In Part 01 of our 2017 New Year Meeting we spent the morning wandering around the swap meet, browsing everything from old car parts to old posters to model cars. After filling up with an early lunch, it was time to look at the cars themselves.
The New Year Meeting reserves space for car clubs and vendors, who typically gather a small selection of prime examples along with a display of their wares or some model-specific memorabilia.
Among the most memorable cars in this section were Nissan Sunnys, usually modified in line with the popular TS Cup vintage racing spec. The sheer quantity blew me away, and there was plenty of aftermarket support from companies such as Tomei.
The engine specialists at Tomei have made a whole suite of products for the Sunny’s Nissan A-Series motors, from head gaskets to valve springs to a beautiful engine cover and exhaust manifold. You can see them regularly at vintage races at Tsukuba and Ebisu Circuits, which have opened up more race days to accommodate.
We’ve seen this Advan-liveried KP47 Toyota Starlet before, one of the few Toyotas that competes in TS Cup. This time, it was parked alongside a 1968 Bluebird 510, making for odd bedfellows, but we love to see mixed marque lineups.
The same goes for this lineup of Euro classics and a TE27 Sprinter Trueno. Hey, it fits nicely with an Alfa GTV and BMW 2002!
A lovable Honda Today was parked beside a pair of equally quirky Cherry X-1s, one stock and one as tribute to the Fuji GC Minor Touring series race cars.
Not to be outdone, the Toyotas were out in force as well with daruma Celicas and TE27s, but marked by an eye towards perfection and preserving the original aesthetics.
Orion Turquoise with gold accents is my favorite of the Celica color schemes. This two-digit-plate 1600GT shows decades-long ownership and that yes, the hinged racing jacket does indeed move out of the way when you pop the hood.
The Honda Civic contingent came out strong this year. Mint first-gens and a rare 1982 CX-S model celebrated the trans-Pacific partnership of owners devoted to classic Civics.
The Honda Twin-Cam Club showed off the 1966 Coniglio, one of several 1960s race cars built from an S800 and running Old Man Soichiro’s 10,000 rpm mill. It raced in the 1969 Japan Grand Prix and was available as kit to convert your street Honda S-Car as well.
The Twin-Cam Club also brought out stunning examples of S600 and S800 Coupes. It was quite charming to see the dapper owner of an S600 sitting in his car wearing a period cap and mustache. The two-digit license plate indicated he’s owned the car for decades.
The Toyota 2000GT club was in attendance this year with an exciting new release. They have collabed to make a new wheel design inspired by the 2000GT’s magnesium wheels, but that bumps the diameter up to 16 inches and adds 20mm to the tread width.
I think beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I’m not sure if I like them yet, but do like that it gives an option for owners to leave their rare original wheels at home and take the 2000GT for a cruise. More 2000GTs on the road is always a good thing.
Rocky Auto was there to show off their Rocky Auto 3000GT, a built-from-scratch replica of a 2000GT powered by a modern 3.0-liter 2JZ engine.
The Mazda Cosmo Club was there to celebrate the upcoming 50th anniversary of the Cosmo Sport, coming up later this year.
Personally, I was blown away by the red Cosmo Sport 10B on display. Much like the 2000GT or Hakosuka, the car tends to get pigeonholed by the most popular color (in the Cosmo’s case, white) and we never get to see their beauty in a different paint. The red really shows off its lines and makes you appreciate Heiji Kobayashi’s design.
Racing Service Watanabe was there with a couple of their famous open-wheel racers, and a display of their super-light magnesium 8-spoke.
Perhaps even more surprising than the huge number of 30- and 31-series 1960s Nissan Cedrics that turned out was the fact that most of them were in colors other than the typical black or gray. There was even a rare 30-series wagon running large whitewalls over color-matched wheels.
Last but not least, our friends at Mooneyes went a different route than their usual display of Crowns this year, opting instead for a pair of California-style Sanitora.
We’re not even close to done yet, as we have yet to venture into the actual car show. To be continued…