Fuji Motorsports Museum featuring classic, racing cars to open in central Japan
OYAMA, Shizuoka -- An auto museum featuring some 40 classic cars and racing cars from around the world will open in this central Japan town on Oct. 7.
Fuji Motorsports Museum has been built beside Fuji International Speedway, and a media preview was held on Oct. 3. The facility is part of Toyota Motor Corp.'s project to create the "Fuji Motorsports Forest" -- a place for social interaction among adult motorsports fans.
The new facility coveys the fascination of motorsports to visitors by introducing the history of automobiles spanning some 130 years. Featured cars include an 1899 model produced by French automaker Panhard et Levassor that won the world's first motor vehicle race, a 1909 Thomas Flyer Model L from the United States, which is said to have proven the reliability and durability of gasoline-driven vehicles, a replica of the 1951 Toyopet Racer, Toyota's first racing car that was nearly lost to history, and Toyota's Formula One car that finished in sixth place in the 2009 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
The museum's director, Naoaki Nunogaki, commented, "This is the world's first museum in which the auto industry worked together, and 130 years' history is concentrated in it."
Fuji Speedway Hotel, with 120 guest rooms including some overlooking the circuit, will also open on Oct. 7. Toyota President Akio Toyoda commented, "Motorsports is essential in the development of the auto industry. We'd like to plant lots of seeds for the future of motorsports here and nurture them into a wonderful 'forest' which many people can enjoy."
(Japanese original by Hiroshi Ishikawa, Numazu Local Bureau)