Random Spotlight | JMC S2000s Back In Action

May 30, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

1 2
We've already seen Kevin's Miata from JMC on our Random Spotlight a few days ago, and it's now time to re-introduce the other members, Phil Arboleda and Jon Palomata.
Do the rides look familiar? I'm sure it does, because Phil's S2000 was featured on Stance:Nation last year and Jon's S2000 was introduced from our site.
These guys already have the fame, but I'm giving them a feature once again because of a newer and better setup than before. If you had no clue what an aggressive stance was on a S2000, today will be your day to witness one.

Special Coverage | Night-Import x JIC Magic Garage Sale & Meet

May 29, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

It's been about 7 months now since I official announced Night-Import to the public. The feelings I had about cars back then is still the same, which is why I'm almost at every meet and event here in Southern California. I'm not trying to sound like a cocky person, but when I look at myself now and how I was back then, nothing really changed. Some people built relationships through cars, but for me, it was all about going to events and meeting the same people over and over. I don't want to say it was my photography skills that led to relationships with people because I still think I lack the major components of being an appreciated photographer.
Either way, I thought it was about time we hosted a meet and luckily, with the help of JIC Magic Suspension, it happened.

As most of you guys know, I did an interview with JIC a few weeks ago and after, Jon, the owner of JIC, showed me a decent sized lot behind the body shop where a small meet could be held. I always kept this in mind, but had no idea when to host a meet because of major shows happening on almost every weekend. But when JIC announced a clearance sale through facebook, I took that opportunity to host a meet with JIC, which is why we promoted this meet as a meet + garage sale. Today was that day and I couldn't be any happier.

Random Spotlight: Green Monster is Back

May 27, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

The style of 'stance' or 'hellaflush' is becoming a universal trend in the tuning community and a car that fits perfectly with that style, without any doubt, is a Miata. So, I've come to my own conclusion; a Miata looks complete once it's slammed. To be honest, tons of Miatas are scraping the roads 24/7. Most of them are running on aggressive wheels and slammed without any fender pull, or if done, rolled and slightly pulled.
But here it is, a Miata owner who wasn't satisfied enough with a typical slammed style.
Both were quiet, we waited, and now..it's back with a meaner look.
Let me re-introduce Kevin and his Green Miata from Las Vegas, NV, representing Jock Me Crew (JMC).

Special Coverage | Infestforum 'The Commencement'

May 25, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

I'm still sore from all the walking and squatting last Saturday at Hellaflush VIII and It's JDM yO!'s 1 yr. Anniversary meet, but still, nothing stopped me from doing coverage for other meets and events. I always schedule out which ones to go to before a week or so, and the priority goes to the ones that support us online or offline. Last Sunday, our supporters Infest had their first meet for Infiniti and Nissans, but opened to other makes and models as well.

Event Coverage | It's JDM yO! 1 yr. Anniversary Meet (Pt. II)

May 24, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Hope Part 1 coverage was enjoyable because it's about to get better. As much as I was impressed with the amount of cars and people, the location was one of the best places ever. There were 5 car show rooms inside the warehouse and each room was organized by different groups. I'll lead you guys through, so let's start it off.

Nightlight | Pristine Classic

Night-Import: Photography by Dan Purpura / Words by William Lee

Dave VW-2
While many classic owners are in the bleak moments of not knowing how to modify their car, Dave from NY was different. Owning a 1991 VW GLI, Dave already planned out what needed to be done and in a matter of time, a car that most tend to abuse was kept in pristine condition till today.

Event Coverage | It's JDM yO! 1 yr. Anniversary Meet (Pt. I)

May 23, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

First of all, congratulations to Tony and all the staffs from It's JDM yO! on a successful meet last Saturday and making it through that 1 year of activeness, keeping all the automotive enthusiasts entertained with various content. Did that sound too formal? ... blah~ Tony! Congratz yO!!!!!!!
I don't even remember when I first saw Tony, but for sure he was wearing an 'It's JDM yO!' printed t-shirt. You guys have probably seen the t-shirt as well because the huge letters are printed all around the shirt and missing it means it's time for you to take an eye examination.
To be honest, I'm not a really close friend of Tony's. When we do see each other, it's just a "wsup yO!", "how've you been?", "Keep it up!" sort of relationship, but from the first day of seeing this guy till today, he's been working continuously with his site. It's not only automotive events he covers, but also models! Yeap, you heard me right, MODELS! Tony knows the hottest Import models and seeing a few of them at It's JDM yO!'s booth is not a surprise anymore.

The title of the meet might sound as if Tony started his interest in cars last year, but he's been consistently building up relationships with tons of people even before he launched It's JDM yO!. That's why if you are a fan of their site on facebook, you probably saw Super Street, Canibeat, Import Tuner, and various well-known blogs/magazines promoting this meet.

Let's just say It's JDM yO!'s meet was one of my best attended meets of this year!

Event Coverage | Hellaflush VIII (Pt. II)

May 22, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Don't you just love beach weather? How about checking out some sick cars as well? BOOM! There you have it, Hellaflush hosted by Fatlace.
I know for some of you guys who attended didn't enjoy the event because of the cops, but overall, I think this years Hellaflush was much better.
Hope Part 1 was enjoyable because Part 2 is about to begin!

Event Coverage | Hellaflush VIII (Pt. I)

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Everyone knows Southern California is the heart of automotive meets and events. I can name a few major ones and for sure, Hellaflush is one of the many that will always be in my 'top of the list' events to attend.
Fatlace is the organization that created this meet and every year, the amount of cars and spectators came to a point where it was almost out of control. I'm not trying to over-exaggerate myself and to those who have been to a Hellaflush meet knows what I'm talking about.
Last year's event had a turnout of almost 700 cars and although 50~60% were worth taking a look at, the numbers of spectators and cars were overflowing Venice Beach.

Hellaflush V was my first car event, which happened last year, and since then, my love for cars grew tremendously. To be honest, I'm more of a hellaflush guy, but respect every modification style that exists today. I do notice, however, that a lot of people don't get the point of slamming a car. Some people prefer functionality and say that's what a car was made for, but some of you guys need to understand that 'hellaflush' is a style. I know a lot of automotive enthusiasts, especially JDM car owners saying "my car is....." or "I modified my car like this because in Japan..." and it's the same for 'hellaflush'. This style started in Japan before some of you guys were born. All in all, as much as you guys respect 'function', I don't see a point why 'form' should be hated on.

Anyways, let's start! Hellaflush VIII will be separated into two coverage's so read along or just scroll down checking out the pics.

Random Spotlight | Celica 2000GT

May 20, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

When there's a major event going on and more than one staff from our team participating at the same event, we take some time talking about our choice of a car that's worth a Random Spotlight feature.
After our coverage on Toyotafest(TORC) last week, there was one car that caught our attention and without any doubt, this beautiful classic Celica 2000GT deserves its own 'Spotlight'.

Event Coverage | Rotiform Sunday Funday 2011

May 18, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

It finally comes down to our last coverage of this week, Rotiform's Sunday Funday (Open House).
I remember some of our fans asking about what this company was all about. The answer can be found within this coverage, but to give you guys more detailed information, Rotiform designs and builds their own line of wheels. I'm not talking about those same designs you see floating around in the market today, but unique and classic ones. From single to multi-piece design, these guys know detailed information when it comes to the knowledge of building wheels. Although their HQ is located in Westminister, CA, their popularity reaches out to wheel fanatics in Europe and Japan.

Event Coverage: Eibach Open House 2011

May 17, 2011

Photography and Words by William Lee

Eibach has a history in the Motorsports world, competing at various world-wide known events and manufacturing top-of-the-line performance springs for various vehicles. But also, they are known for one more thing here in Southern California; the biggest Honda meet, known as Eibach's Open House. Last Sunday was Eibach's 7th year, opening the warehouse for a meet and greet for Honda's only. If you don't drive a Honda, expect to park a mile away because this place gets pretty insane with overflowing spectators, vendors, and highly modified Honda's.

Event Coverage: Bimmerfest 2011

May 16, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Bimmerfest started out as a small local meet at a dealership, but as time was going by and words being spread to fellow BMW owners, the meet became an event and the turnout was too big to handle. That's when the location was changed to a larger venue and Rose Bowl located in Pasadena, CA became 'the place' for Bimmerfest. I've heard from my friends about how crazy this event gets every year and sure enough, it was pretty insane. After an early morning heading out to Toyotafest 2011 and doing a coverage for about 3 hours, special staff Hooni and I headed directly to Bimmerfest. Upon arrival, the parking lots were already filled and tons of BMW's were parked in the showcase area.

Event Coverage | Toyotafest (TORC) 2011

May 15, 2011

Night Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

I can't believe a year passed already since my attendance to TORC 2010. Back then, I had no clue about cars and just enjoyed taking photos, but this year was different. Throughout that 1 year period, my passion and love for cars grew tremendously. Of course there were mistakes here and there, but as of now, I do know more than I did and attending this year's Toyotafest made much more sense.
If you've never been to or heard of TORC (Toyota Owner's and Restorer's Club), aka Toyotafest, it's basically an organization specific for Toyota enthusiasts, also including Scion and Lexus. From classics to exotics, this event is the major Toyota event of the year, which means cars that you don't usually see at meets or small events appear at Toyotafest. You'll be amazed with the amount and type of cars very soon, so try not to click the X button on your window. Trust me; your time will be worth it. I usually post a 'crowd' photo as a cover of an event coverage, but for this one, I decided to share my favorite car at the event. It will have its own Random Spotlight feature so stay tuned.

Nightlight | Heavenly Supra

Night-Import: Photography by Jim Davis, Words by William Lee

Ryan's 738HP Supra
Back in the days, I disliked the purpose of modifying a car. Matter of fact, to be straight forward and honest, I didn't know much about cars as well. While you guys were impressed with an exotic car passing by your school or neighborhood, I was playing games on my PSP or talking with my friends. However, there was one car that I did like without knowing the history of it; a Toyota Supra. Something about the lines made it a sudden attraction and even after I learned about all the cars that were famous for modifying, a Supra was still in my top list of 'wanted' cars.
Today, this Supra owned by Ryan from NY shot by our photographer Jim Davis, just triggered my greediness and a step closer to selling my own car to get one. A fully functional-purpose built 1994 Toyota Supra is what we call today, a 'Heavenly Supra'.

Nightlight | Unstoppable

May 14, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Something about Mitsubishi Evolution's become a sudden attraction to many tuners. After Mitsubishi announcing their discontinuation with the Evolution line, it's now an even more wanted car than ever. But having this eagerness to get one and when one becomes in possession, the way you modify either puts you into one of the two categories; a full performance car or exteriorly appealing.
No doubt the Evo 9 is already fully equipped with what one needs, but it was a different story for Henry Balmaceda.

Special Coverage: JIC USA

May 13, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

JIC Japan, or also known as JIC Magic, started their launch of aftermarket products since 1988 and has been dominating almost every field of automotive sport, from Drifting to Time Attack. To expand and promote their name out to the world, JIC decided to branch their division to North America with the name JIC USA. In a matter of time, the division was established and throughout the years, JIC USA participated in various automotive sports and events, categorizing the company as one of the must reputable aftermarket companies in the automotive industry. However, last year, a shocking news was announced  stating JIC Magic filing bankruptcy.

I was fortunate to meet Jon during this past month to clarify what was really going on with the company and to also introduce you guys to JIC's future products.

Random Spotlight: Top of the Top

May 10, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Rather than posting these photos up on Flickr, I want to share some photos of these top quality cars I took during JDM Sport's meet last Sunday. While I was shooting Henry's Evo for our 'Spotlight' feature, a friend of mine from JDM Glam was asking if we should do a photoshoot with other cars that were present at the meet. Because the location was absolutely gorgeous and the cars that joined along were top cars, we took some time to take a few shots.
At the left is Kelvin Hsiu's the famous Do-Luck Widebody Evo, Jackson Wong's S2K at the right, and Henry's Evo at the top.

Special Coverage: So-Cal Import Nights @ JDM Sport

May 9, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

It's been a pretty busy week for me going to meets and doing interviews with a few companies here in Southern California. Surprisingly, no meets/events happened on Saturday that were close by, so it was a day to rest and edit some photos from previous coverages. At the same time, I was excited about JDM Sport's first meet and greet at AJP Distributor's HQ, the West Coast HQ/Distributors for JDM Sport, that happened yesterday. As most of you guys know by now, I go to meets almost every weekend or even 3 times a week depending on what goes on, and every time when I walk around doing my thing, I bump into Lee Ho, marketing/PR director of JDM Sport. This guy has been active than any other friend/company staff I've known since he officially announced the opening of JDM Sport. Knowing his activeness and relationships with other people in the automotive industry, I knew this meet was going to have a huge turnout and as expected, more than 200 cars showed up!
Claim Ho from Firm400 brought out the entertainers and Johnny Ho called up the famous food trucks, Dos Chinos and DogZilla, to participate to sell their insanely good food.

Special Coverage | Cusco USA

May 6, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Cusco manufactures the best products in the automotive market. It's tested and proven. -Kenji Inoue
Our main focus for the next few months is to cover major Japan aftermarket companies in the US and we were able to contact a few companies during this past week.
Being an automotive enthusiast and trying to keep myself up-to-date with automotive sports, I came across one of Japan's famous and fastest cars in the Time Attack series sponsored by few companies and luckily, one of the sponsored companies opened in the US April of last year. I took this opportunity to contact the office and fortunately, we were able to schedule an interview with coverage.
Today, we are going to start our 'theme' with one of Japan's finest aftermarket companies, Cusco.

Exclusive Interview: Professional Drifter, Aurimas Odi Bakchis

May 4, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Drifting is one of the biggest automotive sports and still growing amongst many automotive enthusiasts. A once unknown and unpopular sport is now becoming generalized to the public and seeing the stands of a track filled with audiences is not an uncommon scene anymore.

Going to many drifting events and keeping up-to-date with videos and stories, I've noticed the constant massive attention to already well known drifters. There's nothing wrong with it, but I realized one crucial component that was lacking the most in the sport of Drifting; Recognition. There are tons of grassroots trying to achieve the status of current professional drifters and even when placing on the podium, it's that one moment that becomes a spotlight to the driver and no attention is placed after.
Today, I want to share a story of a professional drifter, a talent of speed that was passed down through generations and with that talent, became a professional drifter in a matter of time. Let me introduce you to Aurimas Odi Bakchis.

Event Coverage: Sideway Sundays #2

May 2, 2011

Night-Import: Photography and Words by William Lee

Can't believe a month passed after the first Sideway Sundays. The weather was gorgeous and the whole event was much organized despite the few changes. To bring you guys an even better coverage, most of the photos were posted on our supporting site OpenClutch, which will be posted in a week or so.

Personally, I was expecting a huge turnout and was keeping my hopes up. Although our site was in charge of media, we were monitoring every promoted forum and facebook, Compared to other car shows that charge roughly $40, Sideway Sunday's Car Show entry price was only $20. Lastly, the weather was much better. Taking all of this into consideration, the Car Show was smaller than the first event. I'm a bit disappointed, but after you guys look through this coverage, I hope some of you SoCal guys can make it to the next event, which will be on May 29th (Tentative).