Social media and the unique appeal of kei trucks and cars have helped spread their popularity around the world, including the United States. Even though American and Korean small trucks like the Ford Maverick and Hyundai Santa Cruz are available, nothing beats the value and versatility of Japan’s kei trucks, such as the Toyota Hiace, Honda Acty, and Daihatsu Hijet. The Honda N-Box is an even better example of this because of how cute it is.
In Japan, many people own an N-Box. You know, extremely common. The second generation debuted in 2017, and it immediately became the best-selling car in Japan. Top Gear claims that the N-Box has been the best console every year since its release in 2017. According to Nippon.com’s sales data, the N-Box remained on top in 2020, but was dethroned by the Toyota Yaris the following year. For five of the six years since the second-generation N-Box was introduced, it has been Japan’s best-selling car overall.
The updated version has a new front end with a variety of new looks available for each trim level. The N-Box Custom has a larger grille and squared-off running lights, while the standard N-Box has a smaller grille and round headlights in rectangular housings. We like the van’s boxy appearance in all of its forms, but the Fashion trim’s color-matched alloy wheels seal the deal for us.
It should come as no surprise that the three best-selling vehicles in the United States in 2018 were all half-ton pickup trucks. In stark contrast to the 63-horsepower kei vans available in Japan. Small economy vans don’t seem to be a hot commodity in the United States. But we are, and the updated N-Box sounds fantastic. Ideally, it would be painted Fjord Mist Pearl and come with gray alloy wheels.
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