The new Nissan GT-R may be stirring up a lot of hype, but before the R35, Skyline lovers on this continent had to have their cars independently imported. The problem is, since the gray-market heyday of the '80s, the American import laws have been pretty dang strict. So, we decided to make our way up to Toronto, to check out how hoons in great white north do things. This particular operation, ONI JDM, has brought in everything from kei cars to fully-modded RX-7s, Supras, and of course Skylines. They offered to take us for a ride in their drift-spec R32 Nissan Skyline, so we bolted down the video camera and strapped ourselves in.
As you can see, the Skyline was far from stock. It started life as an R32 GTS-T, but now it's powered by a RB26 from an R33 GT-R. The ride feels brutal at first, but you quickly adjust your mindset as your expectations realize that this is a full-on stripped-out racer capable of running in the highest level of drift competition. You may think it sounds loud in the video, but that was with the silencer on, something that comes off when it hits the track.
While the shop at ONI JDM isn't particularly big, you get the sense that the business is an extension of the guys' passion. Take the guy that gave me a drive in the R32, he worked as a mechanic during the week, but was a racer and drifter on the weekends. Now, I know that many of us here at Jalopnik aren't necessarily into the tuner scene, but you've gotta admire that dual-purpose spirit of racing on Sunday then wrenching on Monday.
So, despite the free health care, we've discovered the first real reason to move to Canada: awesome JDM rides.
[Check out their website at: ONIJDM.com]