USDM Jam

In Japan there’s a pretty unusual styling trend that has been around since at least the early 2000’s known as “USDM Style.”

What is USDM Style? In some respects, it’s the opposite of JDM style – in that it’s the Japanese interpretation of what modifications are popular to do in the U.S. U.S. license plates are added, left hand drive swaps are done, and U.S. headlight/tailight swaps are popular (even conversion where applicable like the JDM/USDM DC Integra).

Yes, there’s actually USDM Style car meets and shows!

One of the more peculiar aspects of USDM style is that it changes with what is popular in the U.S. at a given time. For example, in the early 2000’s “import/sport compact” era it consisted of neon painted cars with aluminum wings and splashy vinyl schemes. During the mid 2000’s when JDM style took over U.S. car magazines, USDM style actually became the Japanese interpretation of JDM styling in the US car scene: taking JDM cars and making them … “JDM.” Honda Civics became the weapon of choice, with trendy items like tow hooks and Momigi/Wakaba stickers took over. More recently, the “Stance” trend in the US has become a popular USDM style look with slap stickers. I’m not sure what U.S. trend USDM Style has moved on to now.

It always has been interesting to me to see how you are viewed by individuals from a different country: Interestingly, I came across this build on Minkara:

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It’s actually the second USDM style Blobeye to Bugeye conversion that I’ve seen now (without actually looking for them) that has been billed as a “USDM style” Impreza build.

I guess Japanese USDM enthusiasts have picked up on the U.S. predilection for bugeye Imprezas!

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Started out as a nice looking blobeye wagon

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The conversion begins!  Note the original wagon bumper in the beginning…

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Not long before it gets the USDM favorite :  sedan front fenders and bumper with Prodive lip.  Oh how we love our Prodrive lips…

The bug deflector is also an interesting choice that has become semi-popular in the US of late.  I don’t know if we did it to be ironic.  I know Pencils (Chan) whose crazy Sonic Yellow bugeye has graced these pages a while back (and is due for an update as it went from crazy to full on insane recently) had one a while.  Low ride height and thick wheel lip makes this car look like something you would see over here too.

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Blurred front plate – though it’s of course a USDM California plate and I’m sure not registered to the car

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One strictly JDM item on this car that I’m so jealous of is the ‘mirror finishers’ (white painted overlay on mirror base)… doesn’t fit our US-spec non-folding mirrors which apparently have different angle possibly due to LHD/RHD or folding mechanism.  Gotta have the JDM mirrors to play.

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Vintage iPod!  And 7 Eleven!  Pic from same owner, on different car.

License plate delete by PERRIN, U.S. Impreza part maker, makes an appearance – outweighing the California plate apparently.

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And of course JDM projector headlights used – not because they’re readily available and JDM-model correct… but because that’s what we would do in the U.S.  How many U.S. bugeye owners reading this have JDM projector headlights on their car (or want to get them) ?  Exactly.

By U.S. standards this is a great looking modified Bugeye, and it gives an interesting perspective on how others see view U.S. tuning culture.

Owner: highriskのページ from Fukushima – on Minkara

Even without USDM style, Bugeyes appear to have become increasingly popular in Japan with Bugeye owner groups such as the “MIOC” group on Minkara.

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