History of the Japan Grand Prix

Today when people talk of the "Japan Grand Prix" they mean the Formula One event, but there was a time, from 1963 to 1969, when it meant another race, the biggest and the most popular in Japan (held 6 times in 7 years).
"The first Japan Grand Prix took place on May 3, 1963, at the recently completed Suzuka Circuit, but the main race was monopolized by foreign sports cars and racings cars. From then on, the Japan Grand Prix was held every year on May 3 (except for 1965, when it was not held). From 1968, instead of the "4th Grand Prix", the official name was changed to include the year, as in "1968 Japan Grand Prix". From 1969, however, it was split into two events - the JAF Grand Prix held on May 3, and the Japan Grand Prix held on October 10.
Nissan was victorious in 1966 (R380), 1968 (R381), and 1969 (R382). But in 1970, Nissan and Toyota announced that they would both be concentrating on safety and antipollution measures and thus not participating, and this led to cancellation of the 1970 events. 1969 was thus the last year in which the original Japan Grand Prix was contested.


The R382’s GRX-3 engine generated a maximum power of 700PS.


The winning Nissan R381 (H. Kitano) in the 1968 Japan GP.


The winning Nissan R382 (M. Kurosawa) in 1969.