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T H E    E R A’s    1 9 4 9 ~)

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The  360cc  Era  ( 1949 – 1975 )

Since World War 2, engine sizes have changed 3 times.  With the 1955 change to 360cc as the upper limit for 2-strokes, as well as 4-strokes, the kei class really began to take off, with cars from SuzukiSuzulight ) and then the Subaru 360, the first mass produced kei-car, finally able to fill the people’s need for basic transportation without being too severely compromised.

kc50   YANASE   YANMAR

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The  550cc  Era  ( 1976 – 1990 )

Throughout the 1970’s, the government kept whittling away at the benefits offered to kei-cars, which combined with ever stricter emissions standards made for drastically lower sales figures through the first half of the decade.  Honda and Mazda withdrew from the contracting passenger kei-car market, in 1974 & 1976, respectively, although they both maintained a limited offering of commercial vehicles.

njjj m1 Related imageImage result for mazda badge  my48  Komatsu

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The   660cc   Era   ( 1990 ~)

Because regulations only restrict physical size and engine displacement and latterly outright power ), manufacturers are now able to introduce many advanced technologies.  As a result, kei-cars are now often available with forced-induction enginesautomatic & CV transmissionsfrontrear, & 4WDair conditioning, GPS, and many other innovative features.

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m20    kc154    Related image   ss46   my100

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