Author Archives: Steve Chang

Jay Leno drives a couple of Z cars from opposite ends of the spectrum

Jay Leno doesn’t have a ton of Japanese cars on his show, but the last two were both Zs. And they couldn’t be more different. One is a 1970 Honda Z600, a 2-cylinder front-wheel-drive compact making about 36 horsepower; the … Continue reading

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QotW: What’s your favorite Japanese sports car?

Today, October 10, is Sports Day in Japan. The holiday was established after the opening day of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, which took place on this day exactly 58 years ago. Definitions for what constitutes a sports car will vary, … Continue reading

Posted in Question of the Week | Tagged | 18 Comments

Mitsubishi Fuso’s rare dual front-axle bus has been restored

Looking like something out of an Ultraman movie, the Mitsubishi Fuso MR430 bus oozes retro-futuristic strangeness. Tri-axle buses aren’t rare, but one with two axles located at the front, both of which turn with the steering wheel, certainly is. It … Continue reading

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QotW: When is it time to call in the professionals?

When it comes to car repair or restoration, many of us pride ourselves on what we can do in our own garages. But there are lines that must be drawn. We feel pretty comfortable tackling any mechanical, some electrical, and … Continue reading

Posted in Question of the Week | Tagged | 9 Comments

Rate this Ad: Toyota HiLux family receives an unexpected visitor

In the latest ad for the Toyota HiLux, a family that owns multiple generations of the venerable pickup receives a disturbing visit. It’s time for another Rate This Ad, this time coming to us all the way from Australia. This … Continue reading

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Nissan’s Zama Heritage Collection offers another virtual tour

Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida announced yesterday that Japan would remove caps on international travelers and visa restrictions on countries such as the US in three weeks’s time. That effectively means Japan will allow tourists back in starting October 11. … Continue reading

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Nissan Skyline tops Japanese survey about dream cars

Monday, September 19, was Respect for the Aged Day in Japan. To mark the occasion Kinto, a car sharing service, held a survey to ask drivers of three generations about their motoring habits, including what their dream cars were when … Continue reading

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Brand new Nissan SR20 engines will soon be available in Japan

A company in Japan will soon start making brand new SR20 engines. While they’re not technically from Nissan, like the remade Skyline GT-R parts and NISMO gauge clusters are, the motors are being made with Nissan’s blessing. Mercury Enterprise, a … Continue reading

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Collect the 100 most significant Japanese cars in 1/64 scale

By now JNC readers are probably familiar with large-scale subscription model kits. Iconic cars like the Nissan Skyline GT-R or Toyota AE86 are common subject matter, with a few pieces mailed to you each week over a period of about … Continue reading

Posted in minicars | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

KIDNEY, ANYONE? 1973 Mazda Luce with less than 4,000 miles

When considering the list of 6-figure Japanese cars, the Mazda RX-4 isn’t typically a chart topper. When new it was considered too heavy for its rotary engine, especially compared to its RX-3 and RX-2 stablemates. But man, it was a … Continue reading

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A Toyota Corona runs from the law in Assassin

Almost exactly 40 years ago, on September 15, 1982, the movie Assassin was released in Japan. The plot was loosely based on the Setouchi Seajack Incident of 1970, one of the country’s most notorious hostage situations at the time. In … Continue reading

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Watching an immaculate 1,500-mile Mazda Miata get even cleaner is extremely satisfying

You might think that a 1990 Mazda Miata with only 1,500 miles on the odometer would not need a thorough detailing. Especially when that Miata was lovingly cared for by its original owner and is so “new” that even its … Continue reading

Posted in Aftermarket | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

QotW: Which JNC looks best in black?

Today, September 6, is Black Day in Japan. A number of businesses producing black goods promote their wares on this day, so it’s a good day to wear black clothes, eat black Kagoshima pork, or indulge your inner goth. It’s … Continue reading

Posted in Question of the Week | Tagged | 11 Comments

Travis Pastrana’s Subaru GL Wagon takes on Goodwood

Subaru has released a short film about taking their 1983 Subaru GL Wagon to the Goodwood Festival of Speed. The 15-minute video goes behind the scenes and into the mind of driver Travis Pastrana as the team set out to … Continue reading

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Oops, someone has already wrecked a new Nissan Z

As you read this the Nissan Z is just arriving at dealers, but the first documented crash involving the new 400-horsepower sports car has already occurred. As it happens, the Z configurator went live on Nissan’s US site only two … Continue reading

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QotW: Daily, Garage, Sell — Roadster Edition

Welcome to another edition of Daily, Garage, Sell, JNC‘s version of Bang, Marry, Kill. You are presented with three cars. One is going to be your daily beater no matter what the weather, distance, or cost. Another will be parked in your … Continue reading

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Rate This Ad: Subaru intensifies the Eurobeat with Initial D-style ads

An illustrated car speeds down a mountain road at night. That image will forever be linked to the artistic style of Shuichi Shigeno. The Initial D creator captured the thrill and speed of Japan’s underground touge battles even when it … Continue reading

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Toyota Land Cruisers sure are starring in a lot of movies and TV shows these days

I don’t get the chance to watch a lot of movies or TV, but even with my limited media consumption I’ve seen a ton of Toyota Land Cruisers appearing in all types shows. They’re not just retro background decoration, either. … Continue reading

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Toyota Supra successor rumored to spawn Mazda rotary variant

According to reports out of Japan, Toyota is reportedly working on a new sports car to be released sometime in 2026, around the time the current GR Supra is scheduled to sunset. The next version will allegedly be an electric … Continue reading

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Rate This Ad: Nissan off-roads through the decades

A new Nissan commercial takes viewers on a ride through the decades. Titled “60 Years in 30 Seconds”, it features spokeswoman Brie Larson time-jumping from the 1959 to present day in various Nissans. If you think that sounds familiar, it’s … Continue reading

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