Mitsuoka Orochi – Japans newest Sportscar

The 3rd Generation of ‘Orochi’ is finally announced.

Back in 2001 Mitsuoka Motor Co. showed it’s first prototype of the Orochi sportscar at the Tokyo Motor Show to a gobsmacked crowd who couldn’t wait for it’s official unveiling ‘in 2003’. Along came 2003 with another promise from Mitsuoka that the car will be ready on schedule.. but to no avail. Then, at the 2005 TMS, Mitsuoka once again promised – but could not deliver – the official unveiling of the Orochi (‘big snake’ in Japanese).After all that, the ‘market reaction’ model of the 3rd generation Orochi was shown at Roppongi Hills on September 6th. (see pics)

The car will be powered by a Toyota 3MZ-FE 3300cc V6 mated to a 5MT automatic gearbox. The 2005 show car, the Orochi Nude Roadster, was built on a Honda NSX platform as a mock up, but the production versions will use an original platform.

President Akio Mitsuoka of MITSUOKA MOTOR comments, “We made a breakthrough, and we could not help abandoning the promise of making an announcement for the Orochi to go on sale by Tokyo Motor Show despite the difficulties of passing homologation”. President Akio Mitsuoka clarified that development was at an advanced state due to the cooperation of Toyota, so that “we could make it to marketing stage without fail in 2006”, unfortunately the chassis and the body panels were revised (no convertable will be offered) so it became a regrettable result for the many Orochi fans.

Mitsuoka has already acquired the number of production units to be made, and is correct to assume that Mitsuoka is very happy with result of the final appraisal vehicle that was shown before the car goes on the market. Details like the spec, price, and the number etc. of the annual output wil be clarified by a formal announcement on October 2.

Personally, there are some design elements I don’t like, particularly the front grille and some of the swooping lines down the side of the car, but overall is incredibly unique… and this is from Mitsuoka remember! I hope it’s a sales success and is the beginning of the end of Mitsuoka’s love affair with 1940’s styling.


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