This Is NYC Car Life

New York City car culture isn’t a thing? Think again.

Speedhunters readers can all agree, the passion for living life through cars knows no boundaries on this planet. There are parts of the world which many of us commonly look to for indulging our automotive urges. Japan, Asia, Europe, Australia, and the US West Coast – these areas of the world are place where enthusiasts often plan vacations for the sole purpose of enjoying cars.


Add New York City to that list.

Now, I know some of you may be thinking ‘no way, no one drives in NYC!’ As a native New Yorker and automotive enthusiast, I can tell you that I’ve heard this statement often.


This is why, over the past few years, myself along with a few of my close friends and family have undertaken the mission of bringing to light NYC car culture, with a specific focus on Japanese cars.


In the past, there have been a few attempts to cover New York’s car scene by different publications, so I won’t claim we’re the first to do this. However, in my and many other locals’ opinions, they’ve never been an accurate representation. That’s what we’d like to change.


Together, we are PRIME ( Under that moniker, we hold various events throughout the year, in and around the city, with the sole purpose of bringing enthusiasts together and building a community of shared resources.


Enjoying JDM cars in the Big Apple sounds a bit far fetched, but we make it happen. Our roads aren’t the best (terrible actually), but the passion is strong, and as they say on Broadway, the show must go on.

Street Icons

Our focus is the street, not only as a space for display but also where modification style emanates. Inspired by ’90s Japan automotive lifestyle, we build our cars and celebrate the culture as a homage to that era.


As the end of the season approached, we wanted to hold one more event to close out 2016. We received word that friends from Japan, Texas, Canada, LA, as well as the north and south areas of the East Coast would be in town, many of whom own builds that would be right at home in Option magazine or on this very website. Reason being, the selection of tuning brands and build styles owner’s use are often from the iconic pre-Y2K decade. Thus, the title for our event manifested itself as Street Icons.


The plan, meet at an undisclosed location, cruise to Times Square, cruise through Manhattan, then meet at another undisclosed location. Sounds simple enough, but the risks are always looming. As in any densely populated city, parking real estate is the highest commodity.


Dreaming of our own Daikoku PA, finding a space for a large group to gather is the first step. Planning the route comes next, ensuring the chosen roads won’t demolish a rare front bumper or diffuser that likely took months to arrive from Japan, while always keeping watch for any number of random issues that could occur.


Finally, it’s finding yet another low-key area to regroup and disperse. With the unlimited number of yellow cabs, MTA buses, delivery trucks and the boys and blue, it’s a bit of an undertaking, but nothing is more satisfying than seeing a large group of tuned Japanese cars cruising through this metropolis.

The Cars

The East Coast and Tri-State area in particular are home to some of the most amazing Japan-inspired builds. Time attack-spec Evos, Skylines of all eras, full RE Amemiya catalog RX-7 builds, NSXs, AE86s, Supras, VIP sedans – the list goes on. You name it, it’s probably here somewhere. Most just don’t know and are quick to dismiss this as a possibility. On this night, many of the regulars along with new faces came out to enjoy the bright lights of Times Square.


Speaking of new faces, our friends from Texas, Final Form USA, also made the long journey to the Tri-State area to partake in the festivities. Remember those contemporary CarShopGlow FD3S LED taillights that showed up randomly some time ago? Final Form were one of the first to introduce those to the US market; their tuning style lines up with ours: JDM style and power for both the street and the track.


For Street Icons, the city once again proved itself a symbol of diversity. Likeminded enthusiasts from all walks of life gathered to enjoy cars. To our friends outside of NYC and around the world, we invite you to join us sometime.

Thank you for reading. See you soon!

Edwin Reyes


Photos by Pravan Kuntmala, Brian Chin & Saliou Omar Khoule

Cutting Room Floor


Comments are closed.


by Oldest
by Best by Newest by Oldest

Seeing this makes me want to have a New York course in racing game again with day/night setting.


Awesome rx7s, better than REs own booth at TAS I may dare to say. Plus the Bugeye Wrx game is strong with this group


Ever notice how the standard
Speedhunters scenario is a phenomenal car in a phenomenally-unsuitable
particular article is set in New York, but
whether it's Tokyo, Singapore,
Los Angeles, Melbourne,
London or
wherever, so often you guys do a story on a great car in a place that's
actively hostile to private car ownership. Especially if it's a fun vehicle.
High taxes, smog
inspections, no parking, absurd speed limits, auto theft, exorbitant tolls,
hideous traffic snarls as a matter of all makes me wonder why guys who
love cars so much live in big cities at all.
And the powers-that-be treat the
kinds of activities that car guys enjoy with the same disdain the FAA shows to
someone flying a stunt plane through a takeoff pattern unannounced.


Therealstig ..........and the influences come from old historic Re Amemiya builds from TAS.

Closed course films

Good photos of the event. All around good stuff


Ice Age I feel like you're missing the point a little bit. To me what this shows is that car enthusiasts are everywhere and a true enthusiast is not limited by their environment. Perhaps a chosen career path or family requires an urban life. Of course there are countless enthusiasts who are able to live in an environment that caters to automotive obsession but, from a Speedhunting perspective, I think the ones who are able to enjoy their cars regardless of the environment they chose/are forced to live in are, often times, the ones with the most passion.  Meaning they have the most to overcome in order to enjoy what is important to them.


All about that IS300 Wagon! I always thought that would be an incredible base for a killer build.


I would have never thought. That's a lot of REA rx7s damn.


Ice Age I can kinda get behind what you're saying. I'd imagine the people who live in these places are there to stay, and are doing what they can with what they've got.


racerlordheiman forza 2


Awesome. Just awesome. 
I've owned a few cars while living in Manhattan. It's not easy, but for a car guy it's worth it. I just sold my last - 1990 Mustang LX - in order to buy an apartment. Unfortunate but fair cause. 
Must start following Prime to see when the events are happening, hope i'm allowed to hang, i'll bring my AustraliaDM-spec bicycle...


I live in NYC and have seen so many of these cars and ALOT more cruising by.  Imagine standing on a busy street corner, cars honking, people jamming up the crosswalk and 3 R34 GTRs are sitting at the stoplight totally hidden from the unsuspecting world around them!  I have looked into getting something myself (JDM 89 Porsche Turbo) and found the guys at Nostalgia imports who are a great group to know in the tristate area for opportunities like this!


Thank you, Edwin and the crew at Prime NYC for sharing this phenomenal story with us. This is what Speedhunters, as a community, should always be about.


absolutely AMAZING, would never expect to see so much JDM in the U.S...simply FANTASTIC


Wow something from my neck of the woods finally! Never see anything from the tri state area!!


I can't handle how much I cannot handle this. Thank you for sharing.


That red Supra :D


That blue Evo looks the bollocks


CyborgGT This was a different cruise. Not the wekfest one.


Paddy McGrath Thank you so much for the opportunity! It is a great honor to be able to share these photos and the story with you and the SH community.


Ben Chandler Thank you! Truly an honor for us and the entire NYC/Northeast community.


Retro as hell indeed


Did you see Krispy there?


Thank you everyone for reading the article and for viewing our photos/video. We cannot express our gratitude enough. It was an amazing night that's for sure. If you're ever planning on coming to NYC, keep an eye out, you might see us rolling through. Until then, enjoy Speedhunting.


Mitsuru Yes! Always great to see Krispy, and old friend of ours. He posted a vlog about the night recently:


cjhcjh Therealstig We love RE-Amemiya out here. One of our main guys with the AC037
conversion wasn't even out that night as he was prepping for SEMA. Wish he coulda made it. Next
time! Here's a pic of his car:


I want to become a part of this! Thanks for giving me more motivation to get my FC taken care of by spring!


I REALLY must buy myself an FD before they become crazy money!


Photos from NYC...... or JPN?


EdoPRIMENYC Sick! Also gotta say I love the colors popping everywhere in the YT video.


That red Supra tho.


That Evo 0>Evo 8/9/10


You sure you weren't drunk of Sake and you were actually in Osaka?


Love it! After having lived in NYC for 4 years and not seeing much of the car culture scene for the reasons you mentioned, it's great that you're trying to organize every one together! It's the greatest city in the world, and you've made it even greater!


cjhcjh Thank you so much for the kind words and for watching!


Ice Age Yeah, unfortunately car life almost always comes after. After things like career, family etc. So if you've got the passion, the environment won't hold you back.
Usually when the environment is harsh, but there is a car enthusiast, they'll have a lot more passion. This is because without that strong passion, they wouldn't be bothered to be into cars in a place like that, throwing in the towel and finding another hobby.
For cases like that; Passion = Perseverance. Very much so.


Amazing story and event boys! You guys are proof than Carmunities can exist absolutely anywhere. Thanks for sharing!


Nice shots! I thought this was in Japan!


Bro5 was thinking the exact same thing! kudos to Brian Chin for showing us readers the diversity of the car scene in NYC which is rarely shown (as far as I can remember).


Matboy_Au  Thank you! We were definitely trying to prove that. Everyone out here is hyped up for 2017 after seeing this article. Some amazing builds in the works!


Ryan King  I love Sake and Osaka haha.


Paddy McGrath  Thank you so much! We have been fans of your work for years now and we are thoroughly humbled be getting a chance to be on SH. See you in the streets.


JH4DC321 The scene was pretty hype in the 90's and early 2000's as well. The good old days before Fast and Furious movies...


I really hate to be negative...but why does that red Integra have a, "Honda Primo" windshield banner? While I'm 110% for using authentic parts to build up your "JDM" car..I'm 210% against making it into something it isn't; which is what the Integra is trying to do. It'd be the same thing as taking an EK or EG Honda Civic and putting "No Good Racing" decals, Vinyl square number plates, and white lettering on your tires..and calling it a, "Kanjo Civic".


mikum  Thanks so much! Really appreciate it! We wanted to turn NYC into Daikoku PA haha. We'll do this again, and again... ;)


I saw a video of this meet/cruise the other day. Awesome calibre of cars! That white FD is so nice. It's good to see car culture even state by state in countries cause it can vary. I honestly didnt expect that many nice cars in NYC. New York is basically known as the mecca for everything but car culture is something that was basically unheard of from there (at least from an international perspective). Obviously there is car culture everywhere, but it is very nice to see such a big turn out of really high quality cars. 

Did the police do anything? They're speaking to the Evo driver. In Australia police have the power to basically take your car off the road on the spot if it has mods, are the cops like that there?


EdoPRIMENYC Mitsuru That's where I saw it hahaha


DinoSawr  Thank you! Yes the white FD is one of my favorites as well. The owner is such a good guy. Check his instagram: @resuper7. Your expectation is what we found most people think about when we tell them about car life in NYC. The scene has been thriving for years in different ways, it just never gets much coverage. We want to change that though!
As for the police, when we hold these events, we all make sure not to cause any trouble or break any traffic laws. We're all regular people with jobs and families that just like to drive cool cars. We have nothing but respect for the NYPD. We don't want to cause them any more issues since they're guarding the busiest area in NYC. They are awesome to us when we roll through. Most of them just like seeing cool cars pass by. They get up close to see what's going on but nothing happened that night. It makes for great imagery, though!


jamesthesuplado  That means a lot, thanks man!


DinoSawr EdoPRIMENYC Mitsuru  Haha yea, Krispy has been around forever out here. Glad to see his progress over the years.




My Uncle Samuel just got a stunning blue Infiniti QX80 SUV by working part time from a 
computer. see page............


sooo many nice FD'S!!!!!!


EdoPRIMENYC DinoSawr Good way to make a statement is to fill times square with awesome jap cars thats for sure haha Followed him :)

Thats good! As long as everyone behaves and respects the road laws the police shouldn't be an issue. Sadly in some other parts of the world even a drive/meet for charity can end up with police defecting cars for mods even when no one does anything wrong. I guess NYPD have their priorities like you said which makes sense. 

Awesome event, glad everything went good! Incredible background with the all the lights too


what model year is that daihatsu hijet end up in nyc?

Gianluca FairladyZ

the more i look at these FD's, the more i fall in love with them!


Was such an amazing night. I could not believe it when I heard we were going to be going for a cruise through Times Square. Like, is that even possible? Was such a crazy cool group of cars. I was so bummed I had to leave early. I needed to get back to California, so it was time to go. I escaped the Island through the Lincoln tunnel, and headed west. Thank you all for putting this event together, and for the incredible coverage! Would love to get back to NYC to do this again!


Ella . even though Rita `s storry is really great, last thursday I bought a gorgeous Dodge after making $5825 this past 5 weeks and-just over, ten-grand last-munth . it's actualy my favourite-job I've ever had . I started this six months/ago and immediately was bringin home at least $76 per-hr.


I'm shocked that a mother can earn $8888 

in 1 month.............


562MikeA  It was great meeting you. You'll always have friends in NYC.


nickgenerazio12 To each their own I guess. It was actually a clean car. Although he had a Primo banner, it's slightly incorrect to have it since it would have been sold under Honda Verno.


My Uncle Nolan recently got Infiniti G Sedan by working part-time from a macbook... 
go to the website.............


So much goodness.  All of those FC's, the white FD, the Lexus IS wagon, the green NSX, and of course, the hachi.  Hot damn, so much good stuff.


Is this car seriously an Uber?? I have never had an Uber driver pick me up in anything near as cool as this is!


bvs092309 haha maybe ;) I was waiting for someone to notice! It would be pretty amazing to be picked up by a full catalog AIMGAIN RC. The owner also has a beautiful GRB STi. Hopefully we can share that with the SH audience one day as well.


Leppah Thanks man! It's like an episode of Hot Version haha


562MikeA It was great to meet you that night! Amazing memories! Thank you for hangin' with us. Shout out to Willy!


dangina WE <3 FDs out here. Wait until you see the Skylines...


Damn, those white FCs are beautiful! Great photos, thanks for this.


love the setting with the time square man...looks like shibuya crossing :I


echology one of the things I love about TimesSq and JDM cars haha


Twitch_6  Thanks for checking it out!


DinoSawr Thanks again man. We are planning a few already. Can't wait 'til summer.


I am amazed that a mom able to profit $9626

 in 4 weeks ..............

look at this website.............


This post is a healthy dose of JDM. Loving the vibes, man


I heard / read exactly three times of the NYC car Culture
1. Racer X Article on the "The fast and the furious" DVD.
2. Speedhunters Article about the two R34 Skylines.
3. This Article


good video/vlog thingy on the event from krispy media


Cant wait to be a part of this aaaaaaaaaa!!!
Great rides and beautiful setting, nothing quite goes as well with cars, as night and neon/city lights. The mood and comfy atmosphere are irresistible. 

Loved the vid <3


Yahoo CEO, Marissa Meyer has gone som far as to Support the practice "Work at home" that I have been doing since last year.check this link. ►►►►►►  ▒❥❥❥


How long ago were these taken? I remember seeing a vlog from a passenger showing the meeting locations and how a few had travelled quite a way to make it to the meet


Skreamies This particular event took place late last year. These end of season gatherings are always pretty awesome with the quality cars and people that attend. It's the last time most of us will be in the same place before the winter gets brutal.


Mechanophile Thank you!


joelmoore Yep. Kripsy a good friend of ours. You can seen me and Pravan talking about the event. I'm the guy shouting out the instructions haha


Darelumga I know exactly what you're talking about. Racer X, back in the day there was a ton of street racing in NYC. Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens. This is pre-F&F; and is actually what inspired the movie.
The R34 article, I was there with some old friends. They are local. Two R34 and one R33. Here's the piece by Matthew Jones if folks want to revisit:
Those cars are still here and they make their rounds here and there :)
I'm telling you NYC/NJ and the Northeast are full of JDM car culture. Most of it in hiding until we have an epic night like we did with Street Icons.

Thanks man!


You can spot the racer, see that meat on the rear


Feels like you kinda let a cat out of a bag... Gotta get more of NYC!  Did you ever find your Daikoku?


EdoPRIMENYC joelmoore wish we had stuff like this in the UK ahaha look so cool


bluestreaksti Sharp eyes!


bluestreaksti Maybe :) Thing is, at the spaces we gather, we have to make sure it's kept secret. Otherwise the burn out ricers and kids who's dad bought them a Camaro will show up and start revving for no reason. We can expect a visit from the NYPD shortly after that... :/


Awesome coverage, awesome event. Thanks for putting a spotlight on NYC.


Saw this meeting in Krispy Media his vlog. To read this article with stunning photography and video makes it even better. Great meet and cars that showed up! Keep it up guys. Here the link to the video I was talking about:


Next Up Jackie Robinson Parkway aka The Kanjo


Landon . I can see what your saying... Fred `s report is neat... on friday I got a top of the range Ariel Atom from bringing in $5137 recently and just over $10k lass month . it's certainly the nicest-job I've had . I started this 9-months ago and right away began to bring home minimum $69, per-hour.


ChuChu2  You know whats up! Might want to keep that one amongst new yorkers though. Never know who's watching... ;)


Watching this in 4k on my monitor is soooo trippy. You guys did an excellent job on this vid. Great collection of cars.


like Shawn responded I didn't know that someone able to make $6367 in one month on the 
internet . ......... >>>>>>>> SEE MORE


Wow.. Amazing! These cars looks so right on Times Square! I was in NYC in January 2016. Didn't see any JDM/tuned cars at all. I was so disappointed. I also searched online too see if there was meets or anything. Where should I look next time? :)


Considering none of these cars are normally driven on the streets of NYC on a regular basis, stupid article. I've lived here my whole life; pretty bad representation of the car scene in NYC. Whats the point of posting multiple photos of RX7's from Texas in an article that's supposed to represent NYC's car scene?


love this..... **clapping still**


StephonFazalKhan I've lived here my entire life as well. Seen many things that made the culture epic back in the day. Zerega, Hunts Point, Spring Valley, Jackie Robinson, DPA, Francis Lewis, etc. 
I disagree with pretty much everything you've said. I don't expect the world to agree with me or what we do either. That being said, I'm very much looking forward to reading your article about NYC car life some day.


MariusEngenSkinnes Off-season now bro. Most cars are hibernating. Once spring hits folks will be around. Not sure at this capacity though. For something like this, spring/summer time is the best bet.