A Young Asian American Subculture
Largely based in Southern California, the import scene has since the early 1990's been popular among the Asian American youth, creating a subculture that revolves around import car modification. The racing scene is comprised of predominantly males from ages 15 to 30, although female racers have been slowly but surely entering the scene in their own right. Women continue to dominate the import model scene, and many have received attention in mainstream media. With the turn of th 21st century, and with the mainstream exposure that the import scene is receiving due to movies such as The Fast and the Furious 3: Tokyo Drift, the import scene has brought in members from other ethnic groups like Caucasians, African-Americans, and Hispanics. This subculture, which started with a group of Asian Americans inspired by hot rod racing and the Japanese racing scene, has turned into a relatively widespread phenomenon with uniquely Asian American roots.
Where exactly are these import scenes?
Though it started in Los Angeles, the import scene quickly moved up the coast to the Bay Area and now can be found in some parts of the East Coast and the Midwest. Currently, import car shows and import drag races happen monthly in cities such as Atlanta, Boston, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Seattle. The import culture, which was predominated by Asian Americans starting from the mid 1990's has seen a shift in demographics in recent years due to its mainstream exposure in movies such as the Fast and the Furious trilogy. Many Asian Americans who appreciated the nascent import scene, untainted by commercialization, are disgruntled by its entry into the mainstream. Now, the import scene can be seen more as a multi-billion dollar sport compact movement backed by large corporations.