The title of this write up can in no way be more literal, as several thousand Honda enthusiasts gathered at the home of Malaysian Motorsports, Sepang International Circuit. This event was a congregation of owners and car enthusiasts in celebration of one of the most iconic automotive JDM brands in the world and also one of the most famous power units in the world, with 14 million VTEC units built every year, I mean, who doesn’t know the Honda brand and there were Hondas for as far as the eye can see. Read more
Summernats is one of the biggest car festivals in the world from down under and is famed for some of the most insane burnout showcases in existence, and this massive event has made its way on to Malaysian soil which is the new inaugural event hosted here by JP Performance motor sports of whom has hosted the Super GT Malaysian leg for the past few years. Read more
June 13, 2014 by Eugene Chan Chun Hong
Filed under 7tune Classics, Articles, Car Shows, Classic JDM Cars, Culture, Events, Everything Happening, Honda, Japanese Nostalgic Car, JDM Feature Cars, Latest Articles, Mazda, Nissan, Odd Spot, Toyota, WTF
Following up from the teaser I posted up a few days back for AOS Asia, it is with great pleasure that I present to you the full coverage of the Art of Speed Asia 2014. From cars to bikes, USDM to JDM, one can really see the diversity that makes Art of Speed what it is. AOS, as it is more affectionately known, has become one of the premier events in the region that truly celebrates Custom Culture. Avid enthusiasts and passionate tuners from all over congregate at Art of Speed to supply a visual treat and there was definitely something for everyone at the event. Read more
June 8, 2014 by Eugene Chan Chun Hong
Filed under 7tune Classics, Articles, Car Shows, Cars, Classic JDM Cars, Culture, Daihatsu, Events, Everything Happening, Honda, Latest Articles, Mazda, Meets, Nissan, Odd Spot, Suzuki, Toyota, Tuner Cars
Appreciation and respect for one another in the world of motor sports and automotive culture are goals that many people aspire to achieve and Art of Speed has certainly fulfilled those goals with absolute flying colours. From retro to contemporary rides, all types of two wheeled beauties ranging from old, new, custom and downright crazy, they are all welcome to be showcased for everyone to appreciate. Read more
Before I set these two cars up for the shoot, I was just pondering with a friend on how people say these cars are so hard to find and so rare and yet, I have come in contact with so many of these rare beauties. Even a couple of my friends are getting into restoration of S30Z’s. From hidden personal restorations to internationally acclaimed zetto artisans, Star Road, I have been witness to a great variety of Fairlady’s and have found a deep and profound sense of appreciation for all of them, regardless of what state or style they arrive in… Read more
Retro Havoc 2014 was an event that really took a lot of people by surprise, including me. I had no idea what to expect for my third visit to Malaysia but for all intents and purposes, the promise of over 300 of the countries best classic cars, crammed into one giant aircraft hangar on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur made for a tantalising proposition that couldn’t be missed!… Read more
As the sun rose from the east down here in Malaysia, The boys from Back wheel Bitches & Twinbladez Stickers finally gathered their nostalgic rides after months of planning to embark on an uphill climb to Genting Highlands Malaysia. The estimated distance from the rendezvous point till the top of Genting Highlands was about a 47.7KM long drive, with a challenging 15KM steep uphill climb which will prove to be a gruelling test of endurance for the classic cars.
Watanabes never fail to make any car look the part.
Classic Pick ups are the growing trend down here in Malaysia.
Bosozoku styled Mercedes Benz, Nicknamed “Cosa Nostra”.
Media partners who were involved on ground to witness the heart pumping and adrenaline moments, were RTM Malaysia, Atara Racing Datsuns, Malaysia CCCM and lastly Retro Garage in conjunction with 7tune. There were 30 cars that participated consisting of Datsuns, Toyotas, Volkswagens and a Mercedes, We here at Retro Garage and 7tune was amazed with the high spirited aura radiating from the drivers as man and machine form a special bond to push forward to the peak and their goal was simple; to reach to the top and nothing could stand in their way.
As the drive progresses, The convoy of classics were 25KM closer to the chequered flag but unfortunately there were a few problems that had come up; few cars were left behind as their machine experienced technical problems while pushing the limits of their rides and for some, they stopped for an hour or so to let their cars cool down before they resume another half of torturing drive up fairly steep corners. Eventually the convoy arrived at the peak of Genting Highlands Malaysia with an ecstatic atmosphere and an overwhelming amount of happiness can be seen on each participant’s face. Nothing can explain the sheer excitement more than seeing those drives who made it up like a bunch of kids that just got huge amounts of candy.
Lastly, Respect was given to all the drivers who spare their time to conquer the treacherous situation climbing up onto Genting Highlands. And not forgetting a special thank you to Retro Garage, RTM Malaysia for your patience and willingness to cover this historical moment.
That’s all for now, Signing out from Malaysia. Terima Kasih!
Terima Kasih – Means thank you in Bahasa Melayu
EVENT MAIN SPONSOR – TWINBLADEZ STICKERS
Words – Praveent Chelvam
Photography Kean Yap/Praveent Chelvam
After a good night’s rest we got up nice and early to head on over to Sepang again on Sunday to bring you the final coverage of our 2 part coverage of the Super GT here in Malaysia and coming early was certainly the right choice to make as Sunday is always more lively at Sepang for Super GT. We stored away our things at the media centre and grabbed our vests and headed out again for coverage and we decided to get a regular spectator’s perspective and see what they see. Read more
Its a new year and its time again for the JCCA (Japan Classic Car Association) annual new years meet in Odaiba. A veritable feast of classic automobile goodness and plenty of gasps of “natsukashiiii” from the locals…natsukashi meaning “its so nostalgic isn’t it!!”
Straight in at the gates you gaze upon rows upon rows of gleaming classics, most older than myself.
Alongside all the Cars is a very very Japanese level enthusiasts flea market and by Japanese level I mean everything you would ever want as a classic car lover no matter what your vehicle of choice or fancy is! From Sparco seats to vintage car sales brochures to toy cars, you name it its here.
Headlamps, you got it.
Model Kits, absolutely.
I spent hours walking the aisles mesmerised by all the history surrounding me, whilst turning down one of the aisles I came upon two schoolboys holding a flag and wearing uniforms….upon speaking to them I found out that they form part of the Hosei University Automobile Club, today they had brought along a real stunner. A 1938 Jaguar SS, a real piece of automotive history, as far as I could read most of the parts and some of the bodywork is still original, either way its a grand spectacle.
As an Englishman it was rather strange walking around a Japanese Classic Car meet and being met with rows upon rows of classic Britishness, from rows of Lotus Espirit and various racing incarnations of other Lotus models to Minis, Triumphs and Jaguars.
After a while of wandering around and chatting to some locals I found what I personally was looking for, the Fairlady Z section. I have always found the first gen of Fairlady Zs to be such a beauty to behold….which comes as no surprise given where its design influence came from…..this particular model however I found in the parking lot!!
Up and down I went finding more gems from “Back in the day” sometimes so far back in someones day I don’t know if I was alive at the time some of these cars rolled of the production line or flew off the grid.
Found some real gems.
A wild blue Celica GTV circa 1972.
As the day drew to an end my shutter finger was still maniacally twitching away, so much awesomeness. It was then I had an epiphany about enthusiasts and collectors of every nature….we all love what we do and love to talk about it with like-minded and noobs a like, if you have the passion, they have the time, I shot this last image and I think it sums up the atmosphere of the day perfectly, bunch of mates hanging out talking cars around a car, drinking ghetto sake surrounded by car parts and other car lovers! CARS!!
Till the next time… but before I go, here are some bonus shots for you to enjoy
It was an absolutely MEGA end to 2012 for 7Tune – with almost a dozen events to attend, countless people to meet and a couple of international events to fly to. Here is a rundown on what you can expect on 7Tune in the coming weeks during the first month of 2013… Read more
Publika at Duta Solaris in Kuala Lumpur played host to one of the most exciting events of the year. The Art of Speed event is billed as Malaysia’s first “Kustom Kulture” and hot rod show that features everything “custom”. How does this fit into the JDM related world? We will soon find out.Subaru Leone pick up truck and the orange “Dragon” Toyota Celica
The Art of Speed event was held at Publika’s The Square and White Box. The Art of Speed event is inspired by the successful Mooneyes Yokohama Hot Rod & Custom Show in Japan, which had recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. I was happy to be invited by one of my best friends and co-organiser of the event, Mr. Rahmat from Playhouse Garage.
Rahmat, the owner of Playhouse Garage, specialises in rust repairs and restorations for classic and retro cars. He offers custom modifications and repair jobs to old or new cars.
The event was held over a period of two days. Various local celebrities, bands and artists had made their appearance on that day, where they have performed on stage, playing rock and punk music. People were mostly occupied by the diversity of activities that were offered in the event. The crowd was also exposed to airbrushing, pin-striping, tattoo demonstrations and various related activities. Performing artistes include Altimet, The Malayan and LOKA Band, among others that were present that day.
It was very interesting to find that there was a Moon Eyes authorised dealer in Malaysia. Moon Eyes were hardly heard off outside of USA and Japan, unless you follow the retro and classic JDM scene a lot. It was nice to find that finally decided to bring the cool range of products from Japan. There were tons of imported T-shirt and automotive related accessories for sale. Sadly, due to time limitation, I was unable to make any purchases, because there were too much to choose from!
KickAss Choppers from Jakarta, Indonesia and Thor Chops and Kustoms from Bangkok, Thailand were flown in for this special event, along with their awesome customised motorcycles. A lot of modified motorcyles and bicycles were on display. It was nice to see some bikes to be turned into a work of art. The bikes were a mix of either European, American or Japanese bikes.
The Harley Davidson Club of Malaysia were also present to lend their support to the movement. This beautiful Harley Davidson on display in Beautiful Machine’s booth takes cues from both Japanese and American modifications. I definitely like the customised Japanese artwork on the bike helmet.
Asep, the owner of Switchblade lifestyle diner, is the proud owner of this star car, a modified Chevrolet Impala with air suspension lift kit and a muscular V8 engine. He is also the brainchild of this event and he is responsible for bringing this wonderful customs and modification culture to Malaysia for the first time. It was great for me to witness the Impala first hand in Malaysia, as Left hand drive cars or more-so, American cars are pretty scarce in Malaysia, due to the horrific road tax system, that taxes cars on engine cubic-capacity or size. The V8 growl was definitely an awesome engine soundtrack that took my heart away.
Rock and roll music were played until late evening. After the bands had wrapped it up for the night, participants of the Midnight cruise were told to assemble in front of the Square, to be led by the local Royal Malaysian Police bike outriders for a car cruise around the city of Kuala Lumpur.
I brought my passenger along and we went off in style, revving the engines loud in my 1995 Jeep Wrangler and hooning around the city of Kuala Lumpur, along with other cars and bikes. We started our journey from Publika, passing by Jalan Duta, Jalan Kuching, Jalan Tun Razak, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Jalan Sultan Ismail, and then back towards Jalan Duta again to assemble our cars and bikes in front of the Istana Negara car park for a photography session with the event organisers and participants. (Editor’s Malay language translation note : Jalan = Road ; Istana Negara = National Palace)
About 20-30 cars of Japanese, European and American mix turned up for the Midnight cruise. The event was overall a great success. I wish that in the future, there will be more JDM participation, but this is just the beginning, and being this successful, I have faith that JDM participation will increase.
Words – Kevin Lee
Photos – Kevin Lee
7TUNE. THE ULTIMATE JDM EXPERIENCE SINCE 2005.
Not everyday you come face to face with legends, and we were extremely lucky to be able to feature a pristine 1975 TA23 Celica that belonged to one of my many friends who had a united passion for restoring and maintaining Japanese Legends. Read more
I simply could not believe it. I just stood there staring at it in disbelief, wondering if it was really the genuine holy grail for all Zed lovers. Could it be the rarest and most valuable Fairlady Zed in the world; the Fairest Lady of them all? Read more
I’m going to show you around an extremely special little EF9 that is packed with modifications and built to such a high standard but at first glance you may just pass over it without a second look at it because it appears…normal. And yet, there is so much under the surface here, that it’d be foolish to overlook it! Trust me, this EF is properly hardcore. I had some quiet time with the car to see what really made it tick and then a rundown on what went into the build with the owner… Read more
“You will never find another pristine example like this anymore around Malaysia.” This is one car in Malaysia that has been sought and dreamt by car enthusiasts of young and old, around the world. It was a very fortunate moment to be given a glimpse of this fine beautiful machine, before it goes on sale and to be sold to the luckiest owner in Malaysia.
The Datsun 240Z, which Mr. Ng owns, was obtained about 30 years ago from Kuantan. He admires this glorious machine very much; that he had it garaged and pampered all its life. He has retained many of the original parts in the car, to preserve its originality. So what makes this car very special?
The Datsun 240Z is the ancestral grandfather of the popular Nissan 350Z or 370Z. It is also fondly known as the Datsun Fairlady Z in the Japanese market. The smooth, Kammback swooping lines of the car’s silhouette is the unmistakeable Z car trademark. The President of Nissan Motor Company USA, Yutaka Katayama, didn’t wanted to gamble its luck with the company’s image abroad, decided to enter the American market with a new brand, called Datsun. They would want to disassociate itself from the brand in case they failed to penetrate the US Market.
The 240Z started in mind, as an affordable sports car for the masses. Designated as the Model S30 the Fairlady’s styling and design cues are from German-American designer, Count Albrecht Goertz, who was also well known for was involvement in the design inputs of the Toyota 2000GT coupe. The Toyota 2000GT went on to be a legend of its own and it became one of the most desirable Japanese sports cars in the planet, after being driven in the 007 movie, You Only Live Twice, starring Sean Connery.
The 240Z was a star of its own. Although it did not have the endorsements of a widely acclaimed movie franchise, it has its own merits and sensations, not least because of its price. It was a very smooth, civilised, fully equipped yet a very capable sports car its time. Most journalists of its time had compared it to the legendary Jaguar E-type, however the 240Z trumps in it being a more affordable alternative than the latter. With all the positive praises from automotive journalists everywhere, buyers began to flock into the Datsun showrooms.
The long nose of the 240Z was very distinctive in shape, as it wrapped around a 2.4 litre inline-6 engine snugly, that produced 151 horsepower. Power might sound inadequate by modern standards, but back in the early 70’s, this was a lot faster than most cars in the category and overall car performance beats the baseline V6 powered Ford Mustang of its days.
The car had modern underpinnings for its time. Chassis specifications were very up to date, considering it had 5-speed running gear, all independent suspensions via Macpherson struts, wishbones and coil springs, rack and pinion steering and front disc/rear drum brakes. The dashboard was however, more American, having inspirations from the dash of a Corvette.
Soon, Nissan realised that the 240Z was an instant success. They realised they were unable to cope with the demand on the market. Never had their cars ever been compared to the badge prestige of a Jaguar but yet provided so much mechanical reliability in the Z cars.
The original Datsun 240Z was sold at a phenomenal rate of 50,000 cars a year. Later in 1973, Datsun introduced its 260Z model, which had its engine enlarged by increasing the size from 2.4 litres to 2.6 litres, in hope that it will compensate for the power losses due to detuning of the engine in accordance with the U.S. emission limits. That however, did not helped, as it possessed lesser horsepower and torque than the former. Newly regulated U.S. rules dictate that the crash bumpers had to be larger, which caused the 260Z’a performance to suffer.
The Datsun 260Z later introduced a pair of tiny seats for passengers at the rear. Designated as the “+2” variant, it allowed two adults to be tucked in properly at the back, although the designs of the Z had to be altered, with its swooping rear and flow lines changed slightly, to accommodate the headroom of two adults. That made the “+2” variant undesirable, as the hump from the roofline raised made it ugly. Sales unfortunately plummeted considerably after its introduction.
The Datsun 280Z was the last hurrah in the earlier Z cars. It had its engine enlarged to the final size, of 2.8 litres. Realising that the performance was suffering in its earlier 260Z cars, the 2.8 litre engine produces good power figures that finally offsets the lack of performance due to the requirements of the U.S. government of its time. The 2.8 litre engine adopted a Bosch electronic fuel injection and junked its older carburetion unit for driveability.
Demand for the Z cars had remain strong most of its life till the last model sold in 1978. Despite all the models that were sold in the US and European market, the only model that was not sold outside of the Japanese car market was the Datsun Fairlady Z432. The Datsun Fairlady Z432 was fitted with impressive twin-cam 2.0 litre engines that were actually powering the most legendary of Nissans since the 70s’. This legendary entity is none other than The Nissan Skyline GT-R. The engine produced 160 horsepower and it emitted one of the most unforgettable engine sounds, that distinct note of which is still appreciated by motorsports enthusiasts up until today.
The Z432 is one of the most expensive and highly sought after Datsun Fairlady of them all, considering prices nowadays still going for a whopping $100,000 in Japan, and with so few in existence of which are mostly held on by collectors and it is hard to see one ever change hands anywhere in the world. Only 420 units of these were ever built and sold to the public.
Considering it was one of the most affordable sports cars of its period, most race teams have purchased them for racing. It was a very successful race car in the 1970s. Famous names such as Bob Sharp Racing in the Eastern US, had employed Paul Newman of acting fame, to race for its race team, in their race prepared Datsun 240Z. While in the Western US, Brock Racing Enterprise, participates their races with a race prepared Datsun 240Z, with John Morton winning most of the time, at the wheel.
With such immense fame and involvement in racing in its days, the Datsun 240Z was a legend of its own. It was very much a Nissan GT-R in its time. The 240Z is also portrayed often in modern media, in the forms of modern serialised comic/animation, as the lead character vehicle in the Wangan Midnight series. With renewed interests in the cars, most of these cars in Malaysia are sold for exorbitant prices now to enthusiasts. Even very badly rusted wrecks are purchased by enthusiasts to be restored and repaired to its former condition.
It will be a while before a car of such pristine condition will appear for sale in the market. It is a poster boy’s dream come true to be able to come close to feel and admire the car from close. Hopefully, the new owner will enjoy and preserve the car for the coming years.
Words – Kevin Lee
Photos – Kevin Lee
7TUNE. THE ULTIMATE JDM EXPERIENCE SINCE 2005.