Holy Crap There's A New Daihatsu Taft And Of Course It Slaps
You know what I like to do when things start to feel a bit gray and dreary? I like to take myself on a little journey. A journey to a place I know will always make the world seem brighter and more optimistic. A strange, magical place I like to call “Daihatsu Japan’s Website.” And this trip brought me knowledge of something truly wonderful: a new Daihatsu Taft.
Well, relatively new at least—this new version of the Taft went into production in June, and was available for sale July 10. That counts as new!
This new Taft is based on Daihatsu’s WakuWaku concept car that we saw last year at the Tokyo Motor Show:
If you’re not familiar with the Taft, don’t feel bad—the Taft name was only just brought back this year after being most recently used back in 2007 for the Indonesian market version of a small off-roader that was better known here as the Rocky, but was also called the Fourtrak or Hiline or the Toyota Blizzard.
To Americans especially, the Taft name may seem odd, since it’s the name of our 27th president, William Howard Taft. There’s speculation that the Taft was named for him because of a slight resemblance, which, if you look at old photos, you can kind of see:
Despite the coincidental similarities, Daihatsu maintains the name is an acronym for “Tough & Almighty Fun Tool,” which is a hilarious string of words I soon hope to use in a semi-public setting to refer to my genitalia, which I’m sure will deliver Big Laffs.
Let’s get back to the new Taft, though. It’s a Kei-class car, which means it’s legally limited to 660cc and 64 horsepower, along with a strict set of compact dimensions.
The Taft, of course, meets all these requirements, with a 658cc naturally-aspirated inline-three engine making 51 HP, or a turbo version making 63 HP. Buyers can choose whether or not they want all those horses spinning just the front wheels through a CVT, or spinning all four wheels.
I think the new Taft looks fantastic; a chunky, boxy, futuristic-looking little brute that, especially with the optional “plating” on the front, looks a ...
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