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Pimped-up luxury cars are order of the day at Tokyo Special Import-Car Show

By Len Clarke

Prepare yourself for an onslaught of automotive glitz and dazzle as Japan’s brashest car exhibition comes to Tokyo Big Sight on June 19-21.

Now in its sixth year, the S.I.S. Tokyo Special Import-Car Show is an annual showcase for the latest and wildest custom rides from around the globe. The event focuses on auto tuning and customization—the art of taking really expensive cars and making them even better. Hundreds of vendors turn out every year to show off their unique versions of the world’s most coveted machines, and you can expect some pretty radical high-end reinterpretations. Think blitzed-out Bugatti Veyrons and Ferrari Enzos—that level of extreme. It’s a blowout of supercars and one-offs that you’re unlikely ever to see on the street (well, unless you’re living in Monaco or Dubai).

As its name suggests, the Import-Car Show is all about overseas models, which sets it apart from the Tokyo Auto Salon (held every January), where the focus is predominantly on Japanese makes. Still, many of the exhibitors are homegrown specialists. Look out for signature vehicles like the A.S.I. Bentley Continental, one of only 29 built each year, and a total head-turner with its Japanese motif—in gold leaf, no less.

Ridiculously large wheels (32 inches, anyone?), flared-out body kits and crazy paint jobs are just part of the attraction, though. Interiors are also a major focal point in the world of ultra-slick custom cars, and some of them will leave you gasping for breath.

Last year’s show drew 237 exhibitors—many of them from overseas—and nearly 58,000 punters. (We weren’t able to confirm how many of these just came to see the booth babes.) A large proportion of the international exhibitors hail from Germany, and many of the tuners use German cars as their canvases. That said, you can also expect to see plenty of British, Italian and American models.

In addition to the blinged-out rap-star mobiles, visitors can feast their eyes on concept cars, vintage cars and other automotive delights. Previous years have also featured European racers that competed in Japanese motorsports events in the past. This year, in an effort to stop things from getting too macho, an entire zone will be devoted to overhauled Mini Coopers that’ll have you whistling the theme from The Italian Job all the way home.

The rows of chromed-out beauties are matched by a wide variety of stalls selling everything from collector toys to books and memorabilia. And yes, you can expect lots of scantily clad vixens to be doing their best to distract the camera-toting hordes from the real action.

So head over to Odaiba this June for a glimpse of the world’s wildest street-legal machines. Just don’t get run over by the six-wheeled Hummer on your way out, eh?

Tickets cost 1,700 yen in advance or 2,000 yen at the door.

This story originally appeared in Metropolis magazine (www.metropolis.co.jp).

© Japan Today

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

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Oh, nice! i wanna go!

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Pimp my Prius!

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No GM cars? :p

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Been the last few years and loved it. Pity a lot of auto houses that usually turn up are skipping it this year....sign of the times

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"And yes, you can expect a lot of scantily-clad vixens to be doing their best to distract the camera-toting hordes from the real action"

Heck, the scantily-clad vixens are the real action!

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The Japanese are the original tuners and can give the best visual upgrades to western muscle cars.

dennis0bauer at 03:06 PM JST - 2nd June

No GM cars? :p

Hummer is a brand of GM

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"Hummer is a brand of GM"

Not for long.

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the adjective is "pimped-out", not pimped-up. "pimped-up" sounds like a prostitute who has been beat-up by her pimp.

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