July 7th in Japan only means one thing to car enthusiasts: 7’s Day.
We’ve been covering this car culture spectacle since the very start of Speedhunters in 2008, and 15 years later the official unofficial gathering of RX-7s and other rotary-powered machinery still can’t be missed. Because, despite the fact that Mazda no longer produces a rotary-powered car, the passion surrounding the famed RX models is as strong as ever.
As I do every July 7th, I visited the mecca of Japanese car meets – Daikoku Parking Area in Yokohama – to join rotary enthusiasts from all around the country (and abroad) and check out some spectacular sights and sounds.
Every year, the 7’s Day gathering is a little different.
Sure, there are always the familiar cars, but at the same time plenty of fresh rides drop by.
And being Daikoku PA, you can always count on vehicles of the non-rotary variety showing up too, like this pristine Autech Stagea 260RS on BNR34 BBS wheels.
Knowing that the on-site police would ultimately shut down the parking area – like they do every time a big meet happens – I arrived early in the evening to make sure I didn’t miss anything.
Being a Friday, it was pretty quiet when I arrived as people are still leaving work at this time. But that just meant I got to see every single car arrive and park up.
My first observation after a good hour at Daikoku PA, was that the stock and OEM+ look is definitely still in favor with enthusiasts. It’s happening right across the board of Japanese performance cars from the golden era, so not really a surprise to see RX-7 owners going down this route, even if the rotary-powered coupe has traditionally been one of the most modified models.
While I’m always on the look out for some cool Cosmos, it was another car from Mazda’s back catalog that caught my attention. I wasn’t alone, either. What is everyone looking at here?
An FC3S RX-7-derived 13B turbo, fitted to Mazda’s large four-door sedan from 1990.
This particular Luce is one I’ve spotlighted before, and it’s still a stunning example running SSR mesh rims and an FC3S 5-speed manual transmission swap.Into The Night
For how cool Daikoku PA is during daytime hours, there’s a whole new atmosphere when the sun goes down.
I’m always blown away by how surreal Daikoku PA looks and feels at night, and this is coming from a guy who’s been coming here for three decades!
Rotaries and all manner of other cars kept flowing in until around 8:00pm, when the first police announcements over the parking area’s loudspeaker system began. We all knew that the meet was on borrowed time.
I’ve been wanting to feature this sinister-looking FD3S ever since I first saw it at the Tokyo secret car meet a few months back.
It’s the only FD3S I know of that runs hydraulic suspension, hence the lowrider-esque stance it can pull off.
Who wants to see a full feature on this car?Over To Umihotaru
I put my camera down for 20 minutes to grab some dinner (onigiri at the convenience store, of course), and in that time Daikoku PA really emptied out.
The word on the street was that an invitation-only, curated meet organized by some prominent rotary guys was happening at Umihotaru PA. I headed straight over, but by the time I got there all the cars gathered on the ground floor for the meet were being kicked out by the police.
There were rumors that the cars were heading to the back-up spot – Decks Tokyo Beach parking lot in Odaiba – but rather than chase the small group all around the bay, I decided to stay at Umihotaru and see what else turned up.
There was plenty to see, and after about an hour, some of the RX-7s that had left began returning.
I came across this wild Nismo GT-R on 21-inch AL13 rims and a wrap that kept changing color with the smallest shift of perspective.
What’s a rotary celebration without a few Nissans?! At least they didn’t get kicked out…
7’s Day in Tokyo is always a fun night out, and with Japan being totally open again the event had a nice international feel to it with plenty of tourists enjoying the spectacle. Until 2024!
Dino Dalle Carbonare