"Why is it LHD..."
There could be several reason and all of which I am not too sure as to whether I understand or not because, lets face it, Japan in all of its idiocyncrasies, are more than very quirky...and even with that being stated lightly, would perhaps just touch the surface. But it is not an easy question to answer with a simple snappy response without delving into a slew of other information both culturally and economically, driving that into socioeconomics, cultural psycology along with the collective unconsciousness blah blah blah. I really have no idea what I'm talking about here really he he he!
Yet, I guess if I could put simply, when it comes to the more up market cars such as some of the high end M Series BMW's, mercs and what not, (and in saying that, normal Alfas are considered only SLIGHTLY up market because they are unlike anything esle here aka "foreign") the Japanese Auto market has perceived that most and many J-folk actually think it is more prestigious to have a left hand drive car alluding to the fact that it has nothing to do with funcationality and safety. Facing facts though, driving a LHD car ON the LHSide is not what my senses endear at all with regards to safety...not one effing bit.
And it is only with the foreign cars here to my knowledge such as the Alfa II, which for all intensive purposes is all but designed as a RHD car, which it is in most countries where it is being sold...with the exception of Japan [this is not an American debut], and with that of ONLY the Italia Independant model. All other Alfas are RHD however, on purchasing the car of course this was not my intention and I could not give a rats *** if people think it is prestigious or not because to be honest, I think I am the only one who would mind. But the Japanese unconsciousness is very...well, conscious of others around them, so to say that conformism is the mainstream diet along with Nato and Sake, you could perhaps get a small glimps as to why they do this. If they are driving a LHD car and others observe this occurance, then they make assumptions as to the status, therefore the car must be expensive and that the owners are in some way wealthy - bringing social status. Which, with the exception of myself, this generally is true, hence the association with choice, its a status decision if I could put simply as that. And Japanese are experts in the art of gossiping while actualizing the form of appearing not to gossip, something I actually hate immensely.
But when I drive my car, I actually dislike the attention and mainly because it is different and LHD, many think it is a rich mans car...which, it is not(!), not even close! I think Bigfoot could add to this aswell in terms of the Japanese manner as he is more into the business side of things and is very much associated with many aspects to the above as well, because although I am in the Auto industry in IDesign, I am not a "car designer" per say [wish I was].
I just noticed I am babbling now...sorry, my bad!
But the only reason I chose the LHD is because there was no alternative for RHD and the II model came in only that destinction, so really it was either buy that or buy a pandemic-subaru STI Impreza. Mainly due to the missus not even contemplating me getting another high sports car such as a Porsche or what not after the GTR, she was just simply way too scared of it...and perhaps a little bit of me IN it as well?? Not sure.
Also Japanese people of course know the difference between domestic and imported models, they are not stupid or ignorant to what is out there, they are just zenophobic of such choices and prefere to trust domestic with the exception of that small niche market of people who actually think for themselves and choose based on what they want, not what is socially deemed necessary or proper.
Last edited by Astro; 24-08-10 at 05:08.