Kei Cars and Kit Cars – K Car Global 24H Endurance Sepang


We were fortunate again to have a great weekend at Cars of Malaysia. This time, we dropped by the Sepang Circuit to check out the K Car Global 24 Hour Endurance Race. We found out about this event only through social media and decided to join in.



Upon hearing the name of the event, I was expecting a locally organised event with our very own Kei cars (cars below 1000cc) like the Perodua Viva, Kancil, and Kelisa. But as soon as I arrived, I was surprised. I saw a Ford GT, the Sunoco Ferrari 512M, and a Frog Eye Sprite. I was baffled for a moment but then realised that these cars were actually kit cars made to look like these classic icons.


What was going on? It was only there and then that I learned that this race was organised by K Car Global, which I presume is based in Japan. So it was a Japanese event (First time again for Cars of Malaysia).


To qualify as a K Car the engine displacement has to be less than 1000cc. With a kit car you can put a small engine in (eg. a 660cc Honda engine) and have a body that looks like almost any car you want.


What is A Kit Car?



Image source


If you watched Need For Speed you would have probably realised that the Bugatti Veyron, the Koenigseggs, and several other supercars in the movie looked a little off. If you have good eye for cars, they would have looked very, very off. The wheels were thinner, the interiors looked flimsy, and the cars looked smaller. Those were kit cars. Kit cars are usually a choice for small racing teams to gain experience, or a choice for automotive enthusiasts who like to spend their time at the track. Examples of kit cars that you can purchase are the Ariel Atom, and Caterham 7.




Image source


Kit Cars at the Event and Their Original Counterparts

Let’s have a look at the kit cars that were present and the original cars they try to emulate. It was great to see these things around. It was like a Mini Le Mans. Images of the original car are placed below each car.


Ford GT40

Kit Car:



Original Car:


Image source

Engine: 5.0L V8 (Clearly not K car Material)


Sunoco Ferrari 512M

Kit Car:




Original Car:


Image Source

Engine: 5.0 L V12 (also not K Car Material)


Original Cars or Kit Cars?

I’m confused if these are the originals or kit cars. I don’t have a good enough eye for this. If you can tell the difference, comment below.


Alpine M63

Kit Car:




Original Car:


Image Source

Engine: 996 cc inline 4… actually qualifies for K car


Austin Healey ‘Frog Eye’ Sprite

Kit car:



Original Car:


Image Source


Engine: 948cc inline 4…. well this also qualifies as a K car.


I’m gonna need your help to figure this one out..



Please leave a comment below if you know what this one is.


 


Unique Kei Cars

Also present were some unique Kei cars that you don’t normally see in Malaysia. The Daihatsu Mira is a JDM original but we’re quite used to the look of it since we have the Kancil, Viva, and Kelisa.


Here are some unique little machines for your eyes. Can we drive these on Malaysian roads? It would be great to have a fun car under 1000cc in Malaysia (imagine the tax rate)


Suzuki Cappuccino


You’ve probably seen this one driving down the touge with a heavy dose of Eurobeat.



Mazda Autozam AZ-1


Those doors are stock. And its a mid-engine. I recall seeing one in the Mazda Showroom in Glenmarie. I don’t think it is there anymore.



Honda Beat


Also mid-engine.




Daihatsu Copen


This Daihatsu Copen belonged to one of the Malaysian racing teams (Mozid Racing) and is a rare sight on Malaysian Roads. Front Engine and Front Wheel Drive.



Honda Today

Older Honda Today (Yesterday?):




Newer Honda Today (Tomorrow?):




Suzuki Alto

If I’m not mistaken, this is the 4th gen Alto.




Subaru Vivio


More in depth story on this particular one below.



Malaysian Teams

I’m not going to be able to name all the teams that were there. Turn out was pretty good – there was AKBM, Zam Auto Garage, Team JB King Kong, Mozid Racing, a couple of F-tuned cars, and that’s what I can recall for now. If you are from any of these teams and want high resolution versions of these, just drop me an email.





A Racing Car for Paraplegics





There was one special car in the race and it was this Subaru Vivio. What makes it special? It doesn’t have foot pedals. This racing team was made up of paraplegic drivers do all the car controls have to be accessible by hand. Since you already have your hands busy with the throttle, brakes, and steering, the car comes with an automatic gearbox because having a traditional H-pattern gear knob would be too much of a handful. I guess they could have gone with a paddle shift system but it probably wasn’t worth it.






 Have a closer look inside the cockpit







Night Shots


You can’t have 24 Hour Endurance race without night shots. Although I didn’t stay for the whole thing, I decided to drop by again at night just tofeel what it’s like to see cars racing at Sepang at night.


I was only equipped with my old Canon 550D and a fixed lens (50mm f1.4) and was relying on whatever light that was available.








If you’ve scrolled down this far, congratulations. You are now a certified true fan of Cars of Malaysia. Send me a dm at instagram (@arif.chan) by 30.11.2017  if you’ve scrolled down this far. If we happen to produce any merchandise in the future, we’ll send some of the first releases to you for free.


Until then.


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