Tag Archives: kei

EVENTS: 2018 Japanese Classic Car Show, Part 05 — Trucks

Trucks are the unsung heroes of the JNC world. While many of us would love to have a Skyline or Supra, the truth is that these rigs did just as much to earn credibility and loyal customers for our favorite … Continue reading

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EVENTS: 2018 Japanese Classic Car Show, Part 04 — Subaru and Isuzu

One of the clues that JCCS 2018 was history’s biggest was the presence of Isuzus and Subarus. Not a lot, granted, but in past years we would have said there were a lot if even one car of either marque … Continue reading

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EVENTS: 2018 Japanese Classic Car Show, Part 01 — JDM

Japan-only cars have been making their way into JCCS for a while now, but this year the trickle seemed to turn into a tsunami. You couldn’t swing a fender mirror without coming into contact with a RHD ride from the … Continue reading

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EVENTS: 2018 Japanese Automotive Invitational

It has been a banner year for Nihon steel at Monterey Car Week. The annual series of ultra-prestigious automotive events have traditionally excluded Japanese cars, but 2018 saw, for example, Nissan become the first carmaker from Japan to be honored … Continue reading

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NEWS: Honda to release retro Neo Classic kit for S660

We first saw the Honda S660 Neo Classic Kit at the 2016 Tokyo Auto Salon, but it quickly got lost in the heaps of automotive absurdity the show is known for. Unlike most of the concoctions there, however, Honda will … Continue reading

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JNC LIBRARY: Sam Mitani’s The Prototype is a thriller with Japanese cars at its center

In the world of spy thrillers, full of CIA agents, gunfights, and global power balance-changing secrets that cannot fall into the wrong hands, there typically aren’t a lot of Japanese cars mentioned. However, when the author is former International Editor … Continue reading

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MINICARS: A beginner’s guide to JNC Legos, Part 03

In the final installment of our beginner’s guide to Lego JNCs, we are going to focus on the prevailing style of builds in Japan. In Part 01 we admired highly complex creations comprised of hundreds of pieces where the sky’s the … Continue reading

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VIDEO: Jay Leno drives the Autozam AZ-1

In the latest episode of Jay Leno’s Garage, the car collector gets behind the wheel of another Japanese great, the Autozam AZ-1. The gull-winged, mid-engined, kei-classed sports car seems to charm the host, who actually says he might consider buying … Continue reading

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EVENTS: Petersen Museum Cruise-in, Part 02

The Petersen Museum in Los Angeles puts on many events throughout the year, each with a theme ranging from hot rods to Porsches. Recently, they hosted their annual cruise-in for Japanese cars, inviting Nihon Steel both old and new to … Continue reading

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MINICARS: Subaru SVX and Sambar, Honda S2000, Nissan trucks join Matchbox lineup in 2019

The annual Matchbox convention took place last weekend in Albuquerque, New Mexico. This is where the diecast brand has traditionally revealed the new cars to appear in next year’s lineup. As it turns out, in 2019 there will be several … Continue reading

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KEI HERO: The Suzuki Cappuccino is to the Miata what the Miata is to all other cars

Kei cars are an important and inescapable aspect of life in the Land of the Rising Sun. Some are important because they were a landmark of technology, and others because they were the first of their kind, and still others because they were … Continue reading

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NEWS: Daihatsu debuts retro-styled Mira Tocot kei car

Daihatsu says that its Mira Tocot is designed for women, but we kind of want one. The styling is appealingly somewhat retro, and reminds of the Nissan Pao. It has the same utilitarian look and comes in cool throwback colors, and as most kei … Continue reading

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NEWS: Retro fourth-gen Suzuki Jimny leaked ahead of July debut

Though it has been on the market for nearly 50 years, the stalwart Suzuki Jimny has had only three complete generational changes. The fourth generation of the kei SUV debuts this July, but renderings based on leaked information in Japan’s Best … Continue reading

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VIDEO: A cartoon history of the Suzuki Alto and motorcycle business

After a brief hiatus, Suzuki is back with two new cartoon videos explaining how the company got where it is today. The first outlines the genesis of the Alto, a revered name in kei cars, and the second explains how … Continue reading

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This Kenmeri Skyline does not look o-kei

Japan is a place where space to park for your car is at a premium. Compared to most driving populations, Japan is full of visible feats of Jedi parking, where cars are squeezed with millimetric precision into the smallest parking … Continue reading

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KEI HERO: Mazda R360 Coupé

Of all the mainstream carmakers, Mazda puts the most stock into the driving experience and the sportiness of their vehicles. However, this is not just a recent occurrence. Mazda’s had drivers’ cars in their blood since their first post-war passenger car. Let’s take … Continue reading

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VIDEO: You can’t not love the Subaru Sambar

Scott Coletti is a lifetime Subaru fanatic, and his 360 Sambar is among the best kept examples stateside. I can only think of a handful that are anywhere near to being on par. He’s honest about the van — it’s … Continue reading

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KEI HERO: Suzuki Alto Works

Poor America. We don’t even know how bad we have it. In the States, we think of hatchbacks as puny, minimally equipped tin cans that people buy because they can’t afford something better. Elsewhere in the world and especially in Japan, not only are … Continue reading

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25 YEAR CLUB: Mazda Autozam AZ-1

Kei cars are cool. Slow and small they might be, but they are feats of engineering ingenuity that extract the most space, efficiency, and usability out of a tightly defined set of rules. And sometimes, the most fun as well. … Continue reading

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VIDEO: What it’s like to drive an Autozam AZ-1

“Ridge Racer-feeling” are the words used to describe the Autozam AZ-1, the Mazda-Suzuki collab that was quite possibly the pinnacle of the kei car breed. There’s no such thing as a free lunch, just death and taxes, or something like that. So in … Continue reading

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