Feature Story in “Kurumag” Japanese Automotive Lifestyle Magazine
Odometer (Legend): 529,840
Odometer (ILX): 84,672
Earlier this year, I had the privilege of meeting with author Shigeyuki Ishikawa and photographer Yujiro Otsuki from a Japanese magazine called Kurumag. The free publication is widely distributed across Japan – each issue totaling around 500,000 copies. Previously it has included the stories of custom car builder George Barris and renowned racer Ken Block.
Shigeyuki had learned of my love for the open road through a mutual friend and he asked about featuring my story an upcoming issue that would focus on road tripping. A few weeks later, Shigeyuki and Yujiro came to my home in Scottsdale, Arizona to conduct an interview (in Japanese, with Yujiro translating) and take a few photos of me and my Acuras.
Many thanks to Acura Legend forum member David (“CatchyCamel”) for his great assistance in putting together the translation so that I could share this article with all of you. Keep an eye on the Kurumag website because it will soon launch as an electronic version of the magazine.
Tyson lives in Arizona and his beloved legend reached 800,000 kilometers. There’s nothing he loves more than driving. He is 32 years old, and he told us about the appeal of the road trip.
So what got you interested in cars?
I remember when I was 5, I was polishing my dad’s pickup in front our house. My grandpa and my dad both love cars so it’s no wonder I love cars so much.
What was your first car?
When I was 16, I got handed down a Chevy Celebrity, and then when I was 17 I purchased a Honda Prelude Si. I had fun customizing it quite a bit.
How did you find this particular Legend?
When I was driving my Prelude and my mom was driving a 1993 Acura Legend sedan, I thought it was a good looking car and I hoped to someday purchase my own. At age 21, I started looking all over the country for a Legend coupe MT and I found it in San Jose, California. So I stuffed cash in my pocket and took off right away to go see it. Then it became my beloved car and this has been my 11th year owning it. Other than the Legend, I own an Acura NSX, an Acura Legend sedan, and an Acura ILX.
How did you drive as much as 800,000 kilometers?
The mileage was mostly achieved through my weekend drives almost every single weekend. I find my destinations by opening up a road atlas and saying, “Let’s go there,” to decide where to go. One interesting drive I made was going to Alaska in 2007. I left Arizona and kept going north across Canada until I got to Alaska. And then on the way home I kept going south along the west coast. That drive took 8,000 miles (12,800 kilometers) and the first thing I did when I got to Fairbanks was do an oil change.
You went that far? You could have flown!
Yeah, I agree. The funny thing is I used to work for airlines. I loved traveling so I thought it would be the most awesome thing to go all over the place, but I realized that travel by car is more fun: You get to enjoy the scenery, stop at the small towns and then find good restaurants. It’s not as much fun if you get straight to the destination since you don’t get to enjoy all the other things.
You drove that many miles in one car. That’s not easy, is it?
I could have bought a newer car with the money I spent on maintenance so far. In 2007 in Texas, a deer crashed into my car and the damage was pretty large. The insurance company told me it was totaled but I was so attached to my car that no matter how much trouble it was, I wanted to fix it. It’s an old model year so it was really hard to find the parts. I don’t think it will happen again, but just in case, I got an extra set of headlights (LOL).
Do you know the average miles the Japanese drive in a year is 12,000 kilometers?
Wow! It could take me only 2 months to drive that much. I drive around 50,000 miles (80,000 kilometers) a year.
What’s your most memorable drive?
Back in the day, there was no GPS or iPhone. I printed a map from MapQuest and took it with me. My trips were so far, they would fill up 15 pages. It’s so much easier now. You can take off right away, anytime.
I do have a story from when I went to Santa Monica, California for lunch. This one little lunch took 13 hours round trip. That might be a strange story but on the way home from the lunch as soon as I entered Arizona, the police pulled me over. The office asked, “Where are you going?” so I said, being honest, “I was coming back from Santa Monica from lunch.” The police were suspicious about the fact that I had driven all the way to California just to get lunch and said “No way.” Then more police cars gathered and searched my car completely. That was really something!
Do you have anywhere you want to go for a drive?
I’ve been to almost everywhere on the west coast so I want to go to the east coast like Long Island. Maybe someday, I would like to take the car to Hawaii and drive over there.
What is so appealing about driving?
Everybody must have a desire for adventure. But when it’s time for people to go they tend to plan to much detail like where to go and what to see. Sometimes there is no destination, you just get in the car. Start the engine, turn on the music, and start driving. Just simply and purely enjoying the driving. That also makes a great therapy too. You can clear your mind and the stress of daily life; its just simply just you and the car together. I think driving is a truly wonderful thing.
- A plaque from Acura to celebrate 500,000 milestone
- He keeps all maintenance records well-organized as much as 2 binders full
- On the wall in Tyson’s dining room are photographs of 3 generations of car fanatics
- In his hand is binder full of tons of programs, brochures, articles, and newspaper clippings.
Thanks for reading!
Here’s a parting shot of my 1994 Legend GS 6-speed on Sunday in front of “Legend Cleaners” dry cleaning in Ahwatukee, Arizona.
And one of the ILX this morning in “my” parking spot at the office. End space, backed in, close to the curb. 7:00 a.m. arrival and nobody else has this spot staked out that early in the day. Yeah, it’s all mine.