The Tokyo Auto Salon, traditionally held in January at the Makuhari Messe, is basically the Japanese equivalent of the Sema show in America. This year (well, technically next year), as you’d expect, it is going to be packed with electric cars but there are also a few interesting things that might make the show worth your while. These are my favourite three cars, in random order.
2023 Honda Civic Type R
The long-awaited 2023 Civic Type R will make its public debut at the show, even though Honda said it’ll still be wearing a special camo wrap designed specifically for Type R. They also said this is going to be “the best-performing Civic Type R ever” and they say the final production version will be revealed next year. We just don’t know when. Or where.
We don’t know even what type of engine it’s going to be using, but some say (and hope) it will be powered by an upgraded version of the same 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder that powers the current-gen Type R, which means it should deliver more than 306 hp and more than 295 lb-ft of torque. And the best part? There’s a strong chance it will be equipped with a manual transmission.
JDM Nissan Fairlady Z
Nissan is going to show up with a bunch of interesting vehicles, including a surprisingly compelling (albeit the front end is a bit ugly, see pictures below) van, and the inevitable squad of EVs, but as ever, we want the sportscars, and what’s better than combining the name ‘Fairlady’ and the acronym ‘JDM’ in the same sentence?
We say it’s the JDM version but the truth is the Fairlady (marketed as 400Z elsewhere) is only going to be available in Japan and the United States (+ other smaller markets), but not in Europe, because the 300-hp twin-turbo V6 that powers it is not green enough to be sold in the EU and Nissan therefore simply decided to ditch the European market (both in and outside the EU) altogether.
Nissan Z GT500 racecar
Loosely based on the GT-R, the Z GT500 racer is going to take part in the 2022 SUPER GT, with a Granturismo-style livery and bodykit painted in matte black.
The engine is a 2.0-litre turbocharged inline-4, which doesn’t sound like a lot but it actually delivers 650 hp.
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