The 80s were a pivotal time in Japan’s automotive history, and the JCCS did not disappoint with a of turbocharged, retractable-headlight, angular-bodied machines.
Ricky Mena’s 1987 notchback has been with his family since 1987 and includes modifications like Tokico blues, 15-inch SSR Formula Mesh wheels, and stylish Kamei rear wing.
A lineup of S12 Nissan 200SXes included Elias Ghazouli’s Regatta Red 1984 notchback with 93,000 miles and period Epsilons, as well as original owner Ann Gonzaga’s Light Pewter Metallic 1986 coupe with over 400,000 miles. Ann took home a third place trophy in the Best 80s Nissan class.
Mike Sameshma is the original owner of his 1981 S110, and modified it in period with all the era-appropriate goodies: shaved door handles and emblems, Hurst shifter, Wink mirror, Epsilons, and Alpine stereo. Mike won first place in the Best 80s Nissan class.
Frank De Jesus’s A60 Celica is a regular at the show, but the stock-bodied hatchback hides a powerful secret under the hood — a Lexus 1UZ V8 swap.
Donovan Beavers’ 1986 300ZX exuded 80s style with a Kaminari front lip, and Rays CV Pro 5-spokes.
Another white Z31 slammed on Advan Onis made for a superb shakotan sled.
Xavier Toribio’s patrol car-themed Z31 Fairlady Z is always a head turner. Perhaps the most impressive aspect of it is that he actually got a Japanese light diffuser. Black Watanabes also look pretty good with the two-tone police graphics.
Ray Sebastian’s very clean 1989 AW11 isn’t a supercharged example, but a turbocharged one. In fact, it houses a 3S-GTE swap that, as a bonus, is completely smog-legal in California.
Allan Rodgers’ FC3S Mazda RX-7 convertible was a full Racing Beat build, with the company’s distinctive aero nose and deck spoiler, as well as fully built turbocharged 13B under the hood.
A modern take on retro tuning styles, the Pandem FC RX-7 kit was a hit with those who call curved-brim caps “Dad hats.” In all fairness, it did have a menacing presence.
In contrast, at OS Giken’s booth was parked an FC Turbo that exuded an all-business Wangan-esque vibe with Rays Gram Lights 57DR wheels and midnight blue paint.
The company that perhaps saw the most growth in the 80s was Honda, and they came to the show with an impressive booth showcasing several of their tuning styles. The earliest was a full-Mugen CRX (read more about this car here).
Honda also brought out a mint Victoria Red 1986 EA Civic Si from their US collection, a beautiful example of the company’s 80s hot hatch excellence.
Aldrich Gatpayat’s 1988 CRX Si still wore its original paint job in all its Rio Red luster and factory interior. An throwback to the period, it wore Fortran Drag Progressives and an HKS exhaust.
Similarly, Cliff Brackin’s 1990 CRX also retained its original paint and interior. Period mods like Mugen CF48 wheels with the proper aero covers completed the late 90s aesthetic.
There was even a sizable contingent of first-gen Integras, including original owner Ernie Uy’s black 1989 and Abner Arguilla’s turbocharged red 1987 LS.
Janet Fujimoto’s beautifully restored USDM Corolla GT-S hatch on Longchamp XR-4s is always a welcome sight at both JCCS and Toyotafest.
Alex Bircheff’s 1986 Corolla GT-S proved that a tidy and restrained build brings out the essence of the AE86. The black Japanese Sprinter Trueno front end works on an all-black car, and SSR MkIIIs pair nicely withits clean lines.
Joseph Fuentes says that his 1985 coupe is both his daily driver and his canyon carver. Kosei K1 wheels hail from the 90s when cheap AE86s could still be found and you could slap on some light, affordable wheels and head for your nearest touge.
While flip-up headlight Zs and Supras are amazing, capturing the essence of the 80s was Jordan Kaneshiro’s white V20 Camry. These bread and butter cars were the staples of the automotive landscape back in the day. Subtle mods like an ES250 bumper give the family sedan a slight edge.
Hailing from the same era with a sportier profile was Carlos Ochoa’s CA Accord hatchback. The past JCCS award winner returned in fine form to prove that family haulers could be sleek too.
An incredibly clean Asturias Gray fourth-gen Civic sedan looked like the perfect car to be stuck in LA traffic with. Japanese-market seat covers, beverage holder, and dust bin ensure the cabin will always be nice and tidy. We didn’t even mind that it was an automatic.
Alain Montiel’s sublime Cressida sedan is a quintessential example of the breed. A crisp presentation that keeps the spirit of the original but with a flourish of Techno Phantom wheels is what modern 5M-GE motoring is all about.
Raymond Jorgensen’s 910 Nissan Maxima was in great condition for a daily driven car rocking more than 453,000 miles on its original engine. That’s a lot of comfortable cruising.
We’ve seen sports, family, and luxury models, but economy cars also got their due at JCCS. We last saw Christian Cortejos’ 1981 Starlet at Toyotafest, and he has since replaced his SSR MkIIs with ATS-style 13-inchers.
Tommy Dolo’s bagged, TOM’s-themed KP61 is always a head-turner and boasts one of the cleverest license plates we’ve seen on an old ‘Yota (read more about this car here).
RJ Panlilio’s1982 Starlet wore an N1 wide body kit and a vintage TRD-inspired livery. Under the hood a 4A-G fed by Solex Mikuni sidedrafts with HKS manifold and TRD 4-2-1 header matched the aggressive look.
Starlets won not one, but two of the Best Classic Toyota awards. Angelo Angele’s TRD 4K-powered purple N1 took third place, while Stephen Salazar’s yellow 20-valve 4A-GE-powered car won first.
Humberto Peña’s stunning Copper Metallic (a one-year-only color) 1981 has only 54,000 original miles. Lowered on T3 coilovers and 14-inch Work Equip 01s, it is an amazing specimen of Starlet perfection.
Leonard White’s 1981 Datsun 210 was powered by an SR20DET with 1000cc injectors and 3-inch turbo-back exhaust. To say it would be a sleeper is an understatement.
We really dug Alfredo Martinez’s 1986 Honda Civic from last year when it wore Volk Racing 4/5 S wheels. This time around, he updated the look with Mugen CF48s painted in matching white.
EF Civic were another popular platform, represented in part by Robert Tellez’s K20-swapped red 1990 hatch and Jason. Etchison’s 1989 DX on rare Walter Wolf Racing wheels.
Last but not least was GReddy’s incredible EF. Our Senior Midwest Correspondent Ryan Senensky called the GReddy Civic possibly the greatest EF build on the planet. “It’s the ultimate form of the EF Civic street car, a mix of JDM and aftermarket parts to make a greatest hits for any Honda fan — SiR nose, ITR B18C1 built to handle 1000 HP, Fujitsubo exhaust, Gathers speakers. Even the wheels are Mugen CF-48s on the right side, SSR EX-C Neos on the left. This is one of the rare times an EF Civic has been built on the same level as an A80 Supra.”
To be continued…
How Toribio got the Japanese Light Bar is even more interesting.
I wonder if that’s the original Naps-Z engine under the hood of the 200SX. It didn’t look too familiar from the shallow angle.
Were there any Starions here? Sad to see not one representative of Mitsubishi…
I am thinking the number of preserved unaltered older Japanese cars must be nearly non-existent! I have a ’91 Civic Si which is pretty much original and in great shape. When I bought it 15 years ago, I looked and looked and had a hard time finding a nice example of early Civic Si. Now, such cars are all gone. I actually wanted a Civic Si from the ’80s, but the few that were left were either modded or had 300k miles on them. I would love to own the red ’86 Civic Si in the photos!
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