QotW: How should Mitsubishi have celebrated 100 years of cars?

Today’s QotW comes on the heels of Mitsubishi’s centennial anniversary of building automobiles and their announcement to rebuild a Mitsubishi Model A. It’s not a pure reproduction, but will be built on an Outlander PHEV chassis and powertrain. This Kobe carriage will have some scoot. Interestingly, Mitsubishi is not tackling this feat alone — West Coast Customs has been tapped for the build.

If your eyebrow has been lifted, you are alone. JNC staffers are also scratching their heads. What do you think of Mitsubishi’s 100 year celebration plan? Are they on point or misguided? Should they have tapped their garage of rally monsters, turbo sports cars, or legendary SUVs?

How should Mitsubishi have celebrated their 100 years of JNC?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What does your mom think of your JNC?”  Continue reading


Toyotafest Spotlight: Mike Muniz’s 1972 Sprinter Trueno is one of the finest Toyota restorations we’ve ever seen

Without exaggeration, Mike Muniz’s 1972 Toyota Sprinter Trueno is a paradigm shift in the world of Japanese nostalgic cars. In fact, we’re pretty certain that Muniz has not only achieved one of the most stunning Toyota restorations we’ve ever encountered, but also built a time machine in which he traveled back to 1972 to acquire the rarest OEM parts. Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 06 — Straight Sixes

With the passing of time, we are seeing more and more cars pass into 25-year classic status from what is perhaps the most epic era of Toyota history — that of the inline six-cylinder engine. From early Land Cruisers and Crowns to the almighty Supra, the Straight Six era of Toyotas turned legions of enthusiasts toward the steel of Aichi.  Continue reading


Mitsubishi does not need subwoofers and TV screens

The news that Mitsubishi was seeking West Coast Customs to recreate their first car, the 1917 Model A, was pretty disappointing. Here’s a friendly reminder that Mitsus don’t need useless gimmicks to be cool. That is all.


KIDNEY, ANYONE? 1969 Suzuki Carry LHD

Generally speaking, here at Japanese Nostalgic Car we don’t feature JDM cars when we do Kidney Car posts because we would end up copy-pasting half of goo-net-exchange weekly. That being said, this is a very special car in that most Suzuki Carry examples in America were imported RHD models. This one, however, is a left hand drive example sold in America before there was a minimum wheelbase requirement. America sure was a great place before Ralph Nader ruined everything.  Continue reading


NEWS: Mitsubishi Motors celebrates 100 years by recreating its first car

The shipbuilding giant known as Mitsubishi became a car company 100 years ago this year with the release of the 1917 Model A. Only 22 were built, giving Mitsubishi Motors the claim to the first “mass produced” Japanese car. To celebrate a century of cars, Mitsubishi Motors North American plans to recreate a Model A, but not in a way you might expect. Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 05 — Trucks

Toyotafest is the only Japanese car show that can boast such a wonderfully diverse a mix of both car and trucks. This year, Toyota celebrated the Land Cruiser but there were just as many HiLuxes, Stouts, Tacomas, and other assorted trucks.  Continue reading


Mazda presents the 2017 Touge California — Registration open

We at Japanese Nostalgic Car are proud to announce that Touge California, our vintage road rally for all Japanese marques, returns for 2017 with Mazda as the title sponsor. It is a particularly great honor this year, as 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of Mazda’s rotary engine, and Touge California will be part of the festivities.  Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 04 — The rise of the E30 Corolla

There is never a shortage of Corollas at Toyotafest, and for years the best builds in the field belonged to the AE86, TE27, and TE72 contingents, maybe even a front-driver AE92. This year, however, the 1975-79 E30 Corolla has emerged as a new “it” chassis.  Continue reading


QotW: What does your mom think of your JNC?

As Mother’s Day rolls on by (Hi, mom!) we take time to say thanks to the one that helped raise us to upstanding citizen and avid JNC fan. I wonder, does dear ol’ mom share the same understanding and admiration for J-tin as you do? Share your story with us.

In my case, my mother didn’t see my AE86 until several months after purchase. I was in college at the time and though I had owned several cars in the past, this was the first one that I would update her on the progress of fixing up. Those repairs and upgrades were also the reason I had to skip out on making the trek back home for a family visit. So, when I finally took the GT-S back home to show my pride and joy, I was greeted with a, “So… that’s it?” rather than a “Wow, so that’s it!”. To my mom, it was an old car with chipped paint and dirty wheels. It wasn’t until I painted the car (self taught) that she started to see the value. That grew as people would stop and ask to buy it during weekends I was at the house.

Now, I think she sees it as just a part of me and not a mistake on four wheels. The car is in mid-refresh now and even though I am an ocean away, she took the time to still look after it. Even steam cleaned the seats! That’s progress. Thanks, mom! So how about our readers?

What does your mom think of your JNC?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What’s your best ‘3-digit purchase price’ car story?”  Continue reading


Happy Mother’s Day from JNC

Mitsubishi Colt 1000F

To all the moms out there, thanks for doing all that you do. Happy Mother’s Day from JNC!

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Mazda museum to open in Germany, first outside of Japan

A museum dedicated to classic Mazdas is about to open in Augsburg, Germany. Operated by Auto Frey, a Mazda dealer in the Bavarian city, and with support from Mazda Germany, Frey’s Mazda Classic Car Museum promises to be the first and only such museum outside of Japan. Continue reading


Toyotafest Spotlight: Orly Tapay’s Works replica KP47 Starlet

One of the stars of Toyotafest this year was Orly Tapay’s 1974 Toyota Starlet. Not only was it a rare model never sold in the US, but it was a stunning replica of a Toyota works racer from the heyday of Japanese touring cars.  Continue reading


Toyotafest Spotlight: JZ-powered Celica drag racers

Two of the biggest head turners at this year’s Toyotafest were a pair of seriously mean drag racers built on a daruma Celica chassis. Both were caged, tubbed, and running mills from the legendary Toyota JZ family.  Continue reading


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 03 — Fun to Drive

Fun to Drive” was the tagline of Toyota Japan for much of the 1980s, and it was absolutely true. Toyota once had a whole portfolio of stylish, slingable cars that were also — and this is a key component of fun — affordable. Thanks to the new venue for Toyotafest this year, there was even more space to welcome greater numbers of these delightful machines.  Continue reading


Toyotafest Spotlight: Richard Pope’s 1977 Celica Liftback

After a decade of attending Toyotafests, the thing we look forward to most are the surprise builds that come out of nowhere. This year, one of the cars that really caught our eyes was Richard Pope’s 1977 Celica Liftback.  Continue reading


Happy 510 Day from JNC

Nissan introduced the Bluebird 510 in 1967. Here’s to killing giants for half a century. Happy 510 Day from JNC!


EVENTS: All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 02 — Celebrating the all-conquering Land Cruiser

Toyotafest this year took the opportunity to honor what could be Toyota’s most legendary model. Sure, a neck-snapping Supra, drifting-birthing AE86, or luxe Lexus may be the dream cars of the first world, but for the rest of the globe the Land Cruiser is the ultimate aspirational machine.  Continue reading


EVENTS: 2017 All-Toyotafest 2017, Part 01 — New Digs

Like RAV4 sales numbers, the number of cars at Toyotafest is ever-expanding. Now in its 22nd year, the country’s most comprehensive Toyota, Lexus and Scion car show has outgrown its home at the Queen Mary. This year, organizers from the Toyota Owners and Restorers Club moved to a new venue, giving the event the space to truly show off all the branches of the Toyota family tree.  Continue reading


QotW: What’s your best “3-digit purchase price” car story?

If you’ve been around J-tin long enough, you’ve purchased a 3-digit car. That’s when the transaction price is less than $1,000, and we’re not talking about the so-called “value” you declared to the DMV. We mean money that actually exchanged hands, from buyer to seller. Sometimes it’s a decrepit heap in someone’s backyard that you have to yank out of its car-shaped hole. Other times it’s a rusty parts car that you limp back to your garage. Or, if you’re really lucky, an actual, running machine that you white-knuckle home over a number of miles exceeding the number of dollars paid.

What’s your best “3-digit purchase price” car story?

The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “Which car should automakers make reproduction parts for next?”  Continue reading