Daihatsu’s Tokyo Concepts Blend Retro And Futuristic

Daihatsu is the latest Japanese automaker to reveal its lineup for this year’s Tokyo Motor Show, headlined by two completely new concepts to show the way forward for the small-car specialists.

The pretty little red job pictured above is called the DN Compagno, reviving the spirit of the Vignale-designed model line Daihatsu produced in the 1960s and powered by a 1.0-liter turbocharged engine (though Daihatsu envisions fitting a 1.2-liter hybrid in there just the same).

The new concept takes the form of a rakish four-door coupe, with bright metallic trim from the side sills to the roof rails to blend the modern with the classic. Interior space prioritizes the front passengers, but the rear seats get their own doors as well – not unlike the Mazda RX-8, we’d surmise, but with more conventional portals.

It’s joined by the DN Pro Cargo, which reaches back even further to the 1957 Midget for inspiration and takes the form of a compact commercial van. Looking like something out of a Pixar movie, it packs tiny wheels and small footprint, but enough room inside for an adult to stand up straight – as long as said adult is no taller than 5’3″, which is more than the average woman in Japan.

Along with the new DN Compagno and DN Pro Cargo, Daihatsu has also refreshed a handful of other recent concepts for the Tokyo show, including the DN U-Space, DN Trek, and DN Multisix. Visitors can also expect to find on display examples of production Daihatsus like the Copen, Hijet, Boon, Move, and Tanto.

Photo Gallery

  • Dennis Scipio

    Nice Blend of Modern and Retro design on the Compagno concept.

  • Jp

    These Cadillac tail lights on the DN Compagno… It has an ‘old American car from the 50s’ vibe, in a mini package. Well done!

    • Eythan Aldrich

      you mean the tail fin?

  • Nate

    Quite like the look of the DN Compagno concept.

    • Matt

      Rear seat passengers won’t though…

  • Obsequious Lickspittle

    These are fabulous little vehicles.
    The DN Campagno in particular deserves to be made and go on a production run..

  • dean

    you mean blend vomit and poop…

    • Eythan Aldrich

      you mean shut up and get out? that’ll be your move -_-

      • dean

        no, I made my move on your mom, she loved it….

  • Benjamin B.

    I don’t typically like small sedans. But the retro sedan looks pretty good.

  • Cupboi

    They don’t really know what “Brand Identity” means. Talk about lack of consistency…

  • fabri99

    I wish all cars would be this simple, original and spontaneous in their looks.

  • OdysseyTag

    The Japanese are going in hard with retro concepts these days.

  • ediotsavant

    Beautiful concept cars. It’s unfortunately we don’t buy small cars as these would be wonderful to own, especially the Pro Cargo.

  • Christian Wimmer

    I like the DN Pro Cargo concept, but the pedals look a little offset to the left due to the intrusion of the right-wheel. Reminds me of the Ferrari Mondial/Testarossa/208/308 which also have the pedals offset to the right (on LHD cars) because of the intruding left wheel forcing you to drive the car sitting slanted.


    • Bash

      But none of these cars have any edges. lol

  • Blade t

    Interesting little designs….

  • tkindred

    I like the red one. I could see it in all black, putting on a nice set of wheels on it and lowering it about 1 inch

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