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EVENTS: The 2015 Japanese Classic Car Show

Filed under: Events
by Alvin G @ 6:39 pm on October 4, 2015


Every year, one of my favorite events to attend in Southern California is the annual Japanese Classic Car Show in Long Beach.  JCCS is like a big reunion of old school friends, surrounded by the finest vintage metal made in Japan. The iconic Queen Mary cruise ship and the Long Beach skyline is a perfect backdrop for Zs, 510s, Skylines, Rx-7s, Rx-3s, Celicas, Corollas, Land Cruisers and other interesting Japanese old school cars!


Founded by Koji and Terry Yamaguchi, JCCS has been running for 11 years strong now and the bar is set higher ever year. I remember the first year of JCCS, and it’s hard to believe the inaugural event was over a decade ago!  I love this show and the Z Car Garage crew keeps coming back every year to soak up the sun, see old friends and drool over some spectacular vintage builds.


Attendance was impressive but surprisingly not over-whelming like previous years and this made photographing cars a breeze!  Sure, a bulk of the cars are the same annually but the small percentage of new cars tend to be amazing.  At JCCS we love that every pass up and down an aisle of cars reveals a new detail, emblem, decal, or set of wheels.  Also, this is a more adult car show (no loud Drake/EDM, no booth babes, no car parents towing around scraping cambered-out red Power Wheels with kids in them) and a breath of fresh air compared to the “party” vibe of the larger California shows.


Nissan’s Debut at JCCS

The OEMs participated in record numbers this year. That’s right, in addition to Mazda, Toyota and Honda our beloved Nissan stepped up for the first time with a great showing of rare and unique vehicles from their vault. My favorite was the 1997 R390 GT1 Le Mans race car, sent over from Japan just for this event! Nissan’s collection also included included a 1975 Bluebird-U 2000 GTX, 1972 Datsun 510 and 1967 411. Our friends at JNC were lucky to drive the Dime and Bluebird over the Monterey Car Week.


Completing the “heritage” lineup was this little/big truck combo – a 1960 Datsun 1200 “surfer” Van towed by a 2016 Nissan TITAN XD pickup. Fingers crossed this new diesel rig “passes” emissions. Ha!


Here are few of my favorite Nissans and Datsuns, starting with that not-so forbidden fruit commonly known as the hakosuka.


There was no shortage of Skylines this year and my favorite was Eric Khamchan’s KGC10. It’s racing livery removed from previous shows revealed a stunning shade of metallic blue. The killer stance with wide, gun-metal Watanabe wheels stuffed under the flares set this one off from the rest:

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We first saw this short-nosed Skyline at the Solvang Datsun Roadster Show and were surprised by its intact “surf line” rear fenders,  G-series 4-cylinder power and super rare Hayashi Racing Techno Phantom wheels:


Eric Bauer’s  Hako sported period-spec goodies throughout like these Dunlop CR65 tires and C-pillar vent:


The only 4-door with molded rear flares sitting pretty on deep step-lipped SSR MKII wheels:


Another red Hako with gold Watanabe’s and a striking peanut butter interior:


Finally, this Kaido themed racer replete with external oil cooler, livery and side-exit exhaust:


Z-Car Extravaganza

Z cars from all generations were in full force with cars spanning the tarmac near the Queen Mary to the bayside lawn.  I’m a big fan of subtle modified Z’s but I can also appreciate pristine, bone-stock examples and the occasional shakotan build. This S30 had subtle body-colored flares, deep Simmons wheels and a neatly executed RB25DET engine swap:


By contrast Richard Madlangbayan’s RB25DET-powered S30 is wildly flared with retina-searing paint and extensive aero.  To-die-for NISMO LM GT2 wheels were re-barreled and stepped up to 18″ by FiveOneWheels. Check out the rear diffuser, side skirts and spolier too:


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This was my first time seeing Kevin Yeung’s “White DevilZ” in person. It had some ludicrously sized fenders, WORK Equip 03 wheels with a huge wing and more aero. My favorite part? The L-series powerplant force-fed by an HKS turbo kit. I think I overheard Kevin telling a fan that “he had plans to track it”…

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The guys from JDM Legends displayed this immaculate, super sano S30. From the iconic Watanabe wheels to the triple-carb’d L-series this car was a real treat to view.


Several clean stock S30s like this tennis-ball lime 240z and silver 260z:


John Morton BRE 240z Tribute

Our friends from Georgia debuted one of the most accurate BRE 240z-tribute builds of our time. Randy Jaffe was thrilled to have John Morton see the car in person. The SCCA C Production Champion in ’70-’71 was painstakingly built and it showed. Even John Morton commented on how correct some parts were. Yes, the original LeMans mags are being restored :)


We were stoked to catch up with John Morton and deliver a thank you gift for driving our IMSA Z at RMMR!


Z31s were plentiful too! Not one, but TWO Shiro-Edition 300zx Turbos were displayed:


Some S130 love. T-Tops rule! Ever seen a 280zx with a full Kaminari body-kit…only at JCCS!


The Nissan S12 chassis has been growing in popularity. Known as the “200sx” stateside there were some cool examples of both hatchback/coupe bodystyles:


Although Mr.K passed away earlier this year, we think he would enjoy roaming around JCCS. Mr. K’s very own G-nose 240z:


Datsun Roadsters

Who can miss the die-hard Datsun Roadster owners and their beloved open-top sports cars! The SoCal Roadster Owners club lined up their cars with stock and modified examples. This SPL was my favorite because I love the silver/red combo, whitewalls and discreet 5-speed transmission upgrade:


John Baker’s 1969 Datsun 2000 was one of best stock restorations on display:


These guys drive their cars. Mike Anderson’s SR20VE-powered ’68 SPL was recently  featured online at Super Street and he continues to carve canyons, attack cones and open track the beast. I was pleasantly surprised to see that my SPL grille made it on his roadster :)


This candy green SPL sported dual Weber side-drafts and tan interior. More roadsters in the gallery!


Datsun 510s

This year felt like fewer Dimes were displayed, with only one wagon spotting. The shiny engine bay of this Datsun 510 stood out and sported some Volk GT-P wheels, Brembos and a clean interior:


More Dime goodness:

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The only Bluebird coupe was a JCCS regular. I never get tired of seeing this beauty:


It was cool to see our friend Ben Pila Jr. and his Ronal-shod 510. Ahh the good-old days of the Mt. Shasta Meet!


Datsun trucks were plentiful too:


Drag-oriented, SR20DET-powered 1200s and TWO Nissan Pao’s:



Toyota always has a huge corporate involvement and brought an assortment of race cars and a rare 1967 2000GT.  This year the AE86s, Celicas, Corollas, and Starlets were the best I’ve ever seen!

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This Starlet (KP61) had a very sleeper feel to it until I looked under the hood to find a 4A-GZE turbo twin-cam!


Predecessor to the KP61, but never sold stateside was this massively flared 1974 Publica sporting Tom’s wheels:


This 4th generation Toyota Corona (T80) had me double-taking. Amazing paint, stance and wheels:



My favorite generation of Celica has to be the first. This light blue TA22 had GT graphics and rare (with caps) Hayashi Techno Phantoms. Love the tail lights on these, shown on the yellow car from Toyota corporate:


Two immaculate Celica liftbacks sporting SSR Formula mesh and Hayashi Command wheels:


Third generation Celicas including hatch/coupe body styles and a wild Bosozoku specimen:


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This RT114 Corona Hardtop sat on some super mint Work Ewing Mesh wheels complete with the “center packaging system” caps! See the wheel segment below for more info:


This 80’s Toyota Van LE was a 4wd model with swiveling captain’s chairs:



It’s fun to see the plethora of Ae86 builds and we loved the variety. This Levin conversion coupe was by far the raddest with Volk TE37V wheels and superb parts choices:


Panda-themed, hot-rodded and shod with sweet wheels and slick paint jobs the AE86s did not disappoint!


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Earlier 1st and 2nd generation Corollas in non/Sprinter form with several new (to me) examples. This one had an insane BEAMS 3SGE engine swap and TRD Tosco wheels:

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Jose Lalama brought out his impressive 1973 Corolla TE28 wagon with a T66 turbocharged fully built 3RZ engine from a Tacoma:


Land Cruisers!


Cressidas (MX73 and MX32) from and 1st gen MR2s:


A record number (4) of Sports 800s!



Honda brought several interesting cars, including a first ever N600 imported into the US. In a sea of CVCCs and N600s, most from years past a few cars did catch my eye.


Got snorkel mask? Dig the rear hatch on the Z600 compared to the N600:


We almost missed this little beastie and boy were we glad to catch it. This 1972 N600 no longer has its 36hp 600c motorcycle engine. In its place is an 800c drivetrain from Honda Interceptor making 115hp at 12krpm. But wait it gete crazier! No FWD as the whole suspension has been replaced with Mazda Miata parts. Check out the paddle shifters!


I was surprised to see no EF-chassis hatches but there were some heavily modified CRXs

K20-powered EG:


My favorite Honda was this EA-T chassis. Lots of tasty parts on this one:


Pristine 1st gen CRX followed by a Spoon-ified B18-powered 2nd gen:

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Mazda brought out a few gems of their own with probably the best OE display including an original RX-2 racer, NA and ND Miatas and a Cosmo:


Dig the livery on this RX-3:



Another clean RX-2 on meshies:


Rotary truck and RX-4 on meshies. BBS, SSR, Epsilon these must be the go-to wheel for rotor heads:



Mazda’s iconic RX-7 series was well-represented with SA22 and FC models. From preserved stock and built-to-the-hilt turbo 13B examples it was a Rotary fanatic’s fantasy, especially in red:



Boosted 13B SA22 and stock FC Turbo II:



Pristine RX-3 and RX-2:


Parking Lot Gems

Even before we walked into the JCCS show the parking lot featured lots of sweet J-tin. As soon as we parked this AE86 coupe pulled up sitting on uber-rare SSR Star Sharks!!!


Toyota Liftback on BBS RS and a RHD CR-X on SSR MK2-R:



L-series powered Hot Rod? Yes, please!


Wheel For Fantasy

I personally love going to JCCS because I get to see very rare Japanese/tuner wheels and parts.  Preservation of authentic wheels and appreciation of the time and effort spent to find certain specimens that most folks have never heard of in this generation is what I admire most. I’ll admit, it is kind of downer to see so many Rota wheels and replica parts at JCCS. Especially with all of the high dollar/rare builds it is a let down but this is also a different crowd of enthusiasts. I digress!  My favorite wheel at JCCS: Work EWING 2 mesh:


Why do I love this wheel? Their “center packaging system” is totally 80’s and ridiculously complicated:


Finned delights: Re-barreled Sprint CP-R and Volk Racing Artisan Fin:


Variations on the mesh wheel from BBS, Epsilon, SSR, Volk, Bahn and more. You can’t go wrong! Simmons below:


SSR Formula Mesh step-lipped and full-reverse lip:


SSR Dori and Epsilon:


Bahn mesh and BBS:


SSR Longchamp XR-4, MKII



Modern wheels can work well with vintage metal depending on the build theme. Here are some SSR SP-3 and Volk GT-P:


Wheels that Toyota owners fiend for: Tom’s and the amazing TRD Tosco:


Not to be confused with SSR Star Sharks, there were two examples of the Hayashi Racing Techno Phantoms:



Sometimes smaller is better. Here are some 14″ Hayashi Commands:



Popular with the Honda crowd are Spoon SW388 and Mugen M7 wheels:


These Mugen M7s were re-barreled and stepped up, another benefit of split-rims:


The quintessential old school wheel award probably goes to the RS Watanabe:


Volk’s TE37V with some Weds Sport thrown in for good measure. More in the gallery!



Thank You JCCS!

It is difficult to run a car show and keep up the quality and interest levels but the folks at JCCS have managed to do exactly that for 11 years! No other show gives you the chance to see obscure, pristine, modified Japanese classics…and we look forward to next year’s entrants. We hope you have enjoyed our coverage and please visit our mega-gallery for more pictures. Special thanks to the ZCG crew and Tom Dockery for sharing some great shots with us.

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Z Car Racing: Patrick’s USTCC Report

Filed under: Events,Featured Cars and Projects,Performance
by Alvin G @ 4:36 pm on September 6, 2015


Our friend Patrick Chio has been racing his Nissan 350z competitively for several years and we’ve had the pleasure of helping him tune/maintain the car for events. Recently he campaigned the Z in the USTCC (US Touring Car Championship series) with impressive results, enjoy his report! For past updates on the Z please follow the links below:
z car garage tuned 350z gets 2nd place
2nd place finish for patrick in zcg tuned 350z
cool it now patricks time attack 350z.html
time attack winner patricks z33

This marks the first debut of Z Car Garage Nissan 350z full race car in USTCC (US Touring Car Championship series) at Buttonwillow Raceway for the 2 hours enduro race. This is also the first wheel to wheel race for Patrick Chio as a rookie in his first season.


In the field, we have the only Nissan race car, majority of the field are BMW M3s, with a mix of Hyundai Genesis, Mitsubishi Lancer, Mazda Rx-8, Acura RSX:


Since it is a 2 hours endurance race, we decided to have one driver change. We have invited Andrie Hartanto (Pro Driver) for our second driver. His experience on racing, strategy will be a big contribution to our team.

The 350z was supercharged before the race, but due to the touring class rule of USTCC, we have to remove the supercharger and back to naturally aspirated with 11.9:1 Power to weight ratio. Since it was a 2 hours race, reliability is the key for success. Rob at Z Car garage has been spending his time to dyno tune the Z with max reliability and good fuel consumption while having sustainable power to be competitive in the field.

During practice, we have set the fastest TC Class time of the day, drawing some extra attention from the tech officials, warranting further inspection. Following further scrutiny, (re-weight and check horsepower rating) Chio’s 350Z was found to be fully compliant and legal.

During the qualifying session, we have qualified 3rd position in traffic. The 1st and 2nd places are all within a sec in time.


When the race started, Chio found himself sitting on the pole position due to the top two competitors arriving late to the grid. He was caught off guard when a competitor lined up on the far inside of the grid before the start, boxing him in and leaving the rookie with nowhere to go.

In a frenzied start, Chio dropped back into fifth position shortly after the green flag dropped, but ran a clean consistent race. His steady driving among a tough field allowed Chio to quietly work his way back up to third place in the TC Class field when it came time to hand the car over to Hartanto.


After a strong initial showing in Chio’s first ever race, a stroke of misfortune hit the team. The team executed a flawless pit stop and driver change, however the safety car was dispatched right as Hartanto was sent out to resume the race, thus holding the 350Z in seventh place after the pit stop.


Once the incident on-track had been cleared and the all-clear had been given to resume racing, Hartanto pushed hard until the last lap of the race. By the time the race had ended, Hartanto had clawed back to regain all of the positions lost after the pit stop and lengthy safety car period. At the end, Chio earned his first podium finish of the USTCC TC Class and a podium finish in his first race of his rookie season.


Post-race, it was determined that the race winner was underweight, thus bumping Chio and Hartanto into second position.


“The Z is surprisingly competitive,” Chio remarked after the race. “There are a few things that we still have to figure out, such as the brakes, but we should definitely have a good chance of finishing within the top positions.”

Hartanto echoed Chio’s comments. “We got the 350Z in the mix right away and we even topped the time sheet in practice. The car is fun to drive and shares a lot of similarities with the BMW. I had a lot of fun and would be glad to do it again.”

At the end, big shout out to Z car garage for the help to getting our 350z performed so well and was able to endure the full 2 hours race without any problem. Our next race will be at Utah, Miller Motor Sport Park. Stay tuned.


USTCC Round 2, Miller Motor Sport Park, UTAH


This time, our Z Car Garage Nissan 350Z traveled all the way to UTAH Miller Motorsport Park for the second round of USTCC (US Touring Car Championship). This was our first time at this race track and we were running the east side configuration. The east side of the track is known for middle speed corners and tight road course. Compared to our last Buttonwillow 2hr endurance race, this time is a 45mins sprint race.

With the high attitude of the UTAH race track, all the NA cars are suffered power lost. The car feels much slower than in California race track. On Saturday, we will be doing 2 practices and 1 qualify session for the Sunday race.

On Saturday, we have qualified 2nd in position. This first place pole sitter is a turbo Mitsubishi Lancer which benefited from forced induction in a high attitude environment. Unfortunately, due to a miscommunication, we missed the entrance of post qualifying weighting and disqualified from the result. We have to start all way back in the field during the race.


On Sunday, as much as we were disappointed from the qualifying result, we focused back to winning the race. We were able to climb back to the third position within 15mins into the race. Since the first leading car was so far ahead, we were aiming to finish 2nd. By the last lap, we were able to chase down the 2nd place BMW M3 bumper to bumper. At the very end of the race, we decided to make a pass on a tight corner, it was now or never. However, due to brake locked up, we sightly tapped the m3 rear bumper and lost all the momentum. At the end, we finished 3rd place of this round USTCC race.


At the end, we realized that we are still in the learning period on wheel to wheel racing and the rules as the first season. We will be back next time at our home track Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

As a side note, we stopped by the world famous Bonneville Salt Flats on our way back. :)



One of the major events of the annual car week on the Monterey Peninsula is the annual Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. Held since the early 1970s at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, the event attracts a staggering variety of historic racing cars, which competed in a total of 15 different races.

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Adding to the diversity of racers was the addition of Formula 5000 cars for the first time.  Other highlights were a special race to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Shelby Mustang GT350,  factory efforts from Acura, BMW, Mazda and our beloved Nissan. We had a blast at the RMMR. Read on for our report, illustrated by a 300+ shot gallery of the Reunion and a few video clips. Enjoy!

John Morton Drives Our IMSA 240z!


With the help of Joel Anderson we made our RMMR debut last year running the #49 IMSA Datsun 240z. Find out more about Joel and the restoration of #49 HERE. Our letter of acceptance into the 2015 event included Joel as the driver but unfortunately health issues prevented him from racing.  With race week fast approaching Rob enlisted the help of his hero and legendary race car driver John Morton. Before I arrived at ‘Seca, the crew had John fitted into the race seat and the Z passed tech inspection:

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Paddock Life

Before I describe the sheer awesomeness of just being in the presence of John Morton, let’s first take a trip through aisle G: our pit row in the paddock. The paddock at RMMR is pure sensory overload with incomparable sounds and sights of old race cars. There’s nothing like the sight of pit crews working frantically to put together vintage race machines whether it be from the Pre-War Bugattis to early 90’s IMSA cars. This video sums it up nicely with a mix of machines and their cacophony of engines being fired, revved and idled:


Upon my arrival Thursday morning I was pleasantly surprised to see #49 pitted with several fellow Datsun racers from Group 4A:  1973-1981 FIA, IMSA GT-GTX, AAGT, GTU Cars.  On the final race day we gathered even more Datsuns to create a “Datsun Row”:


Here is quick video of the row:


The camaraderie and good times spent with these folks was memorable. We shared pit space with our friend Ron Carter and fellow roadster owner Michael Anderson. Ron is an avid vintage Datsun Roadster racer running RMMR for the first time in his 1967 2000.  Fox Sports even interviewed him, we are proud of you!

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A rare sight indeed, TWO Datsun 2000 roadsters racing at ‘Seca! The silver car is Craig Carter’s 1968.

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Dave Stone is no stranger to vintage racing Datsuns and this latest ’73 260z build by Troy Ermish was very impressive.  I personally loved the paint color and authentic magnesium minilite wheels. Lots of neat details on this one in the photo gallery:

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We’ll visit more paddock candy later, as the real fun at the Historics lies on the actual track. Yes, that 2.238-mile, 11-corner wonder officially known as Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca!

Race Day: Keeping Up With John Morton

“I am on the pit crew for John Morton. I am not worthy”. That is what runs through my mind when I see John Morton walking towards our pit to jump into #49 for the practice session. I remain composed and follow instruction from Rob, Josh and Andy, the other members of the pit crew. We are all serious when the announcement is heard on the PA for our run grup to head to the pit lane.

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The car is ready, John is strapped in and he motors away. John Morton is driving our IMSA Z.

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When we are staged in the pits waiting for the cars to roll out onto the track it is a different scene. A wave of colors from vibrant livery aligns as the cars park against the garages. I’m in heaven because there is so much rad machinery in one place:

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It’s noisy here from the current run group roaring down the front straight, yet serenely calm as the 4A drivers collect their thoughts behind the wheel, engines idling.  For John, that moment seems to be interrupted as driver after driver comes to his side for a chat. It was fun to watch:



The signal is given and group 4A rolls out to the starting grid:


Watch this video to get a sense of the sounds and staging of Group 4A with a few glimpses of John behind the wheel:


As each practice session ends we run back to the pits to hear from John. He hops out of the Z and tells us, “Engine’s good and brakes are good.” The crew was hoping for more feedback but you see, John is also driving a Porsche 908 in the following session, so off he goes. That’s when Sylvia Wilkinson, John’s lifelong partner comes in. She gives us a breakdown between sessions complete with lap times and feedback from John.


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Turns out he doesn’t need much. In his first practice session John was running 1:44s and by Friday he ran 1:41.4. He liked the car, but the tires were getting greasy and oil temps climbing. It was record-setting hot during RMMR with temps close to 90F. Before the final race we made some tire adjustments and cooling aids. Ultimately we’ll have a fresh set of slicks ready next time around.


We were completely ecstatic to have John Morton pilot the Z and also have zero mechanical issues over the week. John placed us 19th overall in the race with some really great S30 battles between our friends David Martin (Frisselle Z) and Dave Stone. Enjoy these on-track/paddock shots of #49 followed by a longer in-car video with multiple camera angles.

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Take a few laps with John with multiple camera angles in this longer video:


Paddock Highlights

Between prepping #49 for the next session and helping fellow Datsun racers we certainly enjoyed cruising through the paddock and soaking up all of the fascinating hardware. Can you identify the familiar Vans shoes under Larry Oka’s S30?  That’s Rob and Josh helping Larry pull a half shaft:



An increasing presence from automakers is always welcome and this year Ford helped by honoring the 50th anniversary of the Shelby GT350 Mustang. Their display was filled with vintage Shelby’s and the new GT350:


We spotted more Datsuns in the Nissan garage…this duo of 411 and 510 sedans was actually driven by our friends over at Japanese Nostalgic Car!Next door, Acura displayed the new NSX and Ford had their new GT supercar. Stillen even had their own garage space housing the wild #75 300zx. It was in pieces at the time but put on a flame-spitting show in Saturday’s race!

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Here is the very first production 1963 Ferrari 250 GT Lusso and one of only three known examples that were used in competition…


From highly collectible and expensive to downright zany you never know what to find in the paddock. Check out this Reliant Robin of Top Gear fame (or shame):

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This insane Audi 200 Quattro made some neat sounds coming squirting out of the Corkscrew. Check out those BBS Turbofans!


1963 Ferrari 250GTO berlinetta, rumored to have last sold for $38 million (or more depending on the source)


Jim Froula is well-known for his controversial (yet cool) Hakosuka Skyline but he also helped create this badass 1980 280zx. This S130 has some trick design features and amazing attention to detail:


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The Colors of RMMR

As if your sense of smell and sound weren’t assaulted already, the paddock is brimming with every color of the rainbow. The race liveries, trailer rigs, even the concession stands…your eyes are on overdrive at each corner. Ferraris, Porsches, Lotuses, MG’s, Alfas, Fords,Chevrolets, Maseratis, Bentleys …it seems that every era and every manufacturer has some intensely significant car, and they are driven in anger.

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We are huge fans of Canepa and these two Porsches were a treat to watch. At the left is a 962 that we recently dyno’d at the shop! It ran an amazing 1:26.049 and the 935 driven by Bruce Canepa made an epic sweep to first place our group.


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One of my favorite races is the Trans Am series. These muscle cars with their blistering fenders and V8s are entertaining to watch. Ear plugs are a must for this group! The liveries are pretty incredible with some intense history behind each machine. If you stare long enough these cars have a lot to tell you.

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This year we held another Datsun/Nissan Corral but attendance was relatively low. We did spot a few gems like this Kenmary Skyline, Datsun 510 and Skyline-powered S30:

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The Vintage Wheels of RMMR

I am a wheel addict. I love quality, vintage wheels. Once again the paddock did not dissappoint. BBS, Volk, Minilite, American Racing…all shod with meaty slicks of sometimes incredible proportions:

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Thank you!

We hope you have enjoyed our recap of the 2015 Monterey Historics! Please browse our mega-gallery of pictures from race weekend below. Big thanks to our friends and family members that helped us make this possible including the Keith Corwin, Troy Ermish, Dave Stone, Tim Arnett, Ron Carter, Michael Anderson, Josh Corwin, Andy Vargas and Meghan Fuller.  We certainly enjoyed the company of friends and visitors in our paddock, please let us know how we can do better next time!

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Huge thanks to John Morton and Sylvia Wilkinson.  Joel Anderson, wish you were here!

Thank you to Mike Garret, Mark Hutchinson, Sri Gogineni, Ann and Paul Devor for sharing your wonderful photos.
Long Live The Z!



More pictures in our gallery below: …[read more]

EVENTS: SpoCom Norcal 2015

Filed under: Events,Featured Cars and Projects
by Alvin G @ 2:16 am on August 10, 2015


Last Saturday I attended the SpoCom Norcal Edition car show held at Club Auto Sport in San Jose, CA. If you do a quick Google search of the word “spocom” you’ll find more images of scantily clad women than actual cars–this may explain why legions of adolescent males paid the relatively high $25 spectator fee, but more on that later. Look harder though and you can find some sweet J-Tin at this show claiming to be aimed at “automotive & pop culture tastemakers alike.”


The Venue

I don’t claim to be a tastemaster of any kind, but here is my review of the show from a Datsun owner’s point of view.  Let’s start with the venue: Club Auto Sport is a large, retail/commercial complex and home to exotic-car rental agency Club Sportiva and Borelli Motorsports:


Inside the main building there were several aisles for show cars to be parked and a main stage for a DJ and wait for it…bikini contest! Club Auto sport offers private garages so naturally I peeked at various man caves…found a Porsche 959 in hiding!


The Cars

Those tall orange “Swords” above are actually the coveted SpoCom Awards. I learned that this was a highly competitive show with “teams” vying for these 4-ft tall trophies. Here is a taste of the cars placed near the main stage area:


There were about 25 cars lining the aisles inside the building…scattered about in random fashion with one aisle having only 3 cars vs 18 in another:


The car scene inside the building was quite different from the cars placed outside, and this is where I found some pretty neat machinery. Let’s begin with my roadster which was staged near this S30 sporting an old-school body kit:

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Yedi T came to Z Car Garage with his Vortech-supercharged G35 in bad shape from a hurt engine. To get him back on the road we sourced a clean, 60k-mile drivetrain to swap in and performed extensive clean-up left behind from a previous installation.

A few shots of the drivetrain coming out:

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Steering rack work and the new engine being prepped:

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The Vortech parts needed some love too:

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The fresh engine bay and drivtrain is almost buttoned up!

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While the engine/ transmission were out we installed a TransGo shift kit, transmission cooler, Z1 25-row oil-cooler, ARK exhaust system and Motordyne ART pipes.

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ARK exhaust and ART pipes:

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With the new exhaust and tuning we achieved more power at less boost! Final numbers are 390hp/324tq, gains of 19hp/18tq to the wheels:

Yedi T G35 Vortech

With a clean bill of health Yedi is Enjoy The Boost once again!

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