Kimura Motors was founded by Kesago Kimura as Hokkaido Motor Company in post-war Sapporo. A developing brand in a collapsed Japan, Kimura began its life building affordable cars that everyone could enjoy. The Type-1 was conceptualized in 1949 and was an immediate hit. With a spacious interior for not much money, it instantly started the company’s reputation for small, fun, reliable cars. In 1954, Kimura introduced their second car; the K1200-C. With a small yet peppy 1.2L Inline-4, the K1200-C helped Kimura gain their popularity for sports cars. Two successors, the K1600-C and K1800-C, were released sequentially in 1960 and 1966, respectively, but were discontinued due to dwindling popularity.
Thanks to the growing popularity and international export of the Auburn and despite the relative failure of the K-C series and the international oil crisis, Kimura was able to release a new large saloon in 1975 called the Eminence. Sold only in Japan for its first and second generations, it became a status symbol for Kimura; a home-brewed luxury sedan with the capability to compete against European sports cars in performance and American luxury limos in comfort. The Eminence, with it’s sleek and modern styling, too became a relative hit; Japan’s prime minister soon was ferried in one of his own.
Arguably the biggest expansion and growth of the Kimura brand was during the 1980’s. The Auriga, Kimura’s first midsize sedan, was unveiled to the public in 1983 to critical acclaim. Praised for it’s sharp handling, aerodynamic style, and low price tag, it helped Kimura double their annual sales. In 1986, Kimura revealed the Avina, their second foray into the subcompact market after the Auburn grew in size. This allowed the company to begin their “Phase 2” expansion plan; with a focus on the North American market from the years 1989 to 1992, 6 all-new Kimura models were released (Hana, Devorak, Helruna, Cavatina, Arctos, and KT-U). In order to keep up with the rigorous build schedule, 4 new factories were built over the course of 10 years; 2 European plants, a US-based Tennessee factory, and another Japanese factory.
The Devorak, KT-U, and Arctos were all released in 1989, with the former 2 sharing an FR base platform (The Arctos shared a platform with the FF Auriga). The Devorak was the go-anywhere SUV, capable of hauling you and 5 of your children. The KT-U was a rugged pickup that could get up and go wherever, whenever. Unlike the other two’s more rugged nature, the Arctos was marketed as a minivan for the future; a versatile and highly flexible interior made it easy to pack wherever, whenever. Also introduced in 1989 was the official branch of Kimura’s racing division, or KR-R (Kimura Racing-Ralliart). While it had been in service since the mid 1970’s, it was officially purchased by Kimura in 1989 to produce sports machines.
Kimura unveiled the 1990 Helruna at the Tokyo Motor Show. It was shown to have taken spiritual influence from the now legendary K-C series and created as an attainable successor to the TKR-C of 1986. With Kimura’s first mass-production turbocharged inline-4 which was easy to modify, it gained traction as a staple in Japan’s tuner car culture. It also was the very first Kimura to wear a KR-R badge.
In 1991, Hana was released as a small all-terrain vehicle made to tackle any road. On the same platform a year later was the Cavatina, with a similar body but elongated and with rear sliding doors for a more MPV-esque purpose.
The 2000s was an era of great prosperity for Kimura. With sales in over 150 countries, a lineup of over 10 cars (and over 15 in Japan), it showed no signs of stopping. The year 2000 was a planned overhaul for the entire company; from 1999 to 2001, Auriga, Hana, Devorak, Helruna, Auburn, Eminence, and Cavatina were updated for the 21st century. Kimura’s first internationally exported Kei car was released, named K-UBRIK. The new Sirani MPV was created in 2003, with the Cavatina’s previously MPV-oriented style going in a more rugged, crossover-like direction. The Sirani fit the gap well, and became another popular Kimura model.
What holds for us in 2010 and beyond? Kimura continues innovate daily. Kimura introduced the Asura in 2012; an F1 inspired machine with a bespoke V10 and tenacious handling. The modern day lineup all represent the finest made by Kimura. No longer just a small Japanese company making niche cars for the driving enthusiast, our cars represent the pinnacle of dynamics, comfort, and innovation.
K-UBRIK Kei Wagon (2007+)
K-IREI Kei Wagon (2015+)
K-ALEIDO Kei Van (2011+)
K-ANYON Kei SUV (2013+)
K-INETIK Kei Coupe (2016+)
Avina Subcompact Hatchback (1986+)
Auburn Compact Hatchback (1964+)
Auriga Midsize Sedan (1983+)
Eminence Premium Sedan (1975+)
Sirani MPV (2004+)
Protostar Mini MPV (2005+)
Arctos Minivan (1989+)
X-Land Small Off-Roader (2010+)
Hana Subcompact Crossover (2013+)
Cavatina Compact Crossover (2001+)
Devorak Mid-size SUV (1987+)
KT-U Pickup Utility (1981+)
Helruna Sports Coupe (1990+)
Please remember that cars will always be available to test-drive at your request, but may need a few days to process.