By 9am, an hour after the doors had opened, we'd already seen the sheer breadth of the designs and complete cars this fascinating Tokyo motor show of 2015 was going to offer.
The Japanese like doing things to the letter, so as the second hand attained the vertical at 8.30am precisely, Mazda's president stepped out to reveal the magnificent new RX-Vision two-seat coupé, complete with its new-generation Skyactiv-R rotary engine. The crowd of onlookers was vast; those who were cameramen with video to shoot were actually jostling one another to get to elevated positions.
The RX-Vision is a fabulous-looking machine, entirely in character with previous RXs and a dead cert for production, although the company has avoided putting a date on its launch (they say it's to avoid pressuring engineers who have to finish making a fundamentally dirty engine clean). Our guess would be Tokyo 2017, and we'd further wager not a few of those engineers already have it inked in their diaries.
The point is, this RX was perhaps the best representative of one class of car we saw quite a bit of at Tokyo: the model, while being thorough modern, carried forward many desirable traits and traditions from the past. Toyota's cute front engine-rear drive S-FR baby roadster was another - not only recalling Toyotas past, but cars of the Honda S800 and MG Midget ilk as well.
Then, just 15 minutes later, Nissan showed a product from the other end of the spectrum, a model with precious little heritage that was exciting for what it will do in the future. The handsome IDS concept, a decent guide to the next Nissan Leaf but quite different to look at, was so damned modern in shape and thought that even when shorn of things that will never make production (such as the pillarless doors and the more radical aerodynamic addenda), it gave a breathtaking view of the future.