By on November 13, 2015

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It’s been another exhausting day and, after wasting precious time trying to write some sort of clever introduction, I’ve realized that there just isn’t any point in beating around the bush.

The windmill I set out to topple is thoroughly defeated and the Town and Country looks smart sitting in front of the house tonight wearing its new set of permanent Japanese plates.

I wish I could say it was a cake walk, that the Town and Country sailed through its Shaken without any difficulty, but, as usual, there were last minute problems.

Want to know more? Hit the jump for another episode of your favorite reality program: “Man Meets Bureaucracy.”

The day started off well. I set off early and I was at the Land Transport Office (LTO) a few minutes before 9:00 a.m. I had expected there to be a huge rush of early applicants, but I was wrong. Thinking about it, I’m guessing it’s because vehicle inspections and registrations are usually services people pay for and the companies that do them work normal 9-to-5 business hours.

Whatever the case, I ran through the initial steps of the process, moving from station to station with little to no wait until, less than 15 minutes after I arrived, I was told to bring my car around and line up for the dreaded Shaken.

At first, I was a little surprised about this. I had taken the car to a garage for its inspection and, because they used the Shaken testing format, I had assumed this part of the process would simply be rubber stamped in the office. It turned out, however, that the garage had simply done a “pre-inspection” and that now, if I wanted the plates, I would have to stand before the man. Simple enough, I thought, as this wasn’t my first Shaken and the garage had previously been annoyingly thorough.

I should simply breeze right on through. Right?

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Wrong.

Despite my fully endorsed pre-inspection, the inspectors were bound and determined to exercise their due diligence. They began with the basics: checking the headlights, blinkers, brake lights, etc. and followed up by running around the vehicle to examine all the angles before ultimately using a tape measure to — yet again — verify the vehicle’s size.

Next, I was waved into the building for the noise and emissions test but was allowed to pass through without stopping, presumably because of the costly JATA certificates I had acquired earlier in the process. I was also passed through the light testing station for some reason — maybe the pre-inspection paperwork was fine for this part — before being told to stop in the pit area so they could verify the engine number.

The process completed, I was kicked out the far end of the building with instructions to park and walk back into the inspection line to speak with the supervisors. Apparently, there was a problem.

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The Town and Country’s issue, it turns out, was a blind spot that needed to be rectified to be legal. Of course, you say, all cars have blind spots and they can easily be fixed with a $2 convex stick-on mirror. But alas, my friends, the Town and Country’s spot was not at the rear, it was at the front– along the passenger side fender and next the front wheel. The inspectors informed me in order to get my certificate, I needed some way to see into the area.

I was incredulous to the point of becoming highly agitated but, rather than argue, the inspectors decided a demonstration was in order. They had me sit in the driver’s seat while they brought out a small yellow pole, which they moved around the front of the vehicle — stopping every few inches — to verify it could be seen until, well, it couldn’t. It did fine across the front and around the bumper but, sure enough, when it hit that one special point, it vanished beneath the fender line for all of 12 inches before it became visible through the passenger-side window below the mirror. Satisfied they were right, I set off to buy an extra mirror lest a gnome or some other creature less than three feet tall work their way into that position along the fender and be hurt.

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Fortunately, there was an Autobacs right across the street and, after I got kicked out of the Shaken line, it was there I retreated to lick my wounds and find the part that I required. Let me start by saying that Autobacs is probably the crappiest auto parts store on the planet. They have 300 kinds of car perfume, a gazillion add-on lights, hundreds of stick on coin holders, ash trays and other little doodads — but precious little hard parts. To my disappointment, the mirror section consisted on twenty different make-up mirrors, of which at least three of which were shaped like Hello Kitty, a couple of stick-on blind spot mirrors and two big convex bumper mirrors that looked like the belonged on a Kenworth. After pulling my hair out for a while, I spent about 1200 yen on an adjustable blind spot mirror and set about trying to mount it in an appropriate spot.

It took some time. The mirror simply could not be made to work on any part of the fender or hood and, after agonizing about it for a while, I decided to stick it on the side pillar of the sliding door. The idea: Use the passenger side mirror to see what the add-on mirror was reflecting. After another hour in the Shaken line, the inspectors signed off on it and I went back to shambling around the complex acquiring stamps and paying fees.

At around two o’clock in the afternoon, I finally got the plates bolted on and headed off to the city hall to return my temporary tags. With that last errand completed, the job was done and the van fully legal.

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What were the costs? It’s hard to calculate as I didn’t keep all my receipts, but I have a general idea of the major things so I’ll try to get somewhere in the ballpark.

Including temporary plates, which I renewed 11 times, JATA emissions and noise testing, the new right-hand-drive optic headlights, the pre-inspection and associated work to “fix” the signals, the plate adapters, the parking permit, the recycle fee, and the litany of different fees I paid today, I estimate a grand total of $4,260. Of course, there were other costs I didn’t track: the tolls for my useless trip to the closed Chrysler dealer, parking fees I paid while I ran hither, thither and yon and any number of other silly fees that probably add another two or three hundred dollars in real money. And I don’t even want to think about my lost productivity, the vacation days I had to take to push everything through, and the mental stress of it all…

In short, it was a hassle and the cost was high, but the feeling of taking your own bought and paid for car to the other side of the world and getting it street legal? Hell, that’s priceless.

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Thomas. Kreutzer currently lives in Kanagawa, Japan with his wife and three children. He has spent most of his adult life overseas with more than nine years in Japan, two years in Jamaica and almost five years as a U.S. Merchant Mariner serving primarily in the Pacific. Although originally from Snohomish, WA, he has also lived in several places around the United States including Buffalo, NY and Leavenworth, KS. A long time auto and motorcycle enthusiast, Kreutzer has pursued his hobbies whenever possible. He also enjoys writing and public speaking where, according to his wife, his favorite subject is himself.

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75 Comments on “Swimming Upstream: VJ Day...”


  • avatar
    Chan

    Congrats, proud Yokohama plate-bearer! I think it’s somewhat of a status symbol to have a foreign car registered in Japan, so rock it.

    Also looking forward to your LHD-car in RHD-country adventures. That must be fun.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    Wow, you persevered, good job.

    The question I have is what about the blind spot behind the car? I’m sure you can’t see that little post when centered behind the rear bumper. Are they only concerned about when you travel forward?

    • 0 avatar
      vvk

      The blind spot behind the car is something expected. The blind spot that failed inspection is something that is directly caused by the steering wheel located on the wrong side.

  • avatar
    Scoutdude

    Congratulations.

    Very interesting mix of cars in the line there. An oval window behind a Roller on what appears to be steelies w/o covers, quite the contrast.

    • 0 avatar

      The lack of hubcaps on a lot of the cars had me mystified until I saw a guy in line actually pulling the wheel covers off the Toyota Estima he was driving. When the inspector finally reached him, one of the first things he did was a walk-around and I saw him use his stick to touch every lug nut on every wheel. I guess its a point of inspection.

  • avatar
    davefromcalgary

    Awesome Tom, great series of articles.

    Minor pedantry, “the new right-hand-drive optic headlights”

    Left hand traffic. The side of the car you drive on doesn’t determine the lighting pattern required, as evidenced by your “wrong” driving position of your van in Japan. Imports and service vehicles confuse the drive side discussion, so traffic direction is the proper nomenclature for this discussion.

  • avatar
    -Nate

    Very good Thomas ! .

    I’m amazed you turned in the temp. plates , after all that hassle I’d figured out some way of keeping them , God knows you earned them .

    That old Beetle is a late ’53 DeLuxe or maybe a ’54 .

    -Nate

    • 0 avatar

      The pictures don’t do it justice. It was a clean little car and I was amazed when they opened the engine bay – dead stock and factory clean.

      You should have seen the Europa. Japanese people are weird about having their photo taken so I let it go, but I wish now I had at least asked to take one.

  • avatar
    NN

    looks like mostly foreign cars (Camaro, Rolls, Cayenne, Beemers) going through the process. Does this describe some of the non-tariff barriers we hear so much regarding the Japanese market? I’m wondering if the signing of the TPP will remove some of the bureaucracy you just went through–I heard non-tariff barriers in Japan to US cars were part of it. Then again, I can only imagine if you purchase an import in Japan the dealer does all this for you and makes sure it’s going to pass.

    Either way it looks like a terrible process to endure

    • 0 avatar

      The cars are directed to certain lanes from inside the headquarters. It may be that they send foreign cars to one particular lane while Japanese cars are directed to the others. There are another five or six lanes on the right you can’t see in the photo and I’m guessing that lane assignments are made because of traffic flow issues. Foreign cars, which were relatively few, likely require more time to process so keeping them to one side probably helps the system overall.

      I took this photo because it had so many interesting cars in it. About ten minutes later a new Ferrari rolled up on my quarter and at one point during my trips to I walked by a stunning little Lotus Europa. The last time I was there there were two or three classic Benzes, including a gullwing, and several classic Japanese cars.

      I do not believe this is a part of a non tariff trade barrier scheme.

    • 0 avatar
      MeaMaximaCulpa

      This experience can hardly be described as a non tariff barrier, if the author would have imported an ECE compliant mini van the hassle would have been substantially decreased. If one wants to drive a Chrysler van in Japan the easiest way is probably to buy a British spec grand voyager as that van would have been ECE compliant AND adapted for driving on the wron… the left side of the road.

      I don’t want to be “that” European guy but it would be nice if the US and Canada joined the ECE program, the areas where the US requirements are more stringent could be beefed up in the ECE standard and an agreement could be made regarding emissions and emission testing as well as consumption testing.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    Compare Mr. Kreutzer’s experience…

    “I estimate a grand total of $4,260. Of course, there were other costs I didn’t track: the tolls for my useless trip to the closed Chrysler dealer, parking fees I paid while I ran hither, thither and yon and any number of other silly fees that probably add another two or three hundred dollars in real money. And I don’t even want to think about my lost productivity, the vacation days I had to take to push everything through, and the mental stress of it all…”

    … with how a previous editor of this website described the process:

    “In other civilized parts of the world, such as Europe and in allegedly closed Japan, legalizing a non-approved car is as easy as checking that it has lights and brakes. You have it inspected, you sign a few forms, and you are good to go.”

    https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/02/only-a-nutcase-would-import-a-car-to-america-b-s-wants-to-change-that-and-he-needs-your-signature

    Yeah, right. And some of you wonder why it’s appropriate to be skeptical of what was published here during that Reign of Error.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I literally laughed at “Reign of Error”.

      I think Bertel was living in Japan too at the time was he not? There’s just no excuse…

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        I think that his excuse is that he just makes stuff up. It helps that he’s also adept at misinterpreting things.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          He should have went into fiction writing since he has a flair for it.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          Wait, so Bertel engaged in deliberate lies and untruths? Say it isn’t so! Does that mean that GM had a good reason for building as many trucks as it could before the model changeover in 2013? It didn’t bankrupt them again?

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            One of my favorites was when he decried how the chicken tax was keeping Australian trucks out of the US when there is no chicken tax on Australian trucks.

            I also enjoyed his earnest assessment that Edmunds’ monthly sales forecasts (which are made just a couple of days before the end of the month) were 300% accurate.

            It was also amusing that he inferred that the Obama administration was opposed to free trade agreements while it was actively negotiating the TPP and an EU-US pact. Facts don’t really matter when opinions are strongly felt.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            He just has a thing for Jessica Caldwell and needed an excuse to use her picture.

            He even made her a crown.

            https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/grade-the-analysts-jessica-caldwell-crowned-most-reliable-analyst-of-2012/

            Hahahaha. No that I look at it, your argument with Bertel about the 300% is in that thread!

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            He may have got confused and thought America and Australia were the same thing. We really need to re-brand the nation as ‘Murica to avoid confusion.

          • 0 avatar

            You guys are cracking me up.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            I can’t blame him too much for Jessica Caldwell, but the real belle of the automotive ball is Vicki Vlachakis.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Oooooo Gen X for the win.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        Maybe he was sniffing VW Diesel tailpipes at some point as well!

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Great find, Pch, great find.

    • 0 avatar
      MeaMaximaCulpa

      Well Bertell’s claims, as far as the quoted part goes, would have been somewhat true for an ECE compliant vehicle that was intended to be driven from the right seat on the left side of the road; as most of the civilised world accept ECE compliant vehicles. Naturally importing a car would include not only checking that the car has lights but also that the the lights have the correct ECE markings.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        Japan does not accept foreign type approval on the whole car or on many of its components. So no, you are incorrect.

        Harmonization does not mean what you think it means. Countries can and do pick and choose what they are willing to accept and what they require.

        • 0 avatar
          MeaMaximaCulpa

          I do know what harmonisation means and find your patronising tone somewhat annoying. I did not mean to imply that Japan accept ECE “compliant” vehicles wholesale (although that would be nice in the future), an ECE vehicle will however conform to a number of Japanese regulations especially regarding lightning (all except dip/main beam it seems like) and Japan will evidently allow vehicles with non JIS/JASIC approved lights.

          Having said that I do understand that my remark about the civilised world could be interpreted as a type approved vehicle being legal for road traffic anywhere in the civilised world except the US, that is obviously not the case.

  • avatar
    Menloguy

    Congratulations on successfully getting your Town & Country van officially registered in Japan. This is valuable information for anyone considering importing a vehicle to Japan. I appreciated getting a detailed look at a Japanese bureaucratic process that few people are aware of. Although it took much time, effort and funds to get the van registered, we learned that the Japanese government at least allows one to import and register a non-Japan spec vehicle into their country, albeit after making some country-specific modifications. The US, on the other hand, would not even legally allow importing a non-US spec vehicle altogether unless the vehicle is over 25 years old or if you are a diplomatic personnel. Now I am back to dreaming about importing that Ford Focus 1.6 Diesel station wagon with manual transmission that I rented in Germany…

    • 0 avatar
      scrubnick

      Exactly. You might have to have a bunch of silly tests done, but it is entirely possible to bring over a car never intended for their market. The US? We require crash testing and all kinds of safety features and emissions equipment added. Makes the mirror issue look trivial.

  • avatar
    ajla

    No one has ever worked so hard to drive a Chrysler minivan on its second transmission.

    FCA should send you some swag or free mudflaps or something.

  • avatar
    vvk

    > I set off to buy an extra mirror lest a gnome or some other
    > creature less than three feet tall work their way into that
    > position along the fender and be hurt.

    You mean, like a small child?

    • 0 avatar

      It is a blind spot that consists of one square foot right up against the passenger side fender. The rear view mirror and the giant a-pillars on most cars probably create larger, more dangerous blind spots than the one this test revealed.

      A small child would have to work pretty hard to get themselves into that position with being seen and although, as a parent, I’d like to ensure things are as safe as possible, I know that operating a vehicle is inherently dangerous. There are always going to be places you can’t see, that’s why you have to be careful.

      • 0 avatar
        Xeranar

        I understood you grew up in the suburbs in the west? (forgive me, the backstory gets hazy for some and I like reading your articles)

        That’s a serious blindspot in a tight urban area, definitely toddler killing. I’m not saying that it should be a fail, I’m saying that they did have some legitimate concerns. Though I would peg it also on some nationalism as well. Japanese bureaucrats have a certain affinity and respect for their jobs that the US doesn’t really understand because they’re a communitarian society in many ways.

        Also, apparently I can’t see but where is the mirror exactly? I read the article and I just don’t see it on the vehicle in the posted pic that’s supposed to show it.

        • 0 avatar

          It doesn’t show the mirror, just the blind spot. By the time I got the mirror on and back through the shaken line I was well though taking photos and thinking about what a “fun experience” the whole thing was.

          This morning I’m going to seek out a better stalk-mounted mirror for the front fender, similar to what I see on most JDM vans. I was shocked Autobacs didn’t have one. The thing on the side will probably get torn off pretty quickly by the kids going in and out anyhow.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            Super-strong magnet, I hope? You’d hate to cut into a fender.

            Speaking of which, the repeaters don’t look bad. That Camaro in the picture (along with any vehicle with a mirror repeater) is OK without an add-on, correct?

          • 0 avatar
            PandaBear

            Consider yourself lucky that the inspector let you pass with a double mirror reflection mechanism. I know the rule is tough and unfair but if I were the inspector I’d not let someone pass with these double reflection because it is so hard to see the target object, plus it being easy to fall off the car.

  • avatar
    Acubra

    Otsukare-sama, Tomasu-san! Well done. Hope you’ll enjoy the bus thoroughly. Any plans for some cheap roundabout in addition to it? From my Japanese contacts I hear that Prii, as well as the traditional kei-cars, are a huge hit.

  • avatar
    turf3

    Wow, talk about embarking on a huge project for a tiny return! Kind of like putting a 230 cu. in. Chevy Stovebolt six and two-speed Powerglide into a 2015 Lexus sedan. Given enough time, money, and effort, it can be done, but why? Don’t they sell these kinds of cars in Japan?

  • avatar
    JT

    Very well done, although I have to join with the others who wondered “why”. That’s a lot of money to make a statement but all of us admire your tenacity.

    Given the difficulties you encountered, I’m wondering if you were served a bit of “not invented here” by your Japanese hosts. Would you have had the same problem(s) if you had brought in a US version of a Japanese nameplate van?

    • 0 avatar
      scrubnick

      The “why” part was answered in the first of these, I think. Basically, he didn’t want to take a bath on the van’s value by dumping it in the US and then buying an equivalent in Japan.

      I don’t think the people involved were openly hostile, it sounded like they were just doing their job. Turns out their job requires enforcing some odd regulations, but that is not their fault.

      • 0 avatar

        No, I do not think the bureaucracy with was biased against me or my American car at all.

        Most bureaucracies are about minimum standards and how anxious the person doing the work is to enforce them. In the US, you can get a variety of public servants, some of whom adhere to the letter of the law while others the spirit – thats why you sometimes get different outcomes in similar situations. In Japan, it is always about the letter of the law. There simply is no wiggle room and it can be utterly frustrating.

        I think this is why so many Japanese people use services to get this done. Considering the amount of time it can take, the do it yourself option doesn’t pay.

        • 0 avatar
          jansob

          I have taught classes to Japanese Customs agents, and I agree about Japanese bureaucrats. They are mostly very nice people who actually want things to go smoothly. But they take their duties very seriously. These are stable, well-paid civil service jobs that were damned hard to get. And if they miss some little thing that later turns out to have caused a problem, the consequences could be severe.
          Any accident that could possibly have been caused by that blind spot, and their inspection will be checked. They had better have ticked every box on their form or they’ll end up in a dead end posting or worse.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            IOW, no “employee organization” to bail out the sorry hides of the screw-ups (while picking the pockets of those who DO care for little in the way of return in some cases).

            Hmmm..gotta pull your weight, even in a government job! What a concept!

            (This from a “willingly-go-the-extra-mile” state/local systems analyst who sees examples of the first type every damn day!)

  • avatar
    ClutchCarGo

    I find it quite odd that some of the stamps on the paperwork include English words like Passed and Paid. I wonder why they pay to have a different language embossed onto their local stamps?

  • avatar
    65corvair

    I have enjoyed reading your reports on getting your minivan registered and look forward to more auto adventures in Japan. Also like minivans. Wouldn’t it have been a lot cheaper to buy a car in Japan? Even a minivan at the Chrysler dealer?

    • 0 avatar

      Maybe, maybe not.

      Two reasons, first, I would have had to sell the T&C (which I already owned outright) at a loss in the states which probably would have amounted to something close to what I paid here in fees and taxes and, second, when I leave Japan in a few years I, would have to dump whatever car we ended up purchasing to replace the van – likely at an even bigger loss because resale values for used vehicles here are just terrible.

      Beyond that, I just really hate throwing things away. It was my car, I liked it and I wanted to keep it. My job pays for the shipping and I decided to go for it. Would I do it again? Maybe not, I see lots of cool RX7s, Skylines and other cool JDM rides on the street here everyday and the idea I could have had one of those eats at me.

      • 0 avatar
        65corvair

        Thanks.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        “I just really hate throwing things away.”

        There’s the real reason!

      • 0 avatar
        PandaBear

        I think the logic of selling the T&C in the first place then repurchase it after you get back to US would make the “loss” only for the Japanese Van purchase.

        Yes you took the depreciation when you sell the T&C, but when you buy the same year and model vehicle back, your loss is washed.

        Are you going to lose as much for your inspection and license fee on the time you keep the Japanese van you were going to buy?

  • avatar
    GermanReliabilityMyth

    You really have to admire the diligence of Japanese inspections. There’s a reason the Shaken is legendary. Meanwhile, in the good ‘ol USA, I regularly see vehicles with structural rust, yard bags for windows, driving on two donut spares, spider-webbed windshields or any combination thereof. God bless!

    • 0 avatar

      Make no mistake, there are plenty of cars running around Japan in a similar state of disrepair. Other vehicles have all sorts of odd modifications, crazy loud pipes and weird lighting schemes abound, and I see precious little code enforcement actively being done by the police. I feel like the only time Japanese cars are up to snuff is when they face the shaken and my guess is that a lot of people switch right back to their borderline illegal mods as soon as the sticker hits the windshield.

      The idea that Japan is a shining bastion of modernity and cleanliness is quickly disabused by on the ground experience.

  • avatar
    luridshadow

    Grats on getting your permanent plates! I just finished the Jata noise test and I got the paper work back on that.I fixed my running lights and turn signals and since I do not have a van I shouldn’t need a blind spot mirror.We are mailing the recycle paper work today I do not know why thanks wife>< I told her to get the parking permit from the koban station.Jata gave us copy's of the paper work so I am not sure if she just mails the copies or the originals.Another funny tidbit that I found out from a importer.Apparently the Jata paper work is slated for ten cars.When you import a car by your self you are apparently doing paper work and paying for ten cars.Soo we could teq import 9 more of the same car.I heard that importers use this to their advantage by making people pay to skip Jata all together.(Gas test)Versus paying 320,000 yen you would pay 100,000 yen + importer fee.I was also told you can skip emissions if you go to the dealer and get the EPA paper work from the dealer or the EPA itself with a certified stamp with all of the co2 and no2 info.So if you know anyone with a town and country that's 2010 you can charge them for your info so they can skip the gas and noise test.

  • avatar
    ravenchris

    You feel like the ‘Lone Ranger’ because very few have the courage to get this type of project completed.
    Well done.

  • avatar
    golden2husky

    I can’t imagine the fun that the Camaro driver is going to have with blindspots. Good work Tom.

    • 0 avatar

      I know! There is no way that thing is easier to see out of than my T&C, especially with someone 5’8″ in the seat. That thing should be hung with more mirrors than Pete Townsend’s Lambretta scooter.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      One thing for sure–my so-called “LaneWatch” right-side camera on the car in my avatar, which is of little use since I turn my head to check to the right as I flick the signal, and unlike more recent iterations, my 2013 Accord doesn’t have a setting to keep the camera on after the signal goes off. But if I was running over there, I’d have that switched on manually at all times, just for self-defense purposes!

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Thomas,
    By the sounds of it, it was an experience to have your vehicle registered to drive on the Japanese public road system…..all legal. Congratulations!

    Now, why is it so hard???? It’s not hard to work this one out.

    When you are in Japan go out and buy a BT50, take it back to the US and get it registered to drive on the US public road system.

    It just ain’t goin’ happen.

    So, don’t feel to bad. The US has anal and ridiculous technical barriers in place, far worse than the Japanese.

    You will understand why I’m an advocate of the US adopting the UNECE harmonised vehicle regulations in the US.

    If you had this, you might have had to change only the headlights.

    This is sort of like the Beta vs VHS stoush.

    Well, it’s called technical trade barriers.

    Oh, the US should adopt what the rest of the world is converting to because it will be cheaper than the world adopting the US regulatory standards as the US represent a smaller market than the rest of the Globe.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      I guess if it wasn’t for the total absence of BT50s, the US might be an OK place to live.

      We get it, BAFO. You’re an expat, not looking back, and lucky enough to get his ass out of the hell hole known as the US! I would’ve just left New Jersey…

      Things aren’t “perfect” here, except we do have the absolute greatest range of pickups known to mankind. We don’t have every midsize pickup in existence, but we’d no doubt, mostly stick to Toyota, maybe Nissan and the domestics, if we did.

      No regrets, Right? OZ sounded better on paper???.

    • 0 avatar
      wmba

      Professor BAFO: Dear sir: Repeating the same thing 50 times over for four years and getting the same negative response is not usually attempted by even the dumbest of dogs. Yet you repeat the same mantra over and over as if you’d forgotten we heard the same sorry tale from you dozens of times before.

      I am therefore reduced to the conclusion I came to after reading your first three or four attempts to convince the world that you know best, and that is that Ginger, my pet gecko who learns what I want him to do after only a few trial runs, is smarter than you. But, to be charitable, perhaps it can all be explained from the brain damage you have suffered beating your head against a brick wall.

      Now, what’s Ryan’s excuse or was he always that way?

  • avatar

    I came here from your post about the regrettable GMC Jimmy. On that post, your bio says:

    “Thomas Kreutzer currently lives in Buffalo, New York with his wife and three children but has spent most of his adult life overseas. He has lived in Japan for 9 years, Jamaica for 2 and spent almost 5 years as a US Merchant Mariner serving primarily in the Pacific. A long time auto and motorcycle enthusiast he has pursued his hobbies whenever possible. He also enjoys writing and public speaking where, according to his wife, his favorite subject is himself.”

    Being from Eastern Wa myself (Wenatchee) and currently living in Japan, I was vicariously happy for you, having made it out of Japan.

    Now I read that you are back in Japan? Surely there is some reason. What brought you back?


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  • Ronnie Schreiber, United States
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  • Moderators

  • Adam Tonge, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States