Osaka Automesse: The laid back version of Tokyo Auto Salon
“Go to enough car shows and you will realize that while there are plenty of cool cars about, there are just some shows that are really tiring to get across.”
Plenty of people, too many
perverts photographers taking photos of models, and crowded walkways make it too damn difficult to show y’all what we really came to shows for: the cars. That said, our trip last year to the Tokyo Auto Salon was a rather taxing one thanks to these factors – not to mention the hour and a half long train ride going to the venue. To get y’all the scoop from that event took easily 30,000 steps a day with camera gear and goodie bags in tow – and we went there for two days. Blistered feet galore.
For this year we decided to change things up a bit and skipped the 2020 Tokyo Auto Salon altogether. Instead, we took to the Osaka Automesse to be held a month later considering it’s been a show we’ve been meaning to see anyway. From our hotel, it took us about 45 minutes via train to get within the vicinity of Intex Osaka and about 15 minutes on foot.
Since we were there first thing Friday morning, we were met with not too much crowds as we trawled the first few halls of the show. The vibe here in general is more laid back, as if we didn’t need to rush into our work too much and move onto the next car. As if sipping the show like fine wine, we were able to stop and actually appreciate some of the cars that caught our eyes.
The fact that this show is held in the Kansai region also lends itself a certain flair – it’s true when they say cars are built differently here in Osaka. You see, most of the cars you will see at the Tokyo Auto Salon are from the usual big-name shops across Japan. And while these shops are still present at Automesse, there are plenty of other privateer entries that astonish and are built with equal quality to the pro shops – with much more personality. In a way, you could say that Automesse gives us a somewhat closer representation of what you can potentially see on the streets of Osaka.
The show in general feels a bit more close-knit than the bigger shows as well. Walking around the show we managed to walk into big names like Nobuteru Taniguchi, Naoki Nakamura, Ken Nomura and even the Drift King himself, Keiichi Tsuchiya. In a way we feel that Automesse is somewhat closer to the car culture content we’ve been meaning to see from doing all this traveling, and it’s in these kinds of places where we can find some of the best stories apart from dictating specs off a catalog build.
Overall the Osaka Automesse is something you ought to try and see for yourself to understand what’s so special about it versus the more popular Tokyo Auto Salon. We’ll look at some of the trends from this show in closer detail on our next feature, eyes peeled for that one folks!
Words by Aurick Go