Cars, Flowers, and a Wide Open Road

No, I haven't gone completely metro-sexual yet, but it is that season where everything is blooming and the colors are changing from the boring gray to joyful green and pink..

Car wash services are busier than ever as people prepare to take their rides out for that spring time photo shoot.



The two weeks in the end of March and beginning of April present the perfect opportunity to catch your car decorated with a full blossom of sakura.

And while Tokyo presented plenty of unique locations,

 the true full bloom parade was happening in the mountains of Hakone.

where there were a lot of scenery to be enjoyed

and lots of asphalt to be played around on.

I immediately found some enthusiasts with same idea in mind.

And there were plenty of them showing off their awesome rides.

 I have never seen a Ferrari F430 with such a unique and deep shade of blue.  The 20" concave rims seemed like a perfect match to this gorgeous looking machine.

This Audi R8 with titanium exhaust and after market alloys was definitely turning heads as the owner wasn't afraid to hit the rev limiter every now and then.

The passion people have have towards Lancia Delta Integrale will never seize to amazing me.  Looking at this super-clean and decorated example, I can't even imagine the amount of hours that went into looking after and working on this machine.

Of course I couldn't just walk by this Mercedes Benz A45 AMG Edition 1.  Returning readers will certainly recall my introduction back in July last year and a test drive 5 months later.

There were lots of Lotus cars around and there was a good reason for it.

Around the corner, Lotus Cars Japan had their booth open with Exige S and Catherham 7 160 on display.  Apparently, the Catherham is enjoying a significant degree of popularity with waiting list extending over 8 months.  If you wanted one for the summer, you will be in disappointment, but what you can get on the road immediately is the Evora as according to Justin Gardiner they have; a few cars in stock and offer them at a significant discount.

Of course there were plenty of BMW owners happy to get their Bavarian machines out to the open roads.

I was particularly interested in this E90 LCI M3 on optional 19" wheels and rare for Japan Atlantic blue paint.  This is the only 3 series, along with its 2 door counter-part to feature a V8 engine and thus it will make its place in the history books.

Well, it was time to hit the road again and the only road that matters is the famous Izu Skyline.  .

I haven't visited this place since parting with the Skyline (G37) and it was an absolute joy to finally make it back.

The privately owned road is a 30 kilometer joy ride platform with lots of technical turns, plenty of straights and silky smooth pavement. 

Needless to say, it was a great experience to finally unleash the turbocharged horses and hear this engine sing at high RPM.  The car behaved absolutely flawlessly showing it's best qualities on mountain twisties.

I almost forgot how good it was to get out and just enjoy driving on these roads.  It feels nothing like the buggery of over-used traffic lights on streets of Tokyo or over-regulated highway chain. 

These roads, combined with the beautiful scenery is what having a car in Japan is all about.  I personally can't wait until I return to these mountain roads hopefully in very near future.

Thank you for reading, everyone, please don't forget to comment, follow, and share.

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