BE-1 still my tiny one litre heart

It’s truly been a while since we came across a very uncommon import on these pages, talking the occasional strangeness that is a Le-Seyde or the March class that is the Viewt. Today we add the low production Nissan BE-1 to that list.


The Nissan BE-1.

You’ve possibly never heard of it and more than likely never seen one out and about because there were only 10,000 of these tiny engined things made across the years 1987 to 1988 and according to the Facebook ad for this one here in Australia, there’s only two including this one down under. Similar to the Viewt and it’s Nissan March underpinnings, this was one of the Nissan ‘Pike cars‘ series from that era and was so popular in Japan, you had to enter a lottery system for your chance to buy one.

Given how fun these little things look too, you could imagine how few were let go to import out of Japan.

Designed as a fashionable city car, buyers weren’t exactly blessed with that hurl you back in your seat excitement from a quick buzz box as this came with a 1 litre engine puffing out 38 killer wasps at a stretch. In comparison my Grandma-spec 1989 Ford Laser GL was 1.6L and 53kw and I didn’t think there were many options less powerful than that but there we go.
However in the case of this one, it now sports a 1 litre Nissan Figaro turbo engine and looks as such:

Nissan Fagaro turbo
That looks both tight to work on and equal parts fun!

That’s about an extra 17kw to help get the one bag of shopping you can carry around in this thing make it home on time.

It seats four…very small children. And they’ll want to be on friendly speaking terms with each other.

Buyer believes the interior is from a March turbo, like the engine

From the ad itself on Facey:

Super rare super weird
1988 Nissan BE-1
Part of the Nissan pike car series with only 10,000 made and only one other that I know of in Australia.
The car came stock with a 1 litre carbureted engine but this has been modified in Japan and now fitted with Nissan Figaro 1 litre injected turbo running gear.
Interior has also been changed to what I think is March turbo interior.
Rare care with crazy history for Nissan fans and cool mods done by Japanese tiny car wizards.
The car is in good condition with minor rust showing around the left hand tail light
Runs and drives great
Turns so many heads and makes everyone smile
Pop out back windows!

The buyers not kidding about the smile part, I think this little beastie rocks and I’d so love to see one of these things at a car show. I’d also like to see it line up on the track with a Viewt and the other tiny cars we’ve had a look at here at Drive Another Day including the Prinz, the and the equally diminutive Subaru Fiori for a tiny car race that would remind me a lot of the first race you get to compete in in the glorious Gran Turismo 2.


At the time of writing (Sept 2022) This Gold Coast based car is currently for sale through Facebook for $11,500 AUD.

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