Not all of us are lucky enough to own the car of our dreams. And even if we do, sometimes that’s just not enough. Do you pore over every volume of Kousoku Yuen ever published? Build your dream garage in plastic model kits? Fill your house with thousands of little metal cars?
How do you live the JNC life?
What say you, dear reader? As always, the most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What should the next JNC wagon be?”
To be honest, we’ve been trying really hard to get a car that’s not a Toyota, since I already own the Cressida, a 1980 Supra, and an AE86. But over and over again, the very best choices seemed to hail from Aichi. Maybe that’s why Toyota sells so many cars.
As much as we’d like to get a Subaru Legacy or Mitsubishi Diamante Wagon (sorry, the Legnum VR-4 would be impossible to register in Cali), the next JNC wagon will likely be either a Toyota Van, Previa (preferably a supercharged AWD with dual sunroofs), or a 60-series Land Cruiser. If you come across a good one, please let us know!
However, our favorite comment is rarely the most “correct” one. And thus this week’s winner is MainstreaM, who made a compelling case for the Mitsubishi Delica/Van (and look, there happens to be an amazing one for sale on Craigslist right now).
Why not a Mitsu Delica, Starwagon, Van, whatever you want to call it. A proper JDM model would be requisite as it will be diesel and 4WD. With the myriad of trim levels you could roll up in posh style spinning the captains chairs on their axis to easily slide out the door or have a windowless panel van to peddle free candy in the back alley of the show. As for parts availability, Mitsu raided the parts bin when constructing their utility vehicles so enough is shared amongst the different variants that most mechanical parts will be available stateside. This can be looked at in two ways, genius for mitsu sharing engineering across platforms or they cheaped out slapping a different body on the same ol chassis. Either way it’s a world class offroader that can get you to any event in any circumstance no matter the weather or what mother nature has laid in your path.
Omedetou, your comment has earned you a set of decals from the JNC Shop!
JNC Life, I live that in 1/24. One of the reasons I first found JNC.
(In the mini shop right now are a C130 Laurel, a 280Z and a GX61 Mark II Grande Turbo).
When I was a boy, my dad and I had a Mitsubishi Delica van similar to this except it was red.
This could be the hardest thought I’ve felt… I live the JNC life by collecting some 1:60 JNC diecasts (maybe Hot Wheels, Tomica or another brand) randomly. My first love of JNC was AE86 which is pretty damn cool in Tomica 1:60 form (you may know Dream Tomica Initial D Edition), found in two version: the white hood one from Initial D Legend 1 & the black-painted hood one from Initial D manga version… I don’t know why, but my love to JNC seems to be growing since I’d bought Tomica AE86 diecast. I also have R32 Skyline GT-R from Tomica, Kenmeri Skyline 2000GT-R from Hot Wheels & Hobidas (in 1:72 scale); 2000GT, TA22 Celica, JZA80 Supra, SA22C RX7, 510 Wagon, RPS13 180SX, S30 240Z, AE86 Corolla & NA1 NSX also from Hot Wheels; R34 Skyline GT-R Z-Tune & FD3S RX-7 RE-Amemiya from Tomica Premium & PS13 Silvia from Tomica Limited. But honestly, my top 5 favorite little JNCs are Dream Tomica AE86 Initial D, Hot Wheels Toyota 2000GT, Hobidas Kenmeri, Hot Wheels 510 Wagon, Tomica R32 Skyline GT-R & Tomica Limited PS13 Silvia.
By visiting this site of course!
Also I daily an RA29, I dont know how my life could be more JNC focused
First step in living in the JDM way is of course reverse parking. And a Koreisha decal on the rear of my cars.
Model kit are sure a great way to express the japanese-car-life. O own several 1/24 plastic kits that i’ve assembled, some metal die-casts in various scales. I’m trying to complete the Wangan MidNight series released ages ago by Fujimi. For now i own half of the series with #1 Akuma no Zetto, #2 Burakkoberdo and #5 Masaki’s White FD.
Anime and manga are also a major factor in creating my Japan loving guy image. Everything from Wangan MidNight and Initial D, thru Ghost in the Shell and Cyber City Oedo to Gundam and Patlabor.
But for me the most impotant part of living the JDM way are games. Especially racing games. I’ve been growing in the NES and SNES era and moved later to PSX and PS2. So my absolute favorites are Gran Turismo 2 & 4. Wich i still play sometimes. 😉 Most of my buddys didn’t liked GT series because there were now Ferrais and Porsches (by the name at least). So they where riding in NFS and such. But GT gave me the first oportunity to meet such cars like FTO, Chaser, Skyline or Legacy TwinTurbo. Long before they became cool due to F&F movies. I really love the way in wich japanese make their games. Just look at Tokyo Xtreme Racer 3 (one of my most beloved games, just behind GT4 and Wangan MidNight). Endless street racing on Metropolitan Expressways… Heaven…
Or Auto Modellista. Awesome game. The idea with cell-shading isn’t unique by itself, but i don’t know about any other racing game that uses this effect so flawlessly. Plus the game offers some nice and accurate tuning opitions just like TXR3. It’s not so… deep like TXR3, more of fun givin’ arcade.
These games give me the feel of beeing there… In Japan. On these legendary Expressways, on these trecherous Touqe’s, on these famous meeting spots… In places wich i proabobly won’t be able to visit in person… And drive my dream cars… Gloria Y31, Legacy BH5, S30Z, FTO, JZA70, R33, S130Z… Just drive, not race…
Well… to be completely honest, I thought I was the only one and maybe I was just a little odd but nonetheless…
I’ve always had a love for Japanese culture and car culture in particular, ‘living the true JDM lifestyle’ really only started for me though when I purchased my ’85 Bluebird (Datsun 910) daily, it’s slow morph into ‘Kaido racer’ style is probably somewhat proof of this but I’ve opted not to just follow this style and do everything I can to make it 100% authentic Jdm Kaido racer, but to morph everything I love about the Japanese car scene and truly make it mine (ie; Follow the Japanese way of just putting things in it because I like those particular things – even if it’s not something you’d generally see on this style of car in JDM Land).
Apart from the car culture side of things, I seem to be frequenting more and more Asian restaurants for the likes of dumplings and rice dishes as opposed to those greasy disgusting American establishments. As well as hot pre-prepared food, dropping into any Asian grocer is becoming less of novelty and more’so a weekly habit, from which at an alarmingly rapid rate, Japanese items seem to be finding their way into my pantry and fridge, such as as Boss coffee, Pocari Sweat and Pocky Sticks as well as items to create complete Japanese style meals at home using 100% authentic ingredients.
Although I personally don’t use fuel from 7/11, dropping in there for a Krispy Kreme donut and glancing out to see my 910 parked under the orange, red, white and green glowing neon sign is like an instant transportation (in my mind) to the land of the rising sun (albeit admittedly a somewhat USDM influenced one).
My current search for a more practical daily driver – where most people here in Australia (car guys/girls included) might opt for a late model cheap to run Corolla or Holden Commodore, is leading me towards a DC2 Integra, not something rare in any sense here in Australia but the need to a Honda is probably… lets be honest, entirely a result of my need of creating an ‘at home’ sense of Japan. And of course almost every Hot Wheels, Matchbox or other car that my son (and myself) own is something that wears or is a relation of a Japanese make of car.
To end this ‘essay’, my latest little obsession is as a photographer finding images or scenes that could be straight out of Japan, where without knowing the origin of a photographed scene, you would just assume it’s from somewhere in J-land… this is actually going to become a little project of mine and I’m sure very soon some of these photographed scenes will flood my blog.
Guess i am pretty fortunate, I have a small stable of older Japanese sports cars, but I also collect models, books, and magazines on the subject. Both build plastic kits and also collect diecast and resin models in a variety of scales… While an Italian car nut for many years the Italian sports cars got too expensive and the Japanese cars started filling empty spaces in the garage once filled with Italian machinery… Probably never be able to have that Toyota 2000 GT however, they have become so collectible that only the truly wealthy folks can have them and they are well out of my reach, so I will have to be satisfied with the numerous models that I have managed to find of them over the years. Much to be said for Japanese reliability too… Love the magazine and great articles, so look forward to the issues where you cover events in Japan. Hope to get back in the next year or so for the New Years show… been a dream for some time
I spend unfeasible amounts of money on japanese car books, just so that I can look at the pretty pictures
this weekend i woke up before sunrise, made strong coffee and checked my email to see if i had a reply from Streeter on the status of the auctions for rare/stupid JDM “trinkets” i’m wasting money trying to bring over instead of putting it into things like turbo feed/drain lines and adjustable arms. in my defense: doily seat covers, Nardi Tokyo horn buttons and complete Shakotan Boogie OVA VHS sets look better on my instagram feed. then i spent about 30 minutes browsing more auctions and trying to decide whether i should be spending the money or if it’s the coffee making it seem like a better idea than it actually is.
i opened up the garage right around daybreak and after stubbing my toes on suspension pieces or cams or one of the several Toyota gearboxes lying around, i got to work. i rolled the IRS subframe under the x3 wagon to visualize mounting points and geometry, put some elbow grease into the August Feroce 5-lug centers i need to send of to have custom barrels and lips made (Pine?), risked waking up the rest of the house by dragging the floorjacks out to tweak the suspension on the daily.
just like every other time i’m in the garage, i got stuck gazing forlornly at the NA miata i used to enjoy driving every day. it’s now acting as storage for the parts i’ve been collecting for the (still JNC) V8 transplant with N2 flares and wheels wild enough to complement them. one thing at a time.
i considered devoting some more time to finding a video conversion service local to me that can take my aforementioned Shakotan Boogie tapes and convert them to the highest-quality digital format possible to be submitted for fansubs and hosted online. i feel bad that this hasn’t been higher on my priority list, but the idea of mailing them to someone doesn’t appeal to me after dealing with USPS/UPS/Fedex and their propensity to lose or damage my things.
Saturday, i was lucky enough to grab a ride from a friend who recently made his vvti 1jz, jade gray two-tone x7 cressida run well enough to pull daily driving duty. we daytripped to a junkyard about 45 minutes away to pick apart a 1988 car for odds-and-ends needed to clean it up. we also managed to grab a trunklid for a friend’s car to be boxed and shipped to Washington where it will help complete another JZX73.
lunch was spent at the best burger and beer place in the area checking forum posts and fielding messages and calls from friends looking to scoop up hard-to-find corolla rear axle and brake parts. we discussed the recent popularity of the BEAMS motor as a swap choice for the chassis as evidenced by the few concurrent builds he either designed and machined parts for or consulted on. there’s a mutual acquaintance in PACNW building a lot of custom wiring harnesses for this application; so many that he’s created vinyl to be given away with each completed loom that feature his logo in the now-iconic “BEANS” font.
on the way home, we stopped by a local race shop to check on the BEAMS/itrb/mk1 Supra-axled “race car” ae86 my x7 friend is also building. the shop owner is in the process of moving and some of his projects are already gone, but we got to see the familiar 510, 411, 620, s30 and Fairlady roadster that have been sitting and waiting for a restoration or conversion to track rat status. also on-premises in various states of dis- or re-assembly: 4A-GZE ae86 drift car, FB RX7 shell, supercharged AW11 in the weeds, an FC with an empty engine bay, a couple of piles that used to be Nissan VH motors used to test a CD gearbox adapter solution (part of the owner’s valiant attempts to keep the Car and Driver-sponsored 350Z competitive in SCCA vs. the American v8s in its class) and more prepped engines and parts than you could hope to catalog in one sitting.
back at home, beers were cracked open and measurements were taken to assure the fit of some improved suspension items on my daily. plans to road trip South to another friend’s house to pick up more parts and finally see the GX81 and GZ20 he’s imported were hatched. when all the shit was suitably shot, we called it a day.
so yeah, that’s a typical weekend for me. I cringe at the use of the term “lifestyle” as this isn’t something i really put conscious thought into, it just sort of is.
Me and my dad both have a pretty respectable collection of old school Toyotas. In fact over the weekend we had them all out in the driveway for a photo shoot and it took almost an hour to get them all in position for a group shot. Some of the noteworthy models being an MA67 and MA70 Supra along with an ST185 Celica Alltrac Turbo.
Other than that, I buy some 1/43 diecast models whenever I find them at car shows and I’m a huge collector of old literature. I scour vendors at car shows for the odd Toyota or Subaru brochures and buy them up whenever I find them, along with an advertisements I can find. I’m a huge Toyota guy so of course I’m trying to collect as many Toyota brochures as possible, eBay helps but it’s so damn expensive!
…a quarter mile at a time
I live it every scale possible…
basically if its a JNC in whatever scale I will be sure to get my hands on it.
It says a lot about who we are as a person that drives a JNC, many of us are most times humble and just very easy going guys/girls. How many times you give a guy/girl in a JNC a thumbs up and you will be sure to get one back… its a universal language, and pulling up to the gas station is never just filling in fuel but sparking a conversation with some older or younger lady or gentleman about their days gone by when they drove the car we now driving.
And that is the life i never imagined living when driving a simple Nostalgic… its the stories that come with it… i could possibly write a book with all the great stories I had been told by those who owned a JNC or just admire it.
One such story that comes to mind is the following:
I pulled up to fill in fuel and an Elderly man comes over to me, he says very nice Nissan you have here. I reply saying Thank You very much, and he proceeds to tell me about how he had one in the late 70’s . He said all his friends got alfa’s and fords and they all laughed at him for buying a cheap Japanese vehicle as that what he could afford… he said many things about it and how little fuel it sipped and how he could drive the wheels off it and it would keep going.
He ended off saying, “i had the greatest laugh at the end… each time they call for me to tow them home”.
Our cars are just not cars at the end of the day… it starts conversations and it unites all from the young to old. I can not see myself driving a new car ever.
I live the JNC life by driving my 1980 corona all day every day. Rebuilt from ground up almost 4 years ago Iv put almost 40,000km on it since and its still ticking along like new. JNC life is so good I went back for more punishment, building another 1980 corona wagon with a 2jz. Keeping it auto and factory looking. Should be one hell of a sleeper.
On weekends, if I’m not at home working on my Toyota Sprinter Trueno TE47, I’ll be cruising it the whole day 🙂
As a car lover generally I am probably not a JNC guy, I have owned several Alfas, old aussie muscle cars, including modded monaros. A mate of mine bought a modded skyline and threw me the keys and said “have a taste”. I have owned my R33 gts25-t for 12 years now, will never look back! Who said jap cars have no character! I will NEVER sell her!
Ben, as the winner of the above week’s question. I still haven’t received the email in regards to the sticker pack. I was just wondering if it had been sent yet or not. I don’t mean to be a pain, I just assumed I would have received it by now, if it hasn’t been sent yet, all good, no rush 🙂
I have mitsu Delica coming in from Japan in about a month or so. we can work a goo deal if you interested and yes AWD Turbo Diesel 🙂