Back in the early ’90s, Subaru wanted to enter the sports car market to promote its biggest assets, the all-wheel drive and flat six engine. So, the company hired the Italdesign Company to design the sleek, modern coupe.
In 1991, the Subaru SVX debuted with strange styling and complicated side window patents. But it had sublime handling and a great performance. Under the hood was a 3.3-liter flat six that propelled this rare car from 0 to 60 in 7.3 seconds. They sold only about 14,000 in America until 1996.
Toyota Will Vi
In an attempt to bring some excitement to the Kei Car class, In 2000, Toyota introduced a strange and ugly model they called the Will Vi. They sold the car on the Japanese market only. It featured a concave rear, unexpected design elements and unusual details.
It came with a 1.3-liter four cylinder mated to an automatic transmission, so the performance was quite slow. The market didn’t respond well, so they discontinued the car in 2001 after selling just a few of them.
As we told you before, the world of Japanese Kei Cars is crazy and the Mitsuoka Viewt is just another example. They introduced it in the early â90s. The Viewt is a retro-styled subcompact car they built on the Nissan Micra base.
Mitsuoka paid much attention to the details, fabricating a new front and rear end to make the Micra resemble the classic early ’60s Jaguar Mk2 sedan. However, the drivetrain was the same as in the Micra, so it meant that Viewt delivered a modest performance and top speeds.
Prince Skyline Coupe
The car industry in post-war Japan was modest and concentrated on small Kei Cars. But there was one factory that produced luxury vehicles with the looks of those high priced European models. It was the Prince Motor Company.
The best and most influential model was the Skyline Sport Coupe with its sleek design, perfect stance and luxury feel. It came with a 1.9-liter four cylinder engine delivering around 100 HP. Despite its effect on the market, the price was high, so they made just a few hundred of them.
Even before retro was a thing in car design, Nissan presented an influential and crazy looking compact model they called the Pao. It was for sale on the Japanese market only and all of them came in right hand drive configuration.
The design resembled the Austin Farina or Mini, but underneath the body, the Pao was an advanced car with an independent suspension and 52 HP engine. Nissan sold it for just three years between 1989 and 1991. They made over 50,000 of them.
Often called one of the ugliest cars ever produced, Nissan S-Cargo has a cult following, and not only in Japan, but worldwide. The reason is simply its unusual styling and design that is unique in the car world.
Nissan introduced the car in 1989. It was a highly stylized urban Kei Car delivery vehicle with modest power and dimensions, but great usability and practicality. It got its power from a 1.5-liter engine mated to a three-speed automatic gearbox. However, despite being unique and interesting, they sold only around 8,000 of them.
Which is your favorite on this list of crazy, funny and insane Japanese production cars? Be sure to get your Kei car before it becomes rarer and way more expensive.