Found In Translation: The Omomuki 911
Charm

This isn’t the celebration of all things Japan that you might think it is. Instead, this is the celebration of creative freedom.

We’ve been accused recently of our bias towards Japanese car culture, which is fair, because we are indeed biased towards Japanese car culture. It’s something that I spend a lot of time thinking about whilst driving, travelling or any other solo adventures. Bathroom breaks included.

Having received some flack for recently declaring that ‘everything is better in Japan’, without really being able to pinpoint the ‘why’ behind said declaration, I wanted to take another run at it. With the benefit of time and reflection, I think I’ve finally put my finger on what that je ne sais quoi is.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-3

The realisation came several weeks after meeting Kouichi Kakuma and his unique Porsche 911 at a Lawson’s convenience store not far from our hotel in Tokyo Bay. Our encounter was brief; it featured lots of pointing and other hand signals, smiling, polite nodding and gratuitous use of Google Translate. I’m almost certain Ben threw in a few arigatos into the conversation as well, and rarely at the right time or as even the right word.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-5

From a distance, Kakuma-san’s Porsche could almost be mistaken for an RWB build, but it’s not. As you edge closer, the details start to overwhelm you. What looks like matte paint is actually carbon fibre. The bodywork is asymmetrical. There’s an air scoop on the rear window, the likes of which I’ve never seen before and wouldn’t look out of place in one of Khyzyl’s steam punk creations. Then, there’s the exhaust system hanging discreetly underneath the rear of the car.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-7

The scissor doors are a bold choice and something guaranteed to divide opinions. Despite appearances, the car isn’t a 930 Turbo either. These last two talking points are, essentially, the complete list of potentially negative details that some will use to bash the car, although please don’t take that as a challenge. This is still a car that has its main focus on performance, although in a more considered way.

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Rather than throwing horsepower at the problem, with the help of Studio Allica, Kakuma-san put the G-model on a considerable diet. First, the factory sunroof-equipped roof was replaced with a single piece carbon fibre item. Then, slowly, the rest of the exterior was replaced with custom carbon parts. The rear arches aren’t just overfenders, they’re single piece carbon quarter panels. The front arches and bonnet have been recreated as a single piece front clip, which uniquely hinges forward. Of course, the doors have been re-skinned in carbon too.

Over one front fender sits a large vent for the front-mounted oil cooler. The original 3.2-litre engine remains largely untouched, save for the custom titanium exhaust, so a figure of around 230hp can be expected.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-4

The rear engine cover is from a GT2, but further enhanced with a GT wing for additional rear downforce. The discolouration of the side and rear windows through use of a circular polariser would indicate that they’ve been replaced with polycarbonate equivalents.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-11

Adjustable coilovers front and rear sit the body neatly over 18-inch SSR SP1s wrapped in Kumho rubber.

The interior features two Recaros in an otherwise sparsely occupied space. The Momo wheel and cage are obvious additions, but the modified accelerator pedal (one would assume for easier heal and toe operation) is touch more subtle. It’s a comprehensive build and one that has everything already in place should more power be added to the equation at a later date.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-10

For me, it’s the car’s aesthetic that’s so striking. The all-black bodywork, contrasted only by the yellow RUF headlights, amber turn-signals and license plates is just plain mean looking. That odd almost satin/matte black from a distance only further enhances this. It’s a car that has a lot of presence, and you can’t help but chuckle (in a good way) when the doors open up and the front clip tilts forward. The exposed hardware and unpainted carbon fibre are all a big part of what makes this special.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-13

You might consider some of the additions as being over the top, but to try and segue back to the start of this feature – it’s the sort of thing that’s typically Japanese. That ‘sort of thing’ being a freedom of expression that seems to be fading in western culture. Without fear of ridicule or being shouted down for daring to express themselves beyond the confines of what others expect, the Japanese are free to explore outside these self-imposed boundaries. They’re free to do how they please.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-15

With this freedom comes exploration of ideas that might not otherwise occur. In hindsight, I’m not saying that this makes everything out of Japan better, but it does – often – result in more captivating and special builds. It’s also not that they ‘don’t give a f*ck’ but rather that they have the confidence to build for themselves. Something we often lose sight of.

2018 Porsche 911 930 Omomuki studio ALLICA Speedhunters by Paddy McGrath-9

Of course, I’m speaking in generalities to try and make my point. While I’ve never owned a Japanese car and I don’t see that changing anytime soon, I will continue to look to Japan for ideas, inspiration and a reminder that at the end of the day, building a car is a very personal experience and should always remain as such.

Paddy McGrath
Instagram: pmcgphotos
Twitter: pmcgphotos
paddy@speedhunters.com

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42 comments

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1

Beauty !

2

Love it!

3

So did you plan to meet up with Kakuma-san at the Lawsons, or did you just randomly go there and this was parked outside?

4

It was pre-arranged by our heroic community manager, Mark Riccioni.

5

Seeing the opening image i was sure it's a matte black RWB and then i was surprised.
It seems as a track build more than a show only, and seeing all this effort for reducing weight using carbon fiber makes the scissor doors a weird choice. Aesthetically they are nice and give the look the missing piece (they are known between common people as "Lamborghini" style doors thus super car doors but still makes me wonder).
Hope to see it again in it's final form when the power plant is upgraded. It will be a car the future builders will check it first to take inspiration.

6
Andreas Ezelius

Woah! Add lightness is the way to go!

7

I think when people hear that people "do what they want" in Japan, they erroneously assume that Japanese builders take on a "fuck you, I don't care about your negative opinion" kind of vibe. From what I have experienced, it falls in line with this article. People just do what they want, and enjoy their builds.

It is tough that people in the US do things to either piss other people off or draw a bunch of attention for their "unique" choices. Hopefully the market switches around and people less interested in their cars move on to other hobbies.

8

That's an awfully broad box you put us (U.S.) in. Did you know all Mexicans drink Corona and beat up their wives too??

9

Struck too close to home for you?

10

What you say no making cents tu me gringo. Oh yeah, we're all short fat diabetics with poor reeding and...righting.

11

I was going to reply to your comment seriously, about the broad box, because it is true that there are plenty of people that do "their own" without having to be negative, and plenty of guys that praise and keep their negative opinions to themselves.

Then you went on to talk about one ethnicity / nationality and say some pretty messed up shit. I'm all for debating points and getting to a better place, but once you start talking that way people shut down and stop listening to your points.

If it were the two of us talking at a car meet, I'm sure the conversation would've been completely different. It'd be great if we could bring that kind of dialogue online, but it is hard to understand subtlety when you're just reading words instead of hearing them.

12

Moral of the story, I'm funny at least to me. AND, the point I was going for was your statement is inaccurate because its so general and broad. If you couldn't tell, I'm a Mexican and I'm not all those things I listed, so sometimes we all don't fit in a box people think we do.

13

Important thing to note here: "people in the US" does not mean "all people in the US," it means "at least some of the people in the US." I don't think he was making the universal statement you seem to think he was making.

14

I think you are right- many people in the US do create "abnormal" builds for the sake of annoying people or attention grabs. Others are just having fun and end up annoying people. But what I fail to understand is why so many people in the west feel entitled to be annoyed at other peoples' builds? And I think that mentality creates a negative spiral where many people who want to build unique cars develop a bunker mentality or feel as though they have to justify their builds. Which just continues to annoy people and so on. Live and let live and the scene will be better. Unfortunately, if the comment section here is any indicator, that is unlikely to happen soon.

Or maybe we're all trolls deep down.

15

I think most of the hate the "unique" builds get is because the owners don't have any pride do 1 dimensional hackjobs and call it a day. I'm not a fan of stance,vip or a lot of other styles but i have seen some amazing builds that you can tell the owner really took pride and thought out everything done to it and that I can respect even if its not my style.

16

I've got the perfect name for this Porsche, "No Fuchs Given."

17
Joe "joe rogan" rogan

"But what I fail to understand is why so many people in the west feel entitled to be annoyed at other peoples' builds?"

Idk, the average human feels entitled to their own opinion. The confusion comes in with those who insist on proclaiming their distaste as if it's the last and final word. It seems most have learned to be quiet, but that makes for a small comments section, hardly engaging if you ask me.

18

Agreed. Also, "the common people" remark elsewhere is pretty sad also. No ONE of us is any more special than the REST of us. Have a great day. :)

19

Your project Z is still waiting for you.

20

Oh I got to see this car in person quite a few times! Awesome to see it here :)

decom_ad4340e75ff2ce013c8d16fd131b38d1_5acb283bda44f.jpgdecom_ad4340e75ff2ce013c8d16fd131b38d1_5acb283bda44f.jpg
21

I am so glad to see a full review of this car. I was so frustrated when i only seen a few half pictures of this car from the car show (TAS?).

22

"through use of a circular polariser would indicate that they’ve been replaced with polycarbonate equivalents."

I've always wondered what caused the color spectrum rippled across a window when using a CPL, thanks for the free lesson! haha

23

I like that use of freedom, which made the 911look like this.
and as a german resident you´ve to try not being too jealous

24

Sinister.

25

I fully agree with @Alex comment.

There is a huge difference in mentality when it comes to the West - or from my experience the U.S.A. car culture (even more specifically Southern California) - where there is the "No F***s Given" builds in which the build purpose is more to "be against": other people's opinions, etc versus "being for" a type of build. The "be against" is the perspective in which one side looks and ridicules others peoples work, but doesn't stand as much for their own style/build. While the "being for" side, cares what people think, but more importantly really likes their own style/build. They can go in detail telling you all about their build, and share their vision for the build because the focus is building their own dream, NOT to contrast something else.

It seems like being somewhat disconnected is actually more healthy when it comes to building our own dream. If we are always connected and looking at builds, styles, videos etc it is easy to build a perspective and share opinions without actually talking face to face with fellow car-lovers, hearing from a person, in person, why they build the way they do. Or taking time to wrench on our own car and build our own vision, instead of just bashing others or making a build to be against other's ideas instead of building what we ourselves enjoy and like to look at.

26

I think this is an important point. A lot of "Zero Fucks" builds I've seen, and this seems more prevalent in the West but I could be wrong, are not really truly build by people who actually don't care what others think of them. They're built by people who care deeply what other people think of them, but who deliberately want to piss those people off. It's a very negative reason to build a car a certain way.

My projects are things that I want to build. Even when I was discussing the idea of a Renault-powered Porsche in the comments section on another article a while back I was thinking about it because it seemed like a fun idea to me, not because it might make others react a certain way. That idea is... kind of on a back burner, at least while I build experience with other projects, but those other projects are all things that I specifically want to do. I'm not building to make a point, or building to get a reaction (either positive or negative) from anybody else; I'm building cars that I personally want to own and drive.

I think that freedom sometimes feels like it's missing.

27

Bad muphukn ass!!!

28

I do prefer conventional door hinges, but other than that ... hmm, pretty awesome!

29

I like pictures and specs, op-ed is worthless

30
Matthew Everingham

Just as Kakuma-san has nailed this build (This was my favourite car at TAS), you've nailed what makes cars from Japan so special.
*HIGH FIVE*

31

I like a lot about the car, but some of the choices are... Unusual. They speak to the builder's mindset, let's just put it that way. The whale tail and wing look great, but do nothing under triple digits but reduce fuel economy, attract police attention, and weigh down the car. The scissor doors likely weigh more than the factory door setup, even with the carbon skin and plexi windows. With 230HP, you don't need huge tires. In fact, you're likely significantly slower around any track with those meaty beasts. And without the larger, heavier rubber and metal... Well, there's no need for the flares, which once again add weight. It looks like the factory seatbelts were kept, which is excellent for a street car... But then why the cage? Looking at the front vertical bars, it's not the kind of cage you can really run in any professional series. It lacks the cross-bars to protect the driver in a T-bone (especially with the side impact bars removed!)

I personally am a form-follows-function guy, and this build makes me wonder what the function is. It's an unusual compromise between show, race, and street. What it is, though, is FUN. Kudos to Kouichi Kakuma for making the kind of car I love to see at car shows. This is what 14-year-old me would have done with an unlimited budget and a 911. I think that, two decades later, I'm just a bit too much of a fuddy-duddy.

32

Dude...

Is your entire world all about you??

33

This car is insane! I love how the panels were just cut out and replaced with carbon fibre riveted on. I feel like the answer to every mod done to it is ‘because racecar’
That’s why I actually like the doors. They remind me more of a LMP racecar influence, rather than ‘lambo doors’.

34

light weight carbon parts, stripped interior. 230 hp should be enough
BUT all that useless aero drag. 230hp isnt enough power to overcome the drag and make the aero work.
another bullshit back alley tuner smoke-show.
someone take these poor porsches away from the Japanese before they start influencing other people...oh wait

35

"all that useless aero drag"! Oh no! A single wing has now turned into a parachute that almost immobilizes the car from driving! Quick! As an expert aero engineer you need to correct the masses! Oh ya! Don't forget to make a generalized sweeping statement about a group of people and post on some auto enthusiast website.... oh wait...

36

Wow, well said Josh, I literally spat my coffee

37

Well said Josh.

Personally as an avid Porsche enthusiast and owner, I find the car a fantastic personal statement from the builder. I wish people would keep their negative comments to themselves.

38

I've got the perfect name for this Porsche, "No Fuchs Given."

39

Badass!

40

I love it. The use of carbon fibre is very interesting to me, mostly due to first hand experience with carbon fibre now (APR Mirrors, I bought a pair for my car, before that I had only heard that CF was lightweight) and I want to learn / expand playing with more CF for my various projects were it makes sense to do so.

I do have to agree that builds that come out of Japan do tend to have more 'personal personality' infused into the build.

41
David Sully Sullivan

"Having received some flack for recently declaring that ‘everything is better in Japan" -People dont get it until they are able to get over and submerse themselves into the car scene a little bit there. I feel theres no questioning it once you can do that.

42

An absolutely beautiful 911! The "lambo door" style really adds to it, if anything, it looks RIGHT on this vehicle, it is absolutely stunning, from the first picture, you cant even tell that the "grey paint" is paint, I never suspected the entire body to be Carbon Fibre

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