Anime is chock full of interesting cars, motorcycles, guitars, and the occasional universe-spanning bipedal mecha — all of which, depending on the context, can count as vehicles. Earlier this week, we asked you for your favourite vehicles from anime and manga, and you gave us a wealth of responses. Here are some of the best.
JP’s Trans Am From Redline
JP’s Trans Am and it’s not even close. I wanna see Takumi’s shitbox drive across an exploding planet
Somehow, I’ve made it 26 years on this Earth without seeing Redline. This, of course, is an error that must be immediately rectified.
The Fiat 500 From LUPIN THE 3rd: The Castle of Cagliostro
Fiat 500, Castle Of Cagliostro straight up one of the best cinematic car chases ever
Anyone can make an entertaining car chase using Mustangs and Chargers (which makes it all the more impressive that Bullitt couldn’t pull it off). It takes real skill to involve a cream-coloured Fiat 500 in your chase, and have it still come out fantastic.
Bulma’s Renault 5 Turbo from Dragon Ball
The only right answer
This little clip, involving Bulma’s R5 Turbo, is a bit unique within OG Dragon Ball. It contains neither misogynistic ogling of Bulma, nor young Goku’s dick. That’s rare for the original series.
Haruko’s Rickenbacker 4001 from FLCL
I wanted to be her, and then I drove across the entire North American continent on a Vespa with a guitar strapped to the back in 2016 so I guess I sorta was
I understand that the vehicle you’re talking about here is Haruko’s Vespa, the yellow one with the P! sticker that stars in The Pillows’ “Ride On Shooting Star” music video, but consider: Haruko rides the Rickenbacker while battling the shotgun trench coat robot. It flies. That’s a vehicle.
Howl’s Moving Castle from Howl’s Moving Castle
does this count??
Of course it counts! People sit in Howl’s moving castle, and the castle moves. It’s a method of transport from place to place. If that’s not a vehicle, I don’t know what is.
The Cyber Formula cars from Future GPX Cyber Formula
There are some really iconic vehicles already mentioned, but one that I did not see and feel like deserves a shout out, is the many Cyber Formula cars from Future GPX Cyber Formula!
Another series I haven’t seen! So many good recommendations here, I’ll need to start adding things to my watch list.
Hank Hill’s Ford Ranger from King of the Hill
[Just a photo of Hank’s truck]
King of the Hill is my favourite anime.
Misato’s Renault Alpine A310 from Neon Genesis Evangelion
[Just a gif of Misato’s Renault]
I’ve written about how Misato’s Renault paints a deeply grim picture of Eva’s world, so for this slide I just want to talk about how difficult it was to find a safe-for-work clip of Misato. I had to resort to Steely fucking Dan to get something involving her car that didn’t call her “mummy” or a waifu. Get a grip, Eva fans.
The Mach 5 from Speed Racer
[Just a gif of the Mach 5]
In Japan, Speed Racer was released as Mach GoGoGo. In Japanese, “go” means five. Is the Mach 5 really supposed to be the Mach 555? Much to think about.
Catbus from My Neighbour Totoro
[Just a gif of Catbus]
I have, shamefully, never seen My Neighbour Totoro. I’m still working through the Miyazaki backlog, having only recently gotten to Princess Mononoke. Maybe Totoro will be next.
Lexus LFA from Lycoris Recoil
The red LFA from Lycoris Recoil. Sadly, it is not driven in the anime, but it’s not every day you find an anime character that reacts to an LFA like this.
This is the second time in about two weeks that Lycoris Recoil has been mentioned to me. It first came up after I started extolling the virtues of Birdie Wing to a friend of mine, for three or four straight says. Have I told you all about Birdie Wing? It’s a lesbian golf mafia anim — [I am pulled away from my keyboard by a long hook].
Kaneda’s Motorcycle from Akira
Kaneda’s bike from Akira. At a notional 200hp it’s still more powerful than a 1,300 Hayabusa
Now, 200 horsepower is easily attainable for bikes. A factory-stock Ducati Panigale makes more than that, and the Kawasaki H2 beats it by a full 100. Back in Akira’s day, those numbers were a bit harder to come by.
Tachikoma from Ghost in the Shell
The Tachikoma from Ghost In The Shell
Do you want to hear a sentient spider tank talk in a Lisa Simpson voice about god and individuality? Well, Ghost in the Shell is the media franchise for you. If not, well, this may not be your taste.
Super Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann from Gurren Lagann
No one wants to point out all mecha are vehicles?
Look, you didn’t specify which mecha you meant. It’s probably Gundam, but I’ve never seen Gundam, so you’re getting a mecha that’s 112 times taller than the observable universe. WHO THE HELL DO YOU THINK WE ARE?
Takumi Fujiwara’s Hachiroku from Initial D
2 wheels: Kaneda’s bike.
4 wheels: [Gif of Takumi’s hachiroku drifting]
Takumi’s 86 was almost my recommendation pick when asking this question, but it felt too easy. It’s the car on my keychain, I had to do something a little more inventive. But, like Kaneda’s bike, this list wouldn’t be complete without it.
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