Although we’re treated to some pretty impressive modified car shows here in the UK, there’s one big problem with the vast majority for hardcore fans out there: they’re just not long enough! As 4pm rolls around and owners’ stomachs begin to rumble, the venues usually clean themselves out within the space of a few minutes, much to the dismay of the more dedicated in the audience who’ve waited a whole year for this event to come round once again.

That’s exactly where Japanese Auto Extravaganza [JAE] comes into the equation. Run by car clubs, for car clubs each August/September, the event takes everything that’s great about modified car events and stretches it into a four-day camping festival. And because JAE is all about the people, whilst bringing you some of our favourite cars from this year’s event, we’ve also decided to share the owners’ fascinating stories, too.

  • OWNER: Dean Carter
  • CAR: ’75 Datsun 1200 Coupé
  • KEY MODIFICATIONS: Minilite-style alloy wheels and an uprated stereo


“I had a modified Evo X before this, but wanted something older and with more character. It was an itch I needed to scratch and I don’t regret it! I always wanted to stick with Japanese cars, and with its Mustang-style features and being so rare, I knew this was the one for me. Future plans include lowering it on some retro wheels, a retro steering wheel and a full re-spray.”

“The best thing about JAE is camping with the boys and girls from my car club, JDMK. I’ve been going with them for the past six years and everything about it makes it one of the best weekends in my calendar; the relaxed atmosphere is amazing!”

  • OWNER: Steven Grove
  • CAR: ’91 S13 Nissan Silvia ‘Odyvia’
  • KEY MODIFICATIONS: The Odyvia was an unofficial derivative of the S13 Silvia created by Japanese tuning house Spirit Rei, which featured a front-end conversion using headlights from none other than an RB2 Honda Odyssey, along with a wide-body kit. This very car was Spirit Rei owner Motohiro Taniguchi’s master car, used to create the moulds which all other Odyvias were made from.


“I located this car in Japan in February 2017, whilst on holiday to source something special. I was after a Kenmeri or another Hakosuka Skyline, but both proved hard to source. During many different visits to various dealers I stumbled across this one. I knew I had to have it as I love the cars that are different, unique and rare.

Once imported the car was in need of a restoration; the paint was faded from the intense Japanese sun, the dash had cracked and the painted audio install looked tatty and not my taste. Over the last three months, the Odyvia has been fully restored inside and out. Whilst I have retained the original look a few subtle mods have been added to bring the car back up to date and again ready to be seen and enjoyed.

JAE is the show that the club I’m in looks forward to every year. Its unique in that it’s a four-day show where you get to enjoy being with your club members and the clubs cars all weekend; it’s great being able to visit all the other clubs and their cars, allowing you to talk to them first-hand whilst relaxing with a beer.”

  • OWNER: Mark Kelly
  • CAR: ’98 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution V
  • KEY MODIFICATIONS: Comprehensive long-rod engine rebuild with Garrett GT35 turbocharger and new fuelling system to produce over 600bhp, wire-tucked engine bay, Öhlins coilovers, motorsport-inspired interior, Alcon brakes.


“There were two main reasons I decided to go for the wire-tucked look on my Evo. Firstly, I hate things looking untidy and the standard Evo engine bay looks a complete shambles, and secondly it hasn’t really been done before, with most people determined to squeeze more in as opposed to taking bits out.”

“The car is usually used as a weekend show car at the moment. It does the odd drag event at our local abandoned airfield but as myself and a team of admins run Northern Ireland’s biggest Japanese performance car club – JPCCNI – it usually ends up on our stand as a show car during the summer. That’s not to say it’s only a show queen as when it’s out it gets driven hard, and it loves it…”

“The atmosphere at JAE is like no other show I’ve been to; the people are friendly and welcoming and there is such a mix of cars and styles it means there is something for absolutely everyone. Plus, what’s not to like about parking in a field and getting merry with your mates then talking cars all night to random strangers?!”

  • OWNER: Kay Rush
  • CAR: ’79 Datsun Skyline 240K GT
  • KEY MODIFICATIONS: Period re-spray and rear-light conversion, restored bumpers.


A friend of my Dad’s rescued this car from the scrapyard with the intention of putting it on the drag strip. The moment my Dad saw it he wanted it but my Mum had said no more cars! To circumvent her, Dad bought the car as a present for her in August 1995; his trick worked and Mum used the car as a daily driver.

Then on New Year’s Day, 1997 my Mum feel ill and passed away. Dad threw himself into restoring the car and having it resprayed the colour it is today. He spent several years enjoying and showing the car until he felt that he could go no further with it, but he didn’t want it to leave the family so in 2006 he gifted the car to me.

To date, the only modification we have made to the car is swapping out the European-standard rear brick lights for a set of era-correct hotplate lights we purchased for from Kuala Lumper. We have replaced both bumpers which are genuine Datsun parts that we sourced from Japan and Kuala Lumpar respectively. All other work has been maintenance-related; keeping her road worthy and cosmetic touch-ups for showing.

This winter, we intend to remove the engine and give that and the engine bay a refurb as it was never included in the paintjob Dad did and it looks tired. The bodywork is starting to blister in places now and the 20-year-old paint is starting to show signs of wear, so a full restoration and paintjob is on the cards in the next couple of years before the rusts gets too bad. We’re just trying to decide what colour to go, with blue being the favourite at the moment…”

  • OWNER: Christopher Wait
  • CAR: ’86 AE86 Toyota Corolla Trueno
  • KEY MODIFICATIONS: Full nut-and-bolt bare-metal restoration and AE85-AE86 conversion by Japanese tuner IMS/RS YASU in 2002, 4.5AGE engine re-built to 1700cc with all-new internals, seam-welded race chassis with TRD suspension components, Southernway Epsilon three-piece JDM split rims.


“The Corolla was imported into the UK in 2006, where it covered approximately 800 miles before it was put into dry storage for a decade. Since its restoration in Japan in 2002, the car has covered around 8000 miles.”

“I purchased the car at the beginning of 2017 and have done a fair few bits myself already. I constantly find myself cleaning and tinkering – this isn’t just a dry-weather driver but a show and project car, too.”

“The upgrades it received in Japan are well known but rare. It’s often found to be expensive as two donor vehicles are required to create the finished product.”

Mitsubishi FTO Version R

The FTO (Fresh Touring Origination) was produced between 1994 and 2000. Planned to be sold only in Japan, high demand globally saw it become available in the UK.

All FTO’s were two door coupes, front wheel drive and an inline-four or transversely mounted V6 as engine choices mated to a 5-speed manual or INVECS-II semi-auto box. Pre-facelift auto models came with four-speeders whilst most facelift [1997-2000] autos had five-speeds.

In 1996 a GP model was introduced with a late update in the pre-facelift era, Soon after this update, in 1997 the face-lifted GP was overhauled as what can be regarded as the ultimate FTO, the Version R!

Freshly imported, we sourced this lovely late ‘Scotia White’ example for a UK customer using our Personal Import Service. It’s signature external feature is it’s large Version R branded rear spoiler. If you think this gives this car a bold look the interior is even bolder with its colour-coded ‘FTO’ monogrammed front seats in Blue. Two other colour variants were available from the factory. Black seats with ‘Passion Red’ body colour or red seats with ‘Pyrenées Black’ body colour.

Being one of the later models this light weight FTO was branded as an Aero GP Version R. As well as the Version R branded spoiler there is a Version R decal on the nearside of the front lip and Aero GP decal on the offside rear of the boot lid.

Mechanically this car gets the best combination for an FTO, a five speed manual gearbox and the 2000cc DOHC MIVEC 24 valve V6 engine putting out 200bhp. This engine gives the car it’s character with it’s fantastically raspy sound note. Unlike other FTO models it came with uprated suspension, 20mm front anti roll bar instead of 17mm and a 20mm rear anti roll bar rather than 18mm. A limited slip differential was also included to help translate the V6’s power through the front wheels onto the road.

In 2000 the FTO was discontinued due to new safety regulations in Japan deeming it not cost effective to be updated. As this specific car approaches 20 years old, all the more special and rarer it becomes. The period FTO, Version R and Aero GP graphics around the car really uplift the white bodywork well and represents the capsule of time this JDM car comes from.


Fujitsubo’s new FK2 Titanium exhaust system

Despite recently having been superseded by the FK8, it’s fair to say the FK2 is still a relatively new car to the market. With both of Honda’s latest Type R’s utilising the newly developed K20C1 turbo charged power plant, aftermarket parts manufacturers are investing plenty of time looking at ways to improve performance.

Turbo charged vehicles typically respond well to a more efficient, less restrictive exhaust and the FK2 would appear to be no exception, with healthy gains made by simply changing the standard system out.

You can imagine our excitement then, when Fujitsubo announced at the start of the year they had something special on the horizon for the FK2. The level of experience and consideration that goes into all their systems, coupled with superb build quality was always going to produce something great. The finished product is the best we’ve seen to date!

The new Authorize RM+c exhaust is an entirely titanium, axle back exhaust system complete with carbon fibre exhaust tips. Being entirely titanium, the system only weighs 5.1kg, versus the 9.4kg OE system, offering a substantial saving in weight.

It also offers that unique rasp that you only get from a titanium system. Check out the video below to hear it in action…

True to form, Fujitsubo carried out a dyno run before and after on their test vehicle and found that whilst peak power was 294bhp @ 6330rpm beforehand, the car produced 306bhp @ 6150rpm and also displayed a healthy increase in torque once the system was fitted.

Being an axle back system its suitable for both RHD and LHD FK2’s, which ensures our European friends don’t miss out.

As European distributors we were fortunate enough to receive this cracking exhaust from Fujitsubo’s first production run. The rest had sold to the Japanese market exceptionally quickly, such is the popularity of these systems in Japan.

After a brief conversation with serial Honda enthusiast Stuart ‘Dotty’ Dott, it became apparent he was keen to be one of the first in the UK to give the system a go. One early morning drive and copious amounts of coffee later, the system was on Stu’s newly acquired Champ White FK2.

First impressions were excellent. The exhaust note was much deeper and more purposeful than standard. The system burbles away on idle and with a blip of the throttle, offers an exhaust note that is far better suited to the FK2’s muscular styling than the subdued, standard one.

The exhaust tips and their carbon garnishes complement the standard gloss black diffuser nicely. The slightly staggered position of the tips is similar to that of the OE tail pipes, following the slight curvature of the diffuser so as not to protrude.

After driving home and having the chance to really live with the exhaust for a few hours, would Stu recommend the system to others?

“Without a doubt… It’s a great piece of kit!”

Check out the Fujitsubo range here and remember if there’s an application we haven’t listed we can probably get it so drop us a line!

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