Tuesday, 10 July 2018

276 horses short: The pedal-power JZA80 Supra.

All the motivation of a single 4 year old's lil' legs making the 276 horse (and 1100+ leg!) alternative that was Japan's car manufacturer's self-imposed "Gentleman's Agreement" of the late 80s through early 2000s seem.. well, stratospheric.

JZA80? SA80? Pff! 1995 JGTC Castrol TOM'S ABC-A80 Supra inspired pedal-car!

I love this thing. It's absolutely adorable.
Yeah, sure.. I might feel like a bit of a weirdo owning it when I don't actually have any children.. but when my inner-child is beaming? I'll manage. Failing that, it's a convertible caricature of an iconic 90s JGTC car. An inconveniently large model car...

..as yeah, as far as coffee-table decorations go.. err... well this one's the size of that damn coffee-table. Since it's no doubt difficult to get a proper sense of scale from these pictures alone, I'll clunkily paint a very clear picture: this thing's a metre long, 550mm across, 350mm to the top of the Supra's signature wing, and not-quite-so-accurately 400mm high overall. It's one large ol' chunk o' plastic.

Those large dimensions allowing even a simplified child's toy to accurately carry across some very fun detailing..

...so despite being dressed in that JGTC Castrol TOM'S Supra livery, this is very clearly styled after a pre-facelift Japanese-market production car - complete with optional aero skirts and rear spats! Yeahhhdorable...

Pedal power!

..and speaking of power; a pair of AA batteries inside that steering wheel power a bunch of goofy things. Lights flash and sounds play - fun to drive parents absolutely insane!

Pre-facelift means those mirrors are manually folding of course. The 550mm overall width dropping to a more carpark-friendly 500mm. The Barbie Jeep will do no damage today..

Safety labels, and the manufacturer or distributor revealed: Nonaka Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
Their website still shows similar toys today, but unfortunately Googling revealed little more about this particular model. No surprise for what's clearly a pre-Internet mid-to-late 90s piece...

SO.. if anyone has any more info on these, well I'm all ears!

Done. Good fun.

Saturday, 30 June 2018

One Nine Five Nine.

..and legitimately one nine five nine of two or three I've ever seen in person..!
Too expensive and far too err.. left-hand-drive-only, saw to it that not too many ever made their way out to Australia; this particular silver '87 likely making the journey well into the permanently-parked-ornament life it was sadly always destined to have. But hey, it's better than nothing - and exactly how I came across it sharing pride of place beside a LaFerrari (a similar story there) at the Gosford Classic Car Museum late last year...

"The absolute cutting-edge in supercars, 25 years apart: Ferrari's twin-turbo F40 and the hybrid Porsche 918! No, wait.. scratch that; Porsche's twin-turbo 959 and the hybrid Ferrari LaFerrari..! It's interestingly coincidenal that these manufacturers offered such competetive/comparable models three decades apart, as it's certainly not always the case.. #icantaffordanyofthesethings #gosfordclassiccarmuseum #carmuseum #porsche959 #porsche #959 #porscheclassic #porscheforumaustralia #laferrari #theferrari #drivetastefully #orbuyandputinamuseum #notmissingthepointatall"

"..followed by a crab-like side-step to the left for this shot: a look at the 959's centrelock (..hollow-spoked, magnesium..) 17" alloys and their original-fit Bridgestone RE-71s.. #becausenothingbadevercomesfromoldtyresonporschesupercars #bridgestone #bridgestonetires #bridgestonepotenza #re71 #re71r #porsche959 #porsche #959 #porscheclassic #wheelporn #rarewheels #magnesiumwheels #centerlock #carmuseum #gosfordclassiccarmuseum #drivetastefully #porscheforumaustralia #1987"

Now seven months later? That'd be the perfect time for a desaturated look at the rest of the set..!
What a thing though eh! A damn shame Porsche didn't make more of them; dreamy logic that could've meant a less absurd value, possibly more in Australia, and the slightly better chance of ever seeing one driven enthusiastically on local roads.
No, three hundred and thirty seven nine five nines was not enough..

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Rollin' in my 2.0, 2.0: an even crustier Sigma wagon..

...now with a 2.litre Astron II. No, bugger it, I'm making this work.

Following on from the previous '83 GJ Sigma wagon post with a similarly rusty, far crustier, example of the Australian Sigma wagon's 1985- GN final evolution - the high-roofed winged-wonder:
Some time between washes. 
As always, there's no amount of rusted sheet, missing paint, or added vegetation that can detract from what is otherwise a good example of a rarely seen vehicle. It's complete and unmodified; what appears to be original paint (just look at those profile-inspired pinstripe decals!) and quite likely all the parts, trims and screws exactly how Mitsubishi left them 30+ years ago. We're in business.

This particular April 1986 car was spotted at a local wrecker in late 2016. Time spent sitting under a tree (or something along those lines..!) is likely the only reason it even survived that long. Most of these are already long gone.
Two years on, whatever this poor old Sigma was scrapped and re-imagined into (soup cans maybe?) is likely already on its way to becoming something else. Yay recycling.. 

The high-roof GN Sigma Wagon's radical roof-mounted wing. High to clear the raised roof; it'd look fairly ridiculous on the earlier standard-roof cars!

Gardening Australia. 

The factory hot-cross-bun hubcaps almost look as though they've got colour-matched outer edges. I don't even want to look into that; I'm very happily going to imagine (pretend?) they were - don't ruin this for me!

..and a quick glimpse of the interior, as all was a little too festy to want to venture much further.

Anyway, just like the Camira posted recently, one of the typically less-loved locally-made vehicles (..than a Holden/Commodore or Falcon) that I just don't get to see much of these days. Not many care to keep them on the road, and even less are willing to make the finacially-illogical decision to restore and show one. For someone with a soft-spot for anything screwed-together in this country, a shame..

Thursday, 14 June 2018

The furious Group C ATCC '84 Bluebird..

Lazily diving into a little more phone-photo-tastic detail on a couple Instagram posts from October last year..

"The Group C 910 Bluebird George Fury piloted to pole position (and a lap record that stood for years) at Bathurst in '84. Just one of the awesome exhibits on display at the National Motor Racing Museum (at the base of Mount Panorama circuit, Bathurst) yesterday arvo.. #streetsweeper #groupc #georgefury #nissan #nissanaustralia #nissanmotorsport #nissansport #nismo #nissanblubird #910bluebird #bluebird #z18et #turbo #simmonswheels #mountpanorama #jameshardie1000 #nationalmotorracingmuseum #japanesenostalgiccar #1984"

"A better look at yesterday's 910 Bluebird, and the wild-aero-and-huge-Simmons essentials that helped define late Aussie Group C (CAMS) touring cars.. #groupc #atcc #australiantouringcarchampionship #georgefury #nissan #nissanaustralia #nissanmotorsport #nissansport #nismo #nissanblubird #910bluebird #bluebird #z18et #turbo #simmonswheels #simmonsv4 #simmonsmesh #wheelporn #mountpanorama #jameshardie1000 #nationalmotorracingmuseum #japanesenostalgiccar #1984"


A quick re-visit to the National Motor Racing Museum's website shows this isn't actually the car it presents to be, but a replica based on an original rally car. Odd. I wonder if it has the touring car's Z18ET turbo four? I wonder how close it is to the real thing? 
..so while these photos may only be a useful reference for other Rally-turned-ATCC replica builds out there (..uhhh, anyone..?); if we just crack out the ol' imagination... yeah, yep, this'll do.