To adequately summarise what Japan’s car history means to the greater history of the automotive industry, we’d need a few chapters. Japan’s domestic automotive market, or JDM, has provided so much to the realm of automobiles, from humble beginnings to global dominance. “Made in Japan” had bad connotations for the previous generation of collectors, but for this current generation, Japanese brand values are “reliable,” “quick,” “inexpensive,” and “easy to work on.”
Examine some of the most ridiculously priced collector cars on the open market for a long time. You have Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Alfa Romeos, and Bugattis. Usually, European cars and up to some extent, American cars come to mind; not Asian cars. However, this does not preclude the Japanese Domestic Market or vehicles produced by conventional Japanese-based automakers from making waves occasionally. Nissan, for example, provides the GT-R, a sports car bargain with a raw-performance-to-price ratio that outperforms anything assembled by Ferrari or Lamborghini.
They mainly fixated Asian companies on building everyday people’s cars and concentrating their factories to work as efficiently as possible during the supercar spring of the 1960s and 1980s, and they universally made them in such large quantities that they never got a scarcity tag. As a result, only a few historical Japanese automobiles are considered valuable or fetch ridiculously high prices at auctions. However, this is changing.
1973 Nissan Skyline GT-R: $430,000
The Nissan Skyline GT-R will always be remembered as one of Japan’s greatest automotive achievements. Because they did not bring it to the United States, it is now considerably more valuable and sought after by vehicle collectors all over the world. Not only that, but it was only available for a few months in 1973.
According to reports, they sold 197 copies. They simply built the car to get rid of the leftover engines from their predecessor. The 2-liter straight-six engine S20. This car is notable for its rarity rather than being the second in the GT-R range.
1970 Nissan Fairlady Z432: $809,022
Only 420 are made, and they were all sold in Japan, where they are highly prized and rarely come on the auction block. The Fairlady Z432R has a rarer racing version of the Fairlady Z432 and they made only 30 to 50 of these orange Z432Rs, making it the most desired Nissan Z.
In January 2020, one of these homologation specialties was auctioned at Tokyo’s Best Heritage Auctions, where it sold for $809,022. Know more about the $4,30,000 Skyline and the $809,022 Fairlady here.
1968 Toyota 2000GT: $1,001,844
Toyota and the Japanese automobile industry proved with the 2000GT that they could compete with the world’s best and they were here to stay. Opening the way for future Japanese automobiles in international markets of all kinds.
This 1968 version is a right-hand drive and has been restored from its original Pegasus White. However, it comes from a limited production run of only 351 units, so it ain’t cheap.
2012 Lexus LFA Nürburgring Package: $918,500
Lexus made only 50 of these. The Lexus LFA Nurburgring Package is the final chapter of a unique car, Lexus’ first and only supercar.
This supercar sold for $918,500 at the 2019 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale event, with the 4.8-liter V-10 producing an extra 10 horsepower for 562. The special-edition LFA is touted to reach 202 mph and complete the 0–62 mph sprint in under 3.7 seconds.
1992 AAR/Toyota Eagle MkIII GTP: $1,045,000
This automobile was the most dominant prototype in US motorsport history, and it was going to be auctioned by Juan Manuel Fangio II’s garage. The MKIIIs won 21 of the 27 races they took part in, winning Fangio the IMSA GTP Championship in 1992 and 1993.
The car was built by Dan Gurney’s All American Racers and given to Fangio by Toyota after it was decommissioned. This AAR Toyota Eagle MkIII GTP has delivered more racing success and technologically innovative designs during the IMSA GTP era than any other Toyota car.
1967 Toyota 2000GT: $500,000 – $1,155,000
Toyota’s 2000GT gained widespread notice as a strong competitor in the global sports car market after achieving fame in James Bond’s You Only Live Twice. We acknowledge the Toyota 2000GT as and lauded as Japan’s first supercar, and just about every aspect of its existence supports its demand for such a high cost.
After they produced about 351 Toyota 2000GTs in 1967 and 1968, the 2000GT is anticipated to value indefinitely because of its exclusivity, superb elegance, and association with the Toyota brand. Toyota 2000GT demand has shifted over time, with sale rates as low as $500,000 in 2019.
2017 Acura NSX: $1.2 Million
In mutated form, one of Japan’s exotic-fighting legends lives on. Acura poured everything it knows into the contemporary resurrection of the NSX, creating a carbon-trimmed masterpiece with a battery-enhanced feature and a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 that produces 573 horsepower. With a top speed of 191 mph, making it Acura’s quickest car.
1989 Mazda 767B: $1.75 Million
This 1989 Mazda 767B rolled across the Gooding & Company auction platform at Amelia Island in 2017 and sold for $1.75 million. The 1989 Mazda 767B is the most costly Japanese car that was not auctioned for charity, having a rotary-engined race car.
Chassis 003 was one of three constructed for the 1989 season. This automobile was one of just three endurance racers manufactured, and it was the only Japanese manufacturer to win at Le Mans in 1990.
2021 Lexus LC 500 Convertible VIN #100001: $2 Million
This is the first Lexus LC 500 convertible for the year 2021. When the first 2021 Lexus LC 500 convertible was auctioned off, the winning offer was $2 million in under three minutes. The Boys & Girls Club of America and the Bob Woodruff Foundation divided the $2 million hammer price.
The car is one of 100 that will be customized for the Lexus LC 500 Convertible Inspiration Series in 2021, with exclusive darkest blue paint, wheels, and other component highlights. However, the powertrain will be the same as other 471-hp LC 500s with a Direct-Shift 10-speed automatic transmission.
2020 Toyota Supra: $2.1 Million
The world’s first production version of the 2020 Toyota Supra GR, autographed by Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda. Barrett-annual Jackson’s auction in Scottsdale, Arizona in 2019 sold it for a stunning $2.1 million. The car, however, was sold for a good cause, with the entire bid price going to the American Heart Association and the Bob Woodruff Foundation.
Barrett-Jackson was the first to auction VIN #001 cars for charity 15 years ago, extracting additional value from these vehicles, waiving its auction costs, and donating the proceeds to charity. Barrett-Jackson has already helped to raise over $100 million for charity.
Japan is responsible for producing some of the best vehicles in the world but sometimes their creations are a little on the strange side.
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