Import Alliance car show

If you’re thinking, “Dang that guy must really love Dr Pepper.” You’re right! In fact, until more recently, Jake Willard had what some would call’ a pretty severe Dr Pepper habit. He’s since kicked the habit, and I don’t know why, but that kind of makes me a little sad. Anyway – this story is 100% Tennessee-bred & it’s beautiful. 

Jake Willard has been drawn to Dr. Pepper memorabilia since he was a boy.

The way he puts it – in Tennessee, all the rednecks collect Coca Cola stuff. So Jake picked Dr. Pepper… & it just kind of stuck. 

At 14, Jake’s 1st car was a retired Dr. Pepper delivery van. No lie lol. It was a GMC Safari. And what you’re probably picturing in your head is exactly what it was: An old van with stripped Dr. Pepper graphics… but with faded paint so the Dr. Pepper logos were still totally visible. He bought it from the local bottling plant for $350. 

Civic EG 15 wheels

Jake just really loves Dr. Pepper…

As as you can probably figure, he was also naturally drawn to domestic cars. The kinds with birds in their name. But then sometime around 2006, he bought a ’96 EK Civic hatch, and it was just what the Dr ordered. Since then, Jake’s probably had 50 Hondas. What can you say… when Jake finds something he likes… he goes all-in. You gotta respect the commitment. 

Kanjo civic

Jake gravitates to Kanjo styling… 

And honestly, Kanjo is an attitude more than anything. A lifestyle. In Japan, you can’t halfway do Kanjo. You can’t kinda like Hondas… it’s all-in or stay at home. The Kanjo cars themselves, however, are usually not so overbuilt. At least not like we tend to do it in America – where we overkill horsepower, replace all the trim, add rare parts, and then never drive it. Like I said, over there, it boils down to a mindset more than a modlist. 

Dr Pepper

The engine in this Civic Coupe…

Is a JDM D15B. That’s a SOHC vtec engine. Nothing earth-shattering, but it’s what came Jake’s way. The car is actually on its 2nd or 3rd life now. Early in its lifespan, it got sandwiched between two cars & was totaled out… but somebody thought it was worth fixing. A couple of decades & 330,000 miles later, here it is. 

EG coupe 15s

The Civic Coupe sits on entry-level Rev9 coilovers…

With Truhart control arms front & rear. Wheels are Konig Candies in 15×7 +30. The Civic’s got an HKS header-back exhaust for braps. And a Momo steering wheel… which no matter how worn & beatdown it gets, Jake will never ditch.

Civic shirt

Jake actually reminds me a lot of our designer, Guy Haynie

He doesn’t strive for the limelight in Honda culture. And he doesn’t boast parts, or get caught-up in ‘scene drama’, competition, or comment threads. He just drives the car that makes him happy. Yes – it really can be that simple lol. Check out TRBO NCTR. It’s Jake’s Japanese-inspired Honda-focused apparel brand. 

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