We got an extraordinarily positive response about the Hot Wheels FJ60 Toyota Land Cruiser yesterday. As you can see from the packaging, it’s part of an all-Toyota premium series. We promised there would be some new castings in it, and we’ve been given the go-ahead from Mattel to disclose the other cars in the series, so without further ado. Continue reading
We are stoked to show you the latest Hot Wheels to wear the JNC inkan. In fact, it’s got quite a few more similarities than just the sticker with our own real-life shop truck, a 1986 Toyota Land Cruiser The miniature’s paint and graphics are based on our actual car, which features a somewhat unique, period-correct, dealer-installed decal stripe package. Continue reading
Toyota ads have been pretty lame for a while now but if they asked us how to make one, their latest new ad is exactly how we’d do it. The Big Three have been leaning into their heritage for decades to sell their pickups. Toyota, on the other hand, has been slow to capitalize on one of the greatest 4×4 histories in the automotive kingdom. This commercial for the 2022 Tundra changes all that. Continue reading
After over half a century, Honda will end production of its iconic air-cooled inline-four motorcycles. It’s a lineage that began with the seminal Honda CB750 Four, a bike that reshaped the motorcycling universe when it debuted in 1969. The announcement came on Honda’s Japanese Twitter account, where the company posted a teaser of a CB1100EX and sportier CB1100RS Final Editions. Continue reading
Do you dream of a 1980s Nissan that is rear-wheel-drive, is powered a turbocharged and intercooled straight-six engine putting out 325 horses, and has a one of those super-evocative model names that could have only emerged from the Bubble Era? Behold, the Space Arrow! Sure, it’s a bus, more specifically a Nissan Diesel P-RA46 which began production in 1985, but you’re certain to have the only one like it at the next meet. Today is National Bus Day in Japan, commemorating the running of the country’s first bus route in 1903. We at JNC wish you all a happy one.
Today is Respect for the Aged day in Japan, a reminder to show some appreciation for your elders. It’s not always easy to keep in mind when the youngins are faster and flashier than their predecessors. However, there are cars like the Mazda RX-3, which don’t get nearly as much attention as the RX-7, or even much as contemporaries like the Datsun 510. But there are many, many even more obscure cars that we should do well to respect.
What JNC doesn’t get enough respect?
Normally when a car company strikes a product placement deal in a major blockbuster, provides cars to the production team, then posts a video to social media in which the cars getting destroyed, it typically doesn’t show the hero in a competitor’s product outmaneuvering them. Yet, that’s exactly what happened with a behind-the-scenes video that Jaguar Land Rover just posted for the upcoming 007 movie No Time to Die. Also, it’s the first time James Bond finds himself in a Toyota since 1967. Continue reading
Redefining an icon with over 50 years of history behind it was always going to be a difficult task. However, in an interview published by Nissan, the two designers responsible for the new Nissan Z talk about what it was like to work on the 2023 Nissan Z. Standing before an original S30 Fairlady Z, exterior designer Naoyuki Ohkoshi and interior designer Takuya Yamashita discussed what it was like to bear the responsibility of penning Nissan’s most famous model. Continue reading
Last week we asked what your favorite car commercials were. In any list like that, the 1996 Nissan spot “Toys” was bound to show up. In it, a GI Joe-esque action figure comes to life, drives a Nissan 300ZX remote control car across a house to rescue a Barbie-like doll from her lame boyfriend. Everyone who loves cars knows it, but far fewer know that there was a sequel, where Joe drives a Nissan Pathfinder. Continue reading
When Nissan revealed the special edition GT-R T-spec yesterday, we noticed a strange discrepancy between the US and Japan versions. The US T-specs are officially labeled as 2021 models, while in Japan it’s called a 2022 model. We reached out to Nissan about this difference, and the response revealed that it’s almost certain that the current model year will be the R35 GT-R’s last in the US. Continue reading
Nissan is bringing back a pair of seminal GT-R paint colors to adorn a new limited-production variant of the R35. The 2022 Nissan GT-R T-spec reincarnates Millennium Jade and Midnight Purple, two signature colors of previous generation Godzillas. Both are hugely important to GT-R heritage and, to us, this feels like Nissan could be sending off the long-lived R35 with a bang. Continue reading
Last Friday Nissan Mexico celebrated their 60th anniversary. Nissan opened its doors to our southern neighbors on September 10, 1961 and laid the groundwork for a rather significant operation. Five years later, they had opened a factory in Cuernavaca, their first full-scale manufacturing center outside of Japan. Continue reading
Let’s face it, there have been a lot of bad car modifications over the years. Whether it was a misguided attempt at recreating a race style, a goofy trend that took on a life of its own, or just an “I did it because I could” thing, a good number of them befell Japanese cars when they were relatively affordable. Luckily, the worst of them have fallen out of favor over time. Unluckily, they took down lots of good cars with them.
What modifications on cars make you cringe most?
Nissan has released an illustration re-interpreting the original Silvia as an electric coupe. The rendering comes from the imagination of Matthew Weaver, vice president of Nissan Design Europe. Weaver was asked to come up with an electric car based on a car from Nissan’s history, and chose the 1965 CSP311 as his inspiration. Continue reading
Here’s a photo from one of the best classic car events out of Japan, the New Year Meeting (RIP). At the 2012 show, a 910 Bluebird was parked among the vendors, unassuming but with evidence of having lived a full life as a well-maintained driver. That itself lent it a certain charm. Hopefully it’s still out there, a decade later, living its best life. Happy 910 Day from JNC!
We recently got the chance to see the new production Nissan Z in person. Nissan let us pop the hood, sit in the car, talk to its chief engineer — everything short of drive it. But despite the lack of road time, we learned many new things that are impossible to glean from simply judging it by its photos. And for the first time in many years, it feels like Nissan has finally listened to enthusiasts. Continue reading
The first Toyota Land Cruiser went on sale in August 1, 1951. This year, they celebrated 70 years of the well-traveled beast by not only launching the all-new J300 Land Cruiser, but announcing that the FJ40 would be the first Land Cruiser to join Toyota’s Heritage Parts Program of reproduction parts. More recently, Toyota has released a couple of videos thanking Land Cruiser fans for 70 years of support. Continue reading
On this day 70 years ago, the first Japanese commercial jingle was broadcast. The song “I’m an Amateur Cameraman” made its radio debut on September 7, 1951 on Chubu-Nippon Broadcasting (CBC) and New Japan Broadcasting (NJB) as an ad for Sakura Film by Konica Minolta (then called Konishi Roku Photo Industry Co., Ltd.). Curiously, the song never mentioned the company or the product name, but was written by Toriro Miki, a popular composer at the time. That’s why September 7 is known as Commercial Jingle Day in Japan.
There have been a great number of captivating car commercials from both sides of the Pacific. Japan’s often made use of surreal situations, celebs and, of course, unique songs composed just for the ad. The American spots leaned towards humor or cars speeding through the desert. Any format can be memorable, impactful, perhaps even immortalized as a piece of pop culture.
What’s your favorite car commercial?
The best comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “Why do you love (or hate) the Fast & Furious movies?” Continue reading
Poor Mazda. Even though they typically make great cars that should sell far better than they actually do. This was even true in the late 80s, when the well-reviewed sixth-generation BF 323 was completely overshadowed by, as Motorweek found, by its Japanese competitors. Sure, okay, maybe it was hard to argue against taking the 323 over a Honda Civic, but even the Mitsubishi Mirage got higher marks. So, for the seventh-generation BG 323, Mazda came out with guns blazing. Continue reading
RS Watanabe announced today that the iconic 8-spoke wheel is now available in 18-inch diameters. Widths will range from 7.0J to a massive 10.5J, and they’re available only in a in 5-lug pattern. The offsets on some of the deeper fitments have yet to be determined and the company says it is taking requests, so now is your chance to influence what sizes will be available when they come to market. Continue reading