Daihatsu Copen Review

Daihatsu Copen
78%

Daihatsu Copen Review

Daihatsu Copen Review | Part TwoDaihatsu Copen Road Test

Every home should have one of these - if only as a pet! Since its launch in 2004, the diminutive and delightful Daihatsu Copen has won hearts and minds all over the place, to the point of attaining cult status.

Every home should have one of these - if only as a pet!

Since its launch in 2004, the diminutive and delightful Daihatsu Copen has won hearts and minds all over the place, to the point of attaining cult status. This cute little two-seater is capable of putting a smile on the face of the unhappiest person and, a search on a well-known online auction site, will show that such is their following, that some examples are still fetching somewhere near the original selling price.

And that makes the pricing of the new car something of a surprise. Originally, the Copen was powered by a 3-cylinder 660cc petrol engine, which is slightly bigger than my motorcycle. It had to be this way as part of the Japanese Kei-car or Keijidosha regulations, which limit physical as well as engine size. The latest (1998) regulations stipulate that the car can be no more than 3.4m in length and 1.48m wide because of restricted parking space, especially in Tokyo. Furthermore, the engine has to be less than 660cc and produce no more than 64PS

In the early days, Daihatsu Vehicle Distributors Ltd, the UK importer, managed to persuade Daihatsu to make the small, turbo-charged engine European Vehicle Type Approval compliant; the rest as they say, is history.

Small though the engine was, the Copen was fun, cute, responsive and with impressive performance. But not content to leave it at that, Daihatsu made some changes when it came to the second generation Copen, launched last year (2007). The main difference is that a new power unit has been shoe-horned into the tightly packed engine bay. It is a 4-cylinder, 1.3 petrol engine and the idea behind its introduction was to appeal to a broader spectrum of customers who might have been put off by the smaller engine.

For the technically minded, this unit is much the same as that used in the Daihatsu Sirion and features Dynamic Variable Valve Timing (DVVT) with a twin overhead camshaft and chain-driven cams, providing low speed pulling power and a high-rev response but the main benefit is that it lowers emissions and improves fuel economy.

It produces 87PS at 6,000rpm and 120Nm of torque at 4,400rpm, which is an improvement of 19PS and almost 20Nm. The top speed has increased to 112mph and the 0-62mph time is now 9.5 seconds rather than the previous 11.7seconds.

28 August 2008 Melanie Carter
Daihatsu Copen Review | Part TwoDaihatsu Copen Road Test
Daihatsu Copen Road Test Data
Model ReviewedDaihatsu Copen
  
Body TypeConvertible
ColourSilver Metallic
  
Performance (manufacturers data) 
  
0 - 62 mph9.5 Seconds
Top Speed 112 mph
  
Transmission5-Speed Manual
  
Fuel TypeUnleaded Petrol
  
CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures) g/km
  
Economy (NEDC Figures) 
  
Urban36.7 mpg
Extra Urban56.6 mpg
Combined47.1 mpg
  
Insurance Group9
Euro NCAP RatingTBA
Warranty3-Years Unlimited Mileage
Price (when tested on the 28/08/08)£11,495

The information contained within this Daihatsu Copen review may have changed since publication on the 28 August 2008. The actual model road tested may feature options and functionality specific to that model, which may not be available as on option or be fitted to other models in the range. Options may not be available on UK specification cars. You may wish to check with your local Daihatsu dealer, before making a purchasing decision. E.&.O.E. You may NOT reproduce this car review in full or part, in any format without our written permission. carpages.co.uk © 2017