Author Archives: Ben Hsu

VIDEO: It’s easy to forget how weird import drag racing was

Back in 1996 the idea of a front-wheel-drive Honda being anything but an economic commuter was still an alien concept to most Americans. But, it had grown big enough that even a public broadcast show like Motorweek was reporting on … Continue reading

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Mazda RX-3 Wagon at Tokyo Auto Salon gives off Katayama vibes

While not quite as ambitious as the 6-rotor Eunos Cosmo, another Mazda that caught our attention from the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salon was the show’s sole RX-3 Wagon. Done up in a touring car style that evokes the Savanna RX-3 … Continue reading

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Mazda Cosmo 6-rotor makes waves at Tokyo Auto Salon

One car that made a splash at this year’s Tokyo Auto Salon was a JC Mazda Cosmo with a 6-rotor motor. Built by Anniversary Racing Factory, a rotary specialty shop in Tokorozawa City, Saitama Prefecture, the engine consists of three … Continue reading

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Daihatsu had the best Tokyo Auto Salon display with ten generations of HiJet

The Tokyo Auto Salon is traditionally filled with over-the-top booths filled with over-the-top builds. But this year, it was humble Daihatsu that took the cake with a lineup of HiJet kei trucks that dated back to 1960. There were 10 … Continue reading

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QotW: Which seven cars would be in your dream garage if money was no object?

Over the weekend some of the JNC staff played this hypothetical game, as we are wont to do. Let’s say you had enough money to buy any seven cars you wanted, but they were the only seven cars you could … Continue reading

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1983 Subaru GL Wagon becomes next Travis Pastrana Gymkhana-mobile

Subaru has revealed Travis Pastrana’s next steed for the Gymkhana video series, and it’s a good one. The long-time Subie collaborator is going full retro with a 1983 Subaru GL Wagon that’s got, perhaps, a few modifications under the skin. … Continue reading

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Subaru 360 “Beach Van” charms its way to the kei car Grand Prix at the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salon

In a show where copious horsepower and dazzling bling overshadows less shouty cars, a humble Subaru 360 Custom has taken the Grand Prix for kei cars at the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salon. Called the Subaru 360 Beach Van, it might … Continue reading

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Toyota Century “Lowrider Limo” wins Sedan Grand Prix at Tokyo Auto Salon

One of the most notable displays at each year’s Tokyo Auto Salon belongs to NATS, the Nihon Automobile Technical College. As students there learn automobile maintenance, repair, and customization, they get to build some of the coolest (and most fun) … Continue reading

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Nissan Fairlady Z432R-inspired Z gets a nose job at the Tokyo Auto Salon

Over the weekend the production Japanese-spec Nissan Fairlady Z was finally unveiled at the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salon. Joining it on stage at the custom car extravaganza, in addition to the standard yellow and blue, was one very orange customized … Continue reading

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QotW: What is Japan’s Corvette?

On January 17, 1953, the first Chevrolet Corvette made its debut at the GM Motorama at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York. In the nearly 70 years since, the world has come to know it as a symbol of the … Continue reading

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Toyota rolls out FJ40 Land Cruiser heritage parts, expands Supra, AE86, and 2000GT selection in major update

Toyota has just announced a significant expansion of new items for its Gazoo Racing Heritage Parts program. Most cover the FJ40 Land Cruiser and, surprisingly, the A70 Supra. However, the AE86, A80 Supra, and 2000GT also get some love. The … Continue reading

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Nissan Silvia CSP311 concept gains momentum as EV

Back in September, Nissan released some illustrations of an electric Silvia revival. Penned by Matthew Weaver, a vice president at Nissan’s European design studio, it pays homage to the original Silvia, the 1965 CSP311. At the time, it was just … Continue reading

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Mazda 3-rotor, rear-wheel-drive flagship, and how to make it happen

Mazda has filed a patent application for a 3-rotor hybrid drivetrain configured for a rear-wheel-drive layout. Obviously, if built, it would be the first rotary-engined car since the 2012 death of the RX-8, and the first triple-rotor production car since … Continue reading

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QotW: What car from 1997 do you want to import?

It’s 2022, which means that America’s 25 year rule now applies to cars from 1997. That opens the doors to a new slate of once-forbidden machines. Let’s say money and rarity are not factors. The imagination swirls with visions of … Continue reading

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Toyota AE86 meets 2022 GR86 in stunning Initial D-inspired commercials

We promise we are not turning into an Initial D blog, but this was too cool not to share. We’ve not been shy about crapping on Toyota’s terrible ads before. So consider us flabbergasted that the same company, just before … Continue reading

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Initial D‘s beloved characters: “Where are they now?” according to MF Ghost

We last wrote about MF Ghost in 2017, when Shuichi Shigeno had but published one chapter in Young Weekly, the same manga serial that Initial D ran in from 1995-2013. Back then, little was known about the plot, but now … Continue reading

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VIDEO: Japanese Classic Car Show 2021

The Japanese Classic Car Show Association dropped their official 2021 JCCS video yesterday. While it doesn’t feature all the cars, trucks, and motorcycles that were present (you can see our own coverage for that), it does a great job of … Continue reading

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Initial D successor MF Ghost anime in the works

Turn up the Eurobeat. Successor to the beloved Initial D, Shuichi Shigeno’s MF Ghost has been in publication since 2017. With four years of weekly stories under its belt, publisher Kodansha announced today that, like its forebearer, MF Ghost would … Continue reading

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QotW: What’s your automotive New Year’s resolution for 2022?

It’s a brand new year, and that means an opportunity to start anew. What are your automotive goals for 2022? Finally get that dormant project on the road? Finally make a dent in the pile of 1:24 scale plastic model … Continue reading

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Japanese Classic Car Show 2021, Part 02 – Our Faves

Some time off can do funny things. It can act as a reset. The in-person Japanese Classic Car Show was forced to go into a hiatus because of the pandemic last year, and forced to move to a new location … Continue reading

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