Catching Cars In Japan’s Capital

We often talk about how great Japan is for automotive enthusiasts, and tuning shops scattered all over the little island, world famous races tracks and secret word-of-mouth car meets do make it a place of true automotive bliss. Thinking about this as I watched the masses wandering around chasing animated characters on their phones, I had an idea. What if instead of hunting virtual creatures, I hit up a few random areas of Tokyo and hunted real cars in a similar way…

So that’s what I did. Armed with my trusty camera and some water to ensure I wouldn’t die in the 38-degree summer onslaught, I started off my hunt in Tokyo’s ‘Electric Town’ of Akihabara.


Akihabara is paradise for those into electronics and anime. Whatever your computing needs or anime desires are, you can find it here. Thanks to UDX parking deck, a place known for car meets and itasha car gatherings, you can always find some interesting cars in this part of the city. With the Subaru Levorg sharing its platform with the Impreza and Legacy, many people have been picking them up and modifying them. I rather liked this example sporting STI wheels, a front splitter, and a titanium-tipped exhaust.


As I was walking down the street towards Kanda, I spotted the owner of this Lotus enjoying the beautiful summer weather. Being small, lightweight and nimble, the Elise is the perfect car for not only attacking tracks, but also driving on Tokyo’s ridiculously narrow city back roads.


A few moments later, this FC3S RX-7 came by. Besides an aftermarket exhaust system, the Mazda seemed to be stock and kept in amazing condition – something that the Japanese are very good at doing.


At the popular salaryman heaven of Kanda, I decided to jump on the first train that pulled into the JR station. It may look complex, but the railways are fairly easily to navigate and can take you pretty much anywhere you would like to go in Tokyo.


By the roll of the dice, the train I boarded had its last stop at Tokyo Station. Although it was a Saturday, many Japanese people still work, which meant the streets near the station were filled with black vehicles waiting for executives to finish their business meetings. Vans like the Toyota Alphard are the perfect vehicle to chauffeur VIP around in, but you at least need a set of decent wheels to set yours apart from the masses, in this case 2-piece BBS LMs.


Continuing my exploration, I was soon right in the heart of Ginza. Packed full of high-end fashion boutiques, Ginza caters to those with a taste for the finer things in life, so I wasn’t too surprised when I spotted this Rolls-Royce Ghost among the sea of taxis.


And one block over I saw another, this time sporting a rather interesting exterior color combination.


Following the flow of traffic out of Ginza took me to the man-made island of Tsukishima where I found this BMW i8 lurking in the shadows.


With sunlight starting to fade, I jumped back on a train and got off at Azabujuban hoping to find some kind of exotic or supercar. With a lot of foreign embassies and trendy boutiques, you’re almost guaranteed to see something nice in the area, and for me it was this Audi R8 which clearly didn’t fit in its small parking space.


Feeling somewhat satisfied with my findings, I decided to head back towards the station. It was then that I heard the familiar sound of a 4.5-liter Italian V8 headed my way and at a rather alarming rate. As soon as I made it to the intersection, this Ferrari 458 Speciale came blitzing up the hill, turned and quickly drove off into the sunset, its exhaust note reverberating off homes and the nearby country club.


Rejuvenated by the Speciale, I decided to press forward with the hunt and head towards Roppongi. That’s where I found these two Range Rovers, both of which looked like they’re used for their intended purposes.


One way to standout among the high-end luxury cars and exotics is to not buy something even more expensive, but something completely different. With the off-roading craze starting to become popular here in Japan, it was cool to find this JK with a suspension lift kit and some meaty looking tires.


With light starting to quickly fade away, I hurried to Roppongi Hills, yet another area known for exotic cars. Mazda was holding an event outside one of the shopping areas, showing off some of its current model line-up.


Finally, it wouldn’t be Roppongi if you didn’t see something totally bizarre. For a small fee you can rent these go karts, dress up as Mario and friends, and drive through the local streets. What a perfect way to end a day of hunting!

It’s always a great day when I can explore different the cities and culture of Japan, all while hunting for all the automotive treasures it hides, so if this is something you’d like to see more of, please let me know.

Ron Celestine
Instagram: celestinephotography



Comments are closed.


by Oldest
by Best by Newest by Oldest

That is, my friend, a really good day.


Tokyo is really a crazy place, i was there last year and i only want to go back, the life is so different !

and nice shoot ! :D


Awesome pics Ron, quick critique though: Only the one on the right is a Range Rover, the other is a Land Rover.


The i8 is a neck breaker. I've seen 2 in the wild so far, and damn.


Ahhh your absolutely correct. Thanks for the good look !m(_ _)m


It really is! I'm so glad I can call it home.
And thanks!


Absolutely! Wish I caught everything I saw. Stupid taxis....




Good read! Liked the way you used the cars to describe the different vibes of Tokyo. すがい!!!


Ree_Ree すごい*


Still upset Mazda doesn't directly sell the Mazda 2 (or Demio for you foreign guys) hatchback or even sedan in America, you had to outsource to Toyota to sell them here. but i'd prefer Mazda's looks of the Mazda 2. I don't see why Toyota needs to sell a rebadged Mazda 2, when Mazda can directly sell them here


Thank you!! I wanted to try something different so if people enjoy it, I'll keep this up (^_-)


Would love to use the streets of Japan as a track, owing to its good corner combos and elevation changes, but the routes I come up with are too narrow for even just one car.


man it is crazy to see a jeep like that in Japan's streets. I know its fairly common here in Canada but it just seems out of place it japan. Seems kinda surreal


Your definitely right. It's TOTALLY out of place but what better way to be different ;)


awesomefearwave  They sell a mazda 2 here in Canada. Its basically a Ford Fiesta though. The 2 you are thinking of maybe different then the one they sell here in Canada though. What Toyota vehicle is this 2?


i miss the time in Japan that I had when i see these pictures.


Yes! Show us more of Japan!!


See more pictures at ....


Great story. Well done sir. This is proof that speedhunters articles don't have to be about body kits and wheels.


Maart3n Actually, they are both Land Rovers, the left one is a Defender


Thank you so much m(_ _)m I really appreciate it!


I'll see what I can do ;)!




my Aunty Victoria just got a fantastic white Nissan 370Z Coupe only from working part-time online. read this


That FC is gorgeous


what Bonnie replied I'm shocked that anyone can make $7614 in four weeks on the computer . have a peek here



I see only one Range Rover, Ronald!

Gianluca FairladyZ

More of this ;)!


Yea,, down below someone else caught my mistake . But thank you for the assist ^^!


I'm sure I can make that happen ;)


like Josephine said I am impressed that some one can profit $5628 in four weeks on the computer . see it here=====net.pro70­­.Comllllllll


like Diana explained I am shocked that a single mom able to get paid $4892 in 1 month on the computer . linked here
see it here=====richnow9­­.ℭomllllllll


nice jobs watch thissee it here=====richnow9­­.ℭomllllllll


my Aunty Emily got a nearly new silver Lexus IS 350 Sedan by working parttime online from home... view it now ......5newtime.comᴵᴵᴵᴵᴵᴵ


like Helen responded I'm alarmed that a single mom can earn $5712 in four weeks on the internet . take a look at the site here ---------->>


That Jeep is diesel, I thought diesel was banned in Japan, or only for trucks


like Marjorie responded I am dazzled that a student can earn $9666 in one month on the computer .see it here=====net.pro70­­.Comllllllll


my Aunty Aaliyah recently got a nearly new green Mercedes-Benz R-Class Wagon by working off of a laptop... find out here now 
❥ ❥ ❥ ❥ ➥ ➥  ➥


Thats amazing watch out for more cars overe here ....


as Jonathan said I'm startled that a stay at home mom can profit $6081 in 1 month on the internet . visit this site



like Tony implied I'm startled that you can get paid $7484 in a few weeks on the internet .see it here=====max34.ℭomllllllll


my best frends aunt just got Dodge Charger SRT8 just by parttime work from a laptop... read here
❥ ❥ ❥ ❥ ➥ ➥  ➥


as Edith explained I'm dazzled that some people able to profit $4930 in a few weeks on the internet . Get the facts 
❥ ❥ ❥ ❥ ➥ ➥ ➥


as Todd replied I am shocked that a mom can make $8932 in a few weeks on the computer .see it here=====net.pro70­­.Comllllllll


what Troy replied I'm taken by surprise that a single mom can make $7958 in 1 month on the internet . see



like Brenda responded I'm shocked that a stay at home mom able to earn $7047 in one month on the computer. have you read this web sit---------->>


My Uncle Mason just got a nearly new silver Hyundai Genesis Sedan by working part-time from a laptop... more info here
❥ ❥ ❥ ❥ ➥ ➥  ➥


I often stay with my mother-in-law in Saitama. In a small area of unassuming suburbia, a small bike ride will uncover super car dealerships, performance tuning garages and a plethora of car lots selling vehicles not seen outside of Japan. Car heaven.