Archive | bubble era

I Went Into Mazda’s Secret Basement And Entered Rotary Heaven

Underneath a quiet office building in even-quieter Irvine, California, there rests some of the loudest, strangest, most glorious race cars and historic cars ever made. This is Mazda’s hidden basement in Southern California, something few people even inside the company ever see. What’s funny is it didn’t start out as…Read more… Continue Reading at http://jalopnik.com

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Mazda Was So Small In The 1980s That It Put Off The Miata To Make A Minivan

It’s hard to put the success of the Mazda Miata into perspective, a unbelievably huge hit from a rather small company. How small? Small enough that Mazda didn’t have enough money to to put out the Miata and a minivan at the same time, and it chose the minivan first.Read more… Continue Reading at http://jalopnik.com

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The Subaru Amadeus Was A Flat Six Shooting Brake That Wasn’t

The Subaru SVX is one of the looniest cars ever put into production: a flat-six luxury coupe with a fighter jet canopy from a company that mostly just sold plain station wagons. But these two sides of Subaru once collided and gave us the Subaru Amadeus. Or, rather, not.Read more… Continue Reading at http://jalopnik.com

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Toyota’s First Twin Turbo Straight Six Is Stranger Than You’d Think

Toyota called it its “finest engine,” ambitious, technologically advanced and, from a modern perspective, impossibly strange. And yet few Americans ever knew it existed: the 1G, a 2.0-liter straight six that’s more interesting than you might imagine.Read more… Continue Reading at http://jalopnik.com

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The 1989 Tokyo Motor Show Is Where I Will Go To Find Joy Again

What do we have to look forward to in our far-flung future year of 2018, besides the sweet release of death? Nothing. To find happiness again I will take you back—back to a time of unbridled optimism, of cheerfully bizarre niche vehicles, of turbocharged world-conquering performance, of gull-winged kei cars. Let us…Read more… Continue Reading […]

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Bask In 28 Minutes Of Gloriously Weird Ads For Japan’s ’80s And ’90s Luxury Sports Cars 

In these dark times, I find it is helpful to submerge myself in a bath of liquid car-nostalgia. I forget my pain and my troubles by going back to an era when people wanted nothing more than two doors, a silky smooth inline-six engine, plush leather seats, and extremely questionable business models. Friend, let’s go…Read […]

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The Auto Industry Will Never Be Insane Enough To Make The Mitsubishi Minica Lettuce Again

I’m currently working on a project about the “Bubble Era” of the Japanese auto industry the period from the mid-1980s into the early ’90s when the Japanese economy boomed, and Japanese carmakers rode the explosion like an ’80s action hero. It’s hard to generally describe how nuts the whole time was, so I’ll highlight…Read more… […]

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The Skyline That Lied: When Nissan Built A Race Car It Probably Wished You’d Forget

In early 1980s, Nissan was on a mission. It was fighting Toyota for supremacy in the Japanese market, trying to prove itself with high-tech road cars and flame-spitting race cars to draw people into the showroom. And it was making a case for itself, but it had a problem.Read more… Continue Reading at http://jalopnik.com

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The Nissan Pulsar NX Sportbak Is A Reminder That Cars Don’t Have To Be Boring Trash

You’ve probably seen a Nissan Pulsar NX Sportbak before, maybe on the weird side of town with half of its clear coat peeled away. You might not have realized that it was possibly the first and maybe the only modular car ever put into production.Read more… Continue Reading at http://jalopnik.com

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This Obscure Nissan Engine Is Where Modern Japanese Performance Cars Began

Back in the 1970s, Nissan was sort of stuck in a rut. The gas crises had ballooned the profits and export sales of the Japanese auto industry as a whole, but Nissan had lost its edge against Toyota and even the young upstart Honda. Particularly bad was Nissan’s company’s prestige model, the Skyline, which had […]

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