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Old 06-20-2014, 10:28 AM   #11 (permalink)
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However, the way in which they choose to optimize internal space is to make the vehicle taller.

The kei powertrains can have some decent efficiency engineering, but I suspect a longer, lower vehicle would have better aerodynamics without much weight penalty.

Kei cars make sense in the context of the Japanese space restrictions, sure, but for general efficiency, a longer car makes more sense.

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Old 06-21-2014, 12:56 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhtooefr View Post
However, the way in which they choose to optimize internal space is to make the vehicle taller.

The kei powertrains can have some decent efficiency engineering, but I suspect a longer, lower vehicle would have better aerodynamics without much weight penalty.

Kei cars make sense in the context of the Japanese space restrictions, sure, but for general efficiency, a longer car makes more sense.
Not every Kei car is a high brick-shaped microvan or micro SUV, taking as an example the Mitsubishi i (and the i-MIEV too) and some older ones such as the Daihatsu Mira from the 90s, the Daihatsu Copen and the Subaru Vivio. And the space restrictions are not only a Japanese deal, otherwise there would be no superminis such as the Ford Ka, Volkswagen Fox, Volkswagen Up, Fiat 500, among others.
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Old 06-21-2014, 01:18 PM   #13 (permalink)
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The Copen is also a 2-seater, though, and as I understand, a lot of the "normal" height 4-seat kei cars tend to be quite cramped. (For that matter, the other kei sports cars are known for being cramped despite only being 2-seaters...)
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Old 06-21-2014, 01:35 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bhtooefr View Post
a lot of the "normal" height 4-seat kei cars tend to be quite cramped
Believe me, they're usually still more comfortable than a 1st-gen Ford Ka, in spite of being about 4-inch shorter.
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Old 06-21-2014, 08:15 PM   #15 (permalink)
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My neighbor had a two stroke suzuki "Jeep" it was like 4 feet wide 6 feet long haha.

I also drove a Daihatsu or Kia flatbed work truck when I was a parks worker. It was the most gutless thing I have ever drove. An XR50 dirtbike was faster than it. It could climb descent hills though with its knobby tires!

There are some beautiful kei cars out there. Great design in most of them. Others go off the deep end.

And a Honda Beat racing in the mountains of Japan!
http://youtu.be/T4UQ8OsF2dM?t=2m17s

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Old 06-21-2014, 08:28 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
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superminis such as the Ford Ka, Volkswagen Fox, Volkswagen Up, Fiat 500, among others.
Superminis are limited to three-character names?
Quote:
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It could climb descent hills though with its knobby tires!
It could climb and descend hills?
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Old 06-21-2014, 08:33 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Old 06-21-2014, 11:14 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Superminis are limited to three-character names?
Oh, we forgot the Chevy Spark, the Volkswagen Lupo, the Honda Logo, the Toyota Starlet, the CitroŽn Saxo, the Toyota Aygo, and a few others with more than 3 characters in their names

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