Stick Your JDM Up Your Hella VDub

For those of you familiar with the terms in the title, you’ll know JDM stands for Japanese Domestic Market, Hella (Hellaflush) means making your car look undrivable – which it nearly is – and VDub is associated with Volkswagen.

There are so many car genres and cultures now, it’s becoming a little hard to keep up with the esoteric jargon and relevant car decals. For instance, if you admire the Hellaflush scene and decide to add an illest sticker to your factory stanced car, you’ll be ridiculed. There’s a little more to it than stickers and trends though, and I’ll throw a little light on the subject.

JDM owners’ main concern is ensuring their Jap import is upgraded and maintained with original Jap components. Say you had to replace your Subaru’s turbo. Even if you purchased a 100% authentic turbo from Subaru, it won’t do if bought from outside of Japan. It needs to bought there, shipped over, all the paperwork in Japanese. It’s an expensive way of maintaining your ride if you live outside of Japan, and it’s so big now, a lot of fakes are cropping up on eBay. The stickers and decals reflect the Japanese lifestyle, and these are usually sticker-bombed over a panel of the car or a section of the console.



Hellaflush owners usually take there cars, slam them (lower them), but ensure the wheels are flush with the wheel arches. This could also fall into the ‘Stanced’ or ‘Slammed’ category, but Hellaflush take it a step further and offset the wheels using a lot of negative camber.

The term ‘Hellaflush’ came from the training shoe company Fatlace, and is now one of their brands and the name of their most popular string of car shows. Similarly, illest also comes from the Fatlace company.

What’s a Rat car?



Although I wouldn’t Rat a car, I do admire the creativity that goes into some of them. Although the Rat Rod (a Hot Rod made from bits and bobs) was created with mechanics in mind, Ratting a car now means creating something with purely aesthetics in mind. A popular car to Rat is the VW, especially the Beetle and Lupo – these small cars will usually have a panel stripped of paint and left to rust (the bonnet is the most common panel used), badges from different car brands applied, different wheel trims stuck on, a roof rack added, and various items attached to it. This is where originality comes into play.

Cross Breeding



Although these are all trends on their own, a lot of owners will dabble into other areas. VDub is a term used for Volkswagen and making them look cool – this crosses over into Stanced and Rat because a lot of VW owners slam their cars and a lot of good rat cars are often VWs. A lot of Hellaflush cars also practice JDM or vice versa.

What I think it all boils down to is making a car look a certain way, to be part of something that reflects your attitude. You follow a certain style and trend because it also reflects your personality in the mods you apply to your car. If you have a JDM Honda and like Hella and Rat, well slam it, rust it, rack it, and sticker it up with what you like.

Who cares…


Stanced: An Introduction To Air Suspension

Stanced Lincoln Continental

Stanced Lincoln Continental

So What Exactly Is Air Suspension?

To begin with basics, air suspension replaces a car’s stock springs with air springs – not dissimilar to those of a big truck. Most modern cars have standard coil-springs, which are easy to replace with the airbags as they virtually slip right into place. Because of the boom in installing this type of suspension for enhancing a car’s stance and ride, there are companies out there offering bolt-on kits – there are even air-spring suspensions for the older leaf-springs you find on classic cars.

Air Suspension

Air Suspension


The great benefit of installing an air suspension is having the ability to adjust the spring rate and load capacity. What would usually take days or even weeks of finding the perfect balance is now taken care of in minutes by the in-car controls.

Air Suspension In Car Controls

Air Suspension In Car Controls

Ride and Handling

The more an air suspension system compresses, the stiffer it gets – using this adjustment along with its progressive spring rate with the in-car adjustability allows for enormous performance gains. This means you can tune your car’s ride for changing conditions easier and faster.

Of course, it comes down to personal choice how a car should ride and handle. By adjusting the air pressure and shock valving, you can make your car either soft and comfortable for a long journey, or firm and tight for a track, or anywhere in between.

Stanced WRX

Stanced WRX


This is one of the main attractions to air suspension, as a car sitting extremely low on its wheels looks pretty cool. Some choose to lower a car or truck for aesthetic reasons without losing any drivability or function. Others, however, prefer the vehicle to sit on the ground when parked up, only to rise to the functioning ride height when the car is turned on – this is really cool to witness and can be seen in the video below.