Remembering Japanese cars from the past

Category: brilliant (Page 1 of 6)

Happy Easter with the Suzuki Lapin!

I wish you a happy Easter with one of the cutest cars by Suzuki: the Lapin! Lapin means rabbit or bunny in French, so now you know the connection with the Easter bunny!

Suzuki Lapin HE21 in 2002
Suzuki Lapin HE21 in 2002

Lapin history

The Suzuki Lapin was launched in 2002 as a cubical kei car based on the underpinnings of the Suzuki Alto. It also got sold as the Mazda Spanio under the Autozam flag, but that car is less interesting as it’s just a rebadged version of the Lapin.

Rabbit accents everywhere!

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Grandpa AE86 taking grandchild GR86 for a grand day out – Brilliant

This photo of a German Toyota Corolla GT Twin Cam 16 AE86 and a Toyota GR86 is just brilliant!

Grandpa AE86 takes grandson GR86 for a day out!
Grandpa AE86 takes grandson GR86 for a day out!

As you can see, both have a personalized vanity plate with AE86 in it! It was posted in the German AE86 WhatsApp group and the first comment was “Opa und Enkel on tour.” which roughly translates to Grandpa taking grandchild for a day out. Just simply brilliant!

I’m sorry to say this to the owner of the Toyota GR86: you got the wrong plate! It should have been MD-GR-86! But you could also say I’m just jealous we can’t get personalized plates here in the Netherlands…

Better than JDM: German AE86 vanity license plates – Brilliant

For readers from the US, this is probably difficult to understand, but not every country has vanity plates. And even if they are allowed, most of the time they aren’t completely free form. A good example is the British plates where you often need to decypher what the buyer intended. German plates do allow a bit of freedom, but most of the format is set in stone.

VW Polo with German license plate BRB-AE-86
VW Polo with German license plate BRB-AE-86
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Brilliant: Nissan Leopard F31 digital dashboard

Okay I admit that I love digital dashboards and I surely do love this Nissan Leopard F31 dashboard!
Nissan Leopard F31 digital dashboard
If you look at the complexity of it Nissan must have spent a fortune on getting these LCD displays fault free. ;)

The boot-up test sequence shows about everything the display can show you:

Not much more than the most necessary gauges but sufficient enough for a Gran Turismo like the Nissan Leopard F31

Direct link to video: デジパネ 日産 レパード F31 デジタルメーター UF31 NISSAN LEOPARD digital dash

Brilliant: Nissan Leopard F31 keyless entry card

Nissan was forward thinking on their flagship the Nissan Leopard F31 back in 1986: it featured a keyless entry card! Earlier Glorias and Cedrics already featured pin-code like systems, but they keyless entry card is going way further than that!
Nissan Leopard F31 keyless entry card
This card has the size of a credit card and the thickness of a modern smartphone, but allows the wearer to open the doors and trunk without the use of a key!

The system was actually quite simple:
Nissan Leopard F31 keyless entry card
Two sensors operate this system: one in the driver side mirror and another in the rear bumper. Both sensors will unlock either the driver side door or the trunk separately from each other.The system was only available on the Ultima edition of the Nissan Leopard F31.

Via: Minkara

Brilliant: collection of Showa scale model cars

Now this was a big jaw-dropper: two videos of a Toyota Mark II Grande GX71 literally covered in Showa scale model cars. This must be the largest personal collection of scale model cars I’ve seen!
Brilliant: Showa scale model cars
Now if you look carefully enough you can see that each and every scale model car has its own special paint job (mostly kaido racer, race car livery or kyusha kai) and set of (rare) JDM rims! If you count the number of hours it took to make them look this way alone it already is an amazing job!

Now the list of cars, mainly from the late Showa-era, is going to be a lengthy one, but I’ll try to sum up the most important ones:

  • Toyota Mark II Grande GX71 (duh)
  • Toyota Soarer GZ10/MZ11/MZ12 (including the Shakotan Boogie Soarer twice)
  • Numerous Toyota Celica XX GA61
  • Toyota Celica GT RA45
  • Toyota Corolla Levin TE27
  • Toyota Corolla Levin TE71 four door sedan
  • Toyota Corolla Levin AE86 hatchback
  • Toyota Corsa AL11
  • Numerous Nissan Skylines C10, C110, C210, R30
  • Numerous Nissan Cedric/Gloria 230, 330, 430
  • Numerous Nissan Fairlady S30
  • Nissan EXA
  • Hasemi Skyline KDR30 Super Silhouette kaido racer replica
  • Nissan Silvia S110 Super Silhouette kaido racer replica
  • Isuzu Bellet GT-R
  • Mazda RX-3

And the list could go on for another 20 or 30 models that I overlooked…

Watch video number one: Continue reading

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