There’s an unmistakable charisma that classic cars innately possess. The distinct smell of aged interiors, the mechanical feel of taking a corner at speed, the sound of old engines turning over and chugging along; they’re all factors contributing to an indescribable nostalgia that can only be satisfied by a classic car.
While Sara’s already given you a closer look at the newer cars that showed up to StanceNation NorCal, there was a lot of old school goodness at the show, too. Although, I’ll admit I’m using the ‘old school’ term lightly, as I snuck a few cars from the early 2000s in here.
Seeing as how Japanese cars dominated the show, especially when it came to classic builds, we’ll start there.
This ’69 two-door Corolla is a car I’ve seen on several occasions, most recently at the final Shukai Show in Japantown San Jose. I can’t help but grab some photos each time I come across it – it’s just too good.
The 20-valve 4A-GE-powered Corolla is a modern interpretation of what a classic can be, executed to the highest level. Each time I see the car, something about it has been improved.
Moving to the ’70s but sticking with Toyota, this Celica was an unexpected but very nice find at StanceNation. With the car surrounded by people for much of the day, I was glad to see Sara managed one clear shot of the hood popped after the crowds began to thin towards the evening.
Under the hood it’s clear why the car was on the receiving end of so much attention. There’s just something so awesome about a clean and simple carbureted setup, especially with a set of velocity stacks topping it off. I can only imagine that the sounds this car makes are fantastic.
Jumping to the ’80s, I spotted another 20-valve 4A-GE-powered car I’ve seen evolve over the years at a number of shows. Something tells me that those tire letters didn’t come from our store, but this FX16 GTS on air sure checks a lot of the right boxes.
This being my first time at StanceNation NorCal I was excited to see so much variety, even within specific marques.Datsun & Beyond
Kicking things off for Datsun, I found this SR20-swapped 510 complete with a big single turbo, GReddy intake, and a VeilSide titanium exhaust. I’m sure there are countless other goodies at play here which I can’t readily see, too.
As with Toyota, there was a huge mix of Nissan/Datsun builds, but it shouldn’t be a surprise that most were pushing an aggressive ride height. I’ll be quick to admit that I’ve always liked the look of a stanced S30, but this is probably the first R32 on air that really spoke to me.
I love how the angularity of the front lip and side skirts accentuate the lines of the car and sit nearly flush with the ground.
Of course, it’s hard to go wrong with an S-chassis, isn’t it?
Moving down the rows, I realized that one was entirely dedicated to my friends from Inspire USA and cars which their friends brought out. I featured this FD3S before, but it’s since had a number of upgrades that Drew told me were coming.
I’ve yet to meet an owner who says their car is truly finished.
Four NSXs were lined up here as well, each with a long list of unique parts. A couple have already been featured on Speedhunters, and the other two are definitely worth taking a closer look at sometime in the future. Naturally, a line-up of Hondas isn’t complete without a Civic hatch.
On the topic of hatchbacks, it was hard to miss this Sheepey Race turbo setup. I couldn’t find the owner, but here’s to hoping this car is properly flogged on track.
While Japanese cars made up the majority of the older examples at the show, there were some really clean German builds present as well — all of which had at least a bit of Japanese flair to them. This was most prominent in the Sunburst 964; a full feature is on the way.
Even if most of the builds at this event followed a similar ethos, it was refreshing to see so many different takes on so many different cars. StanceNation NorCal goes to show that within an era, a brand, or even a specific chassis, there are plenty of ways to skin a cat.
I really enjoyed the relevancy of these cars, too, and I found myself cruising through classifieds in the days and weeks after the show, looking to scratch that nostalgic itch.
Additional Photos by Sara Ryan