CC Outtakes: T87’s Singles Collection (September-October 2022) – Part 2b: Foreign Cars (American, British, French)

This last portion of the traditional Tokyo tour will hopefully be appropriately populated by novel and interesting CCs hailing from Britain, France and the United States – three countries whose products are diversely appreciated here. There are always surprises in store, when it comes to cars from these climes. For instance, did I ever expect a 1970 Chevelle? Actually yes, I did. But that doesn’t extend to every car in this post, far from it.

The Astro van was also pretty predictable. They can be seen almost daily here. This one, though, was a cut above (or maybe deep below?) the usual fare.

Third gen Camaros are not common, on the other hand. No idea if the exact MY can be identified – these aren’t really my thing.

Now that’s much more left-field! Shame it was so far away. Looks like the owner employed the kitchen sink school of aftermarket ornamentation, too. A justified notion, when it comes to the ’58 Impala: if ever there was a Chevrolet that needed extra bling, it would have been this one.

We’ve seen this one before. Nice to find it among the Lamborghinis, Lotuses and Skylines that usually hang out at the Jingu Gaien.

Also caught at that location: the first 1997-2002 Plymouth Prowler I’ve ever seen in the metal.

I’m sure someone out there will be able to regale us with details about this gigantic Airstream. Quite beyond me, though.

It had a little brother sitting not too far away, too. Quite a pair they made.

Just one US-made Ford in this edition – and you know what, this one was unexpected. And 8th generation (1987-91) F-Series pickup in U-Haul colours? That was not on the list.

Jeep Wagoneers (be they “Grand” like this one or not), on the other hand, seem to be the subject of a veritable cult, in this country. So they are encountered with striking regularity.

I mean, there is almost always one in every Singles Outtakes and two in this post alone. I even caught a third one that may end up as its own post sometime.

Wow, a Crossfire? There’s a sight for sore eyes. I knew a guy who drove one of these when I lived in Geneva around 15 years ago. At least they looked different. Guess they still do now.

It’s rare to catch a Mercury anywhere outside the US. Did Ford export some Colony Park wagons to Japan back in the late ‘80s to try and give the Caprice Estate a run for their Yen?

As I mentioned in yesterday’s Singles post, there were several limousine sightings over the past couple of months. BMW L7, Mercedes-Maybach S650 and now a Cadillac DTS. This is not the first stretched Caddy I’ve encountered here, but it’s the most recent and well-kept.

This is a Federal stretch, it seems. Ye Olde Interwebbes tell me this company hails from Ohio and has been in the trade for a century.

How’s this for a ‘90s GM twofer? Which one would be your pick, the Sixty Special or the Buick “Regal”?

As far as the Japanese public is concerned, the Buick wagon was voted a clear favourite. It’s amazing how many of these are still around, and in like-new condition, too.

I went back to that twofer area, located right next to a nearby mechanic that specializes in imports in general and GM in particular (and has been featured on these posts and in stand-alone CCs a few times already), and found another unlikely couple – transatlantic, this one.

That ’95 Roadmaster is a huge, whale-sized cream puff. Completely unsuited to local driving and parking conditions, but truly charismatic.

The Honda Rover, on the other hand, has the presence of an Austin Allegro. Ok, I’m being harsh, it’s not nearly that bad. But it’s still pretty far from Rover’s finest hour. Still, it’ll serve as a fitting transition to the British stuff.

Older is usually better, as far as cars are concerned. But the Rover 75 is an exception to that rule, in my view. I remember when these came out and how much better they looked than the aforementioned 600s they replaced. Turned out to be the marque’s swan song. Melodious.

Plenty of these are still prowling the pavement here. This one caught my eye due to its unusual colour – most of the ones I’ve seen are black, gray or BRG.

This is the Jim Klein section of the post, featuring a collection of Jaguar X-Type wagons.

Yes, there were several sightings. They may be rare, but they are also two things that Japanese buyers are very keen on, i.e. British and wagons.

Judging by the number’s I’ve caught here of late, I suspect a heftier proportion of the breed has made its way to my side of the Pacific Ocean, rather than Jim’s.

But it’s (thankfully) not all X-Types here when we’re talking Jags. E-Types are also part of the deal. A much more eye-catching part, too. Though in this particular instance, the driver manages to outdo his steed.

Not a Jaguar, strictly speaking, but a Daimler Double Six. Another V12-powered behemoth gathering dust, like the BMW limo we checked out yesterday.

The odd LTI Taxi made it here, but how many Crown Comforts currently live in the UK?

Let’s look at some classic British roadsters, then. This MG TD is more of a life-size prop than a running car, sadly. Brings a bit of beauty to the world I guess.

Opposite end of the spectrum: the utterly crazy 2007-11 Lotus 2-Eleven. Supercharged 255hp Toyota 1.8 litre 4-cyl. in the middle, only 670kg (1470 lbs) to shift around, 0-100kph in 3.8 seconds. It’s not pretty, but at that speed, looks get blurry anyway.

Back to sanity and the glorious ‘60s with a sweet little Triumph TR4.

The Triumph name still thrives today, but only on two wheels. This one seemed like a classic, but I’m totally clueless about bikes. Anyone know what it is and when it might have been made?

Guessing the production dates of a motorbike is akin to estimating the age of a Morgan: I’m sure it can be done, but I’m sure I can’t do it.

Not a lot of blue-collar bangers in this edition – nothing properly BL or Rootes to speak of – but one Dagenham dame did appear in the form of this lovely Mk1 Escort (1968-75). Looks like it might be an RS of some kind…

Recent Ferraris and Lambos are a tad too extreme for my taste, but Aston kept the classic big sports car look for longer. They’ve become more gimmicky of late, but a decade-old DB9 Volante has a commanding presence.

It wasn’t through lack of trying, but this is about the only angle I could find to take a picture of this jaw-dropping 1957-59 Aston Martin DB 2/4 Mark III 2+2 hatchback saloon (whew!) sitting in this classic car dealer’s shop. Glass is the bane of the CC hunter’s life.

Just one Bentley for this edition. Beautiful colour for a Mulsanne. I couldn’t catch the white Corniche next to it, but as luck would have it…

… I caught one anyway – a 1989-1993 Corniche III, if you please. And quite pleasing it must be indeed.

Rolling right along with a Rolls-Royce Silver Spur III – one of only 465 made between 1993 and 1995.

The final limo of the post is perhaps the coolest one. Rolls made a grand total of 49 units between 1996 and 1999, but for some reason, a seemingly significant proportion ended up here.

Indeed, this is the third time I’ve caught a Park Ward limousine in Tokyo. The other two were black, so this one is definitely not the same car once again.

But that’s not the end of the Royces, not by a long shot. How about a mismatched pair of Wraith coupés? Pretty good, but I think we can do better.

Remember the game of Rolls bingo I said you could play in certain parts of this crazy town? Well, here’s a concentrated variant – the entire range all on the one street. Almost.

Here they are from the rear… hey, hold on. What’s that in the middle of the Rollers?

All these R-Rs were merely there to serve as an entourage for the true star of the street: a Bugatti Veyron. Looks to my highly untrained eye like it’s one of the five special edition Pur-Sang cars made in 2007, too.

I guess it’d be hard to call it beautiful, but it’s certainly striking. Of course, the fact that it has an 8-litre 1001hp 16-cyl. engine is what makes it the king of hypercars. It’s also my first modern Bugatti encounter and, in my opinion, one of my top five finds of the year.

The rest of the French contingent (yes, Bugatti is considered French – that’s where they build the cars, anyway, except the EB110) is going to look a bit paltry by comparison. Let’s keep it Bleu de France and sporty with a Renault 5 GT Turbo. Seems a number of these made their way to Japan…

They also sold R4s here, but not this one. I caught the very same car late last year and, judging by the license plate on the front, it’s a recently imported (and pretty rare) early ‘70s Sinpar 4×4 conversion.

No Peugeots or anything more exotic to add, so we’ll just have to close the post on a pair of Citroëns. Predictably, one of those is a 2CV. But the second one, despite being a bit far away, was a novel sight.

It’s no Bugatti, but hey. That there’s a Citroën XM wagon, and even in France, that would be worth a photo of two. Alas, I was only able to achieve one. Pity I couldn’t ID the trim or engine: they only made about 3000 of these with a V6 – that would be a real find.

So that’s it for this edition of the T87 Singles Outtakes. My pick of this lot would probably by the old Aston, and as far as the JDM stuff, I might go with the Prince Gloria. But I’m sure there’s something for everyone.