Auto Garage TBK: The Mid Night Club Porsche Factory

Even if you’re not Porsche-mad, you’ll likely be familiar with Auto Garage TBK. This Yokohama-based workshop is famous in the Japanese tuning world largely due to its association with the infamous Mid Night Racing Team. Naturally then, when the opportunity to visit such a historic place presented itself, there was no way I was passing it up.

While Auto Garage TBK is best known for its Porsche 964 and G-Body 911 aero kits, the company also manufactures aftermarket body parts for Japanese performance icons including the Nissan Skyline, Mazda RX-7, and Toyota Supra. That said, I was expecting to see some special cars. But I didn’t expect to catch a glimpse of a certain blue 911 sitting on jack stands at the back of the workshop…

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To understand the significance of this particular car, it’s probably best I provide some context on the Mid Night Club and their street racing antics during the ’80s and ’90s in Japan.

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Mid Night is by far the world’s most well-known street racing club, its members known for driving at incredibly high speeds throughout Tokyo’s complex network of expressways and tunnels. The club operated in complete secrecy, with meet-up locations sometimes being hidden in code within local newspapers. Despite what you might think, safety was a high priority within Mid Night. If any members were seen endangering the lives of others, they were promptly exiled from the club.

Mid Night took themselves very seriously as a club, something even more evident in the calibre of cars they had assembled by the mid-1990s. As you can imagine, maintaining speeds of 200-300km/h with vehicles of this era meant no expense was spared when it came to modifications. While most of the club’s activities took place on public expressways, Mid Night cars also set various Japanese top speed records at legitimate events.

That brings us back to this metallic blue 930 Turbo – owned by one of the original Mid Night Club members and built by Auto Garage TBK.

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The 930 you are looking at was known to be incredibly fast on the Wangan and Shutoku highways back in the day, allegedly reaching speeds of up to 340km/h.

There’s a famous photo of this car at the Yatabe test track that isn’t short of a good story either. The 911 set a domestic top speed record of 305.8km/h at the now defunct proving grounds in Tsukuba in June 1995.

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While the 930 is currently missing wheels, some paint, and a few pieces here and there, it was in shockingly good condition given it’s almost 40 years old. It was surreal to see such an iconic car in person.

Takahashi-san, the owner of TBK, explained that the Porsche was undergoing an exterior refresh and a few small upgrades to keep it fast, safe and most importantly beautiful.

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Interestingly but not entirely unexpected, this 930 is equipped with several JDM parts, namely the huge Trust/GReddy intercooler core and piping modified to fit, and an early model Trust/GReddy Profec electronic boost controller. It is safe to say it’s certainly not a high-tech build, but in no way does that stop this thing from being an absolute animal.

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While it wasn’t possible to see the 930 in action, you might have noticed from the photos that an operational 964 Turbo with TBK’s signature aero package was present to satisfy this curiosity. As you might have guessed by the window banner, this 911 is also owned by an original Mid Night member, the car being a recent purchase to replace his circuit-spec 991.2 GT3 RS.

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While this 964 was mechanically original apart from a stainless-steel exhaust system, it was in incredible condition for the age and certainly faster than you would expect for an otherwise standard powertrain. Following a tour of the shop and office, and an extended history lesson on Auto Garage TBK and Mid Night, Takahashi-san offered to take us out for a ride to Daikoku PA.

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I had to ride in the chase car (a severely underpowered Suzuki Jimny for those curious) for the rolling shots you see here, but I don’t regret it. Watching this Porsche accelerate through tunnels and various parts of the Bayshore Route was quite the experience; it almost didn’t make sense for what essentially is a standard ~300hp car.

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Air-cooled 911s are certainly not the fastest cars, but for me, their soul and character will forever be unmatched – especially when there are Mid Night stickers present. Thank you to Takahashi-san and Katsumi-san of Auto Garage TBK.

Alec Pender
Instagram: noplansco



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Old Porsche. New Porsche. Doesn't matter! As long as it's a Porsche! 211mph is freaking fast! And those highwats are narrow as hell. Bet they werent't looking at cell phones and texting back then! The champaign 930 is sweet.

I’m not Hugh Jackman

300bhp actually is a lot. 300whp is a lot too if you remember the other part of the equation which is weight. Not saying this is a light car by light standards but its power to weight ratio for a reason. Gearing is also one of the most underestimated factors in performance. Probably because of the money involved. Not as sexy as a turbo kit either. Custom gears coupled with the right power to weight ratio can be tremendous. Remember transmissions are torque multipliers. Once economy is taken out of the equation you can customize for your track. Or in this case highway.

Having said that, we can discuss specifications all we want. A guy willing to bury himself on the highway in a 280whp car beats a guy with family back home with 600hp every time.

What captivates us about the Wangan era isn’t the cars specs or the money or the cars. It’s how those cars were driven. These guys mashed the throttle and stopped for nothing. It’s insane to think of. I’d never ride with one of them. Basically Japanese Isle of Man. But the road isn’t closed.


Entirely valid and important point, as evidenced time and again by the infamous Mine's R34. The car really was not making absurd amounts of power by contemporary measure, but the magic was in the drivetrain.

As I understand it (and theorized by Stav-Tech), it was a carefully-selected amalgam of gearsets and differentials from R32 and R33 predecessors curated for brutal acceleration versus sustained top-end speed.

I am not Hugh Jackman

Thank you. I’ve been racing for 20 years this year and build my own engines and assemble my own stuff top to bottom. Also have a mentor who won 7 world titles who has taught me a lot over the years.

What leads to a fast lap time is not what is written about in magazines or oohd and ahhd on social media accounts. It’s a very interesting discussion and one many people don’t have any real insight into — largely due to how much bad information is in circulation now via the internet where everyone gets a voice.

For circuits top speed is irrelevant largely. Just about getting to whatever max speed the car can on the straight away via gearing. Ideally you have a different set for every single track you run but $$$. Hence why racing blows out bank accounts faster than the Kardashians.

My mentor was able to do 1:20s around Willow Springs (the big track as the newbies call it) in a vehicle with 40hp. For reference this is a lap time faster than a GT2 RS Porsche driven by crashing specialist Randy Pobst.

Anyone wanna guess how my mentor got that lap time with 40bhp?

I’ve been


What are brakes with 40 hp? Hahahaha!

I am not hugh jackman

Ran only one rear brake on the solid axle.


Now at 300HP, we talking american HP or metric "PS" toilet paper?

You're wrong about the so-called Japanese Isle of Man, but good point about the custom gearing. Many complain about the noise from straight-cut gears on the street, but it's something I would happily live with again. You have your garden variety "gear shops" then you have your lifelong dedicated cog specialists who've been trained by an off-world entity and are versed in the "-ism" of canyon tuning. Only met one such person in my short life and I won't be revealing him - might make my wait times longer on my custom order parts...

Life in the canyons.

disciple of WILLIO

Frank "aliens built my transmission" Profera


Willio it’s 2024. Who hasn’t been abducted and given a sequential transmission?

I am not Hugh Jackman

Just out of curiosity what class would the RS211 have been entered in if you had wanted to field a driver into time attack with it? Sounds like it would have been an unlimited class car

I am not Hugh Jackman

I’d say 300whp in a 2000lb machine is very capable if you can maximize it. (Exige, Miata for example). Obviously assuming correct geometry and time spent to dial in the setup. Obviously.

Japanese Isle of Man was just a clever example. Nothing to read into too much. As for the off world nonsense yeah anyone can learn how to build things it’s not that difficult.

Some tricks to any trade but that’s where good mentors come in. Mine is a hall of fame inductee who dominated open wheel racing as a kid from his garage.

The industry likes to make people think it’s all black magic. That’s the we take your money

I am not Hugh Jackman

Edit: that’s the trick to us taking your money.



What on earth are you on about you silly old fool...


Those guys sure has balls of titanium, considering the safety standards back then weren't as good as they are today, and they were blasting it on public highways with traffic around them. Absolutely mental!

I am not Hugh Jackman

That’s right Takumi. High speed changes things considerably. That’s why race tracks > all. Nurburgring. Spa. Etc etc.


So damn cool


What a time to be alive :D
Great Article!