Oh Daniel you make me envious of the cars you spot over in Japan! I love Kei cars and this 1973 Suzuki Fronte FH (LC20) is one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen.
That front is fairly normal for Japanese kei cars, nothing out of the ordinary there. But then you look at the back and it’s like someone put two cars together into one. The rear doors with the upswept C-pillar remind me a bit of a Hyundai Veloster while the egg-like rear of the car looks like a Toyota Previa. This is something you would never see out of a USDM car.
According to the Wikipedia page of this lovely little thing, the louvers you see on the rear fenders actually allow air into the engine compartment with the right one also serving as an access door to the fuel filler. From the factory, the engine made an “I can walk faster than this” 34 HP but according to Daniel, this particular example has triple carburetors from the GT trim level which brings it up to an “Oh please sir, may I have some more” 37 HP!
The Fronte LC20 was offered in both two-door and four-door configurations with more trim levels than modern Dodge vehicles. Get ready for this one: the two-door had GU, GD, GH, GC, GT, GT type II trim levels. The four-door had FU, FD, FH, FC, and FT trim levels. Later on in the model’s life, the trim levels were made less ludicrous and just renamed to Standard, Deluxe, and Custom.
The LC20 was taken out of production at the end of May 1976 and as Daniel himself says, they are a rare sight. Would I daily drive this? Dude, absolutely. I would whip this thing around town with the proudness of someone who just bought their first exotic car. I guarantee you that if I took a Fronte LC20 to an exotic car meet, I would get more eyes than your buddy’s Aventador.
I think I’ve said all there is to say. May the sun forever shine on Japan and its weird, yet beautiful, automotive industry. The world wouldn’t be the same and I wouldn’t be here writing for WasabiCars without it.