As we already know, Japan is a country with the most diverse car cultures in the world. We can see the creativity and uniqueness of the Japanese car culture from the way they modify cars. In Japan, there is no right or wrong principle, or proper and not proper principles. Modifications are based entirely on the taste, taste, wishes of the owner. This is why modification is very developed in Japan, and tends to be extreme. For example, when Wataru Kato cut the fenders of a Lamborghini car or Akira Nakai cut the classic Porsche fenders. If this is done in Indonesia, maybe many people will comment on it because it is considered an improper modification, and so on.
The roots of the car culture modification style in Japan are based on freedom of expression and creativity. Just look at their classic modification style that seems “reckless”, but until now it continues to grow together with modern elements. For example, Rocket Bunny, Liberty Walk, RWB or Morohoshi Style. Well, this time we will dig more about car culture which is closely related to modification in Japan. Immediately listen to the information, Bro!
ABOUT CAR CULTURE IN JAPAN
In Japan, car lovers really uphold freedom in terms of modification by not making certain rules or references in modification. This also keeps the diversity of modifications in Japan intact. People do not change the theme of modification just because the modification trend has changed or they are afraid to be called Ricer. In Japan, people modify cars based on what they want and like.
The diversity of types and styles of modification is what makes Japan very popular with car enthusiasts from various countries in the world. Daikoku PA is proof of this. This place is a legendary parking lot known as a ‘shrine’ for automotive enthusiasts in Japan. We can meet various types of cars and various types of modification styles at Daikoku meet. Proper, stance, hellaflush, VIP, itasha, lowrider, muscle, dekotora, kaido racer, shakotan, Lambo Morohoshi Family, supercar, Onikyan or camber demon, Kei-car, and others.
CAR MODIFICATION STYLE IN JAPAN
Japanese classic modification has become an important factor in Japanese car culture. Not only from the style of modification that continues to develop, but the modification of the classical era also provides a strong foundation for the modification mindset in Japan, as well as being the beginning of the JDM style which then makes the JDM culture expand widely.
The word classic seems not the right word to be used in these various modification styles, because indeed this modification style is still around until now. This style does not just disappear or change because of the changing times, trends, and modification standards. We can see a touch of classic Japanese modification style combined with modern elements, as we saw in Rocket Bunny, Liberty Walk, RWB or Morohoshi Style.
TERMS IN JAPANESE MODIFICATION CULTURE
There are several terms that are often found in culture modification in Japan. This term can be in the form of a modification stream, the name of the type of modification or the name of the group that uses a particular modification.
Kyusha actually means old car or classic car. His fans are called Kyushakai. From the meaning, actually all classic cars in Japan can be called kyusha. But there are also those who interpret the Kyusha as a classic car that has been restored to its original condition. The modifications made are usually light, and do not really affect the original appearance of the classic car.
Zoku means tribe, gang or group. Sha means vehicle (car). So, zokusha means a car gang or it can also be called a car club. This term zoku appeared in the 1950’s. At that time, the post-war social changes of the Japanese youth and several foreign films and novels inspired freedom for Japanese youth. With the start of the proliferation of car culture, there are gangs or zoku everywhere. There is a highway racing gang called Roulette-zoku or Circuit-zoku, a drag racer gang called Zeroyon-zoku, a drifter called Dorifto-zoku, Vanners or also called Vanning-zoku, Touge battler called Rolling-zoku, and the most famous, Bakusozoku or Bosozoku namely the Boso Gang.
Shakotan actually means a flat car or short ground clearance cars. The other term today is Slammed. This car has a minimalist modification. Basically, all classic Japanese cars that are modified to flat can be categorized as Shakotan.
MODIFICATION STYLE IN JAPANESE CAR CULTURE
- Garuchan atau Grachan
Garuchan or Grachan is derived from the word Grand Championship. This modified style was inspired by the Grand Championship car championships at Fuji Speedway in the 1970s to the 1980s, especially on Group 5 cars. Its main character is an aggressive boxy bodykit in the style of a circuit racing car with large wings.
In accordance with their name which in English means Violent Speed Gang, most of the Bosozoku members are thugs who have long been known in Japan with characters of rebellion, recklessness and violence. Initially they were a motorbike alley, which later included a car in it. The style of modification is inspired by Group 5 cars, the same as the Garuchan, but is developed to be more extreme.
- Kaido Racers
A vintage JDM car club that modifies its car in a Bosozoku style. It’s just that, most of the cars are not as aggressive or fanciful as the Bosozoku. Yes, you could say this Kaido Races is the tame version of Bosozoku. Most of the Kaido Racer members are not related to Bosozoku. They are only inspired by their car modification style. So even in attitude, they are normal people, aka not delinquents.
Kanjozoku is a Honda street racer car club that has become a legend in Osaka. They use a toll road area called the Kanjo Loop Line which is 21 km long. This path is connected so that it becomes an oval track. The main requirement to become a member of this car club is a Honda car. The cars used are Civic hatchbacks such as the EF9, EG6, and EK4 Civic SiR. There are also those who use the EK9 Type R. This car has a characteristic livery or sticker in the style of a circuit racing car which is also functionally modified for a racing car.
- Morohoshi Style
This modification style was created by Shinichi Morohoshi for Lamborghini cars. This modified style has sparkly characteristics, such as a strobe that adorns the car, striking colored neon lights underneath, in the interior and in the car section. Outside of Japan, this style may be unusual, but in Japan itself, the members of the Morohoshi Family continue to grow.
Yanki members are teenagers who are inspired by the Bosozoku culture. Usually they are high school students or entry-level students. Not only their appearance, but also for their motorbike and car modifications they refer to the Bosozoku style. When they graduated from school, or were expelled from school, not a few of them later joined to become Bosozoku.
Hashiriya means street racer or street racer who often races illegally on public roads. Hashiriya is synonymous with high-way racing as in the legendary Midnight Club car gang. However, the word hashiriya can also be used for other street racing themes such as street drift racers.
This style of modification focuses on modifying a luxury sedan that is often associated with the Japanese mafia, the Yakuza. Modified flat luxury sedan with large shiny, flush or cambered wheels, glossy body paint and black window film. Some of the cars used include Nissan President, Nissan Cima, Nissan Cedric, Nissan Gloria, Nissan Fuga, Toyota Celsior, Toyota Century, Toyota Crown, Toyota Aristo.
In the 1990s, anime fans in Japan started decorating their vehicles with anime stickers and knick-knacks. They were influenced by the Bosozoku and Dekotora style modifications and named this style with the term Itasha. This kind of modification is considered as a tribute to their favorite anime character.
Onikyan or demon camber is an extreme negative camber modification style. This modification style is done for visual purposes only. Onikyan is generally performed on Kei-cars or on VIP cars.
This modification style is in the form of a thin gap, or even no gap between the tire and the fender. In the United States, this style may be better known as the Hellaflush.
Hippari means stretched tires. This modification style includes tires on wheels that are wider than the width of the tire. Usually 1-3 inches. This style emerged from the Japanese street drifting world.
This exhaust system or exhaust style with a long pipe that rises upwards is called Takeyari which means bamboo spear or bamboo spear. The long pipe is like bamboo, even the end is often sharpened to become like sharp bamboo. Takeyari can be formed in various forms, starting from the form of lightning, the shape of a chimney, the shape of a trellis, the shape of a tv antenna, the shape of a star, and so on.
Truck drivers in Japan modify the term Dekotora or decorated truck. This trend started with the film “Torakku Yaro” (Truck Guys) in 1975. This film tells the story of a truck driver who modifies his truck and drives it around Japan. In the early 1990s, Dekotora continued to grow with its robot inspiration from the Gundam Series. Today, Dekotora is a combination of a carnival truck car and a transformer-style robot.