If you’re being kind it’s ‘quirky’, and if you’re not, downright hideous. We’re talking about the Mitsuoka Orochi, that veteran of ‘ugliest car’ listicles which shirked Mitsuoka’s usual remit of evoking old British cars by employing some especially outrageous styling. Over 20 years on from the original concept’s reveal, however, we can present a version of the mid-engined sports car that works oddly well.
This particular Orochi has been given a widebody treatment from Liberty Walk at the behest of Japanese firm Sphere Light, and we rather like it. Don’t get us wrong - it’s still mad as a box of frogs, but in a way that’s less likely to make you feel queasy.
Along with the usual arch extensions with exposed rivets, the Orochi gets a new front splitter and side skirts. Factor in a sizeable drop in ride height, and we have a vehicle that looks more akin to a traditional supercar in the way it sits, albeit with the Mitsuoki zaniness still present and correct. See all those frunk vents? They aren’t part of the kit - the Orochi has them as standard.
Filling the new flared arches is a set of deep-dished Y-spoke wheels finished in black. The least obvious modification here is the most important - a set of Sphere Light’s bulbs, which the widened Orochi exists to plug. It’ll be promoting these at the Tokyo Auto Salon this week, displayed amongst various weird and wonderful tuned cars from both main manufacturers like Toyota and aftermarket firms.
We should note this isn’t the first time Sphere Light has used a Liberty Walked Orochi for promotional purposes, but what sets this one apart is the livery. Finished in white with yellow lightning bolts down the side plus a liberal festooning of sponsor decals, it looks fit for a GT3 starting grid. Almost.
There’s no word on mechanical modifications, but we’d imagine the midship engine has been left alone. It’s a 3.3-litre ‘3MZ-FE’ Toyota V6, a 230bhp powerplant the Orochi shares with humdrum runabouts like the Camry and Sienna.
But hey - this wonderfully silly creation was never meant to set lap records. It’s here to grab your attention, and on that front: mission achieved.