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Text: Wooley // Photos: James Tippett

There’s something about an old, shoebox-sized import with new chrome & straight lines. The Datsun 510, the Mk1 Rabbit, the BMW 2002. I’d be willing to bet that damn near all of us have looked one of those up at one point or another – checking prices, checking the aftermarket. There’s just something about ‘em. They’re cars that we can all agree on. You might not like the LS1 powered M3 in this issue. You might think the wing on it, and the RX8 for that matter, are flat icky. You might think the Accord is hella-idiotic, that the Evo is too ricey… or that the EP hatch looks like a Mario Bros cloud. It might not be your thing… and that’s ok. Creative variety is what gives this culture the endurance to be well… a sustaining culture… and not just a quick trend. But this Datsun is common ground for almost all of us. You want to slam & swap one, your old man wants to restore one… even your mom will admit that it’s ‘cute’. I guess when you’re square… it kind of makes you timeless in a way.

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So what do WE do that makes us timeless? Right now, there is a lot of hate going around in the import culture. That is NOT a sign of timelessness. And we need to man up and collectively squash that before it eats us alive. We have no right to hate – 2 quick reasons. 1) Most of the hate we see eating away at the import culture is nothing more than youth-ignorance, envy, arrogance, and pettiness… thrown up online… where everybody has a voice… even the people who do not deserve one yet. Point blank. I wish it went deeper than that, but it doesn’t. Go online, and you see people hating on things that they can’t afford… and hating on people whose lives they want.

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The growth of the import scene was timed well with the younger generation of enthusiasts… and it was also timed well with the coming of the digital age. That worked in our favor. But by acting stupid, we do ourselves no justice, as the younger generation. By acting stupid, we look stupid – end of story. 2) We’re not training for the Tour De France here. We’re just building cars & pushing them around. Yes, modifying cars does take endurance, in a way. And it does take strength, in a way. But a lot of guys out there with the ‘well built’ cars act as if they’ve trained a lifetime to get where they are. That doesn’t necessarily translate. Some of them (and I do mean only some) have developed skills as fabricators & mechanics & drivers… but for a large part of the ‘scene trendsetters’, the most brutal part of training for this sport… was opening up their wallet.

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So how do they justify their snotty judging & criticism of other peoples’ rides… other peoples’ form of expression & enjoyment? I really want an answer to that.

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Purchase Back Issue 29 here to read the rest of this story

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