Welcome to Wekfest Japan, one of the best stance-oriented events in the country.

We always enjoy spending time looking at how this scene continues to evolve and reinvent itself. At Wekfest Japan, USDM culture meets and mingles with the unique Japanese approach to custom modifications, so when I play hunter of speed stance for a day, I’m always overwhelmed and impressed by what I see.

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It’s been three years since I last covered this event, and because of that time span Wekfest Japan felt even fresher. I think there were only two or three cars I had seen previously, a further indication of just how hard people play here.

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With the event being held at Port Messe Nagoya right in the middle of Japan’s Golden Week, there was no way I was going to drive down from Tokyo and risk being stuck in the mother of all holiday traffic jams.

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Instead, I jumped on an early-morning Shinkansen out of the city, arriving at the exhibition center at 8:30am as cars were still being let in.

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By this time the exhibition center was pretty much full, such was the efficient job organizers were doing directing each car to its predetermined display space.

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Jun’s Hardcore x Pandem R33 Skyline was the first car that I approached as it sat in the middle of the dome illuminated by streams of light from the skylight strips above.

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I can’t wait to properly shoot this car in the streets of Tokyo one night. It looks like an absolute beast with those pumped guards.

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The mix of cars and styles at Wekfest always makes this an interesting event. There’s a bit of everything, from Japanese vintage and modern classics…

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… All the way up to high-end exotics, like this Ferrari FF from Bond, a supercar reseller in Tokyo.

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As always, I’ll be breaking down the show as much as I can, offering up a selection of spotlights after this main intro post.

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I wasn’t sure what Wekfest Japan 2021 would turn up given the last 12 months, but I needn’t have worried as show stoppers were in abundance. Simple or complex approach, we appreciate both schools of thought, and hopefully you can too. As ever, I look forward to taking the conversation over into the comments section and hearing what everyone has to say…

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What surprised me was the huge amount of German metal on offer, so expect a full post on that too.

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Then there were cars trying to look German, like this Z33, which I have a full feature on coming up pretty soon.

If there’s an overarching theme at Wekfest Japan it’s USDM, but this event really is so much more.

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It’s a place where you can see all our favorite ’90s icons restomodded to perfection. I was really digging this simple-but-well-sorted take on the JZA80 Toyota Supra.

And this FD3S Mazda RX-7 with impeccable static fitment.

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I know there are a lot of AE86 enthusiasts in the Speedhunters audience, so I’ll be sure to expand on at least two of the many amazing Hachiroku builds I came upon.

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Here’s a little teaser of the first one you’ll be seeing.

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Plus a few more.

I say this every time I cover a fitment-oriented show, but it’s so satisfying to see how this scene has pushed builders in Japan to pay more and more attention to the quality of execution.

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There were so many awesome Nissans to drool over that it was very difficult to pick which ones to show you in more detail. One pair you’ll definitely see in a separate post is from Ishikawa Bodyworks.

It was also great to see that Euro Magic in Osaka is still building awesome VWs under their Voomeran brand.

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Rotaries were well represented and I came across this Pandem-kitted FC wearing an iconic Racing Beat livery and sporting brand new RAYS Volk Racing 21Cs – the first set I’ve seen out in the wild.

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Fast and the Furious vibes, anyone?

Depending on your outlook, you’ll either be happy or sad to see that the over-fender movement isn’t going anywhere. In fact, if it hasn’t become obvious yet, it’s very much here to stay.

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Not everything needs to be wide-bodied though. This A60 Celica on SSR MK2 wheels shows us how a narrow-body should be done.

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In the Built By Legends R32 Skyline GT-R post from a few days ago, one reader commented that the 300ZX would be the perfect chassis to receive similar treatment from BBL. There were a few Z32s at Wekfest Japan, and I couldn’t stop wondering what that approach would be. Maybe dropping in the VR30DETT from the upcoming 400Z might be a cool way to go. Or would that upset too many VG fans?

I think the owner of this Impreza has done an awesome job of bringing some stance style to the WRC replica look. It won’t be doing much jumping though…

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It’s always good to see that onikyan is alive and well. Irrespective of whether you love it or hate it, this is very much a part of Japanese car culture. It also never fails to put a smile on my face.

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Especially when there’s great execution everywhere else.

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I hope this intro has given you a good taste of what was on show at Wekfest Japan 2021, and also what’s in store over the next week or so. It’s always tough to select cars to dive deeper on as most of what’s at the event deserves features.

So make sure you stay tuned for what I’ve got lined up. We’ll be starting with a AE86 that’s swapped things around a little…

Dino Dalle Carbonare
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