It's been close to three years already since Speedhunters took their first look inside Rauh-Welt Begriff. Rod, Mike and Antonio were among the first to show the western world inside this dark, corrugated iron workshop on the outskirts of Kashiwa city. Since then, Nakai and his creations have become a household name among enthusiasts, creating some of the most uniquely styled Porsches, as well as other cars, anyone has ever seen. They are an either love it or hate it affair, often criticized by purist but equally loved by those that can appreciate something bespoke and so far from the norm.
After having shot the green Rough rhythm earlier in the afternoon, Toshi had to get on his way and tackle the close to 400-mile drive back to Kobe, so I decided to stay over and chill with Nakai-san and Nojima-san and grab some more pictures of the workshop and the cars that littler the area surrounding it.
I figured than since our initial visit back in 2008, there are enough new things to warrant an update tour of the shop…
…and I was definitely not wrong. Over the last years Nakai has been beyond busy. The attention his cars have been getting internationally has allowed him to not only accept more orders from overseas but also begin thinking about bigger ventures to promote RWB around the world. On top of this however, demand for his cars in Japan continue to be very strong and no matter how often I stop by his workshop he seems to be working on a new car each single time.
This time he was putting the final touches to yet another mega-widebody 993, a car that was built for a customer of RWB-Kansai and was due to be picked up by a transporter the next day.
The slightly bronze gunmetal stain finish is certainly unique and I tried to check it out in detail without getting in Nakai's way.
…ready to receive some glossy black and extremely wide SSRs, shod in sticky Bridgestone RE55S semi slicks, the same tires I've coincidentally just fitted to my BNR34.
Behind it was the very first Rauh Welt car ever made, Nakai's own 930 Stella Artois, the epitome of what a RWB car should look and sound like!
The 3.8L carbed beast can always be found parked in the workshop, sitting there with its half-cut rear bumper and curious looking exhaust system. Nakai has put the car on sale several times, but I think he is just not ready to see it go. Check out those monster rear slicks!
The Rauh Welt HQ is as much about the cars as it is about the decor. Nakai is a man with very firm ideas and tastes and this is shown on how he has decorated and transformed the place over the years.
Yes he even has a couple of slot machines in there!
RWB cars have for years been participating in the idlers track events and this is the stencil Nakai uses to imprint the idlers logo on the sidewalls of tires of competing cars.
Check out this cool model of a 935 slant nose racer. Inspiration maybe?
Nakai likes to collect a lot of stuff from his travels and everything is on display around the office area. Smooth music is always pumping through the massive speakers that have been fitted around the workshop; music is something that he can't do without as it helps him to relax and at times inspires him.
Cigarette break anyone?
Spotted some cool new RWB t-shits on the big pool table that over the years has disappeared under miscellaneous parts and collectables. How cool is the Disney-like fonts for the tee on the right!
No workshop would be complete without a proper magazine and book collection.
These Rauh Welt plastic logos are the ones that are usually fitted onto the steering wheels of complete cars.
One corner of the workshop is taken up by a small paint booth. This is where Nojima-san of Nojireal does his thing with the paint gun, painting all the cars that have rolled out of RWB. He's the man behind all those famous satin finishes!
This bamboo wind chime is a new addition to the unique and mixed decor and I bumped my head against it countless times when trying to get wide shots of the garage!
Nakai was busy fitting the rear glass onto the new 993 so I decided to go for a walk outside to take a closer look at some of the customer cars.
Nojima-san was back out in front sanding down and rinsing the rear bumper, prepping it for paint.
What a lot of people don't understand about RWB is that it's predominantly a bodyshop, where cars get transformed. Some mechanical work obviously needs to be done to get the cars to sit the way they do and sound a little more special than a stock 911, but if you want big power Nakai will refer you to Porsche engine specialists like Promodet, a short drive away from Kashiwa.
Nakai was nice enough to move a few cars around for me so I could grab at least one car spotlight, which will be coming…
…after the second part of the shop visit. That little Caterham is the car I drove up to RWB on the day, blasting through the Tokyo highway system on a 35ºC summer day sweating buckets in my helmet. But more on why I was driving the bathtub on wheels after I wrap up things at Rauh Welt!
-Dino Dalle Carbonare
Ah, great footage. And as a German, i love how they just throw german words on their cars, making little to none sense
Keep it going!
Gt infused street cars are the sex. This write up and the article in SS show how this shop is dirty and functional, the cars are a good mirror of RWB's philosophy something lacking in some corners of the world.
... oh dude , that is so amazing ... this is tuning , and the location is very nice ! i love it
I saw a 996 up there, it looked amazing!
Love the photos, great writing! Really glad you guys introduced Rauh Welt to the world...fantastic stuff!
I absolutely love it!
RWB are freaking legends!!! i lover every creation that is rolled outta that garage! that one with the red wing mirrors in that last picture looks mint.....more info??
so sickkk, feeling the grey (930?) with the red mirrors in the last picture!
I saw a 996 up there, it looked amazing!
Excellent write up on a car that is renowned for it's aggressive looks, satin paint, and unique style that makes me want one sooo bad.
Thank you for presenting this as I'd always thought that this company was German bred and not from Japan. What an eye opener for sure and kudo's for taking on such an enormous task as to make an already great car epic.
man.. DINO!! You have the best job. Period. Nakai-san, I will trade you a all original 1987 Buick Grand National w/ 27k original miles for one of your masterpieces!!
theres been some fantastic on track video produced by rau that has yet to be featured here on speedhunters including one recently published on vimeo you guys should cover as well
Can we have some more shots of the 996 next to the Stella Artois?
Speedhunters weren't the first Westerners to discover RWD. HPI magazine had an article on some of their cars around 4/5 years ago. I'll dig my copy out if you don't believe me.
Nakai-san's Stella Artois 930 would look cool on those SSR Professor MS1 deep dish/center mesh wheels. My car is on the jack stands now, so some of those pictures remind me of my garage. Can't wait for Part 2.
awesome write-up about a company that really polarizes the Porsche scene.
Check out my 930... which was not Rauh inspired, but still captures the essence
of the bodystyle. Please leave comments if you like it. Thank you
LOve RWB even more now! Props to RWB for being Miller fans (I'm form Milwaukee lol)
Beautiful work once again Dino.
Man.. I can tell that Nakai san is enjoying life to the fullest... just look at his workshop. damn..
I never realized there would be such a big tuning factor for Porsches
deefff goood and great story. nice cars with different looks
That Caterham website is so classy!
Man, that 964 with the ducktail... in that blue... just perfect. Really makes me miss my Porsche days.
Where can i get one of those shirts!!!! tha black one with white font, looks nice
I know it's a small detail, but please stop referring to that car as a 930. If it hasn't got a turbo it isn't a 930.
all looking real good in there!
The 'Clay' coloured 993 is very cool indeeed!
When my wife went back to Japan two years ago I asked her to get me some shirts from Rauh Welt. She called and said the guy she spoke with was super nice. I asked if she remembered his name and she said it was a Nakai-San.... I geeked out.
My heart skipped a few beats... Love it!!!
Oh yeah, so damn cool, this is the stuff Hollywood wishes they could capitalize on!
Great stuff, RAUH-Welt is awesome.
It's back at Rauh Welt now to continue the behind the scenes look at a workshop that has as much
I wanna see that RWB 996! Why don't you guys ever get shots of the Boxster builds either?!
Rad. I'm feelin this.