Best JDM VIP Cars

JDM VIP cars have become increasingly popular in recent years, with enthusiasts embracing the unique blend of luxury and performance that these vehicles offer. These cars are typically large sedans with sleek, understated styling, and they often feature powerful engines and advanced suspension systems that provide a smooth, comfortable ride.

Whether you’re a fan of luxury vehicles or simply appreciate the unique style and performance of JDM cars, there’s no denying the appeal of these VIP sedans. With their sleek, understated styling, powerful engines, and advanced suspension systems, these vehicles offer a unique blend of luxury and performance that is sure to impress even the most discerning automotive enthusiasts.

Some owners choose to enjoy their VIP JDM rides “as the manufacturer intended” (i.e. with no modifications) but there is also an entire automotive subculture of modified JDM luxury vehicles.

In this article, we are going to cover our take on some of the best JDM VIP cars of all time. We aren’t looking specifically at “mod-ability” – although all the cars in this list could be made even more VIP-style if desired – rather which VIP JDM vehicles are most worthy of your consideration, and also please note that the list is in no particular order. 

You are welcome to make your own suggestions and corrections – just leave a comment below. All comments are welcome, particularly when it comes to sharing your favourites 

What Are JDM VIP Cars?

JDM VIP cars are a sub-genre of Japanese Domestic Market (JDM) cars that are modified to exude luxury and elegance – learn more here about the meaning of JDM.

These cars are typically large sedans that are sometimes lowered, with wider stances, and feature aggressive wheels, suspension, and body kits. The term VIP stands for “Very Important Person,” and these cars are often associated with high-class executives and celebrities in Japan. As a rule, these vehicles would have been purchased from new in Japan by well-heeled individuals. 

The cars are known for their sleek and sophisticated appearance, typically with muted colors, chrome accents, and luxurious interiors. The modifications on these cars are often subtle, but they enhance the car’s overall appearance and performance.

JDM VIP cars are often characterized by their “bippu” style, which translates roughly to “VIP” in English. 

This style is all about creating a luxurious, elegant, and somewhat over-the-top look, with a focus on high-quality materials and attention to detail. The cars are often fitted with custom body kits, which can include front and rear bumpers, side skirts, and spoilers. They also feature custom wheels, often with deep dish rims, and lowered suspension to give the car a more aggressive stance.

However, there is absolutely no requirement to modify a JDM VIP car in this style – many owners just enjoy them as they came from the factory. 

Overall, JDM VIP cars are a unique and stylish sub-genre of JDM cars that have a loyal following in Japan and around the world. They offer a combination of luxury, performance, and style that is hard to find in other car modification trends.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at a list of the best JDM VIP cars: 

Toyota Crown

This long-running series, first launched way back in 1955, has morphed and evolved across many generations, each bringing its unique charm to the table. This car has lived through decades of shifts in automotive trends, all the while maintaining its identity as a luxurious, reliable, and stylish saloon.

Across the generations, the Crown has offered a variety of engines – from straight-sixes, V6s to V8s, and even hybrid powertrains in later generations. These engines were designed to provide smooth and effortless performance. Whether you’re cruising down the highway or navigating city streets, the Crown’s powertrain has you covered.

One of the many reasons for the Crown’s charm is its diverse range of models. Take the Crown Royal series, for example, designed with a focus on luxury and comfort. It’s the epitome of a classic VIP car, boasting a plush interior, a smooth ride, and elegant styling. On the flip side, there’s the Crown Athlete series, which adds a sportier touch to the Crown lineup. It’s got a more aggressive aesthetic and a tuned suspension for a sportier drive, making it the perfect choice for those who want a dash of athleticism in their luxury cruiser.

And let’s not forget about the Crown Wagon, a rare and distinctive variant that brings a dose of practicality to the VIP scene. Imagine all the luxury and style of a Crown, but with the added bonus of extra cargo space. Now that’s a VIP ride that stands out, and one you might be able to convince your significant other is a sensible family purchase. 

Inside a Crown, expect to find a well-appointed cabin full of luxury features. High-quality materials, comfortable seating, a quiet interior, and plenty of tech features – the Crown series delivers on all fronts. Depending on the generation and model, you could enjoy everything from touchscreen infotainment systems and premium audio to heated seats and advanced driver-assist systems.

In summary, the Toyota Crown is a truly versatile player in the world of JDM VIP cars. Its multiple variants cater to a wide range of tastes, making it a beloved choice among car enthusiasts. Whether you’re after the elegant comfort of the Royal, the sporty flair of the Athlete, or the practical uniqueness of the Wagon, the Crown has something for everyone. It’s a testament to Toyota’s ability to blend luxury, reliability, and style into one impressive package.

Mazda Sentia

Ah, the Mazda Sentia. This magnificent beast is an often overlooked gem in the world of JDM VIP cars. Hailing from Japan’s golden automotive era of the ’90s, the Sentia, known as the Mazda 929 in some parts of the world, was the flagship luxury sedan offering from Mazda. 

Picture this, a sleek and classy four-door sedan packed with a 3.0L V6 engine pumping out around 200 horsepower (a more modest 2.5L V6 was also avaiable) While it might not sound like a street racer, don’t get fooled. This beauty was designed for cruising in style. Its rear-wheel-drive layout and independent suspension all-around provided a ride that was truly a cut above the rest in its class. A smooth operator if there ever was one, the Sentia knows how to deliver comfort and performance without breaking a sweat.

Now, let’s not forget about the lavish interior. The Sentia came with features that were ahead of its time. We’re talking power seats, automatic climate control, a quality stereo system, and for some models, even a solar-powered fan system that could ventilate hot air out of the car while it was parked up, meaning any self-respecting Japanese businessman was able to step into his Sentia on a warm day and not sweat alive until the AC kicked in. These creature comforts helped make the Sentia a delight to drive or to be chauffeured in.

But the story doesn’t stop there. The Sentia turned heads with its exterior styling, too. Its silhouette whispered elegance while its front-end, with its “cat-eye” headlights, exuded an aggressive charm. Throw in a set of deep dish rims and a subtle drop, and you’ve got yourself a VIP car that oozes sophistication.

To wrap things up, the Mazda Sentia is a masterpiece that was perhaps a bit too ahead of its time. Whether you’re looking for a stylish daily driver, a classy project car, or a low-key luxury cruiser, the Sentia might just be the car you’re looking for. It’s a car that truly deserves more recognition in the JDM VIP scene.

Here at Garage Dreams we are big fans of the Sentia (of which there were two generations – typically the first gen car is the more desirable owing to its distinctive looks). In fact, one of the editors of the site – Sam – has owned two different Sentias, one from each generation. You can also read our full guide on the history of the Mazda Sentia for more information. 

Toyota Century

Get ready to be impressed, because the Toyota Century is nothing short of legendary. This is the car that the Emperor of Japan rides in – yeah, you heard that right! If it’s good enough for the Japanese Emperor, it’s good enough for any of us. It’s basically the Rolls-Royce of Japan, a pinnacle of luxury, comfort, and a timeless symbol of prestige. In the world of JDM VIP cars, the Century stands in a league of its own.

Powering this icon, depending on the generation, you have either a silky-smooth V8 or an unbelievably refined V12, the latter being the only Japanese production car ever to have one. The V12 is whisper-quiet, producing around 276 horsepower, enough to deliver a stately yet potent performance. It’s paired with an automatic transmission that delivers seamless shifts, perfect for the Century’s purpose as a luxury cruiser.

Externally, the Century’s design embodies traditional Japanese aesthetics and understated luxury. There’s a certain elegance to its boxy shape, long wheelbase, and minimalist chrome detailing. It looks timeless, stately, commanding respect and admiration without being overly flashy. Perfect for the VIP scene, isn’t it?

The interior, well, that’s where the Century truly shines. It’s a haven of old-school opulence. We’re talking wool upholstery (yes, wool, because leather was considered too noisy), lace curtains, and traditional Japanese “Shōsōin” patterns etched onto the interior wood trim. Plus, there’s an array of tech features like massage seats, privacy screens, and an excellent sound system to keep you cocooned in comfort.

The Toyota Century is much more than just a car; it’s an experience. It’s not merely a vehicle; it’s a statement of grace, class, and exquisite craftsmanship. In the VIP scene, a Century is more than capable of turning heads, not just because of its rarity, but also due to the unparalleled prestige it brings. This isn’t just a luxury car, folks; it’s a rolling piece of Japanese culture.

Nissan President

The Nissan President, a car with a name that just oozes authority, and it surely lives up to that name. This is the epitome of Japanese luxury sedans, and it’s no wonder the ‘President’ was a choice ride for many top-tier executives and government officials in Japan. This full-size luxury car was Nissan’s flagship offering and let me tell you, it has some real street cred in the JDM VIP scene.

Let’s start with what’s under the hood. Depending on the model year, you’re looking at either a 4.5L V8, or a few smaller V8s on earlier cars, delivering a smooth wave of power that perfectly complements its role as a luxury cruiser, as well as sporting RWD as is typical on the best JDM VIP vehicles.

The exterior is a lesson in timelessly sleek design, balancing elegance with a subtle hint of aggression. With a long, muscular body, sharp lines, and just the right amount of chrome, the President is nothing short of a head-turner. It’s the kind of car that commands respect on the road. Couple that with a lowered stance and a set of staggered wheels, and you have a VIP style car that’s bound to steal the spotlight at any car meet.

Stepping inside a Nissan President is like entering a well-appointed executive suite. Plush leather seats, top-quality wood trim, and a level of fit and finish that could make luxury European marques sweat. The President didn’t skimp on technology either, featuring advanced (for its time) gadgets like GPS navigation, back-up cameras, and premium sound systems.

In short, the Nissan President is an absolute VIP icon. It beautifully blends power, luxury, and style, all while maintaining a dignified charm that’s distinctively Japanese. It’s the perfect car for those who appreciate the finer things in life and aren’t afraid to stand out from the crowd. Truly a shining star in the world of JDM VIP cars.

Toyota Celsior

This beauty is one of the cornerstones of the JDM VIP scene. When it comes to understated luxury and an impeccably smooth ride, few can rival the Celsior.

Under the hood, depending on the generation, you’ve got either a 4.0L or 4.3L V8. These engines aren’t just buttery smooth; they’re practically silent. It’s like being propelled by a cloud – if a cloud had around 250 to 290 horsepower. Paired with a silky automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive, the Celsior delivers a driving experience that is both relaxed and engaging.

The exterior of the Celsior is a masterclass in refined design. It’s not loud or brash, but instead, it elegantly whispers its luxury credentials. Its silhouette is sleek and poised, adorned with just enough chrome to remind you that it means business. If you opt for the UCF30/31 models, you’ll get a more modern and aggressive look that’s just begging for a set of shiny VIP-style wheels and a tasteful drop.

Credit: Toyota

Slide inside the cabin, and you’ll be met with an interior that’s positively brimming with luxury and comfort. Depending on the year and trim level, you could enjoy features like heated and ventilated seats, power sunshades, and premium Mark Levinson audio systems. Plus, the attention to detail is top-notch. The quality of the materials, the precision of the stitching on the leather seats, the polished wood trim – it all adds up to create a cabin that’s a fantastic place to spend time.

The Toyota Celsior is truly a VIP car aficionado’s dream. With its luxurious features, stunning design, and the reliable Toyota engineering, it offers a unique blend of sophistication and performance. It’s not just a car; it’s a statement that tells the world you appreciate the finer things in life. So, whether you’re cruising down the highway or showing off at a meet, the Celsior is sure to impress.

Now if you’re sitting here and saying “hang on, isn’t this just a Lexus LS400 (or LS430)” then you’d be technically correct. The Celsior is the JDM version of the Lexus LS. Read our Toyota Celsior buyer’s guide for more information. 

Mitsubishi Proudia

Strap yourself in because we’re about to dive into the world of the Mitsubishi Proudia, a car that not everyone might be familiar with, but is nonetheless a truly remarkable player in the JDM VIP scene. This luxury sedan, produced in the late ’90s and early 2000s, is a fine example of Mitsubishi’s ability to create a truly impressive and distinctive luxury car.

What’s under the hood, you ask? The Proudia came with a choice of engines ranging from a 3.5L V6 up to a robust 4.5L V8 – depending on exact model and generation – all paired with a smooth-shifting automatic transmission. Whether you want a more economical cruiser or a torque-rich executive express, there’s a Proudia to suit your needs. It was also one of the few luxury sedans that offered both rear-wheel and all-wheel-drive options, making it a great choice for those who appreciate a versatile driving experience.

Now, let’s talk about the Proudia’s design. It’s a blend of conservative and distinctive styling cues that give the Proudia its unique appeal. With its broad, imposing grille, sharp lines, and broad shoulders, it stands out without being overly ostentatious. Lower it onto a set of custom rims and you’ve got yourself a JDM VIP car that strikes the perfect balance between subtle and striking. From some angles, it looks like a Mitsubishi rip off of a Toyota Celsior/Lexus LS400 – not that this is necessarily a bad thing. 

Slipping inside a Proudia is like stepping into a well-appointed lounge. Soft leather upholstery, real wood trim, and a level of attention to detail that’s just wonderful. It came loaded with creature comforts such as heated and electrically adjustable seats, dual-zone climate control, and a high-quality sound system, among others.

Of course if the Proudia isn’t “VIP-enough” for you, it was possible to step up to the Dignity, which was an extended wheelbase limousine version of the Proudia. Atrocious if you need to park it anywhere, but undeniably cool. 

In conclusion, the Mitsubishi Proudia is a unique and compelling choice for anyone seeking a lesser-known but equally impressive JDM VIP car. It may not have the same level of fame as some of its rivals, but that only adds to its appeal. It’s the choice for those who appreciate luxury and performance, but prefer to step away from the norm. Because let’s face it, who doesn’t love being a bit different?

The biggest issue? It’s going to be next to impossible to actually find one of these for sale. They weren’t exactly a sales success in the Japanese market back in the 1990s, nor was the second generation (a rebadged Nissan Fuga). You’d likely have more luck finding a Hyundai Equus, which was basically a rebadged version of the same vehicle and a significantly better seller – although then it wouldn’t carry the same JDM cachet, and you’d probably tire of explaining that your Hyundai is, in fact, one of the rarest JDM luxury vehicles of all. 

Learn more about the Mitsubishi Proudia here in our dedicated article. 

Nissan Cedric

The Nissan Cedric is one of the granddaddies of the JDM VIP scene. Starting its life way back in the ’60s and running all the way through to 2015, the Cedric has seen a lot of history. It’s a car that’s as rich in character as it is in luxury.

In terms of performance, depending on the generation, you could have anything from an inline-four to a punchy turbocharged V6 or even a buttery smooth V8 under the hood. Rear-wheel drive was the name of the game here, and in later generations, you could even opt for a four-wheel drive. The Cedric was all about that smooth, comfortable cruise, and its powertrain options delivered that in spades.

Aesthetically, the Cedric has gone through various transformations over its long lifespan. From the classic, chrome-laden designs of the early generations to the more streamlined, modern aesthetic of the later models, there’s a Cedric for every taste. What remains constant, however, is its distinct blend of Japanese simplicity and a hint of American-inspired flamboyance. Slap on a set of large-diameter rims and lower it a bit, and voila, you’ve got a ride that screams VIP.

Step inside a Cedric, and you’re treated to a pleasantly spacious and well-appointed cabin. Depending on the year and trim level, you could find a multitude of luxurious features like plush velour or leather seating, woodgrain trim, and an assortment of gadgets to keep you entertained and comfortable on your journey.

The Nissan Cedric is more than just a car. It’s a slice of Japanese automotive history and a beloved icon of the JDM VIP culture. It’s a car that can cater to a wide range of tastes while always maintaining its unique charm. So, whether you’re a fan of vintage style or modern luxury, the Cedric might just be the perfect companion for your VIP journey. It’s a testament to timeless design, comfort, and an all-around sense of cool that’s hard to match.

Nissan Fuga

Get ready, because we’re about to delve into the world of the Nissan Fuga, a splendid blend of performance, luxury, and Japanese ingenuity. Known outside of Japan as the Infiniti M and later as the Infiniti Q70, this car is an unsung hero in the realm of JDM VIP cars.

The Fuga boasts an impressive lineup of engines, ranging from a punchy 2.5L V6 all the way up to a thrilling 4.5L V8, with hybrid options available for the second generation car. No matter which engine you opt for, you’re guaranteed a driving experience that combines smooth power delivery with an engaging feel. The Fuga also offers a choice between rear-wheel drive for that traditional luxury sedan vibe, and all-wheel drive for extra grip and stability (for some models)

Visually, the Fuga is a real stunner. Its sleek, aerodynamic silhouette gives it a modern, athletic look that stands out from the crowd. The front is dominated by a distinctive grille and aggressive, angular headlights. Add to that a lowered stance and a set of custom wheels, and you’ve got a VIP style ride that’s both elegant and sporty.

Inside the Fuga, you’ll find a cabin that’s packed with luxury. High-quality materials, comfortable seating, and a host of tech features make it a fantastic place to be. From the latest infotainment system and premium audio to advanced safety features and creature comforts like heated and ventilated seats, the Fuga does not skimp on features.

All things considered, the Nissan Fuga is a compelling choice for anyone interested in the JDM VIP scene. It combines the performance of a sports sedan with the comfort and luxury of a high-end cruiser, all wrapped up in a stylish and modern package. It’s a car that offers the best of both worlds, proving that you don’t have to compromise on performance to enjoy luxury, or vice versa. The Fuga truly embodies the spirit of “VIP performance”.

Nissan Cima

Prepare to be wowed, because the Nissan Cima is no ordinary ride. This executive luxury sedan, also known as the Infiniti Q45 in certain markets, is a hidden gem in the JDM VIP scene. It has that perfect blend of understated luxury, performance, and unique charm that sets it apart from the crowd.

Now, let’s peek under the hood. The Cima packs some serious power, with engines ranging from a robust 3.0L V6 to a meaty 4.5L V8, depending on the generation. These engines, paired with either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, deliver a smooth and punchy performance that aligns perfectly with the Cima’s luxury credentials.

Visually, the Cima presents a tasteful blend of sleek design cues and classic luxury. It sports a muscular yet elegant silhouette that stands out without being overbearing. The front end is adorned with a bold grille and striking headlights, while the long wheelbase and broad shoulders add a touch of dominance to the overall aesthetic. With the right modifications – a tasteful drop, tinted windows, and a set of deep-dish wheels, the Cima makes a splendid VIP machine.

Slide into the cabin, and you’re greeted by an interior that’s all about comfort and luxury. Plush seats, high-quality materials, a quiet ride, and an array of advanced tech features combine to create an atmosphere of tranquility. Depending on the model year, you’ll find amenities such as power-adjustable seats, advanced infotainment systems, premium sound systems, and a suite of driver-assist technologies.

In a nutshell, the Nissan Cima is a stellar choice for anyone looking to dip their toes into the world of JDM VIP cars. It marries the comfort and prestige of a luxury sedan with the spirited performance of a sports car, making it a well-rounded option for those who want the best of both worlds. The Cima is proof that you can enjoy the finer things in life without compromising on performance. It’s a true icon of Japanese luxury motoring.

Where to Buy JDM VIP Cars

If you’re looking to buy a JDM VIP car, there are a few options available. Here are some of the most popular places to find these luxury vehicles:

Online Marketplaces

Online marketplaces such as JDM Buy Sell allow buyers to browse JDM cars for sale from over 82 importers, exporters, and dealers worldwide. These sites often have a wide selection of JDM VIP cars, making it easy to find the perfect vehicle.

JDM Car Importers

JDM car importers are another option for those looking to buy a JDM VIP car. These companies specialize in importing JDM vehicles from Japan and other countries. They often have a wide selection of JDM VIP cars available and can help buyers navigate the import process.

We recommend speaking to Tim from J Cars – a specialist JDM importer based in New Zealand but with international presence. Tim is truly an expert on all things JDM and can help you to source and import your dream JDM VIP car. 

Japanese Car Auctions

Japanese car auctions are another option for those looking to buy a JDM VIP car. These auctions often have a wide selection of JDM vehicles available, including luxury sedans. However, buyers should be aware that the import process can be more complicated when buying from an auction. You can learn more about the auction process and potential opportunities and pitfalls in our guide to importing a car from Japan

Private Sellers

Finally, private sellers may also have JDM VIP cars for sale. These sellers can be found through online classifieds or by word of mouth. While buying from a private seller can be more risky than buying from a dealer or importer, it can also be a great way to find a unique and rare JDM VIP car.

From classified/auction-type sites, to social media groups for JDM enthusiasts, there is bound to be a private seller offering a suitable vehicle – at least if you are willing to be patient. 

Overall, there are a variety of options available for those looking to buy a JDM VIP car. Whether you choose to buy from an online marketplace, importer, auction, or private seller, be sure to do your research and choose a reputable seller to ensure a smooth and successful transaction. Also make to consult our ever-expanding list of buyer’s guides to see if we have pre-purchase information available for your consideration. 

Conclusion – Best JDM VIP Cars

In conclusion, the world of JDM VIP cars is a fascinating and diverse one. From luxurious sedans to high-performance machines, there is something for everyone in this niche.

While there are many great JDM VIP cars to choose from, some stand out above the rest as being the “best” – hopefully this article has given you an understanding of a few of them. 

It’s important to note that owning a JDM VIP car can be quite expensive, both in terms of initial purchase price and ongoing maintenance costs. Usually less than an equivalent class European luxury vehicle from Mercedes-Benz or BMW, but do bear in mind none of these vehicles were inexpensive when new. Car servicing and maintenance costs are largely a by-product of how much the vehicle cost when new, not its current value after years of depreciation!

However, for those who are passionate about these unique and rare vehicles, the investment is well worth it.

Whether you’re a fan of luxury sedans or high-performance sports cars, the JDM VIP scene has something for everyone. With their unique styling, advanced technology, and impressive performance capabilities, these cars are sure to turn heads and make a statement wherever they go.

Author

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  • Sam

    Sam focuses mainly on researching and writing the growing database of Car Facts articles on Garage Dreams, as well as creating interesting list content. He is particularly enthusiastic about JDM cars, although has also owned numerous European vehicles in the past. Currently drives a 3rd generation Suzuki Swift Sport, and a Volkswagen Touareg (mainly kept for taking his border collie out to the hills to go walking)

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