DRIFTING POP CULTURE: Toyota revealed a one-off Toyota 86 Initial D concept. QuickPic
England - Toyota’s UK special projects department has created a faithful, re-imagining of the fictional AE86 featured in the iconic Initial D comics.
The one-off 86 Initial D concept not only copies the manga car’s distinctive panda-style livery, but uses new versions of the same Japanese market components that were featured on the original.
True to the Manga 86
The concept is fitted with custom-made RS Watanabe alloys, TRD suspension, a Fujitsubo exhaust system, Cusco strut brace and a carbon-fibred bonnet. Less obvious cues are the yellow-tinted fog lights, which hint at the Cibié spotlights fitted to improve Takumi’s night-vision, and the silver-painted engine cover that is a nod to the high-revving 20-valve ‘Silver Top’ 4A-GE engine installed during the series.
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The thorough makeover is also evidenced by the inclusion of carbon-fibre door-release protectors and side-mirror covers that give an effect similar to the black plastic material used on the AE86. In addition, mud flaps have been installed because they were on the original Initial D car, the boot lid spoiler has been removed, and the rear lenses have been tinted.
The Toyota 86 Initial D concept will be touring motoring events in the UK in 2016.
Initial D manga
If you’re familiar with terms such as “AE86” and “hachi-roku” when discussing 1980s rear-wheel drive Toyota Corollas, then you are probably aware of the manga Initial D.
Gallery: Manga-inspired Toyota 86 Initial D concept
If you're not familiar with Japanese drifting or manga culture, here's why Initial D is such a big deal:
First published in 1995, the Initial D comic strip series tells the story of a young fuel station attendant who delivers tofu for his father’s business every night in an old Toyota Sprinter Trueno on the twisting roads of the local Mount Akina.
With years of practice before he is even of driving age, the protagonist - Takumi Fujiwara - is the fastest driver on the mountain. As the series develops, several drivers from across the country descend on Akina to challenge young Takumi.
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The series was so popular that it was later adapted into an television series in 1998 and thanks to the increasing popularity of drifting that the series had since become a worldwide phenomenon. It also made the Toyota Sprinter Trueno - known as a Corolla Levin in Japan and Corolla GT in the UK - a cult hero.