Japan was rebuilding the country after the second world war. Motorized vehicles were of great support for this and thus the development and sales of vehicles started to increase year by year. Pick-up trucks play a key part in growing economies, so on this page there will be introduced three pick up trucks that Mazda build in the past. While it used to be functional vehicles, nowadays they actually look quite cute.
The biggest workhorse of Mazda at the time was the T2000. Originally it was sold as a Toyo Kogyo (previous name of the Mazda company) branded vehicle, but with the company name change to Mazda for the purpose of selling passenger cars, the T2000 was also being sold under the Mazda brand. While most vehicles at the time had four wheels, the T2000 only had three wheels. The big advantage of that is a more nimble handling and smaller turning radius.
Different sizes for the truck bed were available as well as a lighter model called the T1500 which used a 1.5 liter engine. The T2000 used a 2 liter engine with around 80 horsepower giving the vehicle a maximum speed of around 100 km/h. Maximum load capacity was 2000 kilogram. Production lasted until 1974.
Like the T2000, the K360 was also a three wheeled truck. Much smaller size though. Just under 3 meter long, 1.28 meter wide and 1.4 meter high. It meant the weight was also low with only 485 kilogram unloaded. With space for two people and around 200 kilogram of luggage, this small truck was at that time a useful companion for many Japanese and is basically a forerunner of the Kei truck.
The K360 was launched in 1959 under the Toyo Kogyo brand and was competing with the Daihatsu Midget. From 1962 it continued as a Mazda. One of the unique features of the K360 was its two tone body color. The top of the cabin was white while for the rest of the body different colors like blue, green and pink were available.
A two cylinder four stroke 360cc engine that produced 11 horsepower was mounted between the cabin and the bed. Via a 3-speed manual transmission the rear wheels were driven. With a top speed of only 65 kilometers per hour it was not very fast, but it was very agile with a turning radius of only 3.5 meter.
Based on the K360, a variant with a stronger engine and more load capacity was also available. It was called the T600 and used a 600cc engine with 20 horsepower. Load capacity was around 200 kilograms more. By 1970 both the K360 and T600 got replaced by the Porter Cab.
Mazda Porter Cab
From 1970 until the end of 1988 Mazda produced the Porter Cab. Where the regular Porter was a van or pickup type vehicle based on a passenger car, the Porter Cab was a small pickup truck with its cab placed more to the front to allow for a larger pickup bed. Overall dimensions were very similar to the K360 predecessor.
The Porter Cab has a very recognizable exterior with two round headlights and two round indicators above it that look like small ears. On the back side, the rear lights are round as well. In models until 1973, the rear light was all red while the newer models got an orange lens for the indicator. For the exterior color there was just one choice in the beginning. First white, then it became yellow, then green and from 1976 it became white again.
In 1977 there was a minor model change during which the engine was changed from two cylinder 360cc 2 stroke (23 horsepower) unit to one with a two cylinder 550 cc 4 stroke (30 horsepower) made by Mitsubishi. Until the end of production in late 80’s, there were minor modifications done to keep the car interested to the public. But after almost 20 years, it was getting outdated replaced by the Mazda Scrum.