Author Archives: Ben Hsu

QotW: Which carmaker takes the best care of its heritage?

The recent revelation that the Toyota USA Museum was crushing two of its cars was gut-wrenching for enthusiasts. Every carmaker struggles with the conflicting forces of keeping their heritage alive and having to juggle constraints of cost or space or … Continue reading

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Ex-race car driver and Japan National Diet member Junko Mihara just had her car stolen

Japan is a famously safe nation, but car thefts have been on the rise. Among the most popular targets are high-end Toyotas like the Alphard, Land Cruiser, and Lexus LX. The thefts have even struck some of the highest-ranking people … Continue reading

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Toyota 4Runner’s sixth generation answers one big question about the new Land Cruiser

Ever since the Toyota Land Cruiser nameplate was revived last August, we at JNC have been a bit flummoxed about it. Though it wore the legendary name, it didn’t feel like a real Land Cruiser. It just felt off somehow, … Continue reading

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The Mitsubishi Eclipse was named after an undefeated racehorse, not the astronomical event

On April 8 a rare total solar eclipse took place in North America. Despite the many “Eclipse Day” references in automotive media, the beloved 1990s sports coupe is not named after the astronomical event — not directly, anyway. In fact, … Continue reading

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A first look inside Suzuka Circuit’s Honda Racing Gallery

This year marks the 60th anniversary of Honda’s entry into Formula 1 at the 1964 German Grand Prix. Today, April 5, Honda is using the occasion to open a new museum dedicated to Honda motorsports at Suzuka Circuit, which began … Continue reading

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The Toyota USA Museum is crushing a classic Cressida and record-setting Prius

We are sad to report that the Toyota USA Museum appears to be sending two of its cars to the crusher. A gold 1978 Cressida and a 2003 Prius with a very distinct livery have surfaced in a recycling yard … Continue reading

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Nissan Z and GT-R will live to see another generation, says execs

Nissan is working on the next-generations of its two most cherished nameplates, according to a new report. Despite a hostile climate to traditional sports cars, the Z and GT-R will soldier on in a new generation, though it might be … Continue reading

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Mitsubishi’s Ralliart history comes alive in this short film

Mitsubishi Motors has produced a short film covering its rallying history. In this 10-minute short film, engineers from Mitsubishi’s WRC program reminisce about what got them into rallying and their passion for the sport. They discuss important Mitsubishi rally cars, … Continue reading

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QotW: What’s the biggest joke in the automotive world?

Happy April Fools’ Day. Instead of playing a joke on you this year, we’re going to explore the jokes that this cruel world has played on all of us. It would be too easy to mock the Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet, … Continue reading

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Watch the Nissan R92CP claim its third “double title” in a row

Nissan has released a video of its efforts in the 1992 Japan Sports Prototype Championships. The 1992 season was a significant one as it marked the tenth and final year of the JSPC. With the bubble economy having burst the … Continue reading

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Why the NA Mazda Miata OEM wheel has 7 spokes instead of 8

As has often been said, the original NA Mazda MX-5 Miata wheel was designed to evoke popular aftermarket wheels of the 1960s. However, as keen-eyed observers might note, all those wheels and the many copies they inspired have eight spokes. … Continue reading

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QotW: What car still feels new to you even though it’s actually old?

As lovers of classic cars our perception of time can get seriously warped. That often manifests itself when we see a car like the Nissan 350Z, which because we grew up admiring the S30-Z32 generations, we think of as new … Continue reading

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NA Mazda MX-5 Miata OEM wheel reborn as 15-incher

The original Mazda Miata was an icon in every way, and the fact that its original OEM wheel is now being remade is proof. The RML Daisy takes its name from the nickname Miata enthusiasts have given the NA Miata’s … Continue reading

Posted in wheels | 4 Comments

Kenjiro Shinozuka, Mitsubishi works driver and Paris-Dakar champion, 1948 — 2024

Famed Japanese rally driver Kenjiro Shinozuka has died after a battle with pancreatic cancer at the age of 75. Best known for his achievements as a works driver with Mitsubishi, Shinozuka brought glory to the Triple Diamond in both the … Continue reading

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Marcello Gandini, legendary supercar designer, loved kei cars

The automotive world is still mourning the recent passing of legendary designer Marcello Gandini. One might assume that the much-revered designer of some of history’s most desirable supercars would drive something incredibly exotic. Something from his long résumé of iconic … Continue reading

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Honda and Nissan have inked a strategic partnership agreement

Back in 2019 the Japanese government reportedly tried to get Honda and Nissan to merge. At the time, both companies were said to have rejected the proposal right away. But now, a mere five years later, both carmakers have signed … Continue reading

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1993 Nissan AP-X concept by Marcello Gandini was rumored to be a Z32 successor

At the 1993 Frankfurt Motor Show Nissan debuted the AP-X, a sports car concept meant to blend driving pleasure and environmental responsibility. The futuristic coupe was penned by Marcello Gandini, he of Lamborghini Miura, Countach, and Lancia Stratos fame. There … Continue reading

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QotW: What tool has saved you the most agony?

Today, March 11, is National Worship of Tools Day. This oddly named day is meant to be spent taking care of the instruments that make our lives possible and convenient. Maybe take some time to organize your toolbox, cleaning grease … Continue reading

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Nissan puts classic Skyline, Silvia, Fairlady into the Metaverse

Nissan has opened a series of heritage car studios in the Metaverse to teach users about traffic safety.We have only the most rudimentary understanding of what any of that means, but if it means another way to experience classics like … Continue reading

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Tokyo Vice‘s cars elevate a pretty great yakuza series to something totally unprecedented

The yakuza series Tokyo Vice is currently on its second season. It’s not the most mind-blowing crime story, but one thing it has going for it is its excellent use of period correct Japanese cars. The series is set in … Continue reading

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