What is it with us and the AE86!? Why are some of us so obsessed and moved by this particular hunk of Japanese steel from the era of Zipps, acid wash j, Fluro shirts and Atari?? This is a question that I seem to be asking myself more and more as of late.
Could it be cause I’ve now got a finished lemon dipped Hachi Roku or the fact everyone that surrounds me is as infatuated with this 1980s legend of the 1600cc class? Is it this constant lifestyle that I’m apart of that is to blame?
It could also be the car too: I identify with it. It’s the symbol of my outward personal self- the small one that just keeps pushing and never backs down. Or it could be that this car just like the right girl or same boy (Matt? :P) can just feel so right from the start?
No matter what is going on in my life once I plant my skinny arse in the driver seat of my lil ’86, my world centres and I know exactly where I am in the world and no longer feel lost. It’s a odd to say this out loud about a car. Really how can hundreds of nuts and bolts, some sheets of steel ,some fabric and a chemical energy reaction can create the sort of feelings I guess a ‘normal’ person may only get from another living being.
Yeah sure we have those days, weeks or even months where we hate this stupid abortion of 1980s produce, I for one have threatened more than once of using the rays from the optical sunflare and gravity from the moon to burn my car to a crisp via heat transfer. But once she is running right again and you take her for that test drive to check everything is ok, that stupid smile comes over your face and you are in love again and planning the next mods and improvements you will be making.
I suppose a lot of this probably sounds a lil hooky-pooky and some would turn their noses up to such a gesture or feelings for a car and maybe its all the Bob Dylan Albums I have currently being listening to, But as I begin to start a project that will have nothing to do with a sprinter and it’s a project that will prevent me from building anotherAE86 for at least 2years, it gives me the chance to realise how much I enjoy the AE86 culture/lifestyle and most importantly the hachiroku itself. The small one that has given me so many good times, great friends, opened so many doors and given me the chance to express myself outside of my families usual style allowing myself to break my own mould a little.
So I have a lot to be thankful to this 1 tonne of Japanese metal, twin cam, two-door ‘sports car’ from a era of bad hair, shocking clothes, ALF and Tape Decks. To those about to rock (an AE86) I salute you! Keep the dream of Toyota’s last rear wheel drive Corolla alive! The car, like so many of our heroes, proves its worth when it is in doubt: it still prevails. And to those of us that are present ’86’ers remember even though “Times are Changing” our lil Hachi Roku is still the same!