This paper mainly addresses the validity and verification of our current code-based knowledge through the utilization of test data of benchmark structure in Japan. A full-scale, four-story reinforced concrete building within the 2010 E-Defense test program is revisited to assess the capability of the current state of practice for the prediction of the actual seismic response of reinforced concrete structures by taking advantage of invaluable data and high-quality measurement techniques applied during the tests. The detailing of the structural elements was in compliant with the Japanese seismic design code whereas minor modifications were applied to the final design of the structure to bring it closer to the selectively well-known US design practice. A series of full-scale shake table tests were performed by gradually increasing the two ground motions of the 1995 Hyogo-Ken Nanbu earthquake for reaching to the near collapse limit state. Global dynamic response characteristics of the structure due to damage accumulation were derived from the test data to trace the strength and stiffness deterioration in the force–deformation hysteresis. Even though the story drift angles were exceeded the critical 0.04 level beyond the limitations of code-provisions, the structure has preserved dynamic stability and its intact form. Based on the surveys and measurements performed at the end of each test, shear walls and beam–column joints were sustained the severe damage while the beams and columns were maintained their structural integrity during the entire test program. Parameters of advanced hysteretic models in the moment-resisting and shear wall frames were calibrated using test data for developing analytical models that can represent all modes of the cyclic deterioration under pinching action as an alternative to the customarily used Takeda model in Japan. For the transformation of MDOF system to equivalent SDOF system, a straightforward procedure is applied to adopt the global response characteristics to the versatile hysteretic model. Moreover, the capability of capturing the seismic response of RC system through advanced hysteretic models is justified. The test results and numerical analyses implied the necessity of further improvements on MLIT and US design provisions for the reduction of observed damages on structural elements particularly in shear walls and beam–column joints to achieve reparability goals.