Author Archives: Ben Hsu

VIDEO: Chip Foose reimagines the AW11 Toyota MR2

We recently learned about Chip Foose’s new video series, in which he applies his designer’s touch to popular classics, when he drew his interpretation of an FJ40 Land Cruiser. Turns out, he drew an AW11 Toyota MR2 as well, reimagining … Continue reading

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ART CORNER: Takashi Matsuyama’s Motor Panic

Takashi Matsuyama is a Japanese artist that creates wonderfully rich automotive landscapes in his art. Densely packed with cars, pop culture references, and easter eggs galore, his works are like a vehicular Where’s Waldo? Many of his illustrations were supposed … Continue reading

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MINICARS: Help us identify this grotesque Datsun 240Z toy car

Recently we received a bizarre toy that has us puzzled. It looks like a Datsun 240Z or S30 Nissan Fairlady Z that, instead of rolling on four wheels (which it has), walks on human feet. There are a few markings … Continue reading

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QotW: What do you actually drive?

Self-described car enthusiasts on the internet love to tell car companies what kind of cars should be made. And if all of them really put their money where their keyboards are, the world would be flush with 400-horsepower manual sports … Continue reading

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There’s a Honda Civic on the cover of Stephen King’s new book

We don’t know anything about horror master Stephen King’s new book, Later, except that there’s an early first-generation Honda Civic on the cover. We can’t seem to find out if the car is even in the story, but King has … Continue reading

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VIDEO: The 1990 Isuzu Impulse deserved better

The second-generation Isuzu Impulse never got enough love. It was cheap, but not quite cheap enough. It was sporty, but not quite sporty enough, especially compared to the competition from Honda or Toyota. Isuzu was more of a truck brand … Continue reading

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Restoration of the Mazda 737C Le Mans race car has begun

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Mazda 787B’s historic win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. To commemorate the occasion one of its predecessors, the 1985 737C, is undergoing restoration. Last week in Hiroshima, technicians began disassembling … Continue reading

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Dreams and Sawzalls: How the Mitsubishi 3000GT Spyder was made

The Mitsubishi 3000GT Spyder was the first modern car to offer a power folding hardtop convertible roof. The option was a big deal in 1995, adding anywhere from $22,000, or the price of a new Acura Integra, to the cost … Continue reading

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QotW: What would you have bought if you were rich in 1990?

Today, Japan’s Nikkei stock index surpassed 30,000 for the first time in over three decades. The last time it was that high was August 1990, right before the bursting of the asset bubble, an event that would slowly sap the … Continue reading

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Happy Presidents Day from JNC

Announced at the 1965 Tokyo Motor Show, the Nissan President was the pinnacle of luxury. It offered more cabin room than the flagship car named after a US president whom we are actually honoring today, the Lincoln Continental (by 1.6 … Continue reading

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A train station in Japan now plays the Seibu Keisatsu theme song

Starting February 20 of this year, Kokuryo Station, located in Chōfu, Tokyo, will adopt the Seibu Keisatsu theme song as one of its platform jingles. The change is a tribute to Ishihara Pro, the production company responsible for some of … Continue reading

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Get an Okayama Circuit license as a reward for paying taxes

The city of Mimasaka, Okayama Prefecture, is offering one of the best citizenship benefits we’ve ever seen. The hometown of Okayama Circuit has begun offering residents a circuit license to drive on the famed race track as a reward for … Continue reading

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VIDEO: Chip Foose draws an FJ40 Land Cruiser

Custom car designer Chip Foose is famous for his amazing takes on American cars from Detroit’s the golden age. He’s not typically drawing Japanese cars, but in a series produced for Hagerty, Foose takes his pen to one of the … Continue reading

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QotW: What JNC would you take for a race around the world?

Today, February 8, is the birthday of Jules Verne, one of the first science fiction authors, born in 1828. One of his most famous works is Around the World in Eighty Days, in which a Londoner takes a bet of £20,000 … Continue reading

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Here are all the new Nissan Pathfinder’s design cues from the 1986 original

A few days ago we predicted that the 2022 Nissan Pathfinder would take some design cues from the beloved original from 1986. Well, the new model has just been revealed, giving us a clear look at its new sheetmetal, and … Continue reading

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Infiniti Red Sport twin-turbo V6 confirmed for Nissan Z Proto

What has long been suspected has now been confirmed. The Nissan Z Proto has the VR30DDTT under the hood. Nissan hasn’t popped the hood of the Z concept for press, but a fan was able to snap a few shots … Continue reading

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Toyota might build a Century-esque ultra-luxury SUV

According to a new report out of Japan, Toyota is planning to launch an ultra-luxury vehicle on par with the Century, except it will be an SUV. Spurred by a global shift from sedans to crossovers and sport utility vehicles, … Continue reading

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VIDEO: The post-bubble 1993 Tokyo Motor Show was subdued but still awesome

By 1993 Japan was in a deep economic slump. As a result, the mood at the Tokyo Motor Show was a bit more sober, according to this Motorweek video. There were still lots of funky concepts, but fewer were geared … Continue reading

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Happy Daruma Celica Day from JNC

Today is February 2, or 2/2, as in TA22. As it happens, it’s a pretty good year to Celica-brate the Daruma. We just marked the 50th anniversary of the Celica a couple of months ago, and learned last week that … Continue reading

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The next Nissan Pathfinder could have retro design cues

A new Nissan Pathfinder will be revealed later this week, and we’re going to make a prediction. It will have retro design cues taken from the first-generation. It’s not a complete shot in the dark, but it’s close. In this … Continue reading

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