In January 1993, the Japanese automaker Mitsuoka introduced a modified version of Nissan March/Micra as the Mitsuoka Viewt. The design of the car was an attempt to make it look like the Jaguar Mark II. The Galue produced by Mitsuoka paved the way for many Japanese automakers to built retro-styled variants of their own models.
The K11 Viewt
The very first Viewt from Mitsuoka was launched in 1993. The company based its first Viewt on the K11 March. Mitsuoka replaced the Match’s hatchback with a fixed rear window and rounded boot. The company also replaced the front grille and headlight assembly with one closely related to the Jaguar Mark II. The standard version resembled a lot with March, however, leather seats and wood trim could be offered at additional charges.
The engines used in Viewt, i.e. 1.0-L and 1.3-L were also taken from the March. Both manual and automatic transmissions were available. However, the top of the line vehicle offered in later years were launched with only automatic transmission.
Both March and Viewt were interrelated, i.e. whenever a change was made in March, the Viewt also received that change. In 1997, a convertible version of March was released as a result of which Mitsuoka also built a Viewt convertible. Its front end was based on the Jaguar, while the rear had an independent unique design.
The K12 Viewt
When K11 March was replaced by an updated K12 March, Mitsuoka decided to introduce its new model. The new Viewt was launched in September 2005. This model too showed a heavy styling cues from the March, e.g. Mitsuoka altered the shape of rear door and the cabin was made much rounder. Despite these changes, Mitsuoka still retained the Jaguar-style on its front and back. Mitsuoka based its only 2-door version called the 12SR on the march 12SR.
The K12 Viewt is offered with a 1.2-L, 1.4-L and 1.5-L engines mated either to a manual or automatic transmission. The Viewt’s interior looks pretty much like March’s, though leather seats are available as an option. Carbon fiber inserts are used on the dashboard following the March’s interior décor.
Significance of the Viewt
The insightful and ingenious execution of Jaguar-styling cues into an already famous vehicle resulted in getting Mitsuoka a great promotion in the automobile industry. After this particular event, Mitsuoka appeared to be a recognized automaker.
Following the popularity of Mitsuoka’s Viewt, other automakers also made modifications in the March so as to make it look like classic vehicles such as Vanden Plas Princess 100, Nissan Taiwan’s Verita and Autech March Tango and Bolero.