Machine Hayabusa note is an anime series produced by Toei Animation, comprised of a single season made of 21 episodes; it first aired in Japan in 1976. It revolves around the fight between two car racing teams: the Black Shadow, a shady organization leaded by the mysterious and ruthless Ayab Mobil Dick, controls the racing world while the heroic Saionji racing team, owned by eponymous Dr. Saionji, tries to contrast them.
The hero of the story is Ken Hayabusa, a young pilot that wishes to avenge the death of his father during a race. He becomes the ace of Team Saionji and, as such, he's entrusted the powerful Falcon, a revolutionary design machine thrusted by a jet engine. During the various races he's supported by the other four racers of the team and, later in the series, Saionji's younger sister Sakura.
Machine Hayabusa provides examples of:
- Badass Driver: most of good and bad guys, but especially Ken, Ayab Mobil Dick, Baron and Ryu.
- Blood Sport: every race in the show sees multiple incidents, almost always lethal, usually involving other anonymous racers and, quite often, the minor Black Shadow racers.
- Big Bad: Ayab Mobil Dick.
- Cool Car: all the cars of Black Shadow and Saionji are this, and it's arguably the main point of the show.
- Every Car Is a Pinto: every racing car, except those of the the good guys in the few instances in which they are involved in incidents.
- Flying Car: car number 4 of Team Saionji can fly/hover for a short time, thanks to two powerful rotors built in its body. Later in the series, Sakura uses a flying car/jet hybrid to provide support to the team, spotting dangers from the sky and warning them in advance, and occasionally refueling the racing cars of her friends.
- Love Interest: 16 y.o. sister of Dr. Saionji, Sakura.
- Meaningful Name: Ayab Mobil Dick. It's possible that the correct transliteration, by current standards, would be different; still, it sounds a lot like "Ahab Moby Dick" which actually tells something about the character. Even more considering that it's a fake name that he chose for himself.
- Next Tier Power-Up: to keep up with the increasingly more powerful cars deployed by Black Shadow, and the increasingly harder racetracks, Team Saionji equips the Falcon with increasingly more powerful jet engines. Actually, every upgrade adds one "rocket"; so that, for example, the V1 has only one, the V2 has two and so on, up to the impressive V5. At some point we learn that the V3 had already been developed before the start of the story, but Ken's father had tested it and had risked his life in doing so, having been unable to subdue its extreme power and make it work at full efficiency. Of course, Ken succeeds.
- This quickly makes the other pilots of Team Saionji almost irrelevant during following races, as their cars don't receive any significant upgrade during the series.
- Orcus on His Throne: Ayab Mobil Dick is this until the last episode.
- Secret Art: Ryu's signature Jump technique, and the Skiing stunt technique Ken develops and masters in order to beat him.
- The Ace: Ryu, the only one able to defeat Ken, and playing fair nonetheless. Twice.
- The Dragon: Baron, right-hand man of Ayab and second best driver in Black Shadow.
- The Hero: Ken Hayabusa, who takes the place that was of his father as ace of Team Saionji, in order to find the truth begind his death.
- Tin Tyrant: Ayab Mobil Dick wears a full set of medieval-esque armour, including a facial mask, to conceal his identity to the audience. Odd enough, given that most of the times he's inside his throne room only in company of Baron and his engineer and both of them already know his true identity.
- Weaponized Car: most of the Cool Cars in the show. The ones used by the bad guys are usually literal examples of this thrope, ranging from the classic Oil Slick and Spiked Wheels to an exotic sleep-inducing ray.
- You Killed My Father: In the last episode, Ayab is revealed to be Benny Kramer, responsible of the death of Ken's father.