Setting Expectations: Motor Fan Festa 2016

HKS Premium Day - held right after Tokyo Auto Salon it was known for its great atmosphere and lots of cars with beautiful backgrounds of Fuji Speedway to photograph against. Featuring plenty  of awesome on-track events it was definitely in my top 5 events to visit on annual basis despite the cold January weather.  2016 saw the event being moved to late April and  included in a giant automotive mish-mash known as "Motor Fan Festa"

For those hoping to see some grass roots JDM tuning on display,  their dreams were shattered because what we saw on that day was nothing short of a full scale invasion administered by import and supercar community that could give "Track and Show" the run for their money.

With big names such as Liberty Walk highlighting the show there simply was no place for little shops to to display their goodies.

There were still traces of JDM left, but they had hard time fighting the abundance of exotics.

As we all know the Japanese supercar owners don't shy away from modifying their high performance luxury machines and this F12  is no exception.  Being fitted with carbon fiber aerodynamic parts crafted by Super Veloce Racing from Hiroshima it has left quite and impression on me when I first encountered the car on the exhibition floor of Tokyo Auto Salon.

This absolutely badass Ferrari 458 belongs to none other than D1 veteran Daigo Saito!

Look, another F12 has, but with a twist:

This JDM-humor logo designed by famous comedian Takeshi Kitano!

This 997 GT3 tuned by Otsuka-san from Check Shop is nothing to laugh about, however, as the road legal race car has a completely stripped out interior, sequential gearbox, center lock wheels, semi slick tires and is getting lap times around Fuji Speedway reminiscent of those set by Carrera Cup cars!

Those looking for some brand new exotics need to look no further as manufactures brought their new collections to display in front of the crowd.

Things were getting serious right there as Ferrari brought the rare dark blue La Ferrari. Unfortunately weather was just refusing to play ball as the fog became so dense that going to shoot track-side was simply pointless.

Luckily, there were some good photo opportunities later in the day.

On top of that, the variety of cars was simply astounding.  May I remind everyone that officially Dodge Challenger was never sold in Japan.

And then there was this: Forgiato Office-K C7 Wide.  Yep, it's wide alright!

The 991 GT3RS is enjoying immense popularity among track-day hungry enthusiasts.

Speaking of track, when it did clear up, the demo run was the only thing left on the schedule and as expected did not bring around any drama, but it's always cool to see an occasional Lambo being put to good use.

As for stationary Lambo's - there were plenty,

as expected, this Liberty Walk Huracan LP610-4 stole the show.

Lotus has always enjoyed great popularity among Japanese fans who enjoy the thrill of driving above everything else.  For such crowd Lotus has unveiled the 3 Eleven - with 460 horse power and 890 kg curb weight it is nothing short of go-kart on crack.  Drive safe, everyone!

For those seeking JDM, here is your sigh of relief.  After all, this is still Japan and every exotic enthusiast, including Liberty Walk's Wataru Kato has JDM blood in their veins.

if not show cars, there were plenty of privately owned cars that could drop jaws of any JDM fan

R34 GTR's don't get more badass than this.

As for Toyota Supra's, they just don't any better than the Ridox Supra reminiscent to one owned by Japanese racing legend Max Orido.

As for different options to tweak your Supra? You be the judge.

On thing for sure is that the popularity of this car never seems to die down as modern trends such as fiberglass see-through bonnet typical for Ferrari or ZR1 found its place onto this almost 20 year old car to show the goodies hidden in the engine bay.

A collection of R35's was present as well, highlighted by this Kuhl Racing example

as well as new Kamikaze R, being prepped for Time Attack super lap.

It's brother in form of 370z - the Kamikaze Z was also seen at Varis booth.

The DoLuck/Kleers time attack R33 is an evolving project that tends to surprise every time I see it.

It is a perfect blend of style and function as this time attack beast has all features of a show car.

But its most beautiful quality is its heart.  Do Luck engineers have done a tremendous work in perfecting the RB26 and giving in most modern upgrades on the market today.  It is indeed a masterpiece of engine building and we will be returning to this car to cover it in detail in near future.

From modern marvels, Lexus GSF by Novel has made its first appearance at Tokyo Auto Salon, and since then has been fitted with first ever after carbon accented full body kit, suspension, and titanium exhaust, all manufactured and available for sale from Novel.

I was delighted to see the GReddy MX5 project again.  We covered some of the features during our Tokyo Auto Salon encounter, but I could not walk by without snapping a picture of it sitting in somewhat more natural environment.

On to the classics.

It was awesome to see all sorts of Classic Skylines, original and replicas being paraded together,

but it were the Z cars, predominantly brought out by Starroad that stole the show.

Execution, attention to detail result in end-product that keeps fans of both modern and classic cars salivating for hours; when it comes to restomodding, Starroad gets it right.

As far as the engine building is concerned, they are in a league of their own.

Sometimes I wish I had more time to shoot these beautiful Japanese classics, but we must move on...

From distant past to a vision of the future. The BMW i8 built by Studie was absolutely astounding to look at.

As expected, there were plenty of M4 demo cars displaying newer merchandise,

predominately wheels and exhausts.

3D Design demo car was seen as it was at Tokyo Auto Salon, while the white M4 built with AC Schnitzer parts was displayed in front of Advent booth.

Getting an opportunity to have another look at the gorgeous Rohana wheels frozen violet-wrapped M4 was as treat as well.

This was also true for Garage Evelyn's Energy Complete i8.  Beautiful BBS custom forged 3 piece wheels were replaced with forged monoblocks in similar design and powder coated in pearl blue, while  everything else appeared to be identical to the Tokyo Auto Salon variant
The trend of the unique i8 has seem to have caught on within Garage Evelyn as their F30 demo car has been modified to have similar look.

BMW Motorsport's latest addition - M6 GT3 was also on display and was looking absolutely gorgeous; by far my favorite looking race car...

There were a number of classic race cars on display and on the track for the parade runs, which weather didn't allow me to shoot.

Luckily we had a glimpse of classic V10 Ferrari F1 cars scream around Fuji Speedway on "Ferrari Racing Days" event.

It was first time for me to see some of Ferrari's old time competitors up close and personal.  How can we forget the awesome livery of United Colors of Benetton?

or the ever troubled Leyton House machine that proved nothing but disaster for the team owners during the short reign in early 90's

Of course, there were plenty of D1 cars.  Team Hiroshima-Toyota with DRoo-P ZN6 powered by Tomei Power EJ26 motor was looking awesome

but this K'Spec Motor Sports JZA80 Supra with Ben Sopra wide body kit redefined "badass".

Wondering around pits looking for cool cars to shoot, I stumbled across a museum section.  Dome is a well known Japanese manufacturer or race car parts and conversions.  Their attempt at road car manufacturing was highlighted by Jiotto Capista concept powered by Motori Moderni flat 12 engine in version one and Scuderia Italia V10 engine in version 2 (pictured aboive)  Both are well known F1 engines.

But it all began with this - Dome Zero prototype, built in 1978 for the 48th Geneva Auto Show it was an attempt by founder Minoru Hayashi to put a race car on the streets.

So there we have it, despite the unfortunate weather it was an awesome event featuring great variety of cars.  With shortage of JDM tuning exhibits it was not what I expected, but as a BMW owner, I can't complain.

As always, thank you very much for sharing, commenting and following.  Please stay tuned for next update and meanwhile don't forget to check the bonus gallery below.

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