AE86 Toyota “Hachiroku” Drift Car

AE86 Toyota “Hachiroku” Drift Car

Perhaps the original and most wanted drift car of all time: the classic Toyota AE86 or “hachiroku” as it’s affectionately known. “Hachiroku” means “86” in Japanese.

The AE86 was made famous by the Japanese manga turned TV/DVD cartoon series “Initial D”. The main character would use his dad’s panda black and white AE86 trueno to deliver tofu and then sneak out to race the mountains in the middle of the night.

The car was manufactured by Toyota from the years 1983 – 1987. There are two different models of the hachiroku and two different body styles for each made for the Japanese domestic market.

The “Trueno” has pop-up headlights and the “Levin” has rectangular headlights. I’m sure there are a few more slight differences but that is the easy way to tell them apart.

The two body styles they come in are the coupe (sometimes known as the wedge) and the hatchback.

There are different engines for different grades on AE86 but the most common engine you’ll find in a “hachi” is the fuel injected 4AGE non-turbo double overhead cam 4 cylinder. This power unit produces around 130PS (128 hp) in the JDM models.

So why is the AE86 so popular for drifting?

  • There are a lot of good thing going for the 86. For one it’s rear wheel drive, which is essential for drifting.
  • It’s reliable. Toyota got it right with the chassis and engine set up. The engine is strong and will rev and rev! The other drive train parts like gearbox, diff and suspension are up to scratch to take the beating while drifting.
  • It’s light (approx. 940 kg or 2072 pounds) which makes it easy to throw around without the need for a turbo engine.
  • It’s stylish. Two doors, the option of a coupe or hatchback. I like the style but some may hate it.
  • They used to be cheap. You could score a low km AE86 in Japan for less than 100000 or $1000 before they became getting super popular with drifters. Now, you’d be lucky to find a rusted out one for that price. Look near the 500000 mark for a nice clean AE86.
  • There are heaps of drift parts made for them. You’ll never be stuck without parts for the AE86. From body kits to suspension and engine parts, there are plenty to choose from.

So do you want to drift a AE86 yet? I do.


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