Los Angeles, California
Import Showoff is regarded as the premiere import car show of the current era. Anytime there is a car show with Showoff and Mainstream Productions involved, you're guaranteed a good showing. Ken Myoshi and his staff have always followed their own standards when it came to car shows. They weren't about the glitz and glam or faux-club environment like other shows. Mainstream has always had their focus on the foundation of the community, which are the cars themselves. Over the years, the industry has taken a bit of a turn away from the cars and put more emphasis on lifestyle. Major sponsors began to put their efforts into other shows and abandoned the Import Showoff series. On top of that, the location that Nisei Showoff is held at annually was recently purchased and will be demolished to make way for a new high-rise building. These two factors contributed to this being the 10th and possibly the final year of Nisei Import Showoff.
Once this news began circulating on the internet, everyone began to sign up to try to get their Hondas spotlighted at this event. Nisei is known to bring out the best of the best and this year certainly did not disappoint. Cali's finest car crews like Auto Concept, Phaze2, DPK, Hasback, and AS1 all brought out their best heaters to represent. Some of the most anticipated and talked-about builds like Big Mike's Prelude, PlusOne Danny's champagne Civic coupe, and Tony Khamly's widebody NSX made their debuts and stole the show.
Showoff is also a great indicator of where the Honda community is headed and what trends are big right now. This year, the biggest trend with Hondas has to be low-offset wheels and two-toned engine bays. A large group off Hondas showed up with aggressive, fender-pushing wheel fitments. The majority of who some consider the "top dogs" are currently running wheels that were once thought to be impossible to fit. While wheel fitment is a love or hate type of thing, engine bay customization is the new universally-accepted standard. Wire-tucking, mil-spec harnesses, shaving, and painting of bays has become the new "JDM" of sorts. People are no longer talking about what JDM parts are rare and hard to find. All discussion now is about what -AN fitting fits where, what lines to run, and what can be removed and/or hidden in the engine bay.
If this truly is the final year, it was a fitting end. The 10th annual Nisei Showoff had a little bit of everything; scorching heat, some of the best Hondas in the nation, one incredibly drunk guy passed out under a canopy, and a wedding party even showed up to walk through the event. The best thing about it was that people could do it all over again. Just a week later, Mainstream put on the Mega Matsuri show. This event featured a Ruckus showcase, old school car showoff, and various shops on-hand to sell parts super cheap in a swap meet-like atmosphere. Let's keep our fingers crossed for a triumphant return from Mainstream.