A move to a bigger and better venue has allowed the organisers of Japfest 2016 to accommodate more cars and features than ever before.
More than 3,100 Japanese performance models will be on display - that's at least 500 more than in 2015. Among the special features for this year's Japfest at Silverstone, Northants, will be Europe's biggest ever gathering of Mitsubishi Evo models courtesy of Evolution, a new club catering for all generations of the performance version of the Lancer saloon, from the super rare and original Evo I to the very latest Evo X.
Well-known cars on the stand include Richard Marshall's awesome Evo IX GT ProSeries Time Attack car and Craig Hammond's Norris Design built 950bhp Evo V, the world's only road going twin-charged Evo, which is both supercharged and turbo charged, as well as a vast selection of both standard and modified Evos. More than 160 cars are already booked in, and that number is expected to rise before the event opens its gates on Sunday April 24.
Also prominent at the event will be the FD Series of Mazda's RX-7, which is celebrating its silver jubilee in 2016. Launched in Japan in 1991, the third generation RX-7 brought new levels of performance to Mazda's famous rotary engine thanks to its sequential twin turbos. A special display will bring standard and modified cars together, featuring a fire-spitting tuned Time Attack model, super-wide Fortune kitted variant, limited edition Bathurst and RS-R, and a healthy gathering of standard RX-7s that look like they've just rolled off the assembly line in Hiroshima. A parade lap of over 70 RX-& FDs is scheduled for 2pm.
Another key feature for 2016 will be the retro paddock, featuring some of the most significant Japanese cars from the 1960s through to the 1990s, taking visitors back to where the scene began.
Japfest will also see the return of Drift Kings, a tyre-smoking spectacle run in association with the British Drift Championship (BDC), with drivers and drift cars from all over Europe coming together to thrill the crowds, with judges awarding marks for style, skill, smoke and speed as entrants compete for the £1,000 top prize.
The new, more central, venue is a significant part of Japfest's broader expansion, as the best-known series of Japanese car events in the UK.
Also in 2016, Japfest Rock! returns to Rockingham Motor Speedway on June 26 and also has track time available, while a brand new, third Japfest event has also been added to the calendar, Japfest Motorsport Heroes. Taking place at the Hop Farm near Paddock Wood, Kent, on September 11, Japfest Motorsport Heroes will be a special event celebrating some of the most iconic and significant Japanese cars from the world of motorsport, along with their road going equivalents.
Full details of the show, the cars and the various activities can be found at www.japfest.co.uk