Founded in the 1960s, Mitsuoka is a niche company specializing in odd-looking cars that take after classic models. The Toyota V6-powered Orochi sports car is probably their most popular on the interwebs, but most of the coachbuilder's vehicles are based on mundane cars. Such is the case with the Viewt, which has been around since 1993 and has always been based on the Nissan Micra/Mach. Well, not anymore because the latest version is a Yaris.
Toyota's supermini is already living a double life by being a rebadged Mazda2 Hybrid in Europe and now it has a third personality in Japan. More than 13,000 units of the previous Micra-based Viewt models have been sold in total. The fourth-generation Mitsuoka Viewt continues the tradition of adopting styling cues from the Jaguar Mark 2.
2023 Mitsuoka Viewt
The rebodied Yaris has a classic front fascia with round headlights and a large upright grille as a nod to the British luxury sedan from the 1960s. It's 70 millimeters (2.7 inches) longer than the donor car and rides on small steel wheels with chrome hubcaps. Known by its full name as the Mitsuoka Viewt Story, it gets round taillights to make it stand out from the previous three generations that mimicked the Jaguar Mark 2's rear lights.
While from the outside it's hard to tell this is a Toyota Yaris, the car's true identity is easy to notice on the inside where the changes are less significant. Mitsuoka has spruced up the cabin with new upholstery and trim colors, but the overlook remains quite familiar. Gone is the Toyota badge on the steering wheel, replaced with the coachbuilder's logo instead.
Pricing kicks off from ¥3,080,000 (around $23,000 at current exchange rates), which represents a massive bump over a base Yaris available in the Land of the Rising Sun from ¥1,470,000 ($11,000). Go for the flagship trim will all-wheel drive and a hybrid powertrain and Mitsuoka will charge you ¥4,202,000 ($31,300).
The Viewt is not the first Toyota to get the Mitsuoka treatment as fans of the brand will remember the Ryugi, Galue, and Nouera based on variations of the Corolla.