Daihatsu Mira / Handi / Handivan

December 2nd, 2005 by gary

First released in Japan in 1980 was daihatsu’s replacement of their popular Max model with a new car known as the Mira. It was a small 2 cyl 550cc hatch that was available in both 3 and 5 door versions with a 4 speed manual or optional 4 speed clutchless manual known as “Easy Drive”. The Mira was marketed differently in many countries, in the UK it was sold as a Domino and as a Cuore in many other parts of the world.

Daihatsu Handi

In Australia the Mira was sold only as a 3 door commercial version called the Handivan and was released in 1981. The L55 handivan was soon upgraded to the L60 model in 1982 which had a new grill and increased engine size of 660cc.

This first generation body continued untill 1986, the only other changes were the introduction of a conventional 3 speed auto that replaced the unloved “easy drive” and an optional 5 speed manual. 

The 1986 L80 saw an all new body and the introduction of a 3 cyl 850cc engine, this motor was probably only used on export cars as Japan favors 660cc or lower engines to comply with a tax rule that allows cheaper registration of these cars known as Kei class cars.

In 1990 the Handivan name disapeared from the Australian market when the L201 Mira passenger car was released, by 1992 a comercial version was also released (same car, just no rear seats). The L201 still featured a 850cc engine but in a new body.

In 1995 the Mira name was dropped in Australia and the Handivan returned, now with a 660cc engine again possibly due to production of the 850cc engine finishing. The Handivan continued untill 1999 when the new L701 was released with a 1 litre engine. The name was shortened to just Handi and a new passenger version called the Cuore was released.

The Cuore continued until 2003 when it was replaced by the L251 model and renamed Charade, the Charade was formally a seperate model altogeather that had not been sold since 2000, the Handi commercial version was dropped in 2001. 

This entry was posted on Friday, December 2nd, 2005 at 11:09 am and is filed under 1980s. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

12 responses about “Daihatsu Mira / Handi / Handivan”

  1. jacob whitmarsh said:

    shes fitter than ceri

  2. Greg Cash said:

    I have a problem with my Diahatsu Mira. After replacing all electricals including the coil, module etc inside the distributor, the car will not run. It ran for a short time(approx 5- 6 starts) after this work, but has since stopped. The car is a 1990 660cc carbie model. The starter turns over fine and there is fuel getting thru the carbie but no spark to the plugs from the distributor. Any clues, I am getting desperate for an answer as my mechanic is lost for ideas.

  3. Mark said:

    i have a 1994 handivan which i run on lpg, it has done 315000 klm and still running very strong, i do all the maintenace on it , i am looking for the workshop manual

    any direction appreciated


  4. Vaxx said:

    I loved my 81 Handi import with a L60 engine. Front hubs let it down :(.
    It’s currently being reborn with a 3.8 v6 5 speed and live axle :), basicly I’m shoehorning the whole drivetrain and suspension form a vn commodore into it

    Should liven it up a little. If I can get traction, I should get a 0-100kph time under 2.5 secs

  5. jason said:

    got any idea where i would find rear seat for daihatsu handi van

  6. nick said:

    just wondering if anyone still has a working original radio or knows where one is for a 1983 handivan

  7. Roger said:

    I bought the import 1980 Easy Drive semiauto Handivan as my first car, I fully agree that the transmission was its biggest letdown, every time you ingaged first or reverse it would thump hard enough to make the whole car vibrate, it also needed alot of servicing as the hydrolics working the clutch were problematic.

  8. Wattsy said:

    @ Nick, I did have an origional AM radio for a 83 handi, not sure where it is now. The reason I pulled it out was to fit an AM/FM unit from a 82 Ford Laser, it was a perfect fit and looks identical to the origional daihatsu unit.

  9. nick said:

    wattsy. Any chance you would be able to find it? I’m willing to pay for all expenses

  10. John said:

    have a 2 cylinder handivan and recently was driving it and heard a large clunk and now it still run ok and is smooth at idle but at higher revs there is a lot of vibration like the car is going to rattle itself to pieces . does anyone have a suggestion what may be causing this

  11. Wattsy said:

    @John, Maybe a broken engine mount at a guess

  12. Kym GOSDEN said:

    Hi I have a J series 660 efi motor is there a efi 4 valve dohc head that can be fitted ?

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