Always Hunt The Parking Lots

A Speedhunter’s job isn’t over, even when every car inside an event has been gone over with a fine-tooth comb. No, that is just half the fun. The other half is in the parking lot.

It’s been said many times over here before, but head along to any event and you’re guaranteed to find some of the best and most interesting cars outside the venue.


These cars are sometimes owned by people who can’t dedicate a full day to an event. Others simply aren’t interested in entering their cars, and I’m sure plenty of people don’t think that their car is up to scratch, even though that might not be true at all.


With that in mind, before bidding farewell to Shunsuke and the team at the Off Time Meeeeting, I decided to check out the parking lot directly outside the Fujisanmesse exhibition center, to see what spectator machines had turned up to the party.

Following on from my seven-hour endurance race in Hokkaido, spotting this Suzuki Alto Works brought back great memories of hunting down more powerful opponents around Tokachi International Speedway.


At car events in Japan you can always find older gentlemen checking out the kyusha. I wonder if this clean Fairlady Z was bringing back nostalgic memories…

Wide-body FD3S anyone? This Mazda RX-7 looked to be thoroughly modified.


Of everything I spotted in the parking lot, this Honda Beat was my favorite. In fact, it was one of my favorite cars of the day outright, hence the title for this story.

This particular example wears a full bodykit from Cozy-Lights, a small kei specialty shop with a strong reputation in the Beat community for its functional and stylish upgrades. The front bumper shaves around 1kg (2.2lb) from the kerb weight.


The owner also decided to ditch the soft top and its mechanism for a composite hard top, and that saved approximately 12kg (26lb) more. As the hood and trunk are both composite too – and with other lightweight modifications in the mix – I wouldn’t be surprised if this things tips the scales at around 700kg (1,543lb).


RAYS Volk Racing TE37s look right at home on anything, and the Diamond Dark Gunmetal 15-inch Sonic variants fitted to this Beat are no exception. The spoke concavity provides more than enough clearance for upgraded Wilwood brake calipers too.

Inside, it’s classic Beat theater. The sports bike-like cluster seems to have been upgraded from stock, hinting at some potential changes in the engine department, perhaps to allow the 656cc three-cylinder engine to rev up to 10,000rpm. Classic Defi gauges relay engine vitals, and a splash of carbon fiber trim adds character to the interior without taking away any of its original charm.


I’d really love to know the full story of this car, so hopefully I see it again sometime and can speak to its owner.

Now I have a dilemma though – writing this has made me want a Honda Beat more than a Suzuki Cappuccino… Which would you choose?

Ron Celestine
Instagram: celestinephotography

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great article! I used to shoot exotic cars at luxury hotels, esp at the entrance area. Hotel staffs could be friendly to let you take photos. Other time watching you closely like a mama hawk.


Thank you! Haha I used to roam around Tokyo and take pictures of all things I thought were cool when I first moved here. Was a good way to learn about the city too!


I love the parking lots,

there so much better then the venues, the venues tend to feel like youtubers/ more for the kids, I like to admire what people drive.

I like to see the real racers.


I def can see where you're coming from with venues. It really depends on the event / gathering for me but you always have to check out the parking lots!



That supra owner, has own youtube channel, was about the that black supra, he also own a 600 bhp r34)

Also he was co host of the JDM Masters and Regular visitor of the Uncle Bee - R


Beat over Cappuccino for me, and that one is perfect. Imagine slotting that through the traffic :D


Seeeeee I'm starting to lean that way too actually..


That black supra owned by Japonic, cohost of the popular JDM Masters you tube channel and one the best customer of the uncle Bee R.


Ahhhhhh! I think I bumped into him there but I didn't realize that was his Supra


For me it would be the Best, but then I'm a big fan of Honda's, having owned four Civics and currently an AtR


A little bias is all good lol. My first car was a Honda and my family car is a Honda sooOOoOoOo


'Beat' not 'Best'


Guys did you see review of similar RX-7 from TheStraightPipes?


A choice between a Honda Beat or Suzi Cappucino? Who are you kidding??? Take both! They're cheap enough. Small enough to keep in your bedroom too. And you could do an engine swap with a CBR600RR...


LOOOL see that would be the correct answer if I had space to park everything... Maybe if I got rid of the 34 but that's def not gonna happen


You need to suggest to your wife that you've always wanted to live somewhere with lake views, and then suggest a nice country house around Tsukuiko. Still near Tokyo (sort of), cheaper property prices, and all the space you need. Plus refreshing walks in the countryside, for a little added romance and relaxation. Just don't mention that the property has all the space you need for 6 cars and a workshop... ;)


Hahahaha well we are doing something similar to that but further out so can add a third to the fleet. Just need to play the waiting game


You never know what you could find in parking lots

19 (better suspension setup / way more torque / better interior etc...