Over biru and yakitori dinner Monday night in Ikebukuro, the JNC Japan team discussed cars we’ve owned. Brandon had the bright idea of going around the table to with what their second car was — simply because the first is often a hand-me-down or but the second car is something you actually choose, sometimes even smartly, after learning a thing or two about cars in general.
Also, probably because he owned the coolest one of all, a Mazda 323 GTX. Skorj had a Karmann Ghia, Ken had a Honda Civic Si, San Mamiya has yet to own his first, and I had a Lexus SC 300 5-speed. We the thought to put the question to you, dear readers:
What was your second car?
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, “What’s your most heartbreaking tale of JNC loss?”
Well, Yuri and sv_i both had tales of cars that got crushed just as they were on the brink of rescuing them. In the end, Yuri won out simply because he had a bit more detail in his answer, including a photo of the very car that was destroyed:
About three years ago, I was venturing through one of Wilmington’s junkyards, early in the morning on a weekday. Coming across an empty row, I waited around to see what treasures would be unveiled as the yard workers brought out the new carcasses to be picked over, one-by-one. As the third car was brought in, a familiar silhouette revealed itself. The faded and dirty red paint adorned an iconic hatchback, while gold alloy wheels, and a giant rocker graphic visually yelled “GT-S TWIN CAM 16 VALVE.”
A bone stock 1985 AE86 Corolla GT-S Zenki hatchback was being plopped unceremoniously into the yard. Grabbing my tools, I sprinted to the sales counter, desperate to save the car.
After much convincing the yard (and a 50% downpayment on the $900 price for an entire car) that I really did want to buy the Corolla whole, they agreed to send a forklift to take it into a holding yard. While waiting, I guarded the 86 from people attempting to take its fuel system and rear-end. Finally the forklift came, and took it to the holding yard, where it would remain for 2weeks while the paperwork went through to release it from the junkyard. I started buying up parts to restore it to its former glory, including a fuel tank and other components from JNC’s own Ben Hsu. Every day, I would daydream about once again owning a Hachi Roku, and a zenki GT-S hatch in red on red at that! Every other day, I would stop by the junkyard, and check up on my 86.
But near the end of week two, I went in to visit my 86, and it wasn’t there. I asked around, and it turned out, one of the employees, thinking the car was in the wrong lot (and not believing an 80’s Corolla would be in the lot set aside for classics people wanted to save intact) picked the 86, and took it directly to the crusher. I was pissed off and heartbroken. They promised to let me know when another intact GTS came into the yard (This was a lie, 3 GTS’s including a grey over black 2-tone zenki coupe came in over the next 2 months, and I was not contacted once.) Thankfully they also returned my deposit.
Here’s the doomed 86:http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/zz20/dkapt2/The%20saved%20Corolla/0215130911.jpg
I did end up with an 86 however. I was so bummed, and so badly wanted an 86 again that I ended up trading my daily driver, a 1997 Miata M-edition with a hardtop, for an ’85 GT-S coupe with jdm bumpers.
But that poor crushed AE86 hatchback will always have a place in my heart as the one that died before its time should have come.
Omedetou, your comment has earned you a set of decals from the JNC Shop!