A Dying Breed: The R.Junky GT-Rs

Sometimes, there isn’t a story to be told.

Sometimes, there’s no rationale offered. Sometimes, what you see is what you get. Sometimes, there’s no justification required.

Our car community is not a particularly large one in the grand scale of things. There are many studies that suggest we’re reducing in size, which is hardly surprising. Fewer people are taking up driving as they reach the required age as the cost of starting out continues to soar, along with improved public transportation the world over. The rapid development of autonomous cars and the implementation of semi-autonomous systems are slowly taking the freedom of driving away from us.

That’s not to mention that the automobile has become the ultimate scapegoat for the world’s environmental problems, yet show me another industry which has done so much in such a short period of time to try and make a meaningful difference? Stricter laws, increased regulation, harsher penalties, closer monitoring, more traffic and less opportunities to enjoy driving.

It’s no wonder we’re in decline.

But the truth of the matter is that cars are actually pretty fucking great, and car people in particular are the absolute best. You can go anywhere in the world and be from any background, any nationality, any race, creed or ethnicity and strike up a conversation with a fellow enthusiast and instantly bond over these machines on any number of wheels.

Language barriers are irrelevant as the international hand signals for car related matters are in fact universal.

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Cars can be enjoyed in so many different ways as well that the list might as well be infinite. There’s joy to be had from the very moment you decide to buy a new car. The thrill of searching through the classifieds and consuming every piece of relevant information possible while refining your criteria. The sale negotiation, the purchase, the collection, the first drive, the plan, the first parts arriving. All of it, fantastic times.

As I’ve involved myself more and more in the online car community over the years, I’ve noticed – and I’m sure you have, too – the increasing disconnect between the real and virtual worlds. It’s got to the stage where I sometimes wonder if the people who comment online even exist in the real world, such is the disparity between the two. Where you find sincerity and friendliness in person, it’s typically all egos and vitriol online. It takes an impressive amount of arrogance to tell someone how to enjoy their own car, but it’s something we see every day.

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I don’t want to waste any more energy than necessary on highlighting this negativity, but it shouldn’t be underestimated. It’s a huge problem that the car community faces, and something which we will have to deal with, one way or another. We’re too small and face too many challenges from outside our ranks to not be a completely united front.

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Cars are one of the last great freedoms we have. The ability to walk out of your house, get behind the wheel and go wherever you want without prior permission or reservation cannot be underestimated or appreciated enough. That we still have the freedom of choice and the freedom of expression over the vehicle we choose to exercise these freedoms cannot be taken for granted.

I don’t want to live in an era where I look back at photographs like these and think that we never had it so good, or that the days of building a car exactly how you want to are nothing but a distant memory.

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If there’s any car that will elicit a series of responses about how they ‘should be done’, it’s almost certainly going to be something within the GT-R family. I would imagine that sitting them on the floor, with an abundance of negative camber, quite likely goes against the typical purist ethos for these cars.

Thankfully, we’re not exactly renowned for being purists around these parts.

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R.Junky are a Saitama based collective who bill themselves as a GT-R preservation association, with Hikaru Motoda (white R32 GT-R) and Takumi Shibano (wine R32 GT-R) being two of its most prominent members. There’s an obvious street style to both cars, along with their friend Taka’s white R34 GT-R.

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Details are vague, as there’s only so far polite pointing and smiling ultimately gets you but one thing is quite clear; their passion for the GT-R is unquestionable.

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While GT-Rs for the most part are still relatively fresh in most parts of the world – particularly in some of the ’25 year’ states in the United States – they’ve had a cult following since day one in Japan. We might admire the history of the GT-R, but the Japanese lived it. They’ve seen the introduction, replacement and ultimate ascendance of the GT-R into the realms of relative unobtanium.

One would be forgiven for trying to protect a rapidly appreciating asset, especially if you bought in when these were still very affordable, but R.Junky does not concern themselves with such issues. These are cars built to be driven and enjoyed.

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The only rationale and justification behind these cars is arguably the most important one there is; because they can. It’s the same reason why we’ve chosen to run this story, which isn’t really a story. There could well come a time when all of this could be just a distant memory, and we will curse ourselves for not taking the time to enjoy it while it’s still around.

All things considered, we’re living in a great era of car culture. It’s never been easier to explore the various sub-cultures around the world, and something awesome is usually just a couple of clicks or taps away.

Enjoy it. Appreciate it, but most importantly, play your part in keeping it alive.

Paddy McGrath
Instagram: pmcgphotos
Twitter: pmcgphotos

Photography by Mark Riccioni
Instagram: mark_scenemedia
Twitter: markriccioni

Hikaru Motoda’s Nissan Skyline BNR32 GT-R – @mochimo26dett
500hp, RB26 N1, Tomei camshafts, uprated pistons and connecting rods, Trust hard-pipes, NISMO intake, HKS V Pro 3.4, HKS EVC 6 boost controller, NISMO aero, RAYS Volk Racing TE37SL, R35 GT-R Brembo brakes, Roberute lifter system, aftermarket suspension arms, custom cage, ARC Titan strut-tower brace.

Takumi Shibano’s Nissan Skyline BNR32 GT-R – @takumi_403
RB26 N1, HKS GT-SS turbocharger, HKS hard-pipes, HKS Power Flow intake, HKS V Pro, Trust intercooler, Sard injectors, Tomei camshafts, BNR34 ignition system, Top Secret exhaust, D2 brakes, Aragosta suspension, NISMO clutch, HKS roll-bar, Bride Gias, NISMO shift knob, Key’s Racing steering wheel, Work Meister M1 18×11.5-inches, Nankang 285/30/18

Taka’s Nissan Skyline BNR34 GT-R – @bcnr34.taka
HKS intake, 5Zigen Super Lap exhaust system, Reimax front pipe, RAYS Volk Racing TE37V MKII 18×11-inch, Cusco front & rear upper arms.



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You guys are crazy - the "preach" has to be one of the most beautifully written, eye-opening, self-re evaluating pieces of literature ever to grace our car scene. I urge both of you to read it again, and again...and maybe our world will improve.


These photos are just stunning! Good Job, those cars look beautiful.


I'll find myself in the garage or out in the driveway just staring at my car or my bikes - just letting my eyes follow every line and curve.

I've never just stared at an app for an hour contemplating its graphics.


holy drool... these are definitely some of the cars that helped inspire my build! happy to see them taking spotlight!



Very well written article too, gives us all something to think about. Uniting in positivity and appreciation for something that could easily become a distant memory.


Yeah great words Paddy. Just 'Cause! get out there, enjoy the drive while cars still have throttles!
three killer looking GT-Rs too!


Great job with the article paddy!


OMFG. What are those pictures? What are those cars? Fcking pretty gorgeous. Just updated my background haha


The Skyline GTR R34 is like my dream car


My GT-R has been sitting in the garage for preservation for a while now. This article is just what I needed. I'm driving her tonight!


Great photos Mark!

Matthew Everingham

This is the best 'non-story' story I've ready for some time.


Honestly, I don't think this article could have been written better. Absolutely stunning cars as well. This is some good stuff, y'all.


Good photos.

Mahesh Sukhram ZA

Awesome photo's, ties up with the words of the article nicely ( The car model also). Though provoking. . .as well.


Great article, and food for thought for sure. I see the division too, and have come to the conclusion, that most of the internet hate isn't coming from genuine enthusiasts, but rather from people who have no connection to the car world in real life. These days it's so easy to get information from the internet, and have all your opinions based upon them. Then it's time to act all knowledgeable and get into fights in the comment sections.

That's why I say, get out and into the car hobby for real. Do something with your own hands. Have all your money go to car parts, get sleep deprived, all beat up, joints and muscles hurting building your car. You'll start to notice that it's not all sunshine and Instagram photos, and maybe you'll appreciate other peoples work a bit more in the process. Most of all, do your own thing! Accept the fact that not everybody get's to have the cars that are hot right now. I should know since I'm into old Opel's, and what's more un-cool (in the online community) than that!

Dustin “eXite” Mankin

Not a GT-R, but a pretty awesome R32 drift car none-the-less. I love finding stuff like this every time I go out.

Since I cover a lot of drifting, I don’t see many GT-Rs, but a lot of FR Skylines trying to look the part. That’s ok, too. Can’t wait to finish editing the video of this R32!

I would have liked to buy a GT-R, but I got here just as the price hike hit.


Mark KILLED this, god damn...
I don't consider myself a Skyline fanboy, but this makes me want one SO bad.


Car people are anything but the best. Super close-minded, racist, sexist group of dudes who value nothing more than their hobby.

I love cars, but to say the majority of their enthusiasts are good? NAH.


If you're not a troll, use your proper name please.


Wow! I agree with Paddy. Get out and find some new car mates!
Here in NZ a good portion of the car community are hard-out bogans (look it up) who can be pretty rugged but I still wouldn't say they're closed mined sexist racists lol


I have good friends that are into cars. They are VERY much in the minority. Y'all don't understand car culture in America.


I don't live there so haven't felt the car culture but as an outsider the States feels like a thousand countries. Go from central LA to Portland to upstate NY to the deep south. You guys definitely have variety (and a massive country compared to here - 4.7 million people spread out over a 1600 x 400 km (1000 x 250 mile) range.


I think you need to find new people to surround yourself with if that's been your experience.


+1 for that Paddy. Agreed.


Great writing, Paddy. Enjoyed that.


Absolutely inspiring „story“. Great Job!


Cars are one of the last great freedoms we have. The ability to walk out of your house, get behind the wheel and go wherever you want without prior permission or reservation cannot be underestimated or appreciated enough..." I couldn't have said it better, and I think about this every day.

Unfortunately, the friendliness of the local car culture will depend on locale. It's likely that the most open-minded are in the more diverse, urban areas, and those places, ironically, are where our hobby seems to be at the greatest risk of being regulated out of existence. Out here in the sticks, in the US, there are plenty of places where you'll get a rock through your window for not "driving American." I agree that somehow we have to come together, and I hope we can. There's a bigger dialogue that we'll have to have, less preachy and more gritty, before that day comes.


Oops, forgot some quotes there! And thanks for the excellent writing, Paddy. Also, the preaching that I was referring to was my own ;)


These are the 3 most beautiful GTRs I have ever seen. Maybe its the pics but damn that makes me almost want to sell my house to buy one =)).


You said "Where you find sincerity and friendliness in person, it’s typically all egos and vitriol online".
Somewhat strangely, my experience has been pretty much the opposite.
I've enjoyed (and still enjoy) great communities online, be it car owners, photographers or fans.
In contrast, most notable car-related events I've attended have been the opposite.
Owners needing to misbehave in traffic to boost their ego, reacting allergic to any question or smalltalk-attempt (not to mention cameras), photographers who really can't stand another camera near them (up to being told to "get lost" (in more swear-heavy ways) in public places), and fans acting in all kinds of....non-recommended ways (insulting/belittling cars in comparisons to online trivia, video-games or personal opinion, making a game out of blocking as much space at car-shows as they can, touching or sitting on/in stranger's cars or walking into traffic to take the ten-thousandth Instagram-photo).
And then there's the mentioned peer-pressure of telling someone how to handle/use/modify his car.
Recently the owner of a "stanced" Golf VII GTI told me that he doesn't like how his car rides at all, but "with that car, I had to modify it that way".
And at that point, at the latest, it's clear that something's not going the way it should.

Sure, getting into cars/driving can be quite expensive, and it's "cooler"/more important to spend money on other stuff (fashion, smartphones, partying, online-games), but at least in my area it seems like the car-community itself got some flaws to work out too.
We can complain about laws (which are a bit strict in Germany) all we want, or about the unfair police (which we sorta brought upon ourselves), but that's only part of why it seems that the car-community is declining (sharply) in interest/members.


Not sure if anyone told you but the days of having complete freedom of expression with your car are already a distant memory, thanks to heavy-handed regulations the world over which criminalize elementary modifications (see: the Catalytic Converter Felony in the US), require expensive and time-sucking government-approved inspections for every modification, or simply adopt an "anything not expressly permitted is prohibited" stance. It's not as bad as it could be, but car people do need to organize and become more engaged in political action.

Marius Mehlum Utaker

These pictures are so great, best I've seen in a long time!


Thanks for the great piece, Paddy!

It is crazy seeing our community shrink again, after how much it blew up after the F&F days. I can only hope that we're distilling out the true enthusiasts. I don't mean people with deep pockets or certain cars, just people that really love their cars and builds.


This has to be my favourite Speedhunters article of the year - and that has to be one of the most difficult calls I have made in 2018!! The grace and accuracy with which you have described our feelings of love and passion towards our cars....the way you perfectly highlighted the negatives, it felt like reading my own thoughts while being gently rocked from one idea to another, simply beautiful. As for the photos....just stunning; modern and cunning yet unmistakably japanese, just so perfect for the subject. So honoured that this article and photographs were put together around my old time favourite cars - Japanese styled 32's. You made my day, thank you so so much.


You are absolutely right. I love this article because it speaks the truth. I feel that they will try to take our freedoms away in the coming decades. But I will enjoy the ability to drive the cars I like until I can no longer drive.