Impulse N2 Spec Racer – Drift made it popular again, but wait there's more…
By Tatsunori Tsuchida
Homologated track cars in a “one-make” race; your choice of tires, brakes, suspension, how many points a roll-cage, what modifications to the engine… be it the rule book, it's all designed to make everything fair, in some cases affordable, and most importantly safe. I've seen plenty examples throughout Japan like the Integra Cup at Motegi, the Vitz Cup at Sportsland Sugo, or the March Cup. But perhaps the longest running series is the N2 AE86 race. Generally “one make” races rarely take the spotlight, but given how much the '86 struck a chord with the Japanese psyche, the longevity, the popularity, and the main-stage-ness isn't a surprise. I mean people drive out just to see it, and it often isn't a support race to something bigger like Super GT.
This is Impulse-Tajima's demo car. While it's unclear the relationship between demo car and yen-revenue, we're pretty sure that the public appearance of this N2 racer ties in nicely for a guy who has an AE86 shop … say better than a certain SE-R sponsored by a certain dog food company (Dog-Car, wink wink).
|A view of the shop.|
Upon meeting Satoshi Tajima, he erases all stereotypes of a garage owner. First off he's diminutive in size compared to the brutish giants you would imagine running a garage. He's soft spoken; I can't picture him yelling at his employees. However, it's his third trait I believe that garners him the most support from his fans and patrons. Tajima is O.C.D. And I mean O.C.D. in a good way. If you look at any corner of his garage it'll be spotless. Every bolt, nut, washer, machine, tool, etc. has its place. Each project car is spotless, and parts to be installed are labeled. Yes, O.C.D. is a trait prized in a garage setting. My father (we own a garage together) often says it's not what you say but the quality of work you put in that gains customers, Tajima's work ethic and attention to detail have certainly helped him in this regard.
|A view of the Impulse custom fabricated radiator.|