QotW: What’s the best shade of JNC green?

Datsun 280ZX Midori Green
In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, we celebrate the color green, aka midori in Japanese. It was prevalent in the golden age of JNCs, from drab military olives to citrusy limes.

What’s the best shade of JNC green?

In 1983 Suntory Brewery’s Midori Melon liqueur sponsored a contest in which the grand prize was a brand new Datsun 280ZX, slathered in a bespoke shade of green. As far as we know there was only one like it, making it quite possibly the rarest S130 color there is.

What say you, dear reader? As always, the most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a toy. Click through to see the winner of the last QotW, “Which JNC are you never sellin’?” 


This week’s winner is Troggie42, owner of a German-spec Series 3 Mazda RX-7 that’s seen everything from the Nurburgring to a cross-Atlantic trip back home. Wel’ll let him tell you about it in his own words.

Mine’s my 1984 RX-7.

It’s an oddball Euro spec model, which is rare in the states. It has the 12A engine with all the GSL-SE drivetrain goodies like the LSD and 4 wheel discs. Sure won’t help the resale value that the speedo reads in km/h, though. I got this thing a few years back while stationed in Germany. My dad had an ’84 he let me drive a few times while I was in high school, and it was an absolute blast. Really my first love for a car, and what sparked my interest in the much-loved and much-maligned rotary engine. The way it revved so smoothly and effortlessly was amazing to a young me, and that feeling has continued in to my adult age.

I went through a few early 90s BMW 5-Series cars (E34 generation if you know the numbers) and a 7-Series of similar vintage while I was over there, I had gone over with an ’08 Mazdaspeed3, but the insurance demands of German roads got the better of my paychecks and I had to let it go. I had a few friends with S13s over there, and they were all trying to convince me to get one so I had something to toy with since the BMW mods were prohibitively expensive. I didn’t really want an S13, so I decided to look for an RX-7 like my dad had. After about a year of searching and a bit of a setback after I had to spend my saved cash on another E34 after I casually put one in to a guardrail after being a bit overzealous with the brakes around a turn, I managed to find and buy the one I’ve got today.

I bought it near Frankfurt, and drove it back to Ramstein, and of course on the way the gasket blew for the water pump. I limped it back with the help of my friend who drove me up there and it sat in my garage, waiting on new gaskets. After that was done, I did a bit of tinkering here and there to get it declared roadworthy, and then it was time for a field trip.

My S13 buddies (and one guy with an R32 skyline) went to the Nürburgring for some laps. The whole way up, they were ribbing me that it was going to blow up, that my apex seals would be littered on the carousel, all the usual rotary jokes. Well, after the first glorious lap of that hallowed ground, I managed to beat them back to the parking lot somehow, and waited for them to return. It turns out that both of their CA18DET cars had the identical problem of the turbo backing off of the manifold. Strangely, my little wankelmobile had zero issues making it around, so in true Top Gear fashion, I left them behind and went for another lap.

While I was out there, I got passed by everything but a Diesel Panamera, but I am proud as hell of my slow 12:36 time for a lap, because that car followed me back home to America, and is currently sitting outside my house, waiting for its hibernation to end. The coolant seals finally decided to give up the ghost after I worked out all of the other issues with the cooling system. It sits, waiting for a rebuild of its little tired 120k mile 12a so that it may fight another day. After that? Well, let’s just say that the gods are going to bless that wonderful little car with another rotor and a turbine some day, and it will be reborn as the touge stormer it deserves to be, rather than the tired old sports car it currently is.

Omedetou, your comment has earned you a set of decals from the JNC Shop!

JNC Decal smash



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18 Responses to QotW: What’s the best shade of JNC green?

  1. ErikFM says:

    The Ice Green from the 1966 Nissan Silvia

    mmmm just the right shade of green that isn’t overbearing and instantly recognizable. It’s like when you see a Ferrari Red or a Yellow VW bug, I associate the Silvia with that green.

    Even the Silvia K had a variation of that green! That Icy, Minty, Greeny kinda Green.

    Instantly recognizable!

    For the lazy:


  2. Brendan says:

    This is totally biased, but that of the CSP311 Nissan Silvia.



  3. Aaron says:

    1970’s Toyota Moss Green… on TA22’s and Te27’s

    Yes, it’s an identifiably British colour. Yes, Daruma Celica’s look best white and Mango’s look best in.. mango. Simply put: if white and orange are the Celica’s and Corolla’s Sunday best, then Moss Green is their Fire-Retardant Coveralls.

  4. Chris says:

    Mazda RX-7 SA Mach Green

  5. dickie says:

    This is a tough one, so many great hues to choose from…

    Green Altair Metallic with ST stripes on first-gen Celicas is definitely up there.

    Then there’s Moss(y) Green, a color I can’t seem to find a paint code for under the e20 Corolla but looking great nonetheless.

    The only car that I think could push Toyota out of the limelight, so to speak, is the SA22 RX7 in it’s vibrant Mach Green, killer even compared to Datsun’s Citrus Green Z cars. The fact that the interior is so awesome helps it edge out the competition.

    Still, in my opinion you can’t truly be green unless you’re green all the way through. To my knowledge, there just aren’t that many classic Japanese cars out there with a green interior. That’s where Toyota takes the cake and the overall win with the X7 Cressida in the uber-rare Jade Gray/Black 2-tone combo.

    – Green paint code? Check.
    – 2-tone? Check.
    – Green interior? You better effing believe that’s a check.

    You can still find examples that haven’t either faded to the color and texture of charcoal ash, and if you do you’d best buy it while you can. A very good friend of mine whose BEAMs-powered AE86 and X73 Cressida builds I’ve referenced before was on the lookout for one to carry his 1UZ/W58 setup. We came across two, one ruined by the shady owner’s hellaflush inclinations and lack of mechanical knowledge or common sense. The other was being sold be an older gentleman who not only didn’t speak English and communicated via his young daughter, but was also blind to the point he couldn’t confirm whether the car he was selling was actually verde or just plain ol’ gris.

  6. Troggie42 says:

    Whoa, thanks guys! Now I have to find more places for stickers… That shouldn’t be a problem. 🙂 I was going to suggest my slightly biased answer for this one of Mach Green on the SA RX7s but I see it is already here. Something about the slightly pearlescent metallics that just feels right sometimes.

    • Myron says:

      That is a nice color. It’s also the color they used to paint refrigerators. Not being funny here; just sayin’.

  7. rotate says:

    Mach green too

  8. Ryan "J3wman" Senensky says:

    Tahitian Green Pearl off the EF generation CRX & Civic. It is a rich full metallic color with hints of blue. The complexity of the color draws your eye to it and in the sunlight will bring out the beauty of a boxy car. Here is a picture that is a good example.


    • juppe says:

      That generation had some nice colors. I used to have a ’90 EE9 1.6VT, with the B16A1 engine. It had the original Barcelona Green color. The green was so dark, that everyone thought is was black. If you drove it at night, and the lights bounced of the hood and mirrors you could see the sparkling greenish tint 🙂

      A bit young to be a JNC, but definitely a classic!

  9. Matt says:

    if anybody had said datsun cactus green they would’ve won wink


  10. jivecom says:

    Came here expecting the CSP311. Wasn’t disappointed

  11. Yoda says:

    6C3 Green Metallic, a one-year-only (1980) color for the E70 Corolla.

    If that 280ZX is still around I hope that, in the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day, the owner found it a period-correct red-on-black Irish license plate!

  12. Jdmrx2 says:

    It has to be mach green of the SA RX7….combined with the plaid interior it is a winning combination!

  13. boyee says:

    i, also a proud owner of a 12a powered S2 rx-7, am quite happy to see so many winning entries from the first generation rx-7 lately! keep it up! i know it is biased of me, but they are awesome machines!

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