Hide Relaxed C-10: Vintage American Trucks Hit Japan
Slammed C10 Straight Outta Japan
The truck scene in Japan has largely mirrored that of the American truck scene. In the early days, mini trucks were the most popular vehicle customized - with many of the models modified in America being of Japanese origin. Those in Japan followed suit but as the years went on, the move to classic American trucks and full-size trucks became more popular. Transporting over American trucks and parts has almost become easier than tracking down vintage Japanese parts for older trucks. The accessibility and popularity has seen many in Japan shift from Japanese trucks to classic American cars and trucks. There are also less restrictions on importing classics.
Living in the countryside in Kyoto, Japan allows Akihide “Hide” Sakamoto, a member of the Japanese chapter of Relaxed Atmosphere club, more automotive freedom than most in Japan. With a complete shop in his front yard; Hide works on mini trucks, classic cars and motorcycles with his close friends. They have dubbed the impromptu shop and group ‘Garage Kartel.’ Recently completed is his imported 1968 Chevrolet C-10. Done in a ‘patina style’ the truck features a full custom frame allowing the rockers to lay on the ground with the push of a button on the AccuAir eLevel controller powered with a Kinetik battery. The patina’d fenders wrap a set of 22-inch Raceline billet wheels powder coated ivory. A set of Nitto NT555 245/35R20 tires finishes things off. Under the hood and inside the cab, things were kept factory and original to show the history of the truck’s birth in America. A roof rack and vintage Coca Cola ice chest hitch take care of the cargo needs due to the bed being open to show of Hide’s suspension work over the rear end. Hide, his son Seyha, and his friends cruise the C-10 all over Japan attending shows and cruise nights while working on their next projects including a V8 Small Block Chevrolet powered Isuzu mini truck and another imported American car, a chopped Chevy.