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Gullwing Thing: 1993 Autozam AZ-1

At just under 11 feet in length and four feet in height, this 1993 Autozam AZ-1 is one small car. Just to make sure you’re seen in this one by the texting drivers around you on the road, it’s a good thing that it’s been repainted in this non-factory bright yellow color. The seller has it posted here on craigslist in Huntersville, North Carolina, just north of Charlotte. The seller is asking $21,900, here is the original listing, and thanks to T.J. for sending in this tip!

Autozam is a company that was started by Mazda during the fat and sassy days of Japanese dominance of almost everything in the business world, better known as the late-1980s and 1990s. From 1989 to 1998, the company made several small cars and Kei cars, which were really small, designed to be small enough to take advantage of certain tax advantages due to their size and power, or lack thereof. The design was related to both Suzuki and Mazda concepts and I have to believe that although it’s much smaller than the average American SUV, they have to be reliable. I would love to have one, but not at $21,900.

The Autozam AZ-1, made from 1992 to 1994, came in only two colors from the factory: blue or red, with gray under the gullwing doors. This car was originally red, according to the exterior color designation on the body tag as shown in the seller’s photos. I love yellow cars, so I wouldn’t change a thing about this one.  It appears to be in very nice condition and the seller says that it was imported in 2020.

The most famous part of these cars would most likely be the gullwing doors. This one has a crazy aftermarket steering wheel so it’s had some work done, at least cosmetically. The interior looks perfect from what I can see, although maybe not perfect for a 6′-5″ tall guy to sit in, sadly. The seats look perfect and being a rear, or mid-rear-engine car, the front compartment houses the spare tire and enough room for one Q-Tip.

The engine is a Suzuki F6A, a 657-cc DOHC inline-three turbo, which had  63 horsepower and 63 lb-ft of torque. Even though these are really small cars, I think it would be incredibly fun to own one. Have any of you driven or owned an Autozam AZ-1, or even seen one in person?


  1. angliagt angliagt

    Duncan Imports in Christiansburg,VA has a few of these.
    Always interesting to see stuff like that.These things are tiny!

    Like 5
    • Ray Smith

      A friend of mine has a red one. They are pretty cool cars

      Like 0
  2. RayT Member

    I’ve seen one, Scotty. And from the driver’s seat, too!

    It’s hard to describe the driving experience. “Fun” is the first word that comes to mind, but that doesn’t really come close to what I remember as a drive in a shrunken Porsche 917. The three-pot engine made 25% of the sound of the 917 mill, and the turbo’s wastegate sounded as if it was letting off boost right behind the driver’s left ear. Steve McQueen could have raced one at Le Mans….

    Oddly enough, the AZ-1’s small (another descriptor that doesn’t really convey reality) size didn’t seem all that bad in L.A. traffic. I guess I was too busy enjoying the drive. That said, it was far better suited to roads like Angeles Crest Highway….

    After all these years, it’s still high on my wish list. The price is a little daunting, and I doubt there is either an Autozam or Suzuki dealer in my town, county or state. I’d worry about some nitpicky part breaking and being, inevitably, NLA even in Japan.

    But still….

    Like 9
  3. Mitch

    BMW Z1 on a budget ………with gullwing doors.

    Like 2
  4. Mike

    I’m 6’2″ 200 pounds. Tried to sit in one at a JDM importer. Had to step on the seat and slide down with my legs going into a hole under the dash. With the door closed, it was a claustrophobic nightmare. We were all laughing at my feeble attempts to crawl out of it.

    Like 10
    • George Curl

      I tried to get in one in Japan while visiting our son. 6″3′ 210 lbs. I never accomplished the entry.

      Like 0
  5. Mark-A

    I’d 💚 to own & drive one of these BUT as already mentioned in the story, BUT being over 6ft tall & driving safely/comfortably so it’ll probably never happen for me. Unfortunately 😭

    Like 1
  6. TheOldRanger

    Cute little car, this would be nice to drive our hills over here in Central Arkansas, with the switchbacks as well.

    Like 1
  7. Stephen Nelson

    Hmmm – they made what, around 5,000 of these? So, pretty uncommon, and, at 6′, I can safely say, an absolute blast to drive. Sure, I moved the seat mounts back about 2 inches, and the steering wheel about an inch and a half – but at that point, perfect for me. If I was 6’1″ – probably a little tighter. Given there were over 26,000 1991–98 Suzuki Cappuccinos produced, and the Cappu made Hagerty’s Bull Market List, I’d say the AZ-1 is still a steal. Granted the one in question has a few miles, but they are out there with a lot fewer miles!

    Like 2
  8. Keith Woicikowfski

    That is the coolest thing I have seen in a long time!

    Like 0
  9. Roland Schoenke

    Jay Leno drove one on Jay Leno’s garage ( YouTube it ) he seemed to fit. He noted the over 8000rpm redline.

    Like 0
  10. Howie

    Yes very cool, the photo of the blue one shows how tiny they are.

    Like 4
  11. MilitaryGuy

    I also am 6’2” tall. To me a HMMWV has a small driver area. I really don’t know why I keep looking at these cars. My first thought is ‘cool car I want one’. My second thought is, ‘I better look for another HEMTT or MK48’ . Especially at the price level they are asking. Although I know fully well, that’s how much these cars sell for all day long.
    Looks nice though

    Like 1
  12. moosie moosie

    CUTE,,,,,,,,, A Watch Fob on wheels. Tiny ain’t it ?

    Like 1
  13. Big C

    Only To the cruise in, and back. Imagine driving down a two lane with the kid driving the Hyundai Elantra, 10 mph over the speed limit, staring at his phone, with Snoop Dogg’s greatest hits, blaring out of his 500 watt kickers. You wouldn’t stand a chance.

    Like 0
  14. angliagt angliagt

    The latest official “Clown Stuffing” car.

    Like 0
  15. upCHUCK

    my grandson is complaining that someone stole a bright yellow car from his Hot Wheels Collection!

    Like 0
  16. chrlsful

    cant see the R. axel?
    If mid engine and driven in a RHD country I’d daily it. Not hard to get used to rhd, just too much of a pain in urban/suburban. A bit dangerous in rural.

    Just turboed one of thses Zuki motors (making upa same side in/out intercooler) as the geoTraker is a show piece fora friend.

    Like 0
  17. Scotty Gilbertson Staff

    Price update: the seller has lowered the price to $19,800.

    Like 0

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