Be-1 and The PIKE Cars

                                NISSAN  Be-1, PAO,  S-Cargo Van,  Figaro and  Rasheen were collectively known as the PIKE CARS   http://www.retrotogo.com/2006/03/nissans_retro_c.html                     

                              BE-1 was designed by NAOKI SAKEI of the Water Studio   http://www.sakainaoki.com/

                                Sakei made an absolute fortune early in life, printing T Shirts with Japanese Motifs while living in San Francisco in the late 1960's.

Nissan Figaro 1991

 

    Nissan Pao 1989

 

 

 The Suzuki is a Naoki Sakei Water Studio Design..

 

 

 Sakei went from T Shirts to Be-1's

 

The Be-1, PAO and the Nissan Figaro although produced and in the case of the Be-1 badged NISSAN, were constructed by Aichi Machine Ltd, ( Nagoya) formerly known as Aichi Kokuki KK.. manufacturer of military aircraft of WW2

Aichi Machine Ltd Premises were referred to as The PIKE FACTORY( producing Figaro and Pao)

The production and assembly involved a lot of manual input. Aichi Machine Ltd currently build engines and transmissions including the Nissan GTR
Australian Import approval requirements have worked to keep both the PAO and the Figaro out of Australia.  Technically it is possible to import both, but the cost of the licence for the 100 vehicles minimum has seen no one step forward to apply for one for any PIKE....bit late now.  A few Pikes came in before a change of import regs...Be1's are OK as they are are pre 1989..and unregulated. I note that Figaro's are being flogged here out of Queensland...just how that is achieved with our import laws is difficult to say but maybe something to do with the provision of personal imports rights.

All the Pike vehicles are inspired by cars that may be seen in the background of any contemporary European movie of the late 50's - early 60's.  Definately some early SIMCA, FIAT, CITROEN, and MORRIS MINI etc. somewhere in all these cars.

Pao and Figaro were far more retro in execution than Be-1 Be-1 engine size 987cc, and quoted engine power is identical to the Morris Mini Cooper (1961) Pao had an Indiana Jones inspired grand safari theme. The Figaro had something of an elegant early european1950's shape to it.  

Be-1's were produced in 1987 by Takada Industries in the Osaka area. Hand assembled, the numbers made were limited.  Demand for the Be-1 was unprecedented with 52,000 orders for a production total of 10,000 units. Allocation of the cars produced to would be purchasers, was by a lottery. Lottery success gives a right to purchase. 

To own a Be-1 in the late 80's was pretty cool.   Even Duran Duran owned one in the 80s..AWESOME ! 

 


 


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

 

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