Step into the thrilling universe of motorcycle anime, meeting characters whose devotion to bikes and the thrill of speed is limitless!
But among the numerous titles, which ones truly deserve your attention? This list compiles some of the best, encompassing classic and modern motorcycle-centric anime that may not yet be on your radar.
An excellent example of an anime that brings the beauty of motorcycles to life is Kino’s Journey. First aired in 2003, the show introduces the audience to Kino, the main character, and Hermes, his conversing motorcycle companion.
Anime About Motorcycles
A more contemporary motorcycle-focused anime is Bakuon!!, otherwise known as Roar!!. This series chronicles the life of Hane Sakura at the innovative Okanoue Girls’ High School, a unique institution where every student can ride motorcycles.
Moreover, the list isn’t exclusive to series; it includes anime films featuring motorcycles. One noteworthy mention is the cult-classic Akira, which showcases biker gangs cruising on their futuristic, cyberpunk bikes.
13Futaridaka – Motorcycle Gangs
After enjoying a delightful dinner, Taka Sawatari and his mother began their journey home when a motorcycle gang launched an aggressive attack against them. A mysterious young man intervened, saving them from the unwarranted assault. The following day, Sawatari discovered that this heroic figure was a professional racer, coincidentally sharing his first name, Taka – Taka Toujou.
In an ensuing race, Sawatari misjudged a curve and lost control, coming perilously close to causing a fatal accident involving Toujou. This intense event served as a catalyst, transforming their previously neutral interaction into a high-stakes rivalry. From that point onwards, Sawatari and Toujou found themselves consistently pitted against each other, their individual racing skills persistently tested in a heated competition.
12Scared Rider Xechs
Originating from the Red World, the Nightfly O’Note – a symbol of instinct – persistently attacks the Blue World, representing reason.
The story centers around Akira Asagi, a 17-year-old Blue World researcher who earns a nomination as the war leader at Ryuukyuu LAG – a revered defense facility situated on the Ishigaki islands. Following the demise of the fifth unit, they form the sixth combat unit “IS.”
Akira is responsible for leading the six riders, also known as the Scared Rider Xechs. Her mission? To vanquish the Other World while fostering a deeper connection with her team.
“Megalo Box” might be better known for its futuristic boxing, but its motorcycle sequences shouldn’t be overlooked. The anime’s protagonist, Junk Dog, often seen riding his motorcycle through the dystopian city, paints a picture of gritty reality. His bike acts as an extension of his rebellious spirit and pursuit of freedom.
Although not a traditional anime about motorcycles, “Megalo Box” skillfully utilizes motorcycle scenes as a narrative tool, symbolizing the characters’ internal conflicts and the contrasting socio-economic divides.
10Yowamushi Pedal – Biking Anime
Although technically focusing on bicycles rather than motorcycles, “Yowamushi Pedal” is worth mentioning for its passionate portrayal of biking culture. Sakamichi Onoda, a socially awkward anime biker and otaku, unexpectedly discovers his exceptional cycling talent.
The series excels in capturing the essence of biking – the sense of speed, the exhilaration of a race, and the profound bond between the rider and the bike. It’s a journey of self-discovery, friendship, and the relentless pursuit of passion, making it a must-watch for anyone interested in anime with motorcycles or bikes.
“RideBack” offers a unique amalgamation of ballet and motorcycles, creating a visually stunning and emotionally rich anime. Rin Ogata, a former ballet dancer, discovers a RideBack bike (a motorcycle with robotic arms), which changes her life.
The anime biker protagonist Rin, utilizes her ballet skills to master RideBack riding, turning the bike into a graceful dance partner. More than just a motorcycle anime, “RideBack” delves into themes of political unrest, rebellion, and personal growth.
The anime’s blend of exhilarating motorcycle sequences with compelling character development ensures a riveting viewing experience.
The story initially delves into both high school life and street racing. The characters start off as illegal street racers, or hashiriya in Japanese, racing on public roads, especially the winding mountain roads known as tōge. Society labels these racers as “rolling-zoku”, a subset of bōsōzoku, and perceives them as a social issue in Japan.
As the narrative unfolds, it shifts focus to professional motorcycle racing events taking place on road circuits, such as the All Japan Road Race Championship.
7Kentauros no Densetsu
Rev your engines and witness an electrifying clash between two fierce rivals! Meet the Centaurs, a dynamic racing team hailing from the vibrant port city of Yokohama. These 93 adrenaline junkies are more than just skilled bikers – they embody the mythical spirit of the legendary Greek horse/men. But hold on tight, because things are about to take an unexpected turn!
In a twist of fate, Arthur and Ken, two passionate members of the Centaurs, find themselves entangled in a love triangle with the same captivating lady. As emotions run high and sparks fly, they decide to settle their fiery competition in the most thrilling way imaginable – a no-holds-barred race!
Koguma, a high school girl in Yamanashi, lives a life devoid of parents, friends, or hobbies. Her life changes when she acquires a used Honda Super Cub motorcycle, which she uses for the first time to ride to school. The experiences of running out of gas and navigating detours introduce small adventures into her otherwise empty life.
She relishes this peculiar change, but her solitude gets disrupted when her classmate Reiko engages her in a conversation about also commuting to school by motorcycle.
The introduction of the Super Cub into Koguma’s life thus opens up her world, leading her towards a fresh daily routine and newfound friendship.
5Genesis Climber Mospeada
Drawn to the proto-culture remnants in the SDF-1, the Invid, arch-nemesis of the fallen Robotech masters, have invaded Earth and seized full control. The planet lies completely under their occupation, with humanity either eradicated, enslaved, or set adrift. It’s this grim reality that Lieutenant Commander Scott Bernard faces when he and his comrades from the Mars base return to Earth.
Despite their best efforts to reclaim the planet, the Mars forces fall short against the overwhelming power of the Invid, leaving Scott as the sole survivor.
Two Car, which is also referred to as Two Car: Racing Sidecar, is a captivating Japanese anime television series that centralizes its plot on the thrilling and dynamic world of motorcycle sidecar racing. The series, which was masterfully created by Silver Link, holds a significant place in the timeline of the studio as it was produced and released as a celebratory project marking their 10th anniversary.
Incepted with creativity and filled with adrenaline-pumping scenes, this series was broadcasted for the first time on October 7, 2017. The viewers were treated to its engaging storyline and awe-inspiring animation techniques until its last episode was aired on December 23, 2017.
3Kino’s Journey (Kino no Tabi)
Embarking on a soulful ride through philosophical landscapes, “Kino’s Journey” represents a unique motorcycle anime that elegantly fuses metaphysical concepts with captivating storytelling.
The anime biker protagonist, Kino, astride her sentient motorcycle named Hermes, travels across diverse countries, each with its unique societal rules and philosophical quandaries.
Their conversations during their travels serve as thoughtful introspection on humanity and society, providing a distinctive angle rarely seen in other anime with motorcycles or bikes. With a focus on the journey rather than the destination, Kino’s Journey truly encapsulates the essence of motorcycle travel – exploration and self-discovery.
Taking a lighthearted approach, “Bakuon!!” brings forth the exhilarating world of motorcycle clubs in a high-school setting. As an anime about motorcycles, it digs into the intricate details of bike models, maintenance, and bike culture, making it a joyride for motorcycle enthusiasts.
The story follows Hane Sakura, a novice rider who develops a newfound interest in motorcycles after riding to school on a bike. She joins her school’s Motorcycle Club and encounters various characters, each with their own unique bikes and riding styles.
In “Bakuon!!”, the motorcycle is not just a mode of transport but becomes a tool for character development and plot progression.
1Akira – Thrilling Ride
A classic in the anime world, “Akira” is a groundbreaking cyberpunk anime set in a dystopian Tokyo. Its anime biker gang, led by protagonist Kaneda, is an iconic part of the story. Their high-octane chases on highly stylized motorcycles have been etched into the minds of anime lovers.
“Akira” is more than a motorcycle anime; its bikes represent the anarchic spirit of youth and the struggle against oppressive authority. The film’s motorcycle sequences are unforgettable, characterized by their neon-lit aesthetic and visceral intensity.
I consider Akira as the best anime film I’ve watched ( well, 80s anime, anyway). Its captivating narrative, fast pace, and action-packed sequences held me in such rapture that I hardly noticed the two hours pass by. As a mind-boggling cyberpunk action film, it boasts numerous impressive elements.
The plot, while simple, feels fresh and absolutely thrives on its intense action sequences. Further, the stunning animation enhances every single aspect of the film, creating an immersive experience.
However, due to its gory scenes, I wouldn’t recommend it for children. But for adults, Akira is nothing short of an explosive, adrenaline-fueled rollercoaster ride!
Akira – Biker Gang Fight Scene