Rice burner

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Rice burner
ManufacturerAsian, esp. Japanese
Also calledRice machine, rice rocket, rice grinder, or ricer

Rice burner is a pejorative, used as early as the 1960s, originally describing Japanese motorcycles,[1][2][3] then later applied to Japanese cars, and eventually to Asian-made motorcycles and automobiles in general.[4] The term most often refers to vehicles manufactured in East Asia, where rice is a staple food.[5][6] Variations include rice rocket, referring most often to Japanese superbikes, rice machine, rice grinder or simply ricer.[4][7][8]

The adjectival variation riced out describes the result of "overmodifying a sports compact, usually with oversized or ill-matched exterior appointments".[9] Rice boy is a US derogatory term for the driver or builder of an import-car hot rod.[5] The terms may disparage cars which have been cheaply modified to present a deceptive or cosmetic appearance of high performance, without the capability.

The term is often defined as offensive or racist stereotyping.[10][11][5] In some cases users of the term assert that it is not offensive or racist,[12] or else treat the term as a humorous, mild insult rather than a racial slur.[13][14][15][5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Motor Cycle 17 November 1966 pp.674-675 You Say This. "Won't last. ...Many a rice burner will be clapped out within four or five years, but the Tiger 90 would last about 12 years. Paul Ayres, Woking, Surrey". Accessed 4 May 2015
  2. ^ Motor Cycle 1 December 1966 pp.740-742 You Say This. "Challenge on. I was interested to see the correspondence regarding the Triumph T90 and the Suzuki Super Six and the challenge issued...Having sold and serviced many Triumphs and Suzukis, I feel qualified to act without bias. Had Paul Ayres (17 November) the experience of both makes, such as comes the way of a dealer with 16 years in the trade, he would not refer to the finest two-fifty motorcycle yet manufactured as a rice burner. K.R. Harris, Aitchanbee Motor Cycles, Harrow Weald, Middlesex." Accessed 4 May 2015
  3. ^ Motor Cycle 22 December 1966 pp.834-835 You Say This. "Proof. We do not consider the Suzuki Super Six to be a rice-burner. Indeed, after it has drunk its petrol, it will have little appetite for anything else. A two-fifty which needs a gallon of petrol every 47 miles to travel at 60 mph must be the ultimate in low efficiency. P.J. Worsnop, P. Woollven, Radcliffe-on-Trent, Nottingham". Accessed 16 June 2015
  4. ^ a b Dictionaries and glossaries:
    • McCutcheon, Marc (2003), Roget's super thesaurus (3rd ed.), Writer's Digest Books, p. 378, ISBN 978-1-58297-254-1
    • Dalzell, Tom; Victor, Terry (2007), The concise new Partridge dictionary of slang and unconventional English, Routledge, p. 538, ISBN 978-0-415-21259-5
    • McKean, Erin, ed. (2003), The Oxford Essential Dictionary of New Words, Berkeley, p. 237, ISBN 0-425-19097-8
    • Dickson, Paul (2006), Slang; The topical dictionary of Americanisms, Walker & Company, p. 41, ISBN 0-8027-1531-1
    • Madden, Donna (2007), Sweet Machines & Bike Night Scenes, Lulu.com, p. 26, ISBN 1-4116-9778-2
  5. ^ a b c d Breitenstein, Jeff; Paiva, Troy (2004), Ultimate Hot Rod Dictionary, MotorBooks/MBI Publishing Company, p. 170, ISBN 978-0-7603-1823-2
  6. ^ "You might be a rice rocket jockey if. (Pony Tales).", Mustang Monthly, 25 (5), p. 14, May 2002
  7. ^ Matebese, Lerato (19 November 2009), "Driving Impression. Putting Godzilla through its paces", Business Day, Johannesburg, South Africa
  8. ^ Palladino, D. J. (9–16 April 2009), "Formula Racing", Santa Barbara Independent, Santa Barbara, California, 23 (169), p. 119
  9. ^ Palmisano, Trey (4 March 2010), "Toyota enthusiast embraces tuner culture", The Washington Examiner, Washington, D.C., archived from the original (HighBeam) on 18 May 2013, retrieved 22 September 2012
  10. ^ Green, Jonathon (2005), Cassell's Dictionary of Slang (2nd ed.), Sterling Publishing Company, p. 1189, ISBN 978-0-304-36636-1
  11. ^ Herbst, Philip (1997), The color of words: an encyclopedic dictionary of ethnic bias in the United States, Intercultural Press, p. 199, ISBN 978-1-877864-97-1
  12. ^ Pierson, Melissa Holbrook (1998), The Perfect Vehicle: What Is It About Motorcycles, W. W. Norton & Company, p. 166, ISBN 0-393-31809-5
  13. ^ Ubinas, Helen (14 March 1999), "Motorcyclists Reclaim Youth With Hog-Wild Week In Florida; [7 Hartford North Final Edition]", The Hartford Courant, Hartford, Connecticut, p. A.1
  14. ^ "Spinning 'Rice Burners' Into Gold", The New York Times, New York, N.Y., p. D.10, 26 July 2004, retrieved 9 May 2011
  15. ^ Heald, Bill (15 June 2003), "Bike Speak ; The Collected Lingo Of The Road Warrior", The Hartford Courant, Hartford, Connecticut, p. 14


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