Interview With Mine’s Niikura Michizo: Gt-r Super Tuner


Celica
“The name: It’s plural of mine. I thought ‘Mine’s’ would be better than answering, ‘Niikura’. I designed the logo myself. I like simple and cool designs. I like simple cool designs, that’s why my cars aren’t always decked out. ”

You may or may not know the name Niikura Michizo, but you definitely know the name Mine’s. Born in 1952 in Hayama, Japan, Michizo is the man responsible for the Japanese tuning house that has developed some of the fastest GT-Rs in the world. Niikura-san’s long love of the GT-R began in his teens when his father gave him a hand-me-down Skyline—nice dad, huh? His first “new” car was a Celica GT-S.

While in high school he maintained a huge interest in motorbikes as well as cars. It was at Isho College that he’d further develop into a forward-thinking engineer and tuner. Almost right after college Michizo joined Bridgestone and there he remained for 12 years, moonlighting the last few years to start up Mine’s. Rather than blowing the money on sake and women, he wisely invested his earnings at Bridgestone to buy the necessary equipment to make sure that his shop would be more than just a lift and an air compressor.

“The name: It’s plural of mine. I thought ‘Mine’s’ would be better than answering, ‘Niikura’. I designed the logo myself. I like simple and cool designs. I like simple cool designs, that’s why my cars aren’t always decked out. ”

You may or may not know the name Niikura Michizo, but you definitely know the name Mine’s. Born in 1952 in Hayama, Japan, Michizo is the man responsible for the Japanese tuning house that has developed some of the fastest GT-Rs in the world. Niikura-san’s long love of the GT-R began in his teens when his father gave him a hand-me-down Skyline—nice dad, huh? His first “new” car was a Celica GT-S.

While in high school he maintained a huge interest in motorbikes as well as cars. It was at Isho College that he’d further develop into a forward-thinking engineer and tuner. Almost right after college Michizo joined Bridgestone and there he remained for 12 years, moonlighting the last few years to start up Mine’s. Rather than blowing the money on sake and women, he wisely invested his earnings at Bridgestone to buy the necessary equipment to make sure that his shop would be more than just a lift and an air compressor.

After Bridgestone you established Mine’s. What concept did you have in mind?

Simple is best. A well-balanced car that stops, turns and can go fast. Another thing, I like to do things that my competitors don’t and can’t do. I like to do things fast. I like to build [my products and cars] quickly and be on time. I hate to be slower than anyone else. Tuning doesn’t have regulations like motorsports, but my thing is to be faster than the cars that are fully decked out like motorsports cars. The parts I develop are for my customers, but they also have to function and be good for the car. I want to keep my parts as realistic attainable tuning parts for consumers. It’s easy to build a bigger displacement engine, but how many people do that? Which leads to keeping it simple.

I learned a lot in my younger years. I had been involved with motorsports and worked with them when I was younger. I wanted to learn; the whole experience was a learning process. Teams are just there to win. I wanted to absorb what was available to me from motorsports. And I’ve put what I’ve learned in that experience into my tuning and products. From R32 to beginning of R34 I was prety much went to every race in the Super Taikyu series.

You must have become very familiar with the series, but also the development of racing and products. How do you use R&D to develop your products?

To develop my parts I would actually get into races and test my products. I do a lot of tenstive on-track testing privately. Testing, R&D you don’t necessarily have to go full throttle for a race distance. That’s not what’s needed for R&D. What I’ve striving for is not the ultimate speed or quickness or time. It’s actually drivability, or driving pleasure. It has to do with feeling comfortable while you’re driving, what the driver feels. You Have to feel good, safe about the feel of the vehicle. That’s a lot deeper than just speed or horsepower.

Tell us about the GT-R legacy and why you’ve chosen to continually developer the Skyline.

Long ago it was known as a very good car and the one to tune. And that’s what I was attracted to. I was attracted to the potential of the GT-R and because it was difficult to tune. For the US, I’m really looking forward to releasing parts for the Z and the new 2008 Nissan GT-R. I want to open a shop in LA and have that be my US headquarters. Sometime next year.

What are your thoughts on the new VQ38 versus the older RB26?

They’re completely diferent engines, of course, but they’re both GT-R motors. They’re great motors. Even if the new engine isn’t an RB, I can tune it. I’m not worried. As a characterisics of the car, I don’t think it’s the type of car you just want to max out the horsepower on. The characteristic of the new GT-R won’t be to boost the engine power, but to increase the total factor of the car a little higher. With the VQ it’s an advancement of technology using an aluminum blocking, compact V- engine. I have no worries about the engine, because it’s been developed by one of the best engineers at Nissan. I’m confident it’s a good engine to start with.

And what about the old GT-R versus the new one?

In Japan a lot of people say that the R33 isn’t an exact successor to the first-generation GT-R, it’s not an improvement, neither is the R34 to the R33. Neither is the R35 to the R34. They have all their own characterisitics. Some good and bad. Some people like the R32 better etc. So all four of them would have different characteristrics.

What is your philosophy on design and how does that factor into the looks of the new GT-R?

I think overall the design concept or deisgn character is similar to the R32 and R33. The R34 is a sportier looking car. And that’s your first impression. Whereas the R32 and R33 and new GT-R is design more or less than grows on you. The GT-R and Ferrari are two different cars. The GT-R enthusiasts wouldn’t accept the GT-R to be like the Ferrari and neither are the designers trying to imitate Ferrari—contrary to what some people may think. The debut of the R32 is very similar to the current vehicle. But even now the R32 is the most popular Skyline of all time.

Who do you see purchasing the new GT-R and what rivals does it have in Japan and in Europe?

I don’t think, at this point, there are any rivals to the GT-R in Japan. If it’s not limited to Japanese cars it’d be Porsche and BMW. I think the buyer would probably increase a little bit in terms of age, higher than before.

Moving onto a slightly different topic, you’ve been in just about every version of Sony’sGran Turismo. Is Mine’s in the next GT?

350Z and the GT-R will be in the new Gran Turismo. When I get the new GT-R, I assume it’ll be in the game, too. I’m looking forwad to getting involved with the game again. I work closely with Yamauchi-san, I know him very well and ensure that my vehicles feel like they should in the game. The production study of the game it’s very intense, very precise. They use a lot of laser scanning devices to scan the whole car. I do give input of the sound of the car and all other parameters.

When should we expect the next Mine’s Nissan GT-R? And what color will it be?

I hope to release the new GT-R within this year. And it’ll be white of course.

Get the full story with drifting and car racing video footage of Niikura Michizo interview.

By: Toyota USA Blog


Keep Your Toyota in Shape


Celica
There have been rumors that Toyota will be releasing a new Toyota Celica 2009. This rumor started when Toyota brought to life the “interesting cars” committee shortly after acquiring a majority share in Subaru. They claim that there will be a return of the legendary AE86 Corolla Coupe from the 1980’s but some say it will be the 8th generation Toyota Celica.

We may call this the FT-HS, a concept? There have been leaked details that this new vehicle would be less than 4 meters in length, 1.7 meters wide and 1.35 meters high with a target weight of 1000kg.

As of this time, the Toyota Celica has released seven generations of this sporty vehicle since 1970. This has continued to attract customers especially the young ones, including the young once. My dad used to own a first generation model of this, and until now he desires to have the latest model of this nasty sports car. The Celica has been called the Supra for some of its recent models. There has been rumors that Toyota will be releasing an 8th generation model of its kind.

When I was young we owned a Toyota Celica. It was my dad’s teenage car. In 1967, the Toyota Celica was planned and originally designed for young at heart motorists and for those who wanted more than a mode of transportation. In an official history of the Toyota Celica released by Toyota USA states that when planning for the Celica began in 1967, its styling was quite revolutionary and it influenced the establishment of the sporty subcompact market segment. The original Celica powered with a carbureted four-cylinder engine and was only available in ST form and as a two-door sports coupe making it an image car than a volume car.

When I was a kid, I’ve always loved to watch science fiction and futuristic movies wherein they feature cars which look like toys. Now, we can see these bunch of toy-like vehicles on the road in the face of a compact vehicle. In the year 2007, Toyota launched the ultra-compact 3+1 seater “iQ concept”. This three meter long cute car is space efficient which is designed for urban motoring. Toyota will be producing just 100,00 units on its first full year of production in 2009. However, there will be no hybrid version of the iQ since a heavy weight battery pack would go against the laws of its engineering which is weight saving.

When will the Prius be available in the other countries in Asia? I still don’t know the answer to this question, but I believe that the consumers are now asking for the successful hybrid car. In a news that I read, it is said that Prius has sold more than a million Prius vehicles with an actual unit number of 1,027,700. Ever since this vehicle has been launched its sales has been increasing steadily. The biggest market for the Prius is in North America, followed by Japan and Europe. All I can say is I want a Toyota Prius.

With the ever soaring prices of gasoline, more and more people opt to go hybrid. Toyota Cars is now taking the first step and the lead in giving consumers a cleaner and cheaper option which is the hybrid. Hybrid vehicles reduce pollution and emissions by switching from a gasoline powered car to an electric motor powered car. Recent news tells us that Toyota is building a $192 million plant in Japan. This plant is to produce batteries for hybrid vehicles. Toyota has this joint with Panasonic brand products maker Matsushita Electric Industrial Company. This plant is to be located in central Japan.

By: Toyota USA Blog


Toyota Auto Parts: a Best Choice in Comparison of Foreign Auto Parts


toyota
Vikram Kumar asked:


 

It is a genuine fact that, it is not that much easy to survive in this ruthlessly competitive market. If you want to stay at the top position then serving the customers in the best possible way and is the ultimate option left with you. Same is done by Prestige Motorsport P/L. We believe in offering best quality services and fulfillment of the commitment at any cost. Having a business of importation of vehicles, Prestige motorsport believes in full dedication, reliability and honesty in their work. Despite of having dealer’s license the company does not work as a traditional dealer. Instead of that the company is working on different pace for having the unique market reputation in the form of a vehicle broker.

 

This prestigious company offers the importation of different brands according to the demand and satisfaction of the customers. But one of the most renowned brands available with this company is of Toyota. This is because of the main reason that the Toyota is a brand that is highly demanded in the foreign market. Due to easy availability of Toyota auto parts in comparison to foreign auto parts it is quite convenient to order and dispatch this vehicle brand. With Prestige Motorsport P/L it is quite easy to get reasonable discount on the wholesale prices of Toyota parts. It is appropriate to receive discount prices on the OEM, aftermarket and new Toyota auto parts.

 

It offers car parts and accessories to a large number of models in contrast of any other foreign auto parts company. These models comprises of Avalon, 4Runner, Celica, Camry, Cressida, Corona, Corolla, Highlander, Echo, Matrix, Land Cruiser, Paseo, MR2, Previa, Pickup, RAV4, Prius, Sienna, Sequoia, Supra, Starlet, Solara, Tundra, Tersel, Tacoma, T100, Van, Yaris; etc. Certainly, there are some of the Toyota parts and accessories that are not easy to find. But with the Toyota parts wholesale, the brands that are available with Prestige Motorsport P/L, you can not only locate rare accessories very easily but can also save up to 80% of the money on their purchase. This is the smart move that you will find nowhere but with Prestige Motorsport.

 

If you are interested in dealing with Prestige Motorsport P/L for the importation of vehicles then you can log on to their web site or can contact via phone during the working hours. But before that, you can verify the OEM Toyota auto parts online so that you can choose the best deal with the available brands. One can easily inquire from the catalog available on the web site by selecting a specific year. If possible you should also go for the thorough comparison of Toyota with other foreign auto parts. After verifying the result, you will clearly understand that why the Toyota brand and its accessories are highly demanded by the customers of Prestige Motorsport.

 

If you want to know more about the Toyota brand and its car parts and accessories then you can make a contact with the dealer stock section of Prestige Motorsport P/L. They provide you all the necessary information about the vehicles and accessories that can be imported to your country. The stock that is available with Toyota auto parts is numerous and it definitely has the potential to offer more option for the customers to choose against any other foreign auto parts company.  Some of the parts include Toyota Air Filter, Toyota Antenna, Toyota Alternator, Toyota Brakes, Toyota Catalytic Converter, Toyota Control Arm, Toyota Engine Parts, Toyota Fuel Pumps, Toyota Headlights, Toyota Grille, Toyota Oil Filter, Toyota Oxygen Sensor, Toyota Spark Plugs, and Toyota struts, Toyota Thermostat, Toyota Timing Chain and Toyota Water Pump. 

 

If you are going for Toyota auto parts then you are fairly going for a better deal. They are far better than foreign auto parts with greater variety of choice. You can have the importation of brands along with the accessories from Prestige Motorsport P/L and experience the difference by your own.



Toyotausablog.com

Keep Your Toyota in Shape


Toyota Prius
There have been rumors that Toyota will be releasing a new Toyota Celica 2009. This rumor started when Toyota brought to life the “interesting cars” committee shortly after acquiring a majority share in Subaru. They claim that there will be a return of the legendary AE86 Corolla Coupe from the 1980’s but some say it will be the 8th generation Toyota Celica.

We may call this the FT-HS, a concept? There have been leaked details that this new vehicle would be less than 4 meters in length, 1.7 meters wide and 1.35 meters high with a target weight of 1000kg.

As of this time, the Toyota Celica has released seven generations of this sporty vehicle since 1970. This has continued to attract customers especially the young ones, including the young once. My dad used to own a first generation model of this, and until now he desires to have the latest model of this nasty sports car. The Celica has been called the Supra for some of its recent models. There has been rumors that Toyota will be releasing an 8th generation model of its kind.

When I was young we owned a Toyota Celica. It was my dad’s teenage car. In 1967, the Toyota Celica was planned and originally designed for young at heart motorists and for those who wanted more than a mode of transportation. In an official history of the Toyota Celica released by Toyota USA states that when planning for the Celica began in 1967, its styling was quite revolutionary and it influenced the establishment of the sporty subcompact market segment. The original Celica powered with a carbureted four-cylinder engine and was only available in ST form and as a two-door sports coupe making it an image car than a volume car.

When I was a kid, I’ve always loved to watch science fiction and futuristic movies wherein they feature cars which look like toys. Now, we can see these bunch of toy-like vehicles on the road in the face of a compact vehicle. In the year 2007, Toyota launched the ultra-compact 3+1 seater “iQ concept”. This three meter long cute car is space efficient which is designed for urban motoring. Toyota will be producing just 100,00 units on its first full year of production in 2009. However, there will be no hybrid version of the iQ since a heavy weight battery pack would go against the laws of its engineering which is weight saving.

When will the Prius be available in the other countries in Asia? I still don’t know the answer to this question, but I believe that the consumers are now asking for the successful hybrid car. In a news that I read, it is said that Prius has sold more than a million Prius vehicles with an actual unit number of 1,027,700. Ever since this vehicle has been launched its sales has been increasing steadily. The biggest market for the Prius is in North America, followed by Japan and Europe. All I can say is I want a Toyota Prius.

With the ever soaring prices of gasoline, more and more people opt to go hybrid. Toyota Cars is now taking the first step and the lead in giving consumers a cleaner and cheaper option which is the hybrid. Hybrid vehicles reduce pollution and emissions by switching from a gasoline powered car to an electric motor powered car. Recent news tells us that Toyota is building a $192 million plant in Japan. This plant is to produce batteries for hybrid vehicles. Toyota has this joint with Panasonic brand products maker Matsushita Electric Industrial Company. This plant is to be located in central Japan.


Toyotausablog.com


Toyota Celica Parts: the Key to Heavenly Performance


toyota
The Toyota Celica derived its name from the Spanish word “calico,” which means “from the heavens” or “celestial.” Just like other Toyota vehicles, Toyota Celica is well-acclaimed for its reliability on the road brought by its durable Toyota Celica parts and useful Toyota Celica parts accessories. Intended for motorists who feel youthful, love fun, and adore style, the Toyota Celica has proven to be more than just a basic means of transportation. After years of planning for the vehicle’s development that began as early as 1967, the Toyota Celica was finally rolled out for public consumption in 1971. It was modeled after the EX-1 “Car of the Future,” thus it exuded style that was considered radical at the time of its production. Its significance even extended to the launch of the sporty subcompact market segment.

Offered only in ST form and as a two-door sport-coupe, the Celica was aimed to be an image car instead of a high-volume car. If truth be known, it was actually Toyota’s version of the Mustang. The first Celica was geared with a carbureted four-cylinder engine displacing 1.6 liters. It performed well in the market with its first major change taking place in 1974 in the form of the GT. This model featured a two-liter engine, which had been behind Celica’s powerful performance for the next 11 years. Succeeding Celica generations revolved around Toyota’s inline-4 engines, although some were operated by 4-cylinders. Despite providing lower performance, they were more economical. In 1986, the car’s drive layout was modified from rear wheel drive to front wheel drive, becoming the most important element that shaped Celica’s history. The first three generations witnessed Celicas in the US market being driven by the different versions of Toyota’s R series engines. From 1986 to 1999, a four-wheel drive turbocharged model, labeled as “All-trac” in the US or “GT-Four” in Japan and Europe, was manufactured. Late 1997 Japanese models showcased the Variable Valve Timing, which became standard in all 2000 models and onwards.

Seven generations have come and gone with the model undertaking a number of revisions and design forks. This included the Toyota Celica Supra, which was to be known later on as the Toyota Supra. The presence of Celica was experienced in the forms of the notchback, liftback coupe, and convertible. In 1998, however, rumors circulated that the Toyota Celica would soon vanish from the Toyota lineup. While the MR2 and Supra were withdrawn from Japan, the current model of the Celica had not undergone any redesign since 1993. So Toyota decided to completely revamp the Celica to give the market what it was looking for. From being a sporty or luxury car, the Toyota Celica is now presented as the “Extreme, Young and Racy” vehicle. It promises to deliver powerful performance at a very reasonable price.

The car would not have lasted seven generations without the help of Toyota’s constant innovations on its parts and accessories. Toyota Celica parts and accessories are the main product of Toyota’s technical expertise in building cars of superior engineering. These highly advanced features of top class design have placed Toyota Celica among the best in the car industry. Finding Toyota Celica replacement parts is as easy as pie with hundreds of online stores to choose from. This is also true for installing Toyota Celica parts accessories that are readily available at present. Replacing damaged Toyota Celica parts may require the help of a professional mechanic. However, with a handy repair manual and the right tools, this can also be done at home.

Toyotausablog.com