Winds of Change at JCCS Long Beach
Like many auto events, the landscape at the recent JCCS Long Beach (Japanese Classic Car Show) has changed as they have changed the year break and eligibility. The debate as to what is a classic and what’s “modern” is a hot topic. It’s also been a hot topic in hot rod circles as cars and trucks through 1987 vintage are now welcome in the show field at major national events like Goodguys, NSRA and others.
How many times have you heard a story that started something like: “I’ve wanted one since high school but I couldn’t afford it then”. Well some of the big news for this year at the Japanese Classic Car Show was allowing models up to 1995 in. That means those Japanese Super Cars of the 90’s that we couldn’t afford in High School are now allowed in and now we’ve aged and have a few bucks in the savings account, these cars aren’t out of reach any longer. For me personally this was about the only thing automotive wise that was missing from the JCCS.
Of course fourteen years ago when this event started these 90s machines weren’t classics yet. Seeing them here is a bit bittersweet however. As much as I love this era of Japanese offerings, seeing them at a classic car show is a reminder of just how old we are now!
No more iconic coastal shots in front of the Queen Mary either – the event host site for so many years. More cars means you need more space. That pushed the show down the street a couple of blocks. The Long Beach Marina Green Park is the new location and it does offer quite a few pluses.
For instance I’m sure the spectators that arrived later in the day were much happier no longer needing to take a shuttle to the event. The addition of hills works well for the 4×4’s, but if I can make a request for next year, let’s try to keep the sports cars off of them.
One of the other things that was very apparent to most of the people I spoke with was the quality of cars at this year’s show. While many of us got in to imports because they were cheap and fun, that’s changed as well. With the increasing rarity of many of these classics, the price and build qualities are also on their way up.
I’m seeing more cars staying original or being restored towards stock than ever before. Don’t worry – modified cars still reign supreme here at JCCS Long Beach, and the quality of these builds is on the rise as well.
Cleaner builds, and more rare parts are really pushing things to the next level here. All and all it’s a pretty good time to be a fan of the Japanese Classics and once again JCCS Long Beach drove that point home.