Nissan Fuga Owners Meet in Chiba Prefecture.
Article by Neal Hartman (Gold Digger), Photos taken/edited by Steve Murray
When 6 car enthusiasts from 4 different countries get together on a Saturday night, things are bound to happen.
I recently had the opportunity to meet up with a couple of my Japanese friends and some friends from Europe to attend a Nissan Fuga Owners meet at Ichihara Parking Area in Chiba prefecture. It really wasn’t the original plan at the beginning of the week, but when I heard that there was a possibility of several Nissan Fugas (Infiniti M for you Americans), the first thing that popped into my head: MAN THAT’S A LONG DRIVE. Well…it is…
Actually, I started thinking that if I could get these JDM Fuga owners to give me some insight as to why they chose the Fuga, and more importantly, why Nissan, I thought it would make for a good story for my brothers and sisters here on NICO.
So, the plans were changed, and my European friends, Mint (real name Steve) and Tim arrived at Yashio station at my requested time. We then headed to Up-Garage to pick up a part, headed to my house, dropped off Mint and Tim and headed back to the station to pick up the other European guy, Danny.
Get back to the house, and wait for the two other guys (my Japanese friends) to show up.
At 7:30, Tetsuya pulls up in his black Fuga 350GT. Myself and the other guys go outside and make small talk for about 30 minutes till my other friend, Minoru shows ut at 8:00 on the money in his first generation Toyota Aristo twin turbo.
We get finalized details lined up and agree to meet at Yashio Parking Area (hereafter referred to as P.A.’s) to get some drinks and make a toilet stop before the 45 minute drive to Ichihara P.A. in Chiba prefecture.
Danny is riding with me, Tim with Tetsuya and Mint with Minoru. I run another friend back to the train station and head to the P.A., meet the crew, grab some canned iced coffee and hit the road. The trip is mostly uneventful enroute to Ichihara, but it was a good chance to catch up with Danny who I hadn’t seen since just after Thanksgiving.
When we finally arive at Ichihara P.A., we are greeted by about 15 or so Nissan Fugas, all but one being zenki and kouki first generations.
Tetsuya introduces me to a few people, namely Iko-san, who I was told was Chinese but had been living in Japan for a very long time. I meet a few other guys, but am not told anyone else’s names.
Well, it’s time to get down to business. Since Iko-san speaks the most English of the Fuga owners, next to Tetsuya that is, I ask two very simple, but thoughtful questions.
1. Why the Fuga?
2. Why Nissan?
Iko-sans reply went something like this, in a mix of Japanese and English: “I went to the Nissan dealership to look at the new Dualis. While talking with a salesman, I see this 350GT Fuga out of the corner of my eye. I was hooked.”
Unfortunately, he chose the 2.5L model, but he is still very happy with it. He also told me that the 2.5L Fuga is a very popular car in Japan. His car is mostly stock looking in apearance, but he has taken the stock wheels and had them painted in a dark red/black two tone that looks quite sharp.
To answer the second part, his reply was this: “Nissan builds a good quality product that is overall well balanced. Their engine performance is very good and the reliability is very good, also.”
Funny, I echo that same sentiment, as did just about everyone else around that heard me ask the question.
Ready for some more Nissan Fuga pictures? Let’s get it on! Nissan Fuga Owners Meet in Japan – PART TWO!