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Mini Truck Brands (A Complete Guide)

Mini trucks are a Japanese sensation that has reached locations around the world.

These smaller versions of average trucks allow users to easily transport goods from one place to another, offering reliability as well as cost-efficiency.

There are several mini truck brands that you can purchase or even import directly from Japan, but if you’re just starting your search, you may not know what to look for.

Here, we’ll introduce you to some of the top mini truck brands and styles to save you some time and effort.

Types of Mini Trucks

Before we dive into brand specifics, let’s take a look at the types of bodies you can find in the mini-truck category:

  • Regular Cab Mini Trucks
  • Jumbo Cab Mini Trucks
  • Regular Cab Heavy Dump Box Mini Trucks
  • Regular Cab Standard Dump Box Mini Trucks
  • DeckVan
  • Regular Vans

Depending on the type of work you do or the heavy goods you need to transport, you may favor one model over another.

It’s important that you do your research to ensure you’re getting the most for your money.

Top Mini Truck Brands

After tons of research and test drives, we’ve determined that the following brands offer the best, most reliable mini trucks on the market today.

Don’t just take our word for it – read on to learn more about each brand and what makes them a solid choice to consider.

Suzuki Carry

The Suzuki Carry may be out of production, but it’s still available as a used car and holds its own in terms of reliability and reputation.

It was an early leader in the world of mini trucks, which helps it keep a solid spot in the market today.

Overall, the Suzuki name is a reputable one, which automatically gives credibility to the Suzuki Carry mini truck.

Not only do individual models of Suzuki cars do very well, but well-known raters like ReliabilityIndex also score the brand as overall reliable.

You can find the Suzuki Carry in both van and cab styles with 77 horsepower at 6500 RPM.

It reaches top speeds of 56mph, and although it may not have all the bells and whistles of some other models, it makes for a decent small workhorse.

Daihatsu Hijet

Daihatsu is one of the oldest Japanese internal combustion engine manufacturers left.

It’s mostly known for building three-wheeled vehicles, but as you can see from this list, they also offer the Hijet mini truck.

While the Daihatsu name is still in operation, today it is entirely owned by Toyota Motors.

Perhaps the more well-known name of Toyota gives this brand a little more power behind its products.

The Daihatsu Hijet is a van-style mini truck that’s super affordable. Like the Suzuki Carry, it stopped production several years ago in 2004.

However, you can still find used models on the market for extremely affordable prices.

While the price is good, don’t expect this little guy to blow past any other cars on the highway.

The light vehicle has just 65 horsepower with 4800RPM.

The 1.3-liter petrol engine will also have to fight hard to carry loads that are too heavy.

Subaru Sambar

Though Subaru wasn’t officially founded until 1968, the first generation of vehicles started back in 1961.

That immediately tells us that Subaru has a lot of experience under its belt, which is always a good thing in the automotive industry.

All that considered, it’s no surprise that the Subaru Sambar turns out to be an almost perfect little pickup truck.

Functional, sleek, and affordable, it gets the job done.

It’s not going to be winning any street racing, but its small bed offers ample space for transporting objects.

Though the interior is super basic, nothing about this vehicle actually looks cheap.

Again, with about 57 horsepower, the engine is smaller than that of a motorcycle. However, it’s super lightweight, so driving around doesn’t feel like a drag.

Overall, you can count on this Subaru brand to get you where you need to go with your load.

Honda Acty

While Hondas, in general, may not be everyone’s favorite car brand, we have to admit that they are usually pretty affordable, reliable, and practical.

That being said, those are usually two of the main features a buyer looks for when buying a mini truck.

The Honda Acty is what Auto Trader calls “the Pomeranian of trucks.”

It’s essentially the mini version of what America loves (trucks).

This tiny pickup truck actually has a 4-wheel drive, but it only gives drivers 38 horsepower.

Compared to the other mini trucks on our list, that’s not very impressive.

However, it’s built to handle utility work and is quite functional with a bed that transforms into a flatbed in seconds.

Its top speed is technically 65mph, but drivers recommend not even bothering. It’s probably safer to take it slow with this little guy.

Though you will look good doing it!

Mitsubishi Minicab

Mitsubishi is a very well-known Japanese car brand that is most famous for its SUVs and trucks.

The brand has consistently scored well on raters like ReliabilityIndex, give or take a few bad years. Despite recent low ratings on newer vehicles, this recognizable name does offer some clout in the mini-truck industry with the Mitsubishi Minicab.

You can find the Minicab in both regular cab and van styles, but either way, the owners of this vehicle seem to be extremely happy. 

This truck offers a 4-wheel drive, a three-cylinder engine, and 44 horsepower.

You can also get an extended cab for this model, but that would cut down on your bed space.

But the standard bed size is about six feet and can hold around 800 pounds, which is pretty impressive.