Emperor (エンペラー Enperā) is a highly skilled team lead by Kyoichi Sudo. The entire team is made of Mitsubishi Lancer Evolutions, claiming their cars are the king of the mountains. Based on Tochigi, their home course is the one-way road of Irohazaka. Their goal was the crush every team in Gunma and take their team stickers to decorate their spoilers as a resumé of how many they have defeated. Their Gunma dominance came to an end when Takumi defeated Seiji in Akina. They serve as the main antagonistic faction in the Emperor arc in Initial D: Second Stage, as well as Extra Stage, and briefly a minor antagonist in Third Stage. The Lancer Evolutions they primarily drive are the 3rd and 4th generations of the car in the anime also the 5th generation -EVO V-). They win their races by using codename Simulations.
They served as the main antagonists as they became Gunma's new threat after defeating numerous teams and taking their team stickers to put on their spoilers as a resumè of how many they defeat starting with the unnamed driver from ThunderFire. The next morning they roam Akina scanning the area. Seiji overtakes Itsuki and Takumi during a joyride and saw the characteristics in its behaviour. They stand by the lake boasting of their Lan Evos and Seiji asks Itsuki some directions. Then asks about whom Akina's fastest racer is. When Itsuki mentioned about Akina's Eight-Six, Seiji laughs at him thinking he is delusional. Takumi and Kyoichi breaks up the fight between the two and admits about the skill level but the car itself is out of fashion. They then head to Akagi to challenge Ryosuke whom ended Kyoichi's winning record prior to First Stage. He later realised Itsuki was telling the truth of Akina's Eight-Six after hearing from Ryosuke whom lost to it during his battle in Akina. Ryosuke accepts Kyoichi's challenge despite announcing retirement after losing his first race. Kyoichi then decides for Team Emperor to challenge Akina's Eight-Six to see for themselves.
Team Emperor first invades Myogi before Akina with Takeshi Nakazato acting as their opponent. The battle was decided a hillclimb. During the battle, Seiji defeats Nakazato using "Simulation 3" which acts as drafting their opponent and overtake once they exploit their weakness. Nakazato crashed his car attempting to make a move and forced to surrender his racing sticker to Seiji whom then cuts it into his spoiler. Seiji boasts that the Emperors will conquer Gunma within a month and warns them to stay out of their way if they ever come across them. Akina is next on their list and chose to race the Eight-Six downhill. Seiji was instructed to do Simulation 3 in which he finds nonsense but Kyoichi knows not to take their opponent lightly since Ryosuke lost to him and sensed energy in Takumi. The race is untimed allowing Takumi a headstart as part of their Simulation 3 strategy. Throughout the battle, Seiji became impatient in slowing down for him and disobeyed Kyoichi and launched his Evo IV in full power. Once in the lead he begins to realise how difficult it is tackling the corners and stressing his front tyres. Takumi managed to keep up with Seiji despite losing so much distance from Seiji's speed. Seiji soon gets overtaken by Takumi at the last 2 corners with the cost of his tires to wear off. His defeat ended their Gunma sweep resulting to Kyoichi to slap Seiji for disobedience. Kyoichi's plans to rematch Ryosuke is still unchanged and must defeat the Eight-Six in Akagi before his main race.
Kyoichi pulls up at the gas station and challenges Takumi to an unofficial race at Akagi hoping to teach him a lesson. Takumi declined at first but later changed his mind after finding out Natsuki had been dating the Mercedes driver secretly. Takumi pulls up in a more serious matter. At the starting line, Kyoichi states it's not a real battle but won't hold back. Kyoichi allowed Takumi to lead using Simulation 3. Kyoichi soon overtakes Takumi at a straightaway leaving Takumi at a disadvantage. Kyoichi is impressed with Takumi's quick adaptability and keeping him up with him for that long. Kyoichi with full determination performs a feint drift and pulls away at a straightaway causing Takumi's engine to blow up. He told Takumi despite not being a real race, an engine blow instantly means defeat and will only resume the race once he gets a better car. A week later, Team Emperor's battle between the RedSuns takes place. In Battle Stage, Seiji is first in line to race Keisuke in a hillclimb and lost in the S's. Kyoichi's main battle with Ryosuke now takes place in a downhill. Prior to the battle, he decided to run the race "Simulation X" in which a driver can run the race at their own will on exceptional opponents.
The race begins allowing Ryosuke to take the lead. He remembers what Ryosuke told him during his first battle with him on how he had a disagreement with Ryosuke about his loss on how his theory on mountain racing is different to his use of circuit racing theories. He told him if his theory was better then he can rematch him. Now with full confidence, he overtakes Ryosuke at a straightaway leaving him at a disadvantage. Ryosuke hadn't given up as he overtakes Kyoichi just at the right hand corner and won the battle by a hair. Ryosuke told him the right corners are his biggest fear due to risk of oncoming traffic since he was used to circuit racing. And circuit racing has no incoming traffic and his homecourse Irohazaka is a one-way road. Kyoichi shown that weakness during his race with the Eight-Six and didn't have enough practice to overcome that fear leading to his defeat once again. Kyoichi realises it and he had been delusional not to realise that. It is shown at the rolling credits they are still continuing to sweep Gunma.
Satake secretly races Impact Blue on their home turf in Usui and loses after wearing out his tyre wear. Satake wanted Seiji to keep it a secret from Kyoichi upon his defeat. In the manga this battle took place before Nakazato's race against Seiji Iwaki (Takeshi Nakazato vs Seiji Iwaki) where as in the anime it happened after that.
They served as lesser antagonists in this stage implying they stopped sweeping Gunma for unknown reasons. Takumi challenges Kyoichi for a rematch after replacing his engine from the blowout. Kyoichi tries to lecture him again to get a better car in order to race him again. Takumi understands but assures Kyoichi the car is different from the first time he raced him and Kyoichi accepts his challenge. Prior to the race he will use the same strategy like the first race using Simulation 3 and the finish line is after crossing 3 bridges at the base of the mountain. Takumi didn't agree to the terms but Kyoichi dismissed his objection and proceeds with the race. Kyoichi realised how much changes the Eight-Six undergone but believes his car is better due to having 350 horsepower. As they approach the bridges, Kyoichi attempted his signature counterattack as he expected Takumi to slow down the last bend of the third bridge but failed as Takumi turns his car at full speed. Kyoichi then praises Takumi's car and drives off. It is mentioned by Kenji that Seiji lost to Kai Kogashiwa in an unseen battle. They later spectated Takumi's battle with Kai and Kyoichi ended his rivalry with Ryosuke as he allowed him to watch the race. Kyoichi realises how capable of a racer Takumi is after his victory. During Takumi's second race with Ryosuke, Kyoichi and Seiji too spectate that battle.
Upon hearing his former classmate of Todo Juku racing school Tomoyuki Tachi is racing Project D at Happogahara, Kyoichi spectates the race and Seiji came along to see it.
Kyoichi and other Emperors spectate Project D's final battle between Takumi Fujiwara and Shinji Inui. They too were present at the finish line celebrating Takumi's victory. Their career paths remains unknown at the conclusion of the series.
In the live action film adaptation of the anime, Emperor is portrayed as a bosozoku gang rather than a street racing team as depicted in the anime and the manga. It was also mentioned that Ryosuke Takahashi of the RedSuns had settled a rivalry with Kyoichi Sudo prior to the events of the film and beat him. Aside from using Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution cars to sweep Gunma, they also use a Nissan Diesel Condor Dekotara truck to transport Sudo's Lancer Evolution when going to races.
During the events of the film, Seiji Iwaki, bumps Itsuki Tachibana's new Toyota AE86, believing it to be Takumi's car. He then arrived and mocked Takumi and Itsuki, calling the AE86 junk and ordering them to go home. Angered, Takumi borrows Itsuki's AE86 and challenges Seiji to an impromptu race, to the point that Seiji spins out and crashes into a guardrail, allowing Takumi to win the race despite the AE86 performing poorly. Kyoichi Sudo, leader of Team Emperor, would later challenge Takumi to an impromptu battle to get revenge for Seiji's defeat, to the point that Sudo wins just as Takumi's AE86 blows its engine. Kyoichi Sudo would later challenge Takumi Fujiwara and Ryosuke Takahashi to a three-person battle and has a slight lead over the duo in the first half of the race. However, he is overtaken as Takumi and Ryosuke work together to overtake him using the gutter technique. Despite warnings of an uncoming car approaching, Sudo refuses to take advice and takes the lead, but loses control of his Evo 3 after dodging the car, causing him and his car to fall off the cliffside and onto a lower section. Kyoichi still survives the crash as he is helped by his teammates who witnessed it, but walks away in defeat after Takumi wins the race.
|Kyoichi Sudo||Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution III GSR (CE9A)||Downhill||Emperor No. 1|
|Seiji Iwaki||Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IV RS (CN9A)||Downhill||Emperor No. 2|
|Satake||Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IV RS (CN9A)||unknown||unknown|
|Nogami||Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution III RS (CE9A)||unkonwn||unknown|