Oh, Tokyo. How you keep fascinating me with your myriad of cars running around your city streets. Every time i go, i see something new, something exciting and something totally unexpected. This time was no different. When you are in a place where many have proclaimed has one of the most amazing car cultures in the World, chances are, you’d think there’d some interesting sights to be seen when a Cars & Coffee styled meet is happening.
And you’d be right.
On my previous post, i showcased quite a variety of delightful automobiles i chanced upon at Daikanyama T-site’s monthly Morning Cruise meet, but i kept what i thought were the more interesting stuff for another post, a place where i can let my inner Auto-Otaku geek out with more pictures. I hope you’ll enjoy it.
Let’s start with this. One of the earliest cars at the meet. A true blue Tommy Kaira ZZ, a car i’ve only seen in earlier Gran Turismo games. Quite a shame this very curious looking car never made it to the later, more graphically enhanced iterations of Polyphony’s masterpiece, but here it is, in the flesh, or metal if you prefer.
Fully styled in house by Tommy Kaira, it might look like the lovechild of a Renault Spider and a Lotus Elise, but the Tommy Kaira ZZ was actually launched years ahead of its European rivals, in 1990. A full 6 years ahead.
Powered by a 2.0-liter SR20DE naturally-aspirated inline-four from Nissan, it propelled the ZZ to 100km/h in a rather rapid 4 seconds. Quicker than any Ferrari of the time.
It was raw, it was light but i guess ultimately, it was way too ahead of its time as only 200 cars were sold during its 10 year production run, mostly in Japan i reckon. Which made seeing one rather special indeed.
And then this rolled in, i swear almost everyone in the carpark twisted their necks as this came into view. Remember me mentioning that there will always be something unexpected? Well, this was it for me. A WRC homologation special Renault Turbo 2. A true icon from the glory days of Rallying.
Those rear flares are just ridiculously delightful.
With slightly over 3000 cars made, these Turbo 2s are quite the sought after collectible, but that didn’t seem to phase the owner who seems to have no plans to keep this Renault a garage queen.
80s box flares. Can’t get any better.
Just taking in the sights.
No need for rear seats when you have a WRC-inspired Turbo-charged Inline-4 sitting right behind you! When the first generation Renault Turbo 5 was launched, it was the most powerful French car ever produced and was built by Rally heroes Alpine in Dieppe.
Just the bare necessities. It might lack plenty of modern day frills but i’m sure each drive in this car is an event in itself. I wish i had one.
From one monster hatch, we move on to one that’s slightly less fearsome but almost equally charming. In a carpark full of Aston Martins and Mclarens, it was pleasant to see strange but delightful little things like these attract so much attention! The Japanese really do love cars.
An Autobianchi A112 Abarth. It was mint!
This really was a day of firsts for me.
Loving the interior. So full of Italian charm!
Same basic body style but extreme opposites in execution. Both highly desirable (at least to me).
Then, as if right on cue, Marty Mcfly pulled in.
I think if Auto-Otaku-ness ever had a leaderboard, a DeLorean would be ranked pretty high up. This one interestingly, was running in “Ready Player One” guise.
If the Parzival plates wasn’t geeky enough, check out what was lying under the frunk! Back to the Future fans will probably go crazy right now. Auto drying jacket, Power-lacing Nikes, that… hat. I wonder if there’s a pair of Calvin Kleins hidden under there too.
Better remember, lightning never strikes twice!
Can you think of a better way to wake up the neighbours? The lumpy growly idle on this Cobra was out of this World.
I won’t claim to be an expert on these things so i cannot vouch for its authenticity, but this being Tokyo where bonafide Ferrari 250GTOs are actually driven on the streets, i’d wouldn’t be surprised if it were.
Spying some upgraded stoppers.
Can you tell if it’s the real thing from pictures alone? I can’t for sure, but what i do know though…
…Is that the plate on this Cobra, should read “BadMuthaf*****”, because this car was just oozing with attitude.
Moving on to a more modern version of the classic hot-rod idea is this truly gorgeous Wiesmann GT MF4.
This BMW M-powered beauty was just stunning to behold. In an era where automobile exterior designs are awash with creases and folds, seeing so many curves on a car is just so refreshing.
Typical German flair?
All the right moves in all the right places.
No, it’s not called Gordon.
While the Wiesmann might be all about big figures and numbers, Toyota had a rather different approach when building their very first sports car. The Sports 800, which debuted back in 1965 with a spellbinding 27 horses on tap from its 700cc engine!
Jokes aside, the Sports 800’s lightweight construction (with extensive use of aluminium) meant it tipped the scales at a hardly believable 580kg. Which allowed the minute engine to propel anyone brave enough to try, up to 160km/h.
Fun fact! The Toyota Sports 800 was one of the first production cars to feature a lift-out roof panel, or targa top, pre-dating Porsche. It might not be the most powerful or most exotic looking sports car in Toyota’s lineup, but because it was so significant to Toyota’s history coupled with the fact that only 3400 cars being made, means this little Toyota now commands big values in the classic car World.
The SL Pagoda. Peak Mercedes elegance right there.
Shame how Mercedes have given up elegance in design for a much more aggressive aesthetic.
One marque that hasn’t thrown away their design aesthetic though, is Porsche. Pure lineage from past to present. This long nose was stunning and carried with it, a fantastic soundtrack.
Period correct tyres?
Clean lines. Still upset i missed the air-cooled boat.
Another beautiful classic from an era of simple, fuss free motoring. The ever so lovely Fiat 500. Or more affectionately known, as the Fiat Cinquecento.
This example was beautifully kept and had a lovely interior.
Hilarious size difference when parked up next to modern machinery.
Speaking of modern machinery, let’s end off with what i think was probably the most stand-out car in the entire carpark. A bright red Corvette ZO6. Amuurricaaa!!!
No, Corvettes don’t do “subtle”. BOOM!
Your eyes are not deceiving you. That is an American car, sitting in a Japanese carpark, driven by a Frenchman!
One last parting shot before i jumped into a taxi off towards Aoyama. Thanks for staying with me!