Driving A Turbo AWD Daihatsu Kei Car Is More Fun Than You’d Expect

Daihatsu is a specialist in small cars and its kei-car history is riddled with turbocharged, all-wheel drive special versions that defied logic and put fun first.

We all have heard about kei cars: they are a Japan-exclusive thing, born out of a regulation that said you can’t buy a proper car unless you have your own parking space. Kei cars are the only ones exempt from this rule, plus they enjoy less tax and insurance costs.

This is a 1998 Daihatsu Cuore Avanzato TR XX R4. What this mouthful of a name tells us is that it’s powered by a turbocharged 64hp 660cc engine that revs up to 9,500rpm(!) and uses all of its wheels to transmit all this power to the ground.

It’s also huge fun to drive, as its engine loves to rev and has the grip to impress the driver despite its proportions being wrong. 0-60mph takes about 8.5 seconds, which should feel amazing for a car of this size.

Regular Car Reviews had the chance to sample one example during their time at the UK, delivering their verdict on this lovely pocket rocket.


  • Bash

    Captain Slow once said: “That’s a ticket to a festival of plastic death”
    I’m not sure and cant remember what car he was referring to, but this quote has just stuck in my mind and somehow remembered it when i saw this little car.

    BTW, sure its a fun ride.

  • john1168

    The best car review I’ve ever seen…..until he picks the Rover at the end:) UGH!!! LOL:) I’ll bet that car is fun in the snow!

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