Ahh… classic car events. They’re the place to see some of the cleanest, most pristine motors in the land, and be both blown away and slightly annoyed while doing so.
Both of those things happened simultaneously at the Pacifico Yokohama exhibition centre last weekend. Nostalgic 2days 2023 was the occasion.
You see, as anyone who knows me will attest, I love a good moan. And there’s no better place to get me started than at a classic car show. Or any car show for that matter.
Before I bring the mood down though, let’s talk about the good stuff, because there was a lot of it at the 2023 edition of this annual event hosted by Nostalgic Hero magazine.
Nostalgic 2days is the event to attend if you want to see the cream of Japanese classic cars. And not just sports classics, but kei cars and family sedans too.
These are cars that are perfectly preserved or restored and presented in mint condition. It’s the polar opposite of Tokyo Auto Salon, proven by the swarm of middle-aged men snapping away here at an Isuzu Piazza. At TAS, the cars comes second to the promo models for many.
As well as finished show cars, Nostalgic 2days is a great place to see cars that are part way through a restoration. It gives you a glimpse of just how much work goes into preparing these time machines.
Another thing I loved about Nostalgic 2days was the used parts stalls. It reminded me of browsing through car boot sales in the UK, something I would love to see more of in Japan.
There were also plenty of food trucks on hand with a little eating and rest area nestled amongst the display cars. It was all very nice, but I couldn’t help thing it would be nicer to be out in the open, regardless of the slight spring chill in the air. That’s was just one of my gripes. So now that I’ve started, let me get on with my moan…
It’s all well and nice being able to see these stunning old cars up close, but being jostled by thousands of other enthusiasts while trying to soak in the nostalgia completely spoils the atmosphere for me. Not to mention, it makes photographing at events like this a bit challenging.
The problem with Nostalgic 2days – something echoed by Dino, who’s a veteran of this event, is that the cars are too tightly packed together and there are too many people. Basically that’s just Japan in general, but I think it’s also true of many events the world over.
The other problem, and something which Jun-san from Hardcore Tokyo agreed with while we chatted next to an original kaido racer, is that, for the most part, these cars will always remain as they are. We had both seen the majority of the cars on show before, and even the new builds were basically all the same as the others. Take Star Road for instance. Their cars are amazing, but they won’t ever evolve. They will always be beautifully presented kyusha, just like the next beautifully presented kyusha.
There are exceptions, of course. Daddy Motor Works and Banzai Racing Equipment (B.R.E) are two companies pushing the boundaries of what a kyusha can be. The latter being a four-rotor-powered Hakosuka, which I’ll be featuring this year, and the former having some of the craziest kyusha builds ever.
I can’t really complain though, because if we want to see crazy kyusha, then there are of course events like TAS and SEMA. The Las Vegas show seems to be a bit more spacious and better laid out for enjoying the cars too.
It’s an annoying little paradox really, to be in love with the cars but loathe the place in which to see them. I can’t be the only one, so I’m interested to know how you guys and girls deal with big crowds in small places.
To finish on a high, you can see more of the cars from Nostalgic 2days 2023 in the bonus gallery below, and in a walk-around video I shot that you can check out here.