[Video] Jay Leno rekindles fondness to “crazy” 1989 Ford Shogun image

The well known car aficionado and ex-host of the “Tonight Show” – Jay Leno – as taken us on a journey down memory lane in his latest video which has as the centerpiece a 1989 Ford Shogun.

The Ford Shogun is a custom take on the very beaten Ford Festiva, with the one-off model being comprehensively transformed by Chuck Beck and Nick Titus. The morphing process includes an overly aggressive (for such a small car) body kit with ventilated hood, modified side skirts, fiberglass fender flares, and a rear diffuser. The cabin rework is less feisty but the Shogun still gets Recaro sport seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and updated instrumentation. This is a regular “hot hatch” of the ’80s though – as the back seats have been ditched in favor of a 3.0-liter Yamaha V6 engine snatched from the Taurus SHO.

While this is a 1989 car, the powertrain still packs a meaty 220 horsepower and 200 pound-feet of torque and includes a five-speed manual transmission sending all the power to the rear axle. If you still feel this power rating is not really impressive for our standards of the XXI century, remember this smallish Shogun will tip the scales at just 2,190 pounds. This allows a 60 mph time of just five seconds and a suicidal top speed of 145 mph. By the way, Leno also seemed dissatisfied with the power level so he added in a nitrous kit good for another 90 hp. Beck and Titus back in the day envisioned a 250 unit production – but of course that wasn’t the case and only seven – Leno’s included – were ever made.