Owning a Piece of History: Top Classic JDM Sports Cars


Last updated on March 29th, 2024 at 04:28 pm

Are you someone passionate about cars and eager to possess a slice of automotive history? Do not stress yourself as these top classic JDM sports cars are what you’re looking for. These iconic vehicles have left a lasting impact on the automotive industry and continue to be sought after by collectors and enthusiasts alike. Whether you’re a fan of Nissan, Honda or Subaru, there are JDM classics near you waiting to be picked up.

2005 Nismo Nissan Skyline GT-R Z-Tune

The Nismo GT-R Z-Tune is a legendary and highly sought-after version of the R34 Skyline GTR. Nissan’s performance division, Nismo, took a limited number of V-SPEC II GT-Rs and transformed them into the ultimate GT-R experience. They incorporated advanced racing technology and made significant enhancements to the already powerful engine. The Nismo GT-R Z-Tune is widely regarded as the pinnacle of the R34 Skyline GTR and holds a special place in the hearts of JDM enthusiasts. Its exclusivity and performance capabilities make it the most expensive R34 Skyline GTR ever produced. With its aggressive styling, track-focused upgrades and impressive power output, the Nismo GT-R Z-Tune has earned its reputation as the “Mother of all GT-Rs” and solidified its position as the king of the JDM world.

1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R Nismo 400R

Out of the versions of the R33, the Nismo 400R, a Nissan Skyline GT-R from the year 1995, is widely considered the most powerful. It was a culmination of Nissan’s and Nismo’s knowledge and expertise, resulting in a highly sought-after edition of the R33. Despite plans to produce 100 units, only 44 were ultimately built. If a car company ever plans to do a send-off for one of their models, they should take inspiration from the 400R. This model was powered by a modified RB26DETT engine, known as the RBX-GT2, which produced 400 horsepower. The 400R featured various upgrades including enhanced engine management, larger intercoolers and upgraded turbos. With these improvements, the 400R was able to achieve a 0-60 mph time of just 4 seconds. It serves as a great example of how to create a powerful and impressive send-off for a car model.

2008 Honda S2000 Type S

The Honda S2000 could be likened to the result of putting an MX-5 through a daily gym routine for a decade. It stands out as one of the swiftest pocket-rocket roadsters ever crafted, and the exclusive JDM-only Type S variant elevated the car to new heights. The Type S variant of the car featured the same engine as the CR model available in the US, which was a naturally aspirated inline-4. However, the Type S had a slightly higher power output of 239 horsepower. In addition to the engine upgrade, the Type S also included an aerodynamic body kit and various weight-saving measures. These enhancements, along with some improvements to the handling, made the Type S an ideal choice for those looking to race on twisty mountain roads, commonly known as Togue racing.

2008 Honda Civic Mugen RR

The 2007 Honda Civic available in Japan diverged significantly from the less aesthetically pleasing version received by the rest of the world, boasting an attractive 4-door design. Things took a thrilling turn in 2008 when Mugen Motorsports acquired 300 units, transforming the Civic into a remarkable RR and elevating it to a whole new level. 

The Mugen RR is widely regarded as one of the fastest Civics ever produced and remains an impressive piece of JDM machinery, even by today’s standards. While the Mugen RR may not have set any lap records, it represented a significant advancement for the Civic and has become an underrated icon of JDM automotive culture.

1998 Subaru Impreza 22B STI

Crafted to celebrate the company’s 40th anniversary and the team’s 3rd WRC constructors’ championship, the 1998 Subaru Impreza 22B STI stands out as a potential pièce de résistance for the brand. This highly coveted model, part of a very limited run, swiftly sold out upon its 1998 release, with a mere 400 JDM units ever produced.

The 22B was a very limited-run model, selling out pretty much instantly on its release in 1998 with just 400 JDM units ever made. The 22B is a remarkable car that was built on the foundation of the GC8E WRX STi. Almost everything was upgraded and improved, resulting in a powerful Frankenstein engine that produced 272hp. Whether you drive it on asphalt, dirt or snow, the 22B always seems to have the perfect response. It is not just one of the greatest rally cars, but the greatest of them all.

These top classic JDM sports cars represent the pinnacle of Japanese automotive engineering and design. Whether you’re a collector or simply a fan of these iconic vehicles, owning one of these pieces of history is sure to bring joy and excitement. Keep an eye out for these rare gems at car auctions, enthusiast forums and specialty dealerships. Happy hunting!

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