Akira's iconic motorcycle races through Japan
A movie-accurate replica of the motorcycle from the classic film Akira recently toured Japan to raise money for charity
The 1988 film Akira stands as a classic not just in Japanese animation, but in the entire post-apocalyptic film genre. As such, fans of the film have been drawn to some of its most memorable moments and visuals, particularly the futuristic motorcycle driven by one of the main characters. One fan even went so far as to devote several years to creating a working replica of the signature vehicle, which has become the only one officially recognized by Akira's creator, and which recently toured Japan to raise money for charity.
It took seven years and 10 million yen (about US$121,000) for Shinji Tejima to recreate the bike ridden by the film's protagonist, but it was probably all worth it when the creator of the Akira manga and movie, Katsuhiro Otomo, deemed it the only officially recognized replica. Tejima certainly made sure his motorcycle was as movie-accurate as possible, right down to a pill-shaped key for a hidden ignition switch and stickers matching the ones from the movie. He even went the extra step and implemented a digital dashboard and working GPS navigator.
Recently, Tejima even donned a red leather outfit matching the main character's in the movie and set out on a tour of Japan, starting at his own Showa Studio auto shop in Fukuoka. He made stops in several Japanese cities in order to raise money for the Bokura Company, a children's autism support group, with his last stop being Tokyo for a special exhibition honoring Akira's creator.
The bike is currently on display at the Katsuhiro Otomo GENGA Exhibition from now until May 30, where visitors can have their picture taken sitting on it among a post-apocalyptic backdrop. Proceeds from the exhibition will support reconstruction in the Tohoku region following last year's earthquake and tsunami in the area.
Check out the video below to see how the bike drives, turning more than a few heads as it goes.
Source: Otomo-Gengate via Anime News Network
About the Author
Jonathan grew up in Norway, China, and Trinidad before graduating film school and becoming an online writer covering green technology, history and design, as well as contributing to video game news sites like Filefront and 1Up. He currently resides in Texas, where his passions include video games, comics, and boring people who don't want to talk about either of those things.
All articles by Jonathan Fincher
I think it is way cool. It would be even cooler if it went into production (or a version similar to it that can be put into production). :)
Gotta love that big long properly fastened neck height wind shield........
Or should that be called "guillotine".
@ Stiffy. And I have nowhere to put my shopping bags either. Totally sucks!
I think you have to have VERY bad luck to get your throat into that windshield. There are much more dangerous windshields on motorcycles that are meant for every day transportation and not just for driving from exhibition to exhibition.
I copped a BMW windshield up underneath my ribs, tore all the muscles away...... took 3 years before I could sit up in bed.
Had to roll over onto the hands and knees and then go upright using the back muscles.
And the EDGE ON, "flat screen" this is aimed more squarely at the neck area - probably only take a 30Kmh head on crash to crush your trachea and jugular type veins....
You're frightening me stiffy.
motorcycle crash test
motorcycle crash test dummies
People don't tend to go "up and over" the handlebars, they tend to squish and slide into and over things..... and the sharp pointy and unyielding things tend to slice, rip, tear or impale on the way through them.
The windscreen is bad - but the instrument console looks like a decapitator too.
Google (with or without quotes) "motorcycle decapitation pictures"
I think I will stick to walking in open fields.....
But does this one fold in the middle like the animated one in the movie? There's some replicas that do that.
He who risks nothing, does nothing.
I'd ride it in a heartbeat, just like I'm going to continue motorcycling, kayaking and flying an experimental 40hp 300lb wood and fabric aircraft a friend of mine glued together 15 years ago.
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