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California Spo-Com - Tetsu's Tales

Japanese car guys were interested in USDM when American car guys were interested in JDM.

Tetsuya Ogushi
Feb 22, 2012

About 10 years ago, SPO-COM style was becoming popular in Japan. SPO-COM is a shorter word for “Sport Compact”. Japanese car guys adopted the tuning style from California; it was bright body color, body kit and low. Some Japanese car magazines made stories about SPO-COM style and they went to California and tried to get any information about California SPO-COM movement in USA. Japanese car guys were interested in USDM when American car guys were interested in JDM. Now, there many kinds of tuning style in Japan. Drifting, time attack, Ita-sha and more; some people think new car is boring and then they are interested in ‘70s, ‘80s or ‘90s cars. That’s why CR-X and Civic (EF) used car price is becoming higher in Japanese used car market. One of new tuning style that is becoming popular in Japan is HellaFlush.

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HellaFlush is lowering down and fender’s arch and sidewall of tire are same position style. That is “TSU-RA-I-CHI” (tsuraichi) in Japanese. Fatlace in San Francisco start to say “hella flush” to describe this style. Last year, Fatlace and Japanese USDM shop, Yamazstore organized Hellaflush Japan at Fuji Speedway. Over 300 cars enter this event. There were Civics, Accords, 70’s or ‘80s Toyotas, Nissans, German cars, VIP style cars and even mini-vans. I didn’t go, but I was surprised there are so many cars representing the style when I read car magazines. It is hard to find HellaFlush style of new Japanese cars at the shows. I know Lexus and Nissan are selling super sports cars but they are expensive or limited model. How about Honda CR-Z? There wasn’t any hybrid cars at the HellaFlush Japan show. Many tuning shops build tuning hybrid cars (CR-Z and Prius) in Japan but I think they are not popular in USA, that’s why it is hard to find hybrid cars at the HellaFlush Japan event. If your car had this style and Japanese tourists look at your car in the parking lot of the mall, please don’t get mad or say “HEY!” with loud voice. That is Japanese tourist just interested in your style and they like HellaFlush very much.

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By Tetsuya Ogushi
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