Why does Lamley hype JDM? Here is where it started…

All Lamley does is hype JDM.

A fair amount of comments get thrown my way, and that is always one of the most entertaining.  It has died down of late, thankfully, but occasionally it rears its ugly head.

That fact is I like Japanese cars, and I like Japanese diecast.  And there is a story behind it.  I didn’t randomly pick an element of diecast I wanted to hype, I just happen to like Japanese cars a lot, and I prefer to write about the stuff I like here on Lamley.

If you read the post earlier today, you know I purchased a Tomica Honda Civic Wagon this morning. Buying that spurred a conversation with a good friend about old Hondas (he is a big fan as well, and much more knowledgable than me), and we waxed on about our love for those cars.

I told him the story of how my love for Japanese cars was spurred by a second-generation Honda Accord, and why that car means so much to me.  It reminded me that I actually wrote about it very early on after I started Lamley, back in 2012.

I found the post, and it was more interesting than I thought.

Not only does it explain the importance of that Accord, and how it is a prime reminder of my late father, but you can see as I write what is happening.  My education of what many call JDM and Japanese cars was just in its infancy, and I was falling for them hard.

So I thought I would repost this article, dated August 1st, 2012.  I was showcasing my latest acquisition, a Kyosho Skyline, but there is much more to the article.  This is where #lamleyhype started, for good or for bad.

It may annoy you, but these cars mean something.  I would imagine many of you have similar stories that inspired what you like and what you collect.

I enjoyed reading this.  I hope you do too.

To quote a friend, “And so it begins…”

That friend, along with a few others, is gleefully watching me succumb to the temptation they call Japanese diecast.  For so long, I have stayed focused on Matchbox, my first love, and Hot Wheels.  There was the occasional looksy at a Majorette, a Johnny Lightning, even a Greenlight, but I have stayed focused.

But there was an aspect of my love for cars that I had not really applied to my diecast collection.  And that element starts with this:

This is a 1982 Honda Accord in signature baby blue.  This is the exact same car that my father drove from 1981 to 2001.  Now that is not a unique thing.  Many kids my age grew up in 1980’s Honda Accords.  But this car was bought by someone who grew up on GMC, Buick, and later Ford car lots.  His father owned those dealerships, and engrained in his son a full appreciation of the American automobile.

So imagine the shock in the family when my father replaced his tan Ford Maverick with a Japanese car.  Of course in 1982 Japanese cars were firmly entrenched in American culture, but they were just making it to the suburbs, and finally right into our driveway.  And we thought my accountant dad’s foray into auto counterculture was super-cool.  (This was a man who lived one block from Haight-Ashbury in the late-60’s, and just saw it as an intersection.)

I loved that Honda, and participated in its funeral in 2001.  Three years later I participated in my father’s funeral.  I have a billion good thoughts and memories about my father, but nothing represents him better than his 1982 baby blue Honda Accord.  He was not a car guy, but he loved things that worked well.

Nonetheless, as my interest in cars grew over time, I saw aficionados for American muscle, European exotics, early and mid-century classics, and on and on.  What I wasn’t seeing was love for classic Japanese.  I remember telling people how much I regretted not keeping my dad’s Honda and getting it completely refurbished.  I remember people laughing at the idea.  Surely there were others who shared my love of these cars.  They just weren’t out there.  I will admit to not looking as much as I should have.  I just kept collecting my Matchbox and Hot Wheels.

And then Jun Imai made a Datsun 510 for Hot Wheels.

Wait, what!?!  A Datsun 510?  By the company that never met a Camaro they didn’t like?  I mean a Fairlady Z, I can understand, but a 510?  I can even understand an AE86, but clearly there is a reason for the 510.

There was.  The reason is because there is an enormous group of folks out there that love classic (make that “nostalgic”) Japanese cars.  It may not be rooted in baby blue Accords, but it is there.

So I started learning terms like Initial-D, kenmeri, BRE, bosozoku, and on and on.  Jun followed up his 510 with two Skylines last year, then an RX-7 and the eye-opening Mad Manga this year.  I was introduced to Japanese Nostalgic Car.  I am late to the game, but I am definitely in the game.

Alright, can I make this introduction any longer?  Yes, I can.

The Nissan Skyline H/T 2000GT-R is my favorite Hot Wheels car, the GT-X is not far behind.  With the kenmeri and hakosuka helping introduce me to these cars in diecast form, it was only a matter of time that my collecting tastes would expand, and they have.  I have been introduced to brands like Tomica, Aoshima, Kyosho, and Choro-Q, and have enjoyed seeing the enormous world they occupy.

And with my interest in this side of diecast growing rapidly, this blog will be logically infiltrated.  It won’t take the place of my love for Hot Wheels, and I am the Matchbox Ambassador, for heaven’s sake.

But look for an infiltration of Japanese cars and brands.  I hope that many of you who already enjoy these cars will share what interests you, and that others will gain an interest in many of these models.

Well, let’s get on with it.  I figure I should show some photos.  I have blabbed on long enough.  Since this post has been about classic Japanese, how about a classic Japanese?

Kyosho does amazing work, no matter if the car is Japanese or not, as you will see later when I post their Ferrari 458.

But here is one of their Hakosuka Skylines, the first generation Skyline GT-R.  I think this is a good place to start.

(And if you need scale, this model is slightly smaller than the Hot Wheels version.)

20 Replies to “Why does Lamley hype JDM? Here is where it started…”

  1. I have a comment and a quesion.

    The question is: Do you find the Accord actually attractive? Is there any actual visual appeal?

    The statement: I think your JDM hype has died down. I think the problem now is (Drunk Vader) and people who find that you promote Diecast companies in order to get free preproduction models and super chases.

  2. I got my first car in the late 90s. A 92 prelude. I was into the “fast and furious” ricer scene so I have a love for Japanese cars. I hope those that are buying…..or scalping JDM cars have a true love for Japanese cars and not just buying them all up to make a quick buck.

  3. First time posting here been reading since july 2013, thats when i got into collecting and found your great blog. my wife was 6 months pregnant and my first kday was on the same day our baby shower was supposed to happened, some how i manage to get her to go woth me lol since the first day i started following you (lamley group) i can tell you that i enjoyed and readed it everyday but now its gone a diffetent direction
    I would have to agree with lucas. You started the blog to show your passion about your diecast. But now the direction of your blog has gone into a more bussiness oriented aspect of the hobby. Dont get me wrong that is great… but now since your advertising you have to show what the companies sent your way more or less.

  4. First time posting here been reading since july 2013, thats when i got into collecting and found your great blog. my wife was 6 months pregnant and my first kday was on the same day our baby shower was supposed to happened, some how i manage to get her to go woth me lol since the first day i started following you (lamley group) i can tell you that i enjoyed and readed it everyday but now its gone a diffetent direction
    I would have to agree with lucas. You started the blog to show your passion about your diecast. But now the direction of your blog has gone into a more bussiness oriented aspect of the hobby. Dont get me wrong that is great… but now since your advertising you have to show what the companies sent your way more or less.

  5. Looks like I'm not the only one that has now noticed how you've changed from a simple blog for diecast collecting and customs to self promotion and making sure you can get stuff for free.

    Now you only promote the “big” eBay sellers the well known customizers (used to help boots some of the smaller guys to get bigger)

    Soon you'll turn into the next Racegroves where getting free stuff is no longer an option you'll want it free and to be paid to show case it on here and YouTube.

  6. I appreciate you John. Thank you for opening my eyes years ago to classic Japanese cars I never knew existed. I'm glad you put in the dedication you do to our hobby. I can't imagine how much time it takes you to work on this blog every day. Thanks so much.

  7. This is getting ridiculous. Drunk Vader and the few others that keep posting need to quit trolling an go away. If you don't like it that much then move on. There are thousands of people who enjoy this blog and the insight John offers. We like seeing in depth previews of things before they come out. The fact is he is providing a service and who cares if companies send him cars as a result. This is the definition of a win win situation to everyone involved. The companies benefit, John benefits and we the readers benefit. Have you ever tried any of the things that are “promoted”. There is a reason he promotes them. People continue to be happy with them. I've never used Wheel Collectors because I do not have trouble finding what they sell once they become available at retail, but I know numerous people who do, and their eBay feedback would attest to the fact that people like using them. Not everyone can hunt relentlessly or wait to see if maybe the car they want shows up. JapanBooster? Have you ever used them? Guess what, they are awesome. Probably the single best seller I've ever dealt with. Sterling Protectors? I open everything so I don't need them but I can tell they are quality products that would be beneficial if I kept things carded. So a few plugs are mixed in to promote them. Why does this bother you so much? I'm glad the plugs are there too. Not everything is relevant to me but I like seeing when new stuff is added from the sellers that are. And it allows the previews to keep coming, this site to keep running, and all the information to keep flowing about a variety of different topics. New Hot Wheels? Check. New Matchbox? Check. A game changing set from M2? Check. Nice guest reviews like in depth Tomica news? Yup, got that too. And there are many of us who enjoy the insightful comments left about things, and all you are accomplishing is clogging these comments to prove you need to grow up and move on.

  8. The first car I bought as a “grown-up” was an '83 Accord hatch in this same color. It was a great little car that I used as my college ride. The cars I really wish I still owned, however, are the first two I bought.

    As a high-school senior, I bought a 1974 Mazda RX-2 in Orange for $200. It had a bashed-in front end, bald tires, and crappy seats. It got crappy gas mileage and was fairly unreliable. But was it fun to drive. I found an abandoned one 6 months after I bought mine and replaced all the bad parts, polished the paint, and made it look almost new. Sold it for $900.

    After that I bought a 1972 Toyota Celica GT in red. It had been lowered and was sitting on 15″ alloys from a Nissan 300ZX. It didn't have a heater, but in the Bay Area, that didn't matter too much. I paid $1100 for it…and sold it a year later for $1300. That is one I really regret.

  9. I love the blog because it gives me a heads up on new stuff coming out. Having met John a couple of times I found him to be a friendly nice guy.
    On the subject of JDM I got opened to it back in the late 70's- early 80's when dumped Z's, 510's, and mini trucks were all the rage here in So-Cal. While I love all cars JDM gets more interest in die cast collecting because there is so much more die cast available that I like.

  10. +2

    If you really dislike the plugs, just slowly accustom yourself to glancing over them, like I do. They no longer bother me, plus I have my own alternate sources for products instead of the sellers Mr. Lambert promotes, which is perfectly fine since we can all choose from whom we purchase from.

  11. Well said Ben. It disgusts me when I see people slandering a man who is putting in the hard work of promoting their hobby. These trolls should crawl back into their cave. Keep up the great work John.

  12. Listen I hate haters and I've said this before. This blog was about the hobby first and foremost that is why I found intrest in the blog in the first place. I remember John's post very heart warming and interesting. That said I don't get on as much as I used to. I don't read every article like I used to. This should tell you plenty right there. John your predecessors were much more open to everything going on and far less overcome by who was selling what. Again that should tell you something. Lamley used to have actual people from Matchbox come on answer questions give updates and really discuss what was going on with the brand. So when things take a total different direction I don't understand when some get upset when it is called out. As far as JDM gose for me it has grown on me. Some of that I attribute to some of John's posts. The real problem comes when products are marketed through this blog in one form or another. It hurts the integrity of the information for me. Let's face it dose not take a genius to figure out someone is promoting something for personal gain. Not saying that is what's going on but just the apperence of this is very disheartening for me being a follower of the blog for so long. Imo there is no place for it here. But as someone said I don't have to read it. However with anything that seems fishy it tends to taint everything. Now I'm not sure who the ones who feel some are just trolling are and maybe that is the case but some seem to be just as upset that the integrity of the blog is at stake and I get that. I have no problem with most posts here but some feel self serving and even one that is is wrong. I followed this blog for years and past representatives have not used this site this way or not to the extent as the current. I have no personal problem with the current administrator. My problem is with the direction the site seems to be going. The Blazer article was 100% on point and very enjoyable. Drunk Vader can tame his rants because intelligent people can and will figure this out just as John will figure out (hopefully) that this practice is not good for the blog overall.

  13. Ben I get what your saying I do. However wheel collector is nothing more than scalpers. They are free to do what they want and anyone can buy from them. Not sure how long you or some others have been following the site but for me it's been years. So I will question what gose on here. The fact that there is even a discussion about this hurts the integrity of the site and unfortunately John's. Although I don't agree with Drunk Vaders over reactions he has valid points. Anything that hurts the integrity of the blog should be concerning. As in my other thread I'll say even the apperence of something fishy hurts the site. So as much as it frustrates you and others to hear some question what is going on. It frustrates long time readers and followers to see possible bias find it's way on here. Scalpers have long been a thorne in collectors sides and have been condemned right here on this site. So when you start seeing them promoted here it is like a stab in the back by someone you thought understood and you trusted. I hope this helps you and others understand why this is so upsetting. If not so be it but don't expect someone not to speak up when they feel something is wrong.

  14. John, thank you for a well put response. Drunk Vader, are you reading, because that's how it's done.

    I understand the frustration with scalpers. I don't let it bother me but I get why it is upsetting so I won't fault anyone for feeling that way. And I understand that it's easy to be skeptical or cynical even when you see promoting going on that you feel falls in line with that.

    But as I said before these kinds of things are the way the world works. I love Jalopnik, it's my favorite site but it's littered with promotional posts mostly for junk I don't care about. But I keep reading it.

    I think Wheel Collectors are probably the biggest issue that people are having. For mainline single cars I agree their prices are too high. I don't buy them. And if I did have trouble finding those things I'd wait a little longer for the prices to come down. But I'm not going to fault anyone who doesn't want to wait or chance it. I've been bitten by the gotta have it now big multiple times on other cars.

    But I also don't think it's fair to label them as scalpers. If you look at things like Pop Cukture sets or Entertainment sets their prices are more in line with others. It's really the singles that are the issue. But they aren't buying cars out of dump bins to put on eBay, they are a hobby dealer purchasing them from the source so that skips the crucial step to be considered a scalper. Opportunist maybe, but it's still legitimately purchased product. But the key thing is that very few hobby dealers deal in singles. Because you have 2/3 of a case filled with generic cars that don't sell. Their prices are high because they are first to market, and because they are a business that has to consider the full inventory which includes all the ones no one wants.

    So while I wont buy them at those prices, I still recognize that others are happy to, that they have good service, that they are a legitimate dealer, and have to contend with lots and lots of unwanted cars. So if they help support this site which I enjoy, and help provide the cars that allow these previews to be seen in a timely manner then this isn't something that will keep me from coming back.

    But seriously, thank you for actually voicing well thought out concerns instead of just littering the comments without anything to back it up.

  15. I grew up with Japanese cars and at first I didn't really appreciate them but now I'm a big fan of TLV since one of the car they made resembles my parents car. Now they should make that accord model.

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