Question of the Week: What is Japan’s proudest marque?

The winner of last week’s QotW, “What 1987 car will be the next classic?” by a slim margin is Isaac with his short-but-simple answer, “’87 Mazda RX-7 Turbo II.” They were criticized in-period for looking too much like a Porsche 944, but if anything the styling has aged more gracefully than the front-engined German, and it had class-leading performance and handling for the Japanese market in the late 80s. Add in increasing rarity due to drifters smushing them into trees and the cost of rotary engine rebuilds is making restoration uneconomic — the perfect ingredients for an up-and-coming classic.

Plus, the FC3S continued Mazda’s long tradition of dominating IMSA endurance races that began with the first RX-7, which leads us to our next QotW.

What is the Japan’s proudest marque?

Mazda of course would be a prime contender as purveyor of the rotary engine and fielding Japan’s sole Le Mans winner. But then again, Toyota created Japan’s first sports car, the Nissan Skyline is practically synonymous with Japan, Soichiro Honda was a total badass, Mitsubishi dominated rallying, Subaru put the nation on wheels, and so on.

Best comment wins a random Japanese thingamabob. Last week’s winner will receive this Choro-Q Daihatsu Midget in the mail. Congrats, Issac!

 

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