Nostalgic dreaming: Nissan KGC110 “ケンメリ” Skyline GT-X

When most auto otakus think of early Nissan Skylines and early GT-Rs, chances are, they’d be thinking of the original JDM badass Grand daddy, the KPGC10. Popularly known as the Box Skyline, or in Jdm speak, the Hakosuka (ハコスカ). So called because of its boxy shape, Hako is box in Japanese and Suka is really just an abbreviation of how Japanese pronounce Skyline (Su-Ka-yi-rine). Personally i don’t think its boxy, but that’s a matter already consigned to the history books, so Hakosuka it is. Anyway, that’s the one most people love and adore and think of. Especially now with everything old and vintage back in vogue.

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But for me and a friend of mine at Nostalgic Garage, the one we like, the one we want, the one we think is the bees knees, isn’t the Hakosuka. The one our JDM nostalgic car dreams are made of, is its successor, the Kenmeri. (Another interesting nickname which i’m sure you’ve read the back story to by now. If not, watch this)

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Launched into the World (mostly Japan) in 1973, the Kenmeri had some very big shoes to fill after all the race successes of its predecessor. There was great ambition and hope in Nissan for dear Kenmeri to succeed, but unfortunately, something called the “gasoline/fuel crisis” happened and demand for high performance machines all but dried up. In the end, only 197 KPGC110s were built. As you can imagine, prices for one of those 197 cars have hit rather stratospheric levels.

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Now while the car you see here might look like one of those 197 GT-Rs, it is in fact not a full fledged KPGC110, what we have here is a KGC110. A 2000 GT-X.

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For those who don’t mind a short history lesson, here’s the lowdown on the KPGC/KGC…etc chassis codes. K denotes that it’s a coupe, P denotes a Prince (pre-Nissan) engine, G15, G18 or S20. G is for cars with 6 pot engines. And C is pretty much the series of the car. For the Kenmeri, it is a C110 series.

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So looking at our 2000 GT-X here, it is a C110 series long nose 6 cylinder engined Coupe without a Prince engine. So there you go, KGC110. History lesson over!

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So just why do we prefer the Kenmeri to the much more revered Hakosuka? I think it truely boils down to the way it looks.

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We of the Liftback generation! For us, Liftbacks are the coolest, liftbacks are king!

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While it might seem sacrilegious for some that a GT-R badge has been stuck on a non GT-R, herein lies the dilemma. This sort of body conversion has gone on in Japan for ages and while this car is not an actual GT-R, the conversion and that badge has probably been on the car for many years and is now part of the car’s history.

So would you remove the badge for the sake of authenticity? Or keep it on the car since it has become part of the car’s story? There really is no right or wrong answer here and anyway, if you were in the position to make such a decision, you probably wouldn’t have to care about what others think anyway when there’s a damn Kenmeri in your driveway!

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Perfectly imperfect. We do like it a little rough around the edges don’t we?

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For the lucky few, being behind the wheel sure must be smile inducing.

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For the rest of us, with this car in Singapore, at least we know some dreams can come true. Shakotan Boogie!!!

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