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Ridelust Daily Fail: Japanese Itasha Fad Makes Me Sad

I’m especially partial to 60s and 70s era automotive design. The DeTomaso Mangusta, Lotus Esprit, Maserati Ghibli, C3 Stingray Corvette, and the legendary Lancia Stratos were some of the best looking cars ever made. The Stratos, in particular, is one of those special cars – in addition to being beautiful, it won rally championships all throughout the 70s, and there were less than 500 ever made. All of which adds to the mystique that the Stratos has, making it one of the must-have cars for ultra high-end collectors. That makes this Daily Fail all the more painful.

Yes, that picture at the top is one of the few remaining Lancia Stratos’, covered in Muv-Luv anime nonsense. The owner of that Stratos also owns a Lamborghini Gallardo, and it’s similarly defiled. Sigh.

So what the hell is going on? Why would anyone do this to an automotive work of art?
It’s called Itasha, and it’s Japanese. Take a look at these abominations:

Itasha is a Japanese fad consisting of guys decorating their cars with paint schemes and decals of anime, magna, and video game characters, usually half naked girl characters. The word literally means “painful car”, but it’s also a pun or a reference to the Italian sportscars that these guys decorate (Ita-/Italian).

The owner of this Stratos and Gallardo is Age Soft chairman Yoshida-san. He made his fortune selling hentai and eroge games such as Muv-Luv. Still, it doesn’t excuse his defilement of that automotive beauty. Let’s hope this is one Japanese trend that stays in Japan and dies a quick fad death.

(via Autopia)

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18 Responses

  1. Jason says:

    I hope you know that this is one of the best things that has ever happend to cars. Itasha is not some crappy American style I think that’s why this person dose’nt like it. Why don’t you stop by my space check out my profile and see that then leave me a comment on whats wrong with anime and manga yea I like it and im a fighter no not on here. I fight using (Jeet Kune do). You need to think before you offend someone. My URL is up top check it out and shut up.

  2. Vito says:

    I am very sorry I have offended you, Master Jason. After seeing your Myspace page, you have convinced me of the greatness that is… ITASHA. I’ve decided to plaster images of Goku from Dragonball Z all over my Infiniti G35 because that is not at all corny and ridiculous looking. It’s totally cool looking and not absurdly tacky, and it makes me look like a really tough practitioner of JEET KUNE DO. I’ve decided to read THE TAO OF JEET KUNE DO, just like you, so I can be a fighter as well as being the proud owner of an ITASHA car. you’re totally right.

  3. Jason says:

    Look I guess that every one has there own opinion and that im just saying that everyone likes different things so why squash someones dreams of doing what they want with there lives I mean that is why this country has gone to hell nobody can do anything without somebody saying well I dont like that. This person that your talking about didnt say hmmmm… I wander what vito thinks about my Itasha. This is the reason im leaving this country (land of the free my ass) I cant wait for america to fall into another civil war and return to the third world country its always been.

  4. Mike says:

    Kinda biased

  5. Ivan says:

    Theres nothing wrong with anime.However,there is something seriously wrong in doing that to such cars.Lancia Stratos…..a rally legend turned into CIRCUS…thats just awful.

  6. dob says:

    agreed, but it does look great on import rides if done with a bit of subtlety. Strange that you seem to have chosen the worst looking examples to post up…

  7. Carrot says:

    stratos is ugly. yes, i’ll be accepting all your rage from now on.

  8. dude says:

    Hey, if the guy can afford to pony up the cash for a Lancia Stratos, it’s his freedom to do whatever he want’s to it. And if he’s the head of a game company, heck by all means he has all the right to promote his own game through a car in which he owns. I don’t see what’s wrong with it.

  9. Ura Wanka says:


  10. James says:

    I plan on doing it to my 350z. I fucking dare you to do something about it.

  11. Ethan says:

    It’s just some other culture’s take on automobile decoration. Tell me there isn’t a guy out there that wouldn’t like to spiff up their car. So what? If the Japanese like to do this to their cars, fine by me. It’s not something I’d do, but I see nothing wrong with decorating your car with anime/manga characters, it’s their choice.

  12. nanuchan says:

    It’s MANGA not “magna” you ignorant…

  13. Kaizer says:

    First of all, itasha isn’t really a “Trying to look cool” style, it’s all about the owner’s showing their love of their favorite character, and combine it to their beloved vehicle, it’s very personal.

    and please note that NOT all Japanese love anime and itasha, ur post makes me feel like u have a bias against Japanese people.

  14. Blocker says:

    First of all Itasha makes me laugh, not because it’s an “abomination” but it is something I can see myself doing. If I somehow found a way to scrape my cash into a pile and buy one of these high-end machines, I can honestly see myself painting not only anime images but other wildly eccentric graphics onto it, but the issue is Itasha. If this guy has the money to buy one of thee works of art, he has the right to do whatever he damn well pleases to it. I understand the manufacturing process and the art behind making these cars, but if they were not to be used however the buyer intended, they should not have been distributed in the first place.

  15. mika says:

    “Abominations”, what a word, i guess your going a bit overboard right here. I’m not an itasha owner but what other people do to their property has nothing to do with you, and everyone has their own aesthetic senses. If you don’t like, don’t look at it. Don’t complain about others preference, It is not a good practice and it only makes you look bad.

  16. Sailor Enlil says:

    Well this “fad” isn’t going away that’s for sure, especially that it’s even invaded the world of Motorsports.

    Check out these GT300 class race cars, the newest being a Ferrari F430:

  17. Nippon says:

    What’s wrong with you!! You are being too biased. Cars are very personal and it’s up to the owner to do whatever wants. He bought it after all. Plus your ‘fad’ thing is awful. Animes are cool! You sure don’t see the beauty. Different pll different choices. I’ll get this done on my Mitsubishi Evo!!

  18. SureDrifter says:

    Well, it is not for every car, classic cars look ridiculous IMHO. japanese style cars in the other hand look uber cool, but you may not understand that grandpa.