Right: The EG that helped put J’s Racing on the map
Micah: What’s your daily driver right now? Any special Honda dream build in the back of your mind?
Hisaaki: I drove a ZE2 Honda Insight with coilovers, exhaust, wheels, aero bits, and a unique ECU up until March this year. I love how practical it is and yet how well it handles in a sharp turn. I’m thinking about getting a USDM Si next, just to be different. Americans want the Type R, and all I can think about is a new Si! The grass is always greener, I guess…
Outside of that new K24 Si, I don’t really have any dream build. We’ll take on pretty much anything that Honda throws at us. Again, we’re all about thinking outside the box.
Micah: Where do you see automotive racing going in these next few years?
Hisaaki: As far as I’m concerned hybrid racing is here to stay in Japan. It’s a good thing that Honda has released such capable cars like the Insight and the CR-Z. Who knows where it will go from there? Kind of exciting really…
Micah: Have you noticed a substantial difference in demand from your USDM buyers as opposed to JDM enthusiasts in recent years?
Hisaaki: Most certainly. In America, everyone wants parts for an older chassis like the CRX, the EG, and the DB9. In Japan, our customers are always asking for parts for their DC5, GE Fit, and Insight. Thank god America is more lenient on older cars! Without you guys buying our parts in the States, we probably wouldn’t be as connected to those older chassis as we are today.
Micah: As the new president of J’s Racing, what do you want to change in the company?
Hisaaki: I want us to fully recover from the damage done by the events that occurred this past winter. I want to restore customer faith in our company, focus 100 percent on customer satisfaction, and keep the creative ideas coming for future builds.
Micah: Is there a five-year goal for the company?
Hisaaki: (laughs) I want to help increase the number of Hondas sold both in America and in Japan. You can only get J’s Racing parts for your ride if you buy a Honda. Hopefully our dedication to the brand will help sales and make Honda customers truly satisfied.
Micah: There are people here in America who don’t know what the “J” in J’s Racing stands for. Could you please put all of these rumors to rest?
Hisaaki: Most certainly. In Japan, people sometimes wonder the same thing. J’s Racing is short for “Junichi’s Racing” and not “Japan” or “Japanese Racing” like some might assume.
Micah: What do you have in store for the American market?
Hisaaki: Ah, 2011 has a lot in store for all of us. It is a year of change for the entire company. Our focus will shift to America, where we will cease distribution via a group of distributors and instead focus on getting the parts directly to the people via the all-new J’s Racing USA. We want to expand our sales in the southeastern U.S. and the Midwest for starters. There will still be certified local dealers that will offer our parts in certain cities. But we want our American clientele to feel like they can contact us directly if they need parts or advice. That feeling of personal attention is what we strive for everyday here at J’s Racing, and we have extended this same courtesy to our American friends since July of this year!