It’s been a while since the last part of this series but what a way to come back. Last weekend I had the incredible pleasure to join a yearly supercar tour with the Dream Fantasy Junction (DFJ) group.
As you may have already seen from the previous parts of this series or from the photos I’ve shared on Autoclique’s social network sites, Japan has a wide variety of supercars. From immaculate classics to one-off editions, and some completely bonkers ones (because Japan), there are few places in the world that can match Japan for supercars.
Because of all the supercars in this country there are also many supercar groups. These groups are made of up like-minded supercar owners that bring their cars together for a great day out. An example of this is the Carguy group I’ve talked about before.
Of course you also have manufacturer clubs in Japan too such as the Lamborghini Owner’s club and the super-exclusive Ferrari Owner’s Club of Japan. The events held by these groups are usually restricted to, as the name suggests, owners of the respective brand and are rarely open to the public. Ferrari Japan for example rent out Fuji Speedway so their customers can drive around without having to worry about a pesky Honda.
But the DFJ tour wasn’t like this at all. I heard about this from a friend and went with him. It was an early morning start. For some reason the meeting time was 9:00am. On most days I’d still be asleep at this hour but I made sure to get up extra early for this. The meeting point was about an hour drive north of Tokyo.
As soon as we got on to the motorway, we knew it was going to be a great morning. I mean, when you see a Lancia Stratos casually cruising down a motorway you take that a sign of things to come. In any situation seeing a Stratos is an out-of-this-world experience but on a smooth Japanese motorway with Toyota Priuses and Nissan vans surrounding it, it looked even more special.
About three-quarters of the way to the meeting point we got a toll gate. Riveting stuff, I know. But what we saw parked up a few metres down the road was anything but ordinary. An electric blue Ferrari F50. Now this was a wrap, obviously, but it was also one of the most recognisable F50s in Japan. It belonged to another supercar group known as the ‘ATeam’ or ‘Anija’. So we pulled over and took a few photos of it.
We were ready to continue driving when a yellow Lamborghini Diablo flew by, followed by a Ferrari 360. Who knew sitting by a toll gate could be so much fun. It was the perfect place to see (and more importantly hear) these supercars take off. There were countless 911s, a Miura, another Stratos, a 430 Scuderia, and countless 911s.
Eventually we made it to the meeting point0 – Hanyu Parking Area. Usually a quiet motorway rest area for weary travellers to stretch their legs and grab a bite to eat, was for one day, a gathering place of some of the rarest, most expensive, and ‘creative’ supercars in the Land of the Rising Sun.
I can’t remember all the cars but some of the highlights include a Jaguar XJ220, Bugatti EB110, a McLaren P1, a Porsche Carrera GT, a Ferrari Enzo, an Aventador SV, a F430 Challenge, a Pagani Zonda, a Ferrari F40, Ferrari F50, 458 Speciale A, a Miura, two Stratos, two Ford GTs, and more Diablos than I could count.
You could even see cars from some other supercar groups join in on the fun too. The P1 you may recognise is Kimura-San’s from Carguy. The orange custom Murcielago from the Morohoshi group was there, as well as the aforementioned ATeam F50 and their custom Zonda.
In stark contrast, the XJ220, the EB110, Stratos, and other classics were in pristine museum-level condition. Actually, the EB110 was driven straight from the Mahojin supercar museum I visited a couple months back. Then there was the blue Ferrari 512 BBi. I do have a soft spot for blue Ferraris but this one in particular was even more special. It was owned and driven by a lady. How cool is that? The pink Liberty Walk Aventador was also owned and driven by a lady. Respect to those women.
Speaking of notable drivers, I later found out after the event that the yellow Enzo was driven by Ken Okuyama, the designer of the Enzo. I’m not sure if that was his actual car or not but it was most certainly driven by him. Too cool.
It was a great event all around and while it lasted less than two hours, it felt like it went on for ages. Time really does fly when you’re having fun. Seeing everyone taking photos of everyone’s cars, seeing random people young and old being amazed by all the supercars, and of course hearing them all accelerate as they left were some definite highlights.
Though the most memorable moment for me was when I was trying to get a ‘artistic’ photo of the P1 from inside a car transporter truck. I didn’t realise that the driver was inside and that he was planning on leaving before I had taken my shots. I only found out when I felt a metal bar hit my legs. I realised what was going on, soiled myself, then jumped on the ramp and ran down it Mission Impossible style. I could see everyone’s faces and thinking I was some kind of nutter.
Near death experience aside, it was a great way to spend a Sunday morning. Beats playing golf any day. And I hear this was only a taste of it. They’ll be having a New Year meet next year and that’s supposed to be even better. So stay tuned for that. In the meantime have a look through the gallery to see some of Japan’s supercars.