Okay guys, just a couple of more JCCS posts and we’ll be done. Today we’ll cover diametric opposites – the trucks and the race cars. The Mazda Rotary Engine Pickup is something that could almost be both. It’s the opposite of a mullet — business-like bed in back, 13B party up front. And in a cruel twist of fate for our Japanese brethren, it was never sold in Japan.
Several examples could be found at JCCS, The bed of this particular one was smoothed out (note the lack of tie-down hooks). We want one purely because they said ROTARY POWER in huge letters across the tailgate straight from the factory.
Much to the chagrin of the Toyotaku, we once said that the Mazda REPU and Datsun 620 could be the two best-looking pickups ever built. Slotted mags and shaved tie-down hooks were the absolute minimum customizations required if you wanted to get in on the mini-truckin’ scene of the late 70s and early 80s.
Don’t get us wrong, we not saying we dislike the Toyota Hilux. In fact, those fender-mounted turn signals are downright adorable. And it might be the only car in the world whose grille could look just as good turned upside down. And being a Toyota Hilux, we know it could withstand an asteroid impact.
Before the Hilux, there was the Toyota Stout, which was a bit larger than the other three. You might think those turn signal pods bear a resemblance to the 1960-61 Chevy Apache, but have you seen an actual Apache lately? It looks like it’s got a butt-shaped tumor growing out of its forehead. The Stout, on the other hand, can look positively sick.
We’re diggin’ the gray-colored steelies. Hmm, wonder if the matching “TOYOTA” tailgate script is a coincidence or intentional.
The sole Datsun 220 truck (or “Datsun 1000” as it was called here) was completely overlooked, despite its status as the oldest Nissan at the show. The 220 series hails from 1957-58, and since this is a LHD version it may have been one of the unofficial imports the company brought into the country before Nissan USA was even established.
Aside from the 2000GT, the FJ40 Land Cruiser may be the most collectible Toyota in the US. Despite some obviously non-standard tires and driving lights, this Cruiser was an insanely sharp restoration. It’s also the first vehicle we’d commandeer in the event of a zombie uprising.
In case you want to flee from the undead with your entire family, you’ll need this long-wheelbase Cruiser. FJ45‘s are rare enough to begin with, nevermind one in such spectacular condition.
Not that we’d ever give up the JNC wagon, but if calamity should strike, which one of these would be the best rig for hauling the our booth to the next show?
Oh yes, we promised you race cars as well, didn’t we? Well here’s a caged AT Civic that appears as tossable as a ball of paper.
Bay Area vintage car shop Performance Options brought their mean mango down again. The last time we saw this TE27 at Toyotafest, it was painted all green, but the vintage-look graphics like the Mobil pegasus give it an nice old school racing vibe.
Most people who race Datsuns go for the 510, but Demetri is known as “The 610 Guru” and thus must rock a battle-scarred 1973 Datsun 610 Hardtop. The car is set up for SCCA IT racing and boasts a seasoned racing pedegree.
To close out this edition, we’ll leave you with a Tamiya radio control Toyota Hilux painted in a supremely cool retro tan with brown striping. After a long hiatus Tamiya just began reproducing these memorable 80s toys, and if you ever come across a real Hilux that’s incapacitated (again, unlikely), just chain fourteen of these babies together.
Just one more installment to go.
You may like the looks of the Mazda and Datsun better, but nothin beats a Toyota for durability! (Even if it’s a tiny one with a six inch tall driver.) Thanks for posting these trucks, they tend to be forgotten in the nostalgic scene.
I know they are probably pretty rare, but I’d like to see more about the Toyota Stout.
^ lolz talks about jnc reliability lolz
I think “butt shaped tumor” is just alittle harsh for a 60-61 Apache
“Butt-shaped” flowed more smoothly than “Butt of a Ford Edsel-shaped” 😛
Performance Options FTW!
Oh yeah, love the trucks!! The forgotten side of the JNC, they all look fantastic!
Wondering ? Where there any Sunny trucks ?
The Sunny Truck is a rare beast in the US and there was only one at the show. Click and scroll down here: http://japanesenostalgiccar.com/blog/2009/10/05/events-jccs-2009-part-one-kyuusha-kulture/
Thanks for taking note of my husband’s ’59 Datsun 220 (1000)!
This line of trucks has been my husband’s mistress for the past few yrs. It was with a starry look in his eye one Saturday in the spring of ’05 that he told me of his first one. Since then, he has found (sigh…and bought) 2 more of the ’59 trucks and one ’59 car (for parts). It has made for some fun family road trips, though.
You are correct in assuming it was one of the first that entered the market. It is my understanding that it was a small fleet of only 10 of those ’59s that started Datsun/Nissan’s foray into the compact truck market. We’ve got 3 and I know of one other that was restored and sold a few yrs ago at a Barrett-Jackson auction. Since there are so few to keep track of, I think it would be really interesting to know what happened to the other 6. The ’59 220 might be my husband’s mistress, but I guess I am a pretty understanding wife. 😉