Due to the fact that these movies constitute one big series as a whole, they are condensed on this page into a larger-than-normal synopsis for all of the movies instead of summarizing each movie individually. Please do not attempt to shorten it by senselessly deleting large quantities of information, and BEWARE OF SPOILERS.
The plot of Acceleracers jump-starts two years after the end of World Race. Vert is now 18, driving a re-painted Deora II for a techno-oriented street gang called the Teku (Japanese slang for "technology"). The leader of this gang is the short-fused but good-natured Nolo Passaro, accompanied by a more-matured and bitter Kurt Wilde, the headbanging music junkie Shirako Takamoto, and the racing strategist Karma Eiss. Nolo treats his gang like equals and brothers, giving them credit where credit is due and plenty of respect. The T-shaped necklace he wears is a Tragic Keepsake from his older brother, Tone Passaro, who lost his life in a race gone bad.
On the other side of the streets, the loud and rowdy Metal Maniacs, the rival gang of the Teku, bump heads and bumpers alike with Nolo and company. They are led by the muscle-bound Tork Maddox, known for his no-nonsense attitude and gruff behavior. Tork has gained the rabid hatred of Nolo for apparently causing his brother, Tone, to cut a curve too wildly in a street race and crash. Tone's car exploded on impacted, killing him right in front of Nolo. Worse, Nolo had just bickered with Tone over who would lead the Teku. The two constantly butt heads at every occasion, arguing over who's to blame for Tone's death and if Tork should even show his face around anymore.
The Maniacs have gained the ire of Kurt Wylde as well: his younger brother, Markie Wylde, has sided with them, taking both levels in badass and jerkass towards Kurt and society in general. Kurt got Markie involved in Dirty Business after the World Race that caused him to go to jail. Afterwards, Markie went to Tork for help, and came back as just plain "Wylde," raging down the road with arrogant cackles. The energetic little shrimp Kurt took him for is now a fierce, reckless, and impulsive punk whose highlight of the day is to pick a fight with his bro and rub it in his face.
The Metal Maniacs also have a resident big guy, Porkchop (A.K.A. Diesel Riggs), with tons of backbone, fearless determination, and a good sense of humor- although he can be quite the sight when angered, even going as far as to wear a Viking hat as his racing helmet and wearing a ham bone around his neck that he chomps whenever his anger rises (hence the name, "Porkchop"). Porkchop's best bud is Monkey, the hair-trigger mechanic of the Maniacs. Unlike his buddies, Monkey is a slew of frayed nerves who'll panic when faced with adrenaline-pumping danger, but an invaluable Gadgeteer Genius and repairman. Finally, there's former World Race driver Taro Kitano, a rich but stoic driver that acts solo and only helps a racer on a whim.
As the plot unfolds, a cliff side race between Nolo and Tork is suddenly interrupted by Markie, who is in turn, interrupted by Gig, causing everyone to ponder his sudden apperance. Gig says Dr. Peter Tezla, head of a multi-million dollar research corporation, needs their skills yet again. He leads them to the now-ruined cube that once housed Highway 35's racing HQ (in the process the sign for Highway 35 is accidentally torn down), where they meet Brian Kadeem, the man Vert gave the $5 million prize money of the last race to for his people. Kadeem leads them to a top-secret, camoflauged mountain headquarters- the Acceledrome. Here is a hologram of the Wheel of Power, the object that was found at the end of the World Race. However, it plays a bigger part in the story than the drivers first thought. The wheel has symbols that correspond to specific realms to test racers at every level- and said realms are far more frightening and unforgiving than Highway 35's. As before, the only way to enter a portal is to get your car up to a blazing 300 miles per hour- something only achieved with an in-drome racetrack and Nitrox 2, Tezla's special booster canisters, albeit lethal if they explode. Realms can house Hyperpods, giant devices that can fit a car so it may have a better time navigating a track. At the end of each realm is a portal, and the first driver to make it through that portal will be awarded an Accelecharger, a highly-advanced device that will enhance their car to automatically master the skill it took to get through a realm unscathed. Unbeknownst to them, drivers can get lost these realms- and they will. Worse, these realms do not open and close at will- they open whenever the wheel decides to choose one, and for only one hour. As soon as that hour is up, the wheel will close- with or without every driver making it through. Let's just say if you were unlucky enough to exit a portal at the moment it started to shut... you'll be half the person you once were. If an Accelecharger was won in that realm, it locks up until the final challenge is initiated. Because of this, many cars (and one truck) are also lost in the realms, prompting Tesla to provide them new ones, if the racers cannot provide their own replacements.
When racing through these realms, the teams meet the Racing Drones, the standing robot army of Gelorum, the woman that duped Kurt into believing he would be getting riches beyond measure for his services sabotaging the World Race. Gelorum is really a cold-blooded machine in a feminine exosuit, trying to lead her drone army to win every single Accelecharger that exists, so she may gain access to the world of the Accelerons and race them. The drones were built with the purpose to win at all costs- self sacrifice and heartless tactics are not above these monsters. They will indeed race to kill, and attack in force to destroy any and all enemy drivers- the reason the Accelerons, their creators, locked them away to avoid catastrophe. Drones can also integrate themselves into their cars, or activate various blade-like attachments on their bodies to use as weapons.
Unlike the humans, Drones can enter and exit realms on their own accord, using Acceleron technology they have commandeered. If a human happens to end up trapped in their headquarters, Gelorum will interrogate them if they are non-compliant. Should they continue to resist... she offers them a fate worse than death- PAINFUL reconstruction into a twisted Cyborg. Kadeem is her first victim, lost in the Storm Realm and hopelessly in her clutches where none can find him. After he refuses to cooperate with her, she sics a massive amount of surgical tools on him to wreak havoc on his anatomy and turn him into a brainwashed mechanical servant on league with Frankenstein.
The Drones have invaded Hot Wheels City, capturing the Wheel of Power and claiming the city as their own fortified headquarters. Gelorum's top lieutenant, RD-01, caused Dr. Tezla to wreck, moments before he could take back the wheel before the drones obtained it. The resulting crash nearly cost him his life and left him severly crippled. Tesla has been forced to employ mechanical braces to walk, and takes medication to relieve his extreme pain. Tesla's attitude following his injuries has changed drastically. He seems dedicated only to finding out where the Accelerons are, often times sacrificing the safety of his fellow drivers to do so- but Tezla has never intentionally sent a racer to their doom. He initially lacks the knowledge and technology to prevent disastrous consequences from striking in a realm, resulting in the loss of four drivers in total. After much research, he devises the EDR- Emergency Driver Return, so that any racer in peril mid-realm may eject to safety back in the Acceledrome. Unfortunately, his device cannot teleport a car back with a driver, meaning it will be lost, and a driver will be sent back through the portal at the speed their car was traveling, causing injuries the first time it has to be used.
Tezla is aided by Lani Tam, another former World Race driver, and ex-teammate of Vert as a Wave Ripper. She acts as Tezla's assistant and chief medic, providing attention to the injured racers and help over the com-links when a realm opens. Lani often questions Dr. Tezla for jeopardizing the drivers' safety, and has doubts as to his capabilities to keep drivers safe. after watching a few get lost in the racing realms, she takes defensive measures whenever a race begins, telling drivers to get out of a realm if it gets too sketchy, time runs out, or they encounter some other hidden danger. Her car, the '55 Chevy Nomad, has even been repainted to resemble an ambulance.
One of the Racing Drones happens to latch onto Vert's Deora II as he exits the Storm Realm, getting cut in half when he fails to make it out in time. This drone tries to attack him, but is forcefully stopped by Karma and taken offline. For a while, the drone is used by her to study how it races, but it eventually reactivates and tries to steal Dr. Tezla's lower body braces to use as legs in place of the ones it no longer has. The drone also attempts to transmit the location of the Acceledrome back to Gelorum, steal a race car, and exit through an open portal back to her headquarters. Nolo destroys the transmitter, while Wylde stops it from getting through the portal, this time damaging it to the point its memory is completely obliterated. Monkey, however, decides to rebuild the drone into a friendly companion named Sparky. At first, he's short a pair of legs, until Shirako salvages a pair from another smashed Drone for Monkey. Sparky is often the comedic relief of a situation, but he's not to be trusted with cars- EVER. It leads to horrible disasters.
As time passes on, Gelorum steps up her game, introducing car-dismantling behemoths called Sweepers to take drivers off the tracks by force. Nolo has a close call with one in the Metro Realm, causing Tork to go after him and save him. Doing so diffuses his hatred for Tork, but doesn't kill it completely. Around this time, the Teku and Metal Maniacs discover strange occurrences happen during their races, starting with the Metro Realm when it appears Kurt has finished the realm first, but has lost his onboard visuals and comes back empty-handed. It turns out a new force is entering the realms in secrecy: the Silencerz. These drivers sport a myriad of top-of-the-line gadgets: liquid-metallic cars, state-of-the-art technology, built-in holographic camouflage, signal-jammers, the ability to holographically shape-shift into other cars, split into two smaller cars, autopilot systems, self destruct mechanisms, weapons that can short out electronic devices, such as computers and batteries in vehicles, or tear cars apart, bombs, and even EDR tech advanced to the point it can teleport their vehicles back to safety. You name it, they are loaded. The Silencerz take the fullest measures to conceal their presence unless forced to strike back, avoiding conflict and acting as a covert, synchronized team of professionals. The motive of the Silencerz is unknown, as they operate in silence, masking their voices with their signal jammers so none may hear what they are doing. However, they were the ones who designed Gig and his robot template in the first place, and he is designed to counteract any attempts to re-program him, even the best ones. Dr. Tezla has claimed they have stolen technology from him, and has found ways to exploit weaknesses in their tricks, such as uncovering their camouflage. Tezla is very unnerved by their presence, and he will even resort to entering a realm himself if they prove to be too much of a threat. Tezla believes they are connected to a illicit organization that once prodded into his research projects. What he doesn't realize is that all his stolen tech is realy being leaked to the Silencerz via Gig, who follows Tezla's orders, but still answers to the Silencerz.
With each race growing progressively harder, Vert begins to lose faith in his abilities as a driver and decides to leave the Drome without telling anyone, apparently quitting. He has a talk with his father, Major Jack "Rabbit" Wheeler, about his depressed thoughts and gets a boost of inspiration to go on. Tezla calls him on his departure when he suddenly returns on the fly, upset that he's disregarded the safety of his fellow team and could have revealed the location of the Acceledrome travelling by himself. However, Vert tells him that he did this because he felt he couldn't trust himself to be of good use to the team, and Tezla sympathizes with him. He lets Vert race again, knowing self-confidence is what fuels his drivers- why he chose them in the first place.
As the battle to get all the Accelecharges presses on, tempers flare between the Teku and Metal Maniacs. Taro develops a distaste for Karma when they have an apparent mishap in the Ice Realm. This turns out to be a Silencer car in disguise, and the two respectfully put aside their differences- if not to hide a few romantic feelings. However, something even more hot-blooded occurs: Wylde tries to take leadership from Tork by force- and he succeeds. However, his actions cause his team nothing but ilk and misery. His fury towards Kurt reaches its peak in the Junk Realm, where he tries to race his brother to the finish as viciously as he can. This effort sends him flying off the road and strands him in the realm, where the Drones snatch him and bring him straight to Gelorum, who proceeds to interrogate Wylde. He learns that Gelorum will transform him into a subservient cyborg if he doesn't comply- at the sight of a reconstructed Kadeem.
Following this horrible experience, Kurt discovers Tezla has been hiding the truth from the drivers- Kadeem was not the only victim lost in the realms. Dan Dresden, Kurt's former teammate, vanished in the Fog Realm. Alec Wood, Vert Wheeler's own best friend, disappeared in the Storm Realm. Even Banjee Callisto, the leader of the Roadbeasts during the World Race, never made it out of the Swamp Realm (you even catch a glimpse of his car in Ignition). Tezla feared it would discourage his drivers, but Kurt thinks otherwise, and immediately initiates a rescue mission to hijack a Sweeper and use it to enter the Racing Drone's HQ with the rest of the drivers. They enact it in the Cosmic Realm, without Tezla's knowledge, since he would not approve, but for some reason, their Accelechargers aren't working. They managed to take over a Sweeper, and defeat all of the other drones in their way. On their way to the portal, Tork finally apologizes to Nolo for what happened to Tone. Nolo then has a moment of clarity, where he realizes Tone drifted too far and lost control of his own vehicle. He admits this to Tork, and tells him it wasn't his fault that Tone died, mending the rift between the two team leaders.
Soon, Gig reveals that the ones the drivers possess are powerless duplicates, and that he switched them out with the real ones. Along with that disturbing information, he's given the leader of the Silencerz access to the drome and is planning to hand them over to his boss. This is only the beginning of an even worse threat to come: suddenly, the drones start coming through the Acceledrome's real world entrance, as foreshadowed by Tezla in a dream. Gelorum steals every last Accelecharger, including the ones the Silencerz had. She uses them to activate the final challenge of the Wheel of Power: The Ultimate Race, a marathon gauntlet through each and every realm the wheel houses, switching between them at random, even going back to some not even mentioned before. Vert, being injured from the Ruins Realm after encountering a giant statue and hurting his leg, is the only driver left in the drome besides Lani and Tezla himself to chase after Gelorum, accompanied by Sparky. Gelorum effortlessly charges through the realms with the power of the Accelechargers, while Vert resorts to getting through the old-fashioned way: using the skills he's learned before to make it through each one.
While Vert and Gelorum rush full-speed through the Racing Realms, the Teku and Metal Maniacs find themselves surrounded by Drones as they search for Wylde. They are duped by Kadeem, now reprogrammed to serve Gelorum, into trusting him and approaching the tallest tower of the Drone Headquarters, only to be ambushed by an army of Drones from all sides. With luck, they make it through the ambush unscathed and infiltrate the tower. Kurt finds Markie trapped at the very top, now sporting a mechanical left arm after he kept annoying Gelorum, most likely implemented to drive her threats on home. Kurt doesn't get a chance to free his brother, as Kadeem shows up to attack him. Kurt is incapable of getting him to realize who he really is, getting thrashed around by the super-strong menace. Fortunately, Markie suddenly frees himself and the two brothers overpower and corner Kadeem, sending him plunging to his apparent death. Saddened by his fate, they prepare to retreat from the HQ. As this takes place, a Silencerz driver heads to the place where the Wheel of Power is being held, and presumably takes it back to the Silencerz HQ. All of the drivers are forced to abandon their cars when the Drones surround them yet again, this time with no means of escape but their EDR devices. When they arrive in the drome, however, the Drones have taken over, and they capture them all.
When Vert and Gelorum make it through every last Realm, they approach the Sphere, the gateway to the Acceleron homeworld. Vert tries to stop Gelorum from reaching it first, causing his car to flip over, while Gelorum's stays upright. Astoundingly, an Acceleron emerges from the Sphere to greet Gelorum, who is demanding her privilege to challenge him as an award for winning the Ultimate Race. The Acceleron scolds her by saying she essentially cheated by using the Accelchargers in each realm, while Vert used his own skills, causing him to award Vert the title of a true Acceleracer and bestow him with Acceleron-esque clothing. However, Gelorum, furious for being denied victory, suffers a Villainous BSoD and turns her wrath on Vert, shedding her exosuit and transforming into her true, goliath robot form, ready to peel the skin off his bones. When she throttles him in her claws, the Acceleron uses his telekinetic powers to take control of Gelorum by force and send her catapulting into the void of space, while setting Vert's car upright again. The Acceleron removes his helmet as Vert comes up to him, awaiting his reply to see if he will accept the challenge of racing him. However, Vert tells him his friends are in danger and he has to go back. The Acceleron raises his finger and waves it in a circular motion, causing a circle-shaped ring to appear before Vert. Tezla, intrigued by all that has happened up until now, asks Vert what's going on. He tells the doctor: "Wisdom is a circle. What you receive, you must give back." Though Tesla is overwhelmed to see an Acceleron in the flesh for the first time and begs Vert not to part ways with him, Vert suddenly cuts the feed to his onboard dash cam, refusing to let the man get in the way of what's really important- his friends' lives. He turns back to head to the Acceledrome, the Acceleron opening an exit portal for him as he leaves. As the Acceleron returns to his homeworld, his voice echoes out to Vert: "When you return, Acceleracer, you will not be alone..."
RD-01 recognizes Gelorum's defeat and assumes command. He relays the news to the others and demands they destroy all the humans, but Vert arrives in the nick of time to lend a hand. The drivers beat up and destroy many drones, before taking over yet another Sweeper, and escaping the Acceledrome. Dr. Tezla, realizing the Drones that are left would wreak havoc if left alone to run amok decides he must destroy the Acceledrome, with the drones within. In order to do so, he plans to detonate the Nitrox 2 tanks in the storage facility by sending an electrical surge into them, causing a massive explosion. Lani asks him how long he will have to escape, at which point, Tezla hollowly replies that the explosion will be instantaneous, and that he won't be getting away. She attempts to make him reconsider, but Tezla won't back down- until Gig forcibly takes control of his mechanical braces and backs him away from the exposed wires- so he can finish the job.
Regretfully, Tezla and Lani leave him be, and both they and the other drivers, save for Vert, escape the Acceledrome using Nitrium and the Sweeper respectively. Vert has no other choice but to gun it to the portal with Gig on standby, ready to set off the Nitrox 2 the moment he's about to enter it. Vert cuts it closer than any other race he's ever had, Gig setting off the charge milliseconds before he escapes, taking out the Drones, the Accelodrome, and himself along with it, while Tezla looks back from the distance, lamenting, "He could only do what he was programmed to do."
Vert's escape through the now-destroyed drome portal sends him out the portal of the Silencerz, of all places. Using a hologram identical to the one that was projected in the drome, it synchronized and caused Vert to end up coming out this one. The masked scientists approach his car and open it up with their own technology, pulling him out before he can press his EDR, while Sparky manages to escape- only to end up landing on a stretch of road in the middle of nowhere- the real world's Highway 35. He meets up with Tezla and company on said road, who have all agreed that finding Vert is top priority. Sadly, he can't dictate what happened because of his limited vocabulary. As the group prepares to roll out, Markie finds the fallen sign of Highway 35 laying on the ground, and appropriately puts it back where it belongs. Nolo decides to drape Tone's necklace around it before the crew leaves, with Tork asking if he's in or not, to which Nolo affirms him he is.
The very last scene of the fourth movie ends with Vert surrounded by Silencerz, who have taken possession of his ring he got from the Accelerons and are comparing it to the Wheel of Power that they took from the drones. Vert defensively asks them what they're up to as they approach him. The Silencerz scientists don't answer and back off. Finally, the leader of the Silencerz steps forward and removes his helmet... followed by these two lines of dialogue.
- Major Jack Wheeler: Son... we need to TALK.Vert: Dad...?
If you were expecting a big finish to this...you're S.O.L. The movies abruptly stopped on this painful Cliffhanger. There are rumblings of a determined fan effort to continue the series, deemed Acceleracers 5: The Edge, but heaven knows when or if this will get off the ground running.