It takes a while to comprehend the complexity of Japanese culture, at least for a person on the outside looking in. Japan is a place that thrives on finding the perfect balance of bold and simple, new and old. They are extremely vigilant when it comes to maintaining tradition, but open to innovate when needed. Tokyo Auto Salon, held every year at the Makuhari Messe Convention Center, is a testament to embracing the past, and is the perfect place to get a taste of Japan’s harmonious car culture.
The car builders of Japan never fail to fascinate us. There are standouts, like Impulse, who effortlessly swap Toyota 86 transmissions into Truenos. Kato-San of Liberty Walk, famous for building extreme exotics, still has the utmost respect for the classics. This year he revealed a wider-than-hell Mazda RX-3 that brought in the crowds.
One car that caught us by surprise was the Triumph TR3 at the Work Wheels booth. Owned by the late Takeshi Tanaka, founder of Work Wheels, it was restored for this year’s show. Legendary aero maker Kei Miura designed the subtle flares, and it’s rolling on the latest Work Equip 40.
You can’t deny the cool factor that comes with some of these classic Japanese icons. We only wish we could hear these classics drive by.