Japanese streets circa 1965 actually meant for US import? Continue reading

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Someone tell MOPAR fanboys what the BRE stripes are

We’ve begun to notice a weird trend recently. Mopar fanboys are up in arms about Nissan copying some racing stripes that belong to Dodge. Sure, Peter Brock may have designed the livery on his Datsun Sports 2000 roadsters in 1968, but the rich heritage of Dodge’s slanted parallel stripes can be traced all the way back to 2010.  Continue reading

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The most well preserved Datsun 720 pickup, ever

07_Nissan Datsun 720

A couple of months ago Nissan threw a key party at an old ivy-covered mansion in the woods crammed full of taxidermied animals. But even better than some Eyes Wide Shut-type masquerade, they let attendees grab the keys to anything in their product lineup, including several items from the Heritage Collection. Continue reading

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QotW: Which JNC commands the most respect?

7536_Nissan Skyline GT-R KPGC10

Today is Respect for the Aged Day in Japan, so…

Which JNC commands the most respect?

With its racing provenance, menacing grille and the fact that its modern day successor eats supercars for breakfast, the Nissan KPGC10 GT-R seems like the obvious choice. Then again, few outside JNC enthusiast circles see it as more than an old Datsun.

What say you, dear reader? As always, the most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s winning comment regarding the news that JCCS is now screening entrantsContinue reading

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MUSEUMS: Motoring Mysteries of the Far East

AACA Motoring Mysteries of the Far East
If you’re on the East Coast and looking for a place to get your JNC fix this weekend, may we recommend the AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania. The museum has gathered a fantastic and diverse cross section of Japanese vehicles in an exhibit titled Motoring Mysteries of the Far East. If you can’t make it, our friend Brad DeSantis managed to snap some shots during his visit there.  Continue reading

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EVENTS: MX-5 Turns 25 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

016DY_Mazda MX5 Miata guinness record

If you just woke up from a coma, we have two things to tell you. First, welcome back. Second, Mazda made a new Miata. Everyone else in the world was bombarded with that knowledge a week ago with an inescapable global unveiling. That, however, was just the pre-game show to the main event: almost 2,000 Miatas descending like locusts on Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.  Continue reading

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