Guest Blog: Matt Malcolm>> The Hachirock Festival

Occasionally, certain situations conspire against you and put an end to even the best made plans.

No matter your great intentions, everything you do to prevent the preventable and avoid the avoidable. It seems that there is always some other force at play, some even go as far to say it’s a law, governed by a man named Murphy.

I arrived at my good friend Brad’s place in Fujieda, Japan a few days ago. I had timed my arrival there so that I would be able to roll along to the HachiRock festival together with him in his AE86. However the car, like many AE86’s needed a few minor repairs and modifications prior to the trip. 

We spent 7 hours under the car, working well into the night we were aligning suspension, adjusting panhard rods, repairing wheel bearings, fitting aero and even painting wheels. All was going well, a couple of minor setbacks delayed the re-assembly of the front wheel bearings, but nothing that would stop us from reaching our destination in the morning.

It was done, back on the ground and sitting poised ready for our 200km road trip. All that was needed was to scrub clean the patchwork of dirty hand marks, wash the windows and crush the remaining cobwebs. We pulled out of the car park at Brads and other than a small trail of smoke following the car from a rubbing rear tire , there were no instant knocks, clangs or explosions. 

We had it in the bag.

Our test drive took us to a local wash station where we got out with the intention of cleaning the car. Unfortunately, in our blind excitement to test drive the car, we had left a couple of pieces of crucial washing equipment behind. That is to say a bucket and sponge. So we backed out of our wash bay and began our return home to collect the vital pieces.

It was then, pulling out of the wash station that Murphy decided to say hello. And with the sound similar to blending a dinosaur the rear end of the car exploded into a beautiful symphony of grinding metal and agonizing vibrations. Tonight it seemed, Murphy preferred immobile Toyota’s and exploding axles.

We managed to limp the wounded AE86 back to Brad’s but there was no way we would be driving to the festival in this Toyota. By then it was 3AM, we gave it a good crack but it was time for bed.

Morning came, and went.

We left Fujieda around mid day, bound for Sagamiko Resort where the event was being held, waving goodbye to Brad’s new 1980’s Toyota garden ornament as we left. An uneventful Japanese traffic jam then followed and bottles of Coke were ceremoniously consumed as the traffic eased and we picked up speed. 

Arriving at the Sagamiko Resort picnic park, we handed over our 1500yen and crossed our fingers we had arrived at the right place. Turning right under the big ticket gates we began to climb a winding, narrow roadway connecting 3 main parking lots.

After what seemed like an age of passing vans and dreadfully boring station wagons we arrived at the 3rd and final parking lot. 

We were greeted by a sea of 1980’s Toyotas, all seemingly poised to deliver tofu on the grandest of scales.

Before the our car even stopped, I had launched myself out of the back seat…

…camera in hand and had begun a systematic inspection of every car.

Walking through the car park was, and cue cliché here, an ’86 fans dream.

Two-hundred and fifty odd AE86’s littered every square inch of the car park.

Large tents covered infamous names like Tec Arts and Running Free, and even the friendly event staff smiled and waved as we parked up. 

It was an amazing sight to behold, and then, without warning a genuine “Black Limited” AE86 crept past me. I stopped dead in my tracks and almost grenade with excitement . The Black Limited was one of only 400 limited edition AE86’s that Toyota made, initially made to help boost sales on the Trueno model the Black Limited is now and forever a beautiful piece of Toyota motoring history.

The ultimate ’86 fans collector’s item.

Unfortunately, because we arrived late in the afternoon, it wasn’t very long before people were announcing their goodbyes, packing their gear and hitting the road. 

So, I quickly dashed up the road and shot a bunch of cars leaving the parking lot. 

It was then that something unforgettable happened, something that would make the whole journey worthwhile. I witnessed my first AE86 traffic jam. 

The long snake of Toyotas’s stretched the entire length of the narrow winding roads. From the gates to the 3rd car park, dotting the route like the LED’s in a Audi headlight.

A couple of days have since passed since the HachiRock Festival and as I type this out on Shinkansen hurtling towards my hotel in Osaka, I can’t help but think about that night trying to get Brad’s ’86 ready.

I can’t help think about how lucky we actually were, for had the axle exploded 200km’s away from his house, we would have had quite the problem on our hands.

I guess sometimes that Murphy guy and his “anything that can go wrong, will go wrong” adage, comes in handy. And I guess sometimes Murphy saves you a very long walk home.




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Desk tops of #1 and #6

Good work!




fan-freakintastic!!! I love the 86 platform. That white hatch is sexxxxxx


straite car pRon!


Yea, thats a big second for btustison's comment. Pics 1 and 6 are desktop material


That was great, thank you very much! Great story.
I alwasy welcome Traffic Jams like that one, haha!



Can we please have the first shot as a desktop?


I think Murphy owns an 86. What do you think? haha



Great commetary and photography, it was fun to read!

I also agree that the 1st and 6th picture deserve a wallpaper, if it's not much to ask. :)


Dude, I wish I could experience the same things as you!


desktop the pink wheel'd ae86


My Friend thats a perfect write up :O) The first white Ae86 Is pure pefection....


This is the definition of "Living the 86 Life".


Damn, hachiroku heaven!


I'm a euopean car guy tht absolutely depises toyota/lexus, but the AE86 will always have a place in my heart


"dotting the route like the LED’s in a Audi headlight" Great writing, keep up the good work Mr. Malcolm.


Lambo doors! It hurts!


Owner of the genuine “Black Limited” are getting sleeepy... Give me the keys to your Trueno...


Awesome looking AE86's!

So damn good!


Gawd I love seeing new stuff on hachiroku's. Great stuff. 1,6 and 7 would be awesome desktops. Don't have any great pics like that.


Nice post Matt, Nice photos as always. Props on the blogosphere bigtime, well deserved!


Desktop of the white Ae86 please :)


Black Limited... foda D+ ! belo carro!!!


desktop of pic 1 please!!


Like Like Like! Great bed time story for me today, here in Athens, Greece. :)


absolutely automotive porn


pictures are super dope!


“Black Limited” AE86 my dream car :O


Great write up! I love it.


I guarantee if your axle snapped out there, some fellow hachiroku guys would help a brother out! Even if you don't speak Japanese, Someone would offer to get a replacement axle or even assist change it out in the dark by the side of the road or tow it over to nearby garage. AE86 is like family no matter where you're from.


you should write for Speedhunters more often, I really enjoyed reading that, and the photos were amazing too! Wallpaper of the 6th photo please!


The Black Limited looks modified. Why would anyone do that? It also reminds me of the Bandit Trans Am.


Great shots of some beautiful Hach's!


There were more than the official 270 there; apparently a lot of people just showed up without registering. Glad to see that someone was there for SH.

BUT, I was kind of bummed to see the plates not covered in the post. I thought it was SH policy to cover up license plate numbers....

May be neurotic, but it's Japanese etiquette to hide the plates (at least partially) when posting on the web.

People don't like sites revealing the numbers on the net, and when it happens on an overseas site,

it quickly leads to a 'no gaijin allowed' atmosphere.

The topic frequently comes up, and many people stick to the registered viewer only mixi SNS to avoid it.


Desktop of all of the 86's, foreal.


Another awesome story matt, you certainly have had an immense couple of months overseas!


really nice a datsun/nissan lover ... but i think it may be time to buy a AE86....much love.


I agree with Wayne..DESKTOP PLEASE!

Matt always posts hot Hachis!


hmm a Black Limited too - i love these cars so much, they just look right and handle very well (so i've been told) seems to be a car you own and never part with.. i'd have a Levin, you know without the pop up headlights.. just love that front end.. great post 10/10 on the pics..





desktop :DDDDDDDD


Refreshing to read a carefully considered post


wow!! what a great article!!


Great work, great story, best pics. Make the 1. pic a wallpaper!!!!!!!!


que de la reconchasumadre todos esos hachisss aaaaaaaaaaaahhh!!! yo kiero el blankito de arriba con dos alerones aaahh!! q pajaaaa!!

regalame p


a truly dream


i used to be a purist lover of hachis but now motorsports has evolved on high horsepower motors,these photos really goes back to the roots of it .but we need more old chassis with high tech combos also as part of the progress of 86 in order to sustain and competitveness.long live the cult ! and take back the drifting and time attack crown!


nice pic bro... hope someday i can go there with u bro...


Amazing coverage. So nice pics,the first one in wallpaper please!

It really communicate the love for this car. ;)


Wow, u managed to do a whole bit on Truenos and didnt get that crappy Hugo machine in thr, how u resist that? least u got pix of sum real sik ones for once


omfg! i saw that slammed black limited on works and *BOI OI OI OING!*


"I witnessed my first AE86 traffic jam." LOL

desktop for #1 and #6 please!! :)


LOL @ lambo doors


Glad to see that the license plate issue was addressed!

There have been comments on minkara applauding SH covering up the plates.

The work has not gone unnoticed!


it's a shame you don't share the pictures in highres, those lowres are useless :(


During my last trip to Japan some of you may remember that I attended the HachiRock Festival and reported


one question, on the 5ft photo, that 86 had a nice interior, so how did you modified or change that to the modern one like gauges, steering wheel, and that nice colorful design?


and about the ae86 black limited, is that new car model?