Picture Intermission – A Tour of Moto-Vated

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On a road trip to Texas last year, I was introduced to an interesting shop called Moto-Vated in Luling, Texas – they specialize in importing JDM cars and motorcycles, and they have some fantastic stuff in their ever-changing inventory. Come check it out with me!

Moto-Vated is led by Glenn Adams, who started things off in 2000, but says that things really clicked for him in 2007. A big part of his business involves importing right hand drive cars – but not for the reason you might think. Typically when you hear about automobiles imported from Japan, you think of popular tuner specialties like the Nissan Skyline or other go-fast options. But Glenn imports them for the niche market of rural postal delivery. In rural areas, the USPS often requires mail carriers to use their own cars, and you want a right-hand-drive vehicle so you can drop off mail without getting out of your car.

Ever lusted after a diesel RHD Toyota Previa (known in Japan as the Estima)? OK, me neither.

The cars are cool, but I was here for the bikes. Glenn travels all around the country, buying out part inventories and storing them in shelf after shelf in a giant warehouse. He’s up to approximately 95,000 parts!


Who speaks Japanese?

If the warehouse full of parts wasn’t enough, there’s shipping containers full of them in the back!

OK, I lied about not looking at cars, because the JDM hearse caught my eye.

I believe it’s a Toyota Crown – how’s that for a mail delivery vehicle?

I’ll wrap up my car tangent with this awesome pair of Datsun fire trucks:

For the second time today, I ask “who speaks Japanese?”

I had dreams of yanking out all the fire equipment from the back and turning this into a double cab motorcycle hauler.

You have to love the double passenger-side mirrors (one of which is on the fender).

OK, this time I promise we’re back to bikes. I suspect the average visitor to Glenn’s shop would make his or her way straight to a small showroom of sorts, where there are a few bikes ready to go.

Did you know that Honda made a “Magna Fifty”? The air-cooled single-cylinder motor makes 3.9 horsepower at 8,000 rpm. And check out that front wheel!

Another bike I had never heard of before – the Suzuki Mini CRO:

Hopefully you’re familiar with the Honda Monkey Baja by now…

…did you see my recent video on the even-crazier Honda Monkey Baja with an Africa Kit?

One of the most practical 50s ever made, the Honda Motra.

A slammed and stretched Honda Mini Trail, because why not?

The last highlight for me was this Yamaha Vogel – I’ve never seen a motorcycle where the wheels looked so disproportionately tiny. We’re talking a 2.6 gallon fuel tank, luggage racks front and rear, and EIGHT inch wheels. The whole thing weighs about 125 pounds.

Glenn’s building a new display area to supplant this room, but there were a few secrets in the new area that I promised not to share – guess you’ll just have to go check it out for yourself! Here’s a few small portions of the new room I’m allowed to share:

Meet the Zook, another 50cc oddball from Honda! Wonder how Suzuki felt about that name.

Are you a Good Rider?

One of my favorite areas of the complex was in the corner of a conference room – that’s where Glenn has hundreds of dealer posters tucked away. I had to take a look at a few, and I genuinely could have spent 5+ hours going through and taking photos of all of them but I had to meet someone in the afternoon. If I ever leave Los Angeles and can afford a large garage, I’m going to cover it in this kind of thing. I spent my limited remaining time rifling through some BMW posters:

BMW’s European Delivery Program:

Moto-Vated also has a series of reproduction rubber keychains that they sell – I snagged the old Honda wing logo in the top left corner to use with Vy’s Honda S90.

California makes it nearly impossible to register/title interesting imports from other countries, so visiting Moto-Vated was like a trip to an alternate universe for me. If you feel the same way, your main thought through this post was probably “how can I snag a weird tiny JDM bike?” Head on over to Moto-Vated and ask for Glenn. Even if you don’t buy anything, you’ll be glad to know someone so passionate about oddball motorcycles.


For more photos of Moto-Vated, check out this album!

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