2017 New Year Mega Meet at Daikoku PA

Going to Daikoku on January 3rd has become a sort of religious experience for me over last few years.  Each year we see what can only be described as culmination of Japanese car culture accumulated in a truly one of a kind truck stop that has become iconic to car nuts worldwide.

Indeed, being located in the middle of a massive junction linking paths to Yokohama, Tokyo, Kawasaki, with routes to Aqualine and Haneda, and surrounded by miles of elevated highways it serves as a rest stop for truckers on weekdays and a perfect hangout spot for car lovers from all over Japan on weekends and nights.

I have planned my visit long before, but when you have an M3, just one visit to Daikoku wasn't going to cut it.  A quick stop at Tatsumi Parking area the night before was much desired and easily accomplished.

It was a great opportunity to reconnect with some of the fellow BMW owners,

and to get a feel of things to come next morning.

The Tatsumi detour ended at midnight sharp with cops sending everybody home, ultimately giving me the opportunity to get plenty of sleep because main event was not going to wait.

So without further ado, it is morning January 3rd and I am in my car heading the the only destination that matters - Daikoku PA

The strategy to arrive early almost back fired as I got stuck at the entrance, so the only logical conclusion was that the meet was already full on and I wasn't there on time.

Or fashionably late...

Immediately after arriving it was hard not to notice the sheer randomness contributing to diversity of car sub-cultures being present at the event.

Indeed, what makes Japanese car culture so unique it is the diversity and how well do people of different backgrounds and tastes interact with one other.

It was soon evident however, that stuff was about to get real.  The traffic at the entrance backed up all the way to the junction on top, as all but few parking spots were taken.

Quickly enough drivers began to improvise and created extra space in best possible Japanese manner,

but when JDM Five-O arrived we all thought that we were done for the day... Not on this occasion, as they calmly rolled by asking all be safe and careful.  In famous words of Ice Cube "Today was a good day"!

As we appreciated the courtesy of local law enforcement, more cars rolled in, including the Audi R8 wide body by Garage Ill Japan, which we saw at StanceNation.

There was something for purists as well, as this track spec Porsche 911 964 was about to hit the streets.

Then there was this.  Jacked Audi A5 with a little gold theme going on.

To me, however this timeless BMW E30 M3 was ticking all the right boxes.  I can't help but to admire the brave owners who look after their classic M cars and install incredibly tasteful mods in the process.

But then... This is why I go to these meets.  The ultimate classic of JDM world was there in the flesh: the one of 351 ever made Toyata 2000GT.  Manufactured in 1967 by the hands brave Toyota engineers who were in charge of building and designing the project and Yamaha contributing the brilliant 2000cc straight-six engine and interior panels made out of same type of wood as they use in grand piano manufacturing.

Perhaps the meet was a bit unique in a sense that there were so many cars from the American steed.

This Chevrolet Corvette C7 Z06 got my inner yank all excited.  This is what I simply call "perfection"

And how can you not love the C10 truck nonchalantly rolling past all the Ferrari's and Lamborghini's

It is thus was becoming self evident that today was some sort of low rider meet.

With most low riders handled by Mooneyes in Yokohama these guys were coming in from all parts of Japan.

Slamming, bouncing, they represented it all, and if anything, they definitely added a lot of spice to the annual Daikoku meet.

I think it is safe to say that with more exposure through social media and automotive web sites low rider scene is rapidly gaining popularity.

And then this: the ultimate muscle car: Plymouth Cuda! This is as rare as it gets, and seeing one in Japan completely blows my mind.

How about this Dodge Challenger RT with most unique paint job I have ever seen.

Speaking of unique, how about an appearance by AC Cobra

If you are into 80's yakuza style tuned Mercedes Benz, this event is genuinely for you.

Well, I am not, so let's move on, and look at some Ferrari's, starting with this 246 Dino.

It was great to see the Idling Power demo car from 2009 - the F460.  It has changed owners since we last saw it in 2014, but nothing in the car was altered, which is a good thing.

Speaking of F430's, this is 16M, also known as Scuderia Spider - extremely rare and drop dead gorgeous!

But few cars compare to F50 in both aesthetics and rarity. Seeing one at such event is truly a privilege.

Ferrari 488 models are flying off the shelves here in Japan, so rare they are definitely not, however aesthetically the car is a true masterpiece of Italian ingenuity and vision.

It was good day to be a Lamborghini fan as well, as this stunningly clean Gallardo showed up.

followed by this glorious Huracan Spyder with Power Craft exhaust.  Believe me when I say that the car sounds as good as it looks.

Speaking of sound; and looks for that matter! This is the ultimate machine that got us into cars in the first place - Lamborghini Countach 25 Year Anniversary Edition.

Nowadays, as we celebrate the brand's 50th Anniversary by appreciating incredible vehicles such as this Aventdador SV it is interesting to see how the company have progressed in last 25 years.  Being owned by Audi and being responsible from transitioning borderline undrivable monster machines to some of the most user friendly supercars without any loss of character is what sets Lamborghini apart from all others.

It was a good day to be a BMW fan as well, as a small crew of just three M cars showed up, starting with this AC Schnitzer spec F82 M4.

Followed by fully wrapped E92 M3 on Advan RS wheels and Akrapovic titanium exhaust,

and what can only be described as the Bavarian unicorn - the M4 GTS.  It was my first time seeing one since initial encounter at 2015 Tokyo Motor Show, so needless to say I was very excited.

But then, I realized that I was getting seriously sandwiched...

This was due to the fact that there was a full on GTR meet going on,

with owners of various generations GTR's coming and leaving all the time.

At one time I counted about six Nismo R35's in one place,

including a red one?

Ultimately making me ask how many have they sold in Japan and whether all of those at Daikoku were authentic Nismo's.

But I guess it doesn't matter, but what does matter is this 2002 Nissan Skyline GTR R34 Vspec II Nur in Millennium Jade color.

This is as good as it gets when you are hunting for 34 GT'Rs.  Good luck finding one, because a mint condition Vspec II Nur can snatch over 10 million yen at local auctions.

If you are looking for a rare breed of GTR's, here is a bone stock one! Still on stock wheels and with stock exhaust!  Not something you see every day.

But ultimately crazy rare award goes to this Nissan Skyline GTR R33 Nismo 400R

Say hello to one of fourty-four ever made!  When it comes to JDM unicorns, this is the one to worship as unlike anything ordinary coming out Japanese production lines engineers were given  blank check, and they made sure to fill it up with best goodies on the market.

The RB26 was given a complete makeover, and renamed to RB-X GT2.  The bore was increased to 2771cc and Nismo intake was fitted along with high efficiency intercooler and N1 Spec metal turbocharges. Brakes, suspension, wheels and tires were also swapped for more robust products so the car would be ready for all that extra power.

Why oh why did they stop production at just 44 units is beyond me, but this is life, and it makes car spotting in Daikoku that much more exciting.

But even without the ultimate JDM unicorns there is plenty at Daikoku to be excited about.  Take this Nissan Stagea RS4 for example.  I was surprised to find out that the stock RB25 motor was still being used as RB26 swap is a very common mod for these cars. The owner did take full advantage of the engine and tuned it to bat-crazy 450 HP via upgraded ECU, turbo's and cooling systems.  You just can't find a cooler wagon on the streets these days.

As usual JDM scene did not disappoint,

and frankly I don't think I have ever seen a turn-up this great, with such huge variety and diversity at Daikoku.  True, we did not get to see a Veyron, Pagani, or Koenigseggas as everyone would have hoped but each and every car that showed up had something to tell for.

As owners were taking to the exit, I decided to make one last stop at Tatsumi PA.

I rarely go there during the day and despite the capacity crowd at Daikoku it was fairly empty... All I saw was well... another Nismo GTR,

and some Porsche's...

feeling that my mission for the day was complete, I headed home.  Thanks for sharing, following, and commenting, everyone. Please make sure to check out the giant photo gallery below and check back soon for updates from Tokyo Auto Salon 2017!

------------------------  P H O T O   G A L L E R Y ------------------------ 




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