Welcome to our second installment of our Scene Theory series. This time we dive into what it means to be JDM in America. The acronym JDM has become more than a three letter abbreviation; it's become a lifestyle, a scene, a brand and a way of expression. On the most basic level, JDM refers to the "Japanese domestic market"⎯the heavyweight of the import scene. Honda, Subaru, Nissan, Mitsubishi and Toyota⎯all of these manufacturers are of the JDM variety.
This beautiful madness started when Olivier Benloulou was introduced to Haig Kanadjian, co-owner of Elite Garage Operations of Montreal, which is known for high-end, custom modifications and race operations. OB was looking for a local tuner to manage their endeavors. Haig and his partner, Harry, have been servicing OB’s projects and operations ever since. Fast-forward and we arrive at these breathtaking Italian machines they currently unleash at multiple races around the country. That’s right, plural: a blue 2008 Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera and a red 2012 Super Trofeo Stradale.
Bought by Brian’s father in the mid-1980s, the C2 Corvette has lived quite the exciting life. Modifying cars in the 1960s and 70s was popular amongst sports car aficionados—and this C2 was not spared from such fate. Just after it was ordered in 1965 it was modified for autocross racing. To accomplish this, the previous owner cut and widened the fiberglass fenders for larger 315-section tires.
When Subaru first brought the WRX to American shores in 2002, no one could have imagined the impact it would have on the automotive world. Ten years later, the rally-bred Impreza has become almost clichéd - it seems like everyone has a friend with a 500-hp STi. What you don’t see very often is an Impreza that stands out from the crowd. This 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX is not one of those situations.
The Volkswagen Bus has become the symbol of the flower power, peace-not-war, love child of the 1960s. You recollect the 1960s and there is the Bus, peacefully lumbering along as a staple of automotive innovation during that tumultuous time in American history. One would not expect to pull up alongside one and have it rocket away with 700 horsepower under the hood. Granted, most VW buses aren’t owned by Phil Mizzi.