Friday, February 01, 2008

Everything's smaller in Japan

I have never been to Japan. But I am a great fan of cars from there. (Our only car is a Honda.)

From 1991-1996, Honda made this great little convertible sports car that never made it to the USA: the Honda Beat. (Our taste isn't that sophisticated.)

I actually saw one in Kenya in the early 90s. And probably several in England, in the late 90s.

Think 60% of the Mazda Miata, in terms of size. The engine was only 660cc. (That's about half the engine size of the average motorcycle sold in the USA.)

Maybe with the price of gas going up still, we might get some cool small cars here. The Smart is coming.

And then, there is the Tata Nano, from India. It was introduced recently and will sell for $2500! (But a used Corolla or Civic may be a more satisfying vehicle for that money.)

Geekish footnote: I got the Tata pic from a random news site. I scanned the Beat pic from an actual Japanese Beat brochure that my friends Eric & Sheryl sent me from Japan, when they lived there.


I Was Just Thinking.... said...

SO explain to me, are the big U.S. auto manufacturers (Ford, GM, etc) lobbying to not allow this more sensible cars into the U.S. market? It does make me a little perturbed that the rest of the world has these great choices and we don't. Would the Tata ever be sold here?

Paul Merrill said...

Probably it wouldn't be sold here - it's not safe enough. The Smart Car is - it was tested a lot.

But I DO wish we had more choice here, when it comes to buying small cars!

The Lone Beader said...

Well, I don't think a Smart car is safe! I would not want to get in an accident in that tin can. LOL.