A kei car is just like an average car, but miniature. Most come as sports cars like the mid-engine gullwing-doored Autozam AZ-1. The vehicles began after WWII. The Japanese government created these vehicles to force native automakers to make frugal and inexpensive vehicles for the public. The name comes from a Japanese term that roughly translates to “light automobile.”

They were built to strict regulations, including an engine size no bigger than 660cc (0.67 liters) and no more than 64 hp. The engine can be turbocharged, but the car itself cannot be longer than 11.2′, wider than 4.85′, or taller than 6.5′. These measurements make the kei car a little bigger than an ATV. Their size is why they stood out.

These were designed as fun cars to drive or even as an everyday driver. They can be imported to the US with some leg work and a great car that drivers can use on their regular commutes. They can come as trucks and even camper vans as well.

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