Monday, 18 August 2014

Bōsō Sunny

Words & photos - Daniel Bevis



Bōsōzoku is a subculture that often takes a lot of explaining. Literally meaning 'reckless tribe', the ethos traces its roots back to illegal motorcycle street-racers of the 1950s, their outrageously styled bikes tearing up the streets of suburban Japan with little regard for safety or the law. Fast-forward sixty years, however, and this is what bōsō means today...
The modern bōsōzoku car actually owes a lot to the styling treatments of their forefathers in the 1980s, which are enjoying a huge renaissance of late. We're talking sump-clattering ride height, surreally caricaturised bodykits, jutting sharknoses, comically extended exhausts, in-your-face retro colour schemes - a deliberately jarring aesthetic. Imagine a Group 5 racer from the 1970s, if it were animated by Marvel Comics. It's the kind of vibe that makes the vast majority of onlookers laugh and scoff. Which is just what the bōsō driver wants.

You don't see a lot of cars styled in this manner in the UK; the Nissan Sunny you see here is something of a show regular, evolving gradually over the years. At last year's Retro Show it was wearing flat green paint, and as you can see it's now rocking a rather splendid black-and-gold affair, complete with skyscraping pipes. A real 'why the hell not?' car that SSBB just loves.

Spotted at the 2014 Retro Show - click here for more photos.






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