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The US Department of Justice has been on a campaign over the past few years to crack down on price fixing in the auto industry, especially from Japanese parts suppliers. In the agency's most recent count, it has indicted 46 people with 26 guilty pleas and raised over $2.4 billion in fines from 31 companies, including nine at once in 2013. Unfortunately, about 20 of these men remain fugitives from the DoJ and catching them might be very difficult.

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Sports cars don't come more bizarre than the ungainly Mitsuoka Orochi. We thought we were rid of the puckered-face, Toyota-powered Japanese oddity when Mitsuoka revealed the Final Edition earlier this year, but it seems the Orochi has a little more left to give of its awkwardness, as you can see from this latest Evangelion edition.

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Japan has given the world so much to enthuse over. We're not sure the Toyota Aygo is necessarily one of them as much as, say, the Scion FR-S or Lexus LFA (especially since it's actually made in Europe), but for many Nipponophiles, the centuries-old artistic discipline of Manga certainly is. And now the two have come together in this two-and-a-half-minute animated short.

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The problems plaguing automotive supplier Takata this year for its faulty airbag inflators are starting to take their toll. Not only do an estimated 7.8 million vehicles need repairs, but it's facing an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. A recent report also alleges that hidden attempts to fix the problem date back to as early as 2004. With all of this turmoil you might expect Takata's chairman, Shigehisa Takada, to be righting the ship, but the man is no where

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It's been eighteen years since we last saw the Legend nameplate in Acura showrooms here in the US, but in Japan it's still very much alive as Honda's flagship sedan. And now the Japanese automaker has revealed the latest generation.

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It's a good thing senior editor Seyth Miersma doesn't live in Japan, or he wouldn't have been able to snap a photo like the one you see here, of a fresh-off-the-line Lexus RC F on hand at a first drive for media. That's because Toyota's Japanese arm has outright canceled its RC press launch. Sure, we've heard about events being delayed, but canceled? That's rare. Even worse is the reason: according to Automotive News, the event was nixed due to lack of interest. Wow.

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There's something bizarrely fascinating about Japanese car culture, especially around Tokyo. The metropolis packs people tightly together in a way that would seem to make owning any car tough. And yet, there's still enough enthusiasm around anything with an engine to support everything from wildly tuned bosozoku rides with exhaust pipes reaching toward the sky to seriously fast Porsche and Lamborghini models.

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A few months back we reported on a dealership owner in Japan who was petitioning Toyota to make a luxury van. The problem, he reasoned, was that he couldn't take as many friends, colleagues and clients around with him in his Lexus LS, and his Toyota Alphard van wasn't luxurious enough. Well, it seems like he wasn't alone, and Toyota has listened.

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Generally, the best policy in life is to admit when you're wrong and just accept the consequences. However, that attitude generally seems to be a bit less common in the world of business – at least without some government or legal prodding. So, it's especially surprising to learn that top Honda executives in Japan are taking a pay cut for the next three months following the fifth recall of the Fit Hybrid (pictured above) in the last 12 months.

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423k Lexus Models In US Affected By Fuel Delivery Issue

UPDATE: Toyota is now announcing specifically which models are covered under its fuel pipe recall in the US. The company is repairing about 423,000 Lexus models that include the 2007-2010 LS, 2006-2011 GS, 2006-2011 IS, 2010 IS C and 2008-2010 IS-F. The automaker says that it isn't aware of any fires, crashes, injuries or fatalities caused by this problem.

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The 2015 Mazda2 is quite high up on our must-drive list. Yes, the teeny, tiny successor to the 100-horsepower five-door is worth getting excited over, largely because the previous generation was one of the absolute best smiles-per-dollar values on the market.

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UPDATE: A previous version of this post included an incorrectly converted price figure. The text below has been updated with the correct information.

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Holy makeshift Batcycle, Batman. This rider in Japan deserves a round of applause and pat on the back for his dedication to an idea. We've seen people build more authentic looking recreations of the Batpod in the past but never with this much commitment to the whole look.

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It's a common refrain among auto enthusiasts to bemoan the current models being sold for being overly complex and expensive and to wish that automakers would just make vehicles like the old days. Sure, they might not have been as safe or efficient, but there was often a certain rugged simplicity that's gone today. Well, Toyota is actually doing it and thinks there's enough demand to put the Land Cruiser 70 back into production in Japan for its 30th anniversary. Sadly, it's only for one year.

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A month after originally teasing it, Subaru is finally unveiling its WRX S4 model for Japan. It's a bit more than just a plush take on the sport sedan, because Subaru is fitting a more powerful version of the 2.0-liter, turbocharged boxer four-cylinder engine than we get on these shores.

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Lexus entered new territory this past April when it revealed the new NX compact luxury crossover at the Beijing Motor Show, but it wasn't until now that the Toyota luxury division actually started building them. The first production examples started rolling off the assembly line last week at the Miyata plant in Japan, with the accompanying turbo engines built at the adjacent Kanda plant.

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Could the "Zoom Zoom" automaker start making hybrids that go "glug glug glug"? Mazda, known for its fuel-efficient Skyactiv engine line, will be the first Japanese automaker to make a diesel-hybrid vehicle for Japan and Europe.

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And Free Fuel, Too, Why Not?

There's no such thing as a free lunch. A free hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle, though? It may become a possibility in Japan, says Automotive News.

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With news that Japan was increasing its spending on drone surveillance, American defense manufacturers have apparently sensed blood in the water and swooped in on the island nation hoping to cash in.

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It's so easy to make fun of the Department of Motor Vehicles in the United States. Whenever folks return from renewing a license or getting new plates, everybody has a joke making fun of the long lines, prolonged waits or bored employees. But it looks like we in the US have it easy compared to the Japanese. Journalist Jacob M. Schlesinger recently chronicled the bureaucratic hell involved for an American to get a driver's license there on The Wall Street Journal Japan Realtime blog.

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Japan's prime minister has a lead foot, apparently. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe recently had a photo op with Toyota's first production hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, even getting behind the wheel for a spin (no chauffeur for him, so much respect on our part). His primary impression was that the car had great pickup, before settling on the more politically correct view of noting the vehicle's lack of emissions.

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