Dino DC: Japan’s Most Authentic Nissan Restorer!

Posted: 2023-04-23 10:31:27
Author: Dino DC
Tucked in the backstreets of Chiba, sits one of Japans remaining, old school, authentic restorers, TA Auto. Ando-san has been restoring old Nissans for decades, bringing Fairlady Z’s and Ken Mary’s back to life. Even more special is Ando-sans very own 432, that has been turned into a 432R.

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Dino DC Video Transcript

Foreign Okay so I recently just picked up the new Fair Lady Z and I thought the most perfect place for me to visit is a shop that I’ve shot at so many times for Speed Hunters I also did a documentary for Discovery and came here and featured

That shop and that is uh ta Oto who is a fair lady and GTR restorer we’re talking about the older cars obviously so the s-30 and the kpgc 10 and 110 Skyline GTRs and I thought you know with the new Z it would be the perfect kind of car to

Bring here and meet andosan who is probably the one of the most charismatic restorers in just the car guys that I’ve met here in Japan so again like most of the shops that I’ve covered so far here in Japan you probably noticed that they’re all in the middle of like you

Know regular residential areas and tia Auto is no no different being Cuba can Countryside it’s definitely more quiet than you know Tokyo or Yokohama but it’s just uh it’s just a Vibe I mean everywhere you look there’s just Parts being either thrown away or stored we’ve got some old school

Bucket seat here melting and dying away and this is uh the converted bar and that houses all the shutters the paint booth and all the rest of the shop so he’s kind of added to the shop over the years when I first came here most of this construction wasn’t even converted

Yet so these uh like I said he’s he’s got a lot of demand and he takes his time but yeah I mean it’s one of the coolest places that I really love to come to and mainly just to chill because you know you go into his little shop and

As we’ll take a quick look soon you can see it’s just filled with memorabilia old books and magazines from back in the day catalog so you can see what these cars used to cost and how the prices have gone up and um actually you know just just go in

There and take a look like I said a ton of old magazines photo albums he keeps all the Restorations are documented uh and he usually doubles up so he keeps one for himself and then gives the other two customers and clients so yeah this kind of stuff holds race

20 engine everything is documented and this is what customers you know really like to see a guy not only takes his time but has the knowledge but you know documents his stuff nothing is hidden you know you’re getting quality and it’s all done very very well so he’s a master fabricator

A true artisan you got the Nismo in blood magazine I can’t believe they still make these it’s actually from this year and this this is how you buy cigarettes in Japan Winston’s might as well get a twin pack of course this is a small chill out table and

Behind it a ton a ton of parts look at this so this is the ignition wiring for a 432 or a GTR race car 50 000 yen if you buy this from another country you can probably add a zero to it the way prices are going so that’s another thing

About Anderson he’s actually very very honest when it comes to like pricing his work which is probably why he you know he’s never really expanded and done things bigger because he’s you know he has an old school mentality and he likes to do things the old way so I really appreciate that and

I’m sure a lot of his old customers really appreciate that too another s30z waiting to be restored all right so I’m not sure if you guys understand just how much of a value this engine might have this is of course the uh s20 completely original fully overhauled so

Ready to be dropped into uh akoska so it still has the Mikuni solex carbs it’s as stock so while these engines probably sell for um you know over 10 million yen so close to 100 Grand US the actual overall the rebuild costs about 10 to 15 grand

So not so bad of course because it’s running stock components OEM stuff so Then this other s30 waiting for a restoration I mean the craziest thing is is last time I saw this car it was sitting in his garden and it was literally melting like this whole front section was just half gone and you know he’s obviously um stocked up on parts to kind of bring

That chassis back all the welding and wow it’s just an amazing an amazing amount of work that has gone into it and he’s transformed it back into a real car there’s some cool manifolds here s20 grills rear quarter panels one big surprise for me today is that

There’s actually a non Nissan car here which is pretty rare this is a customer kind of track car that he’s been asked to redo so the body and Chassis is going to get restored this is a 1954 Alfa Romeo Bertone GT 1300 Sprint not the most valuable of

Classic Alpha Romeos but something quite special and here’s the 1.3 twin cam and yeah like I said this guy’s built it into a track car it’s got the racing bucket seat he’s got the Takata belts he’s got the race steering wheel and he’s even done a

Roll cage and as you can see here caroteria Bertone so basically you know back in the 50s in Italy you could buy um a base car and ask one of the many coach Builders Berton zagato uh touring super legit so many coach workers used to custom create either in small batches or

Bespoke one-offs or obviously the Richer clients and create cars like this and if you look here old Alfa Romeo badge in the Sprint logo Okay so he’s gonna try and get our or rather the 432r started he says he hasn’t turned the engine on in six months possibly a good chance it’s not going to happen but if it does you guys have to hear this engine it’s very special I actually took this car

Out on sodigara which is not too far from here about 10 years ago when we were doing the discovery documentary and yeah this car has so much character let’s see if we can get it up and running oh look at that is so this is the uh the racing version of

The cam covers so the takuashi the octopus legs as they call them here in Japan but the headers are not okay so this car is actually signed by The Works drivers no I’m getting close let’s see if we can do this yes hell yes I love how there’s no seats inside listen to this oh man music okay so basically the lowdown on this engine is that being the race car replica based on the 432 under someone and more power so he struck the engine with a 2.2 bottom end uh conversion so

It’s got forged pistons rods and a fully balanced crankshaft you’ve got race cams and the Nismo version of the solid carburetors the stock engine used to put out 160 horsepower in the road cars this is actually bench tested on a bench Dyno and they measured about 280 PS so around

270 horsepower uh you know for a car that weighs probably 800 kilos you can imagine what kind of fun that is on track so it’s all about response and with the extra capacity you do get a bigger fatter tall curve in the in the middle of the red range it basically uh

For safety it’s been kept to 8 000 RPM it revs out to eight five there’s no real benefit going that high so most of the power is about around 8 000 so that’s your shift point and it sounds glorious when it revs all right so go for more

Yeah it’s it’s a bike engine basically it’s insane well uh let’s take a look inside of course the seats are missing um but you get the gift of it it’s basically uh an s30 inside and he’s added a roll cage for extra rigidity of course these shells are very

Weak into like today’s standards I really have to take a few seconds sometimes to just realize the situation the I’m sometimes finding myself in so here I am rocking up with a brand new Fair Lady Z and I come to visit Anderson and he turns this beast on like possibly the most

Coolest version of the s30 ever made it’s uh it’s amazing I’m hoping this comes through in the video it’s just this is what I live for so another cool fact about this engine is that since he kind of finished building the car and had the engine restored about 10 11 years ago

Is not even reached 3000 kilometers so it’s basically still being run in I mean 3 000 kilometers in 10 years absolutely insane yeah foreign Okay so after hearing this wonderful race version of the 432z I think it’s the perfect time to end this video again this is just an example of what you can get up to in Japan if you’re into cars and today having a new Z and taking it for a drive

Out here in the countryside it’s been an extra special kind of visit for me to I haven’t been here in years so it was really cool to kind of chat to Anderson a little bit and just to see this car again I hope you enjoyed it let me know

In the comments below what you thought and check back soon for more Thank you