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Skyline in the Sunshine: Works-Style Hakosuka

While walking around the Japanese Classic Car Show, it’s pretty difficult not to get overwhelmed by the sheer number of makes and models on display, even more so once you factor in the different styles and modifications applied to each car. During the JCCS, one of the many cars blowing up Instagram and maintaining a steady swarm of photographers was Joel Tan’s 1972 Nissan Skyline.

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The familiar-yet-different styling raised more than a few eyebrows — a show car with a squat stance but draped in a race livery and adorned in logos. This “race-inspired” look is nothing new in the U.S., but it is certainly enjoying a resurgence in popularity. In Japan, however, this “Works” style has stood the test of time for many years and is spotted at nearly any car show, track day or drift event.

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Working It

The “Works” style is heavily influenced by the track cars of the '70s and '80s, including over fenders, a more aggressive stance, sponsor decals, liveries, aero bodywork, as well as performance modifications to back up all the looks.

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Walking around the car, it’s easy to see Joel's Skyline has been worked over (excuse the pun) in an effort to liven up the 45-year-old chassis. The front and rear bumpers have been deleted, giving the car a more aggressive boxy nose and tail. In their place, an eye-catching red chin spoiler hovers above the pavement ahead, while a traditional dual-tipped exhaust extends from the rear. Back around front, a custom aluminum oil cooler is mounted front and center, hoses snaking out from the bodywork between the angled Nissan Cedric headlights.

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Victory 50 fender flares extend the footprint of the ‘72, allowing the small-yet-deep SSR MKIs to stretch way past the factory body lines. At 13x10 -28 up front and 14x12 -51 out back, the new fitment makes for a much more aggressive stance than the original 13x6 wheels that came stock. Victory 50 coilovers help close up the wheel gap between the MKIs and flares.

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Horses for the Hakosuka

Of course, all of these race aesthetics would be just that — aesthetics — if not for the performance modifications under the large shield-like hood. The L28 straight six under the hood has been ported and polished with six proud Ireland Engineering velocity stacks feeding the Mikuni AA carbs.

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This powerplant, coupled with the custom suspension and wider wheelbase, made the Skyline a perfect choice to cruise through the curves of Azusa Canyon when it came time to take some photos.

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The interior remains no-frills and utilitarian, with black leather, black plastic, carbon fiber and metal everywhere. The driver’s bucket seat, woodgrain Trust shift knob and Monster tach are about as fancy as it gets. That being said, with a car of this style, an interior full of luxury shouldn’t be expected.

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Overall, Joel’s Skyline is one of the best examples of this style in the U.S. today, but photos can only hope to do it as much justice as seeing it in person. The sound, stance and presence of this car are a whole other experience when standing next to it. Luckily enough, the "Hakotan" will be defending its title of “Best JDM” at AutoCon LA March 26, so be sure to check it out for yourself!

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Tuning Menu

1972 Nissan Skyline "Hakotan" Hakosuka

OWNER Joel Tan
HOMETOWN Los Angeles, California
ENGINE L28 6-Cylinder, port and polish, MSD ignition wires, Mikuni AA 3Triple Carbs with headers, Ireland Engineering velocity stacks, NISMO clutch, lightened flywheel, close ratio differential, custom aluminum oil cooler, Victory 50 radiator hose
SUSPENSION Victory 50 coilovers (front), custom coilovers (rear)
EXTERIOR Nissan Cedric headlights, Victory 50 fender flares
INTERIOR Driver bucket seat, TRUST shift knob, Monster tachometer
BRAKES Victory 50 brake kit
WHEELS SSR MKI 13x10 -28 (front), 14x12 -51 (rear)
THANKS RaceToys, Mang Chito, Dennis Aquino, JRX Engineering, Norman Alarcon, Nelson Joe Baldonado, and my family, especially my wife Cheryl.

Browse the gallery below for more shots of Joel's Skyline.

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