One of the reasons I enjoy visiting Hayashi at his shop, Auto House Solid, anytime I’m in Gunma is that there is always a large variety of tuning cars on hand. Hayashi services a wide range of customers so there is guaranteed to be something interesting in the shop.
Last week I made my way down to the Kansai Region of Japan for a few photoshoots I had lined up. Our first stop was at Esprit where I met our friend Sugikou-san. I wanted to photograph his Supra again for 80R because a lot of time has passed since our original shoot at Suzuka Circuit.
Growing up with his father, Akira, Yusaku Shibata was embraced with motor sport from the moment he arrived in this world. His life would see him behind the wheel of numerous race cars throughout a number of series, and eventually coming full circle to own and operate the tuning shop his father founded in 1985; ARVOU Motor Sports Service.
When the Good Luck Festival driver lineup was announced towards the middle of last October, I was quite surprised to see the Kurumadoh S2000 on the list. Not that this car is a stranger to the circuit, but that Sportsland Sugo is very far from the shops home base in Oshu City.
Arvou; a name that, over the past few years, has become synonymous with time attack focused S2000 builds (and more importantly Lotus for all you Euro fans) – with good reason too. With their focus pulled toward developing their HKS Supercharged demo car, it’s hard to think that they were involved in anything else. You might be surprised to hear then, that Mr. Shibata actually founded the company in 1985, making Arvou nearly 30 years old. That’s a lot of racing history attached to the company!
I started running through these Arvou shots at HKS Day this afternoon after work. Since I’m home this weekend I’m trying to piece together something before the week begins again. I particularly liked this shot […]
As you may, or may not (probably this one) know, I (Sean) have a S2000. It’s a work in progress, and there is a whole list of things that need fixing, but all that […]
This endurance built S2000 stood the 12 hour test at Idlers earlier this year – definitely one of my favorite cars of the event.
I make it a point to visit Spoon and Type One each time I go to Japan; actually, this is about the 4th or 5th post on NDF about visiting the shop! It’s such […]
Top Fuel; a company made famous by high powered builds. Voltex; a company based on the foundation of aerodynamics. Two companies, that, when married together can create a masterpiece on the circuit. […]
Went out to Streets this weekend – I’ll post up a couple shots throughout the week.
Last time I was in Japan, which seems like ages ago, I stopped by ASM in Yokohama once again to check out what they had hanging around the shop. This time though, rather than just […]
Visiting Type One never gets old for me; there is always something new there to see every time I go. So I make it a priority of mine to stop in each time I go to Japan. Granted, without a car, it makes for a bit of a walk; but I had access to a car this time because I was with my friend from JDM Clips. I might add that having makes visit tuning shops so much easier. Obviously, you go to car shops because you own a car, so it’s not a big concern for shop owners to be close to train stations. If you’re just visiting Japan, going places not near train stations can be both difficult and expensive without an auto; especially if you’ve never been there before. I have absolutely no problems walking a few miles to get to clutch shops, but needless to say, having a car was a giant win. Like any typical foreign fan boy should, I like just walking around the shop and looking at all the stuff I’ve seen dozens of times already – it never gets old. Plus, the shop gets a lot of traffic, so chances are you’ll see different rides there every time you visit. I already featured that extremely cool matte black S2000 that I saw last time, which you can see here; but I never got around to posting up some of the other cars that were in the shop on that trip. I know there are many sites that post up stuff from Spoon and Type One once or twice – but who else posts new shots from the shop over and over! hahaha – hopefully the viewers share the same love that I do. Click past the break to take a stroll through the shop and check a few more of them out.
I’m sure you’re familiar with the saying, “Some of the best things in life are free”. A saying most likely referring to memories or moments in time. For the most part I’d agree, as it’s happened to me several times. The things in life that are the most special often happen unexpectedly and in the most obscure places – take this encounter for example. If you want to get technical with it, this moment wasn’t technically free, but I can say that it was both unexpected and obscure; crazy any way you want to look at it. On our way back to Tokyo from Motegi, my friend and I had decided to pull over at a rest stop for a bite to eat and a little refill of caffeine (in the form of some Emerald Mountain Blend). The long drive back on the expressway had started taking it’s toll on us and after spending an entire day shooting an endurance race, the last thing you want to do is drive for 2 hours back home. As we pulled into the parking area, and drove towards the back to park, we noticed a trailer with a pair of Nissan’s resting atop. As we got closer we realized it was the two Okabe Jidosha Taikyu team’s cars. I suppose they had the same idea as us and stopped for a little break. Not one to miss a photo-op, I grabbed my camera and tripod and snapped a few shots before we went into the restaurant (You can see one of the shots here – I’ll post more later). As we were eating our curry and whatever the hell else I had ordered, we kept trying to pick out who was involved in the racing team. I’m pretty sure it’s impossible to tell just by looking at someone, but we tried anyway. We finished up, grabbed some coffee from vending, and made our way back to the car when we saw this. Click past the break for more – I promise you won’t see stuff like this anywhere else.
Behind most cars, there are stories to be told. Some are your ordinary, every day type of stories that happen to the majority of people. I’m sure we all have lot’s of memories that are centered around our vehicles; but I doubt that they are quite as intense as the story that surrounds this particular S2000. Why? Because this one was at one point engulfed in flames. Has your car ever been on fire? Didn’t think so. This beautiful S2000 belongs to Nhan Doan, whom I had the pleasure of meeting at Wekfest LA, where he was showing his car for the day. I liked his car so much I asked if he wanted to snap a few pictures for NDF after the show. He happily obliged and around 5 or so we headed to Ballade Sports, where he was to drop off the car for a new tune that week. I was hoping to have the new website up by now, here, and have this post as a sort of ‘kick-off’ of the new layout, but as you can see it seems to be taking me longer than I thought. So, good news for all the fans I suppose, you get it early! Click past the break to learn more about this true fighter of a S2000.
. You can tell this was edited awhile ago because of the old watermark; proof that I have a lot of content that’s waiting to be posted. I’m almost embarrassed to call this another ‘Preview’ […]
Spoon Sports: a staple of the Honda tuning community. Any time I travel to Japan I make it a point to try and visit Spoon and Type One because, well, it’s Spoon. Aside from Mugen, no other company works closer to Honda than Spoon and the results are amazing. A few weeks ago my friend and I dropped by Type One to see what they had cooking. The day before the Twin Ring race we didn’t expect much, but fortunately they had left a few employees back at the shop to take care of the weekend customers. I’ll save the full ‘Locale’ feature for another day, but I’ve been itching to share these next few photos with you guys. I posted a teaser on the official NDF Facebook page a few weeks ago and you guys went ballistic over it; this is really a cool car. Anyway, when I was walking upstairs I was so intrigued by this one white S2000 that was for sale that an employee was showing to an interested customer, that I didn’t even notice it sitting to the side of the shop. When I finally saw it I could hardly contain myself. The guys at Type One have always been really cool with visitors, so I wasn’t reserved at all with my picture taking. Although it is a customer car, I was laying on the ground, getting behind lifts, and moving stuff out of the way to get better shots of it. I even caught the guy upstairs smirking a little at me – probably thinking why the hell I cared so much about it. Click past the break to see more of Japanese Darth Vader’s S2000.
. Not much to say other than I can’t get enough of this car; and I can’t wait to see it in person next Sunday at Twin Ring. Next week is going to be crazy. […]
It appears my elusive internet connection has abandoned me once again, and in doing so, has prevented me from sharing with you this beautiful car in a timely manner. So as I sit here in Starbucks, sipping my coffee, looking like Ko-Teng from ‘You Are The Apple of My Eye’ typing on his laptop in Taxi Coffee (obligatory Chinese movie reference – [long story]), it has become my mission to introduce you to the creation you see above. Jon Principe attended the Slammed Society show in Long Beach at the beginning of the month and I just happened to have the good fortune to make his acquaintance. As I was admiring the Amuse wide-body dressed in the reddest of paint, Jon approached me and asked who I was shooting for. When I told him NDF, I received the response I usually get; “Who?” Perks of naming your blog something so strange I suppose. Eager to practice more car photography, I inquired if he’d be interested in a photoshoot. We exchanged info and planned to get together some time in the coming weeks. Turns out Jon ended up winning first place in the Time Attack category at the show, and I ended up winning a couple hours of alone time with his S2000; a true red letter day. Click past the break for the feature.
Those of you who know Spoon, know that they are no strangers of the endurance. So it comes as no surprise that they compete in the Super Taikyu series in Japan. What may come as a surprise though, is that this is the last time we may ever see a Spoon car in the traditional blue and yellow livery. As of the 2012 race season, Spoon has decided to do away with the iconic paint job that has adorned their cars for 25 years. This S2000 (AP1), seen at the official test day at Fuji Speedway, is their 2012 Super Taikyu entry and will be competing in the ST-4 class. This year’s drivers include Taketoshi Matsui, Yasunori Nakajima, and Tatsuru Ichishima – Mr. Spoon himself. As of last weekend, the first round of Super Taikyu has already concluded, and unfortunately Team Spoon did not fare well. You can see the official results here. Hopefully, within the next couple days here, I can get to posting that coverage. Round 2 of Super Taikyu takes place at the end of April at Twin Ring Motegi. You can expect live coverage of that via NDF’s Facebook page, as I’ll be traveling to Japan to meet up with JDM Clips for a super terrific Japan motor sports tour. For now, click past the break for a closer look at Team Spoon’s S2000.
One for the Honda fans; HKS, among many other vehicles this year, brought out the same S2000 they had at SEMA 2011 here in the states. Dubbed the AP350SC-II Concept, (derived from the chassis code, the amount of power it produces, and the main power adder) this S2000 is host to a whole lineup of newly developed HKS parts. Namely, the GTS7040 supercharger that’s attached to the F22. Click past the break for a close-up of this beast.
. Found this in an old thread on S2ki; thought it was worthy of a your attention. I love seeing these things being used as Mr. Uehara intended. .
Due to some unforeseen trouble with my own car (i.e. broken driver side knuckle), it took me a little bit longer than expected to get this second part up; sorry ‘y’all. In the last post, I mentioned a little bit about the breakdown of classes and regulations for the Circuit Challenge. So for this one I’ll just let the pictures do the talking. I really like this shot, with the CR in the background. As I was taking a second look through some of the shots, I noticed a few EK chassis that were worth putting up. Check um’ out past the break.
Anything doing is worth doing right – and Mugen does track events right. Open to anybody with a Honda, enter into the Circuit Challenge and you are graced with four 15 minute runs on Tsukuba 1000 circuit, professional instruction on and off track, ride alongs with current professional racing drivers, the opportunity to drive one of three Mugen built machines, and the option of trying out Mugen products during your track time for free. This year there were 86 drivers in attendance, including JDM Clips own Taka. Check out the action below.
I recently visited the ASM showroom in Yokohama to snag some shots for a ‘Locale’ post, and happened across this orange highlighted AP1 sitting out front. Simple, but tastefully modified with a choice of ASM parts; tow hook, vented hood, Recaro’s (of course), rear wing and wheels. The white body makes the orange painted parts stand out even more, and although not my style, doesn’t look too bad. At least it’s not way overdone. Click past the break for a few more.