Japenese Car Culture Meets Anime In The Bizarre Splendor Of Itasha

Want to see another kind of car culture? Head to Japan, because the island nation is just packed with them – from blinged-out drift cars and Bosozoku aero kits to Dekotora trucks… and Itasha, the focus of this video from Noriyaro.

Though the term originally applied to Italian cars, by now it’s come to take on a different meaning altogether. You have to see it to even begin to understand it, but it basically comes down to the automotive manifestation of anime.

Enthusiasts (or what locals might call Otaku) customize their cars not so much for performance but to pay tribute to their favorite cartoons, which themselves could be the only thing more outlandish about Japanese culture than their cars.

Heard of Sailor Moon? That’s just the starting point. They often revolve around high-school girls (because Japan) but they might be in a band or taking the anthropomorphic form of WWII military equipment. Seriously.

Whatever the theme of the show, enthusiasts pick their favorite characters and have them plastered all over the surface of their cars. And the results, as you can see, can be rather outlandish. But don’t take our word for it: delve into the realm of the bizarre in the 19-minute video below.


  • kachuks

    A bunch of stickers is relatively tame compared to some of the crazier stuff they do over there.


  • anonymous

    I saw Ruby I clicked on the article

  • john1168

    I was walking around the streets of Nagoya and I saw three Mario carts drive by in traffic and all:)

  • fyi an animated bikes are called ITANSHA, where tansha means motorcycle.

  • datCubanguy

    How do anyone cringes in japanese??

  • Auf Wiedersehen

    What a bunch of freakin weirdos