The Mazda Porter and Porter Cab are a series of small trucks that were produced from 1961 to 1989 (as the B360/B600 until 1968) by Mazda, mainly for sale in the domestic Japanese market. Export versions of the Porter were labelled E360. The Porter was replaced by the Autozam Scrum, a rebadged Suzuki Carry.
|Body and chassis|
|Engine||356 cc BA V-twin|
358 cc DB OHV I4
577 cc V-twin
586 cc RA OHV I4
The predecessor of the Porter, introduced in February 1961, the Mazda B360, was available as a pickup (KBBA33) or light van (KBBAV) version of the R360 kei passenger car. It had a 356 cc OHV V-twin producing 13 PS (10 kW) (BA) and weighed 535 kg (1,179 lb). The 1962, export only Mazda B600 was similar to the B360 except that it received an enlarged 577 cc version of the air-cooled V-twin. Later versions shared the P600 Carol's 586 cc RA engine.
In September 1963 the B360 gained the four-cylinder, 358 cc 20 PS (15 kW) DB OHV engine from the Carol. It also received a facelift and new modelcodes (KBDA33/KBDAV), and a DeLuxe Van version was added. Top speed went up from 67 to 79 km/h (49 mph). In October 1966 the B360 received another facelift, giving it a much more modern look. In 1972, the B360/600 entered license production in Burma (today's Myanmar). Mazda's investment consisted of shipping the production equipment to Burma; this was part of Japanese war reparations to Myanmar. After strict sanctions were imposed in 1988, manufacture shifted to MADI (Myanmar Automobile and Diesel Engine Industries), who could no longer import Japanese parts. It was built in the "No 2 Automobile Industry" plant in the small town of Tonbo, at Kwinhla Station, Pandaung Township, Bago Division (just north of Yangon), where MADI also assembled the Mazda Pathfinder and the Hino TE truck. The truck was kept in production until the mid-1990s with 100 percent local content. Always painted in blue from the factory, these were ubiquitous as taxis in Burma (Mandalay in particular) until after the markets opened up in 2011.
Available either as a pickup truck (KBDB33) or a small van (KBDBV), the first Porter (E360 in export markets) was produced from November 1968 to April 1976. The car was closely based on the B360 predecessor, but with all-new body panels.
The initial engine was the carry-over four-stroke, 20 hp (15 kW) 358 cc I4 from the B360. The engine was changed to the Chantez' 35 hp (26 kW) 359 cc water-cooled, two-stroke two-cylinder in April 1973, which required some cosmetic changes (KBAA/KBAAV). In 1975 the Porter was modified to fit new, larger license plates and the engine downgraded to 32 hp (24 kW) to match new, stricter emissions regulations.
The wheelbase was 1,995 mm (78.5 in) with leaf springs in the rear, weight was 475 kg (1,047 lb) and maximum cargo capacity was 300 kg (661 lb) when first introduced.
Porter Cab (1st generation)
The Porter Cab (KECA53) was introduced in March 1969. It was a small, cabover pickup truck on a 1,835 mm (72.2 in) wheelbase, equipped with a live rear axle and a 23 PS (17 kW) at 5500 rpm, 359 cc water-cooled, two-stroke two-cylinder. This, the CC, was Mazda's first two-stroke engine. Top speed was 90 km/h (56 mph). In 1970 new doors were developed, with sliding windows were exchanged for roll-down items, incorporating a quarter window. A ventilation vent was also added to the front. Like the Porter, the Porter Cab received the Chantez-derived AA engine in April 1973, which offered 30 PS (22 kW) at 6000 rpm, five less than in the Chantez.
In January 1975, the Porter Cab too was lightly modified to fit the new larger license plates - hitherto, kei cars had carried smaller license plates than regular cars (230 mm (9.1 in) x 125 mm (4.9 in) rather than 330 x 165 mm). The Porter Cab, with its peculiar cowlings around the headlights carried an instantly recognizable "surprised" appearance. In April 1976 the Porter Cab also received an engine which met the new, tougher 1975 emissions regulations and the model code PC3A. The only color available was changed too, from light green to white. Like the Porter before it, the Porter Cab was labelled E360 in export markets.
|Porter Cab Standard||¥308,000||March, 1969|
|Porter Cab DeLuxe||¥335,000||introduced July, 1969|
Porter Cab (2nd generation)
|Mazda Porter Cab (PC4D)|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||pickup truck|
|Engine||546 cc Mitsubishi 2G23/G23B I2|
When Kei car regulations were changed for 1976, due to shrinking sales in the category, Mazda did not think it a worthwhile expenditure to develop a new, clean 550 cc engine. Instead, they discontinued the Chantez passenger car and the Porter pickup, and began buying Mitsubishi's 2G23 engines to equip the New Porter Cab, which appeared in 1977 (PC4D). The Porter Cab was stretched by 200 mm (almost entirely behind the rear axle, with the 1,835 mm (72.2 in) wheelbase remaining) and widened by 100 mm (3.9 in). Dimensions were now 3,195 mm (125.8 in) x 1,395 mm (54.9 in), and the 546 cc Vulcan S two-cylinder developed 29 PS (21 kW) at 5500 rpm. The headlight bezels were squared off, lending the car a more conventional appearance. In 1979 the car gained two more horsepower.
The second generation Porter Cab was only available in a bright blue color with light grey trim (bumpers, headlight bezels) and black interior, until the 1983 facelift after which only white was available. The facelifted version gained the cleaner Vulcan II engine (G23B), although power output remained the same. Trim pieces were now in a darker grey, interior brown.
In 1985 there was another minor facelift, with trim pieces now in black and a black band between the headlights. The engine switched from a timing chain to a timing belt, and the interior changed to gray. Air conditioning was now available as an option. In 1987 the Mitsubishi Minicab received Mitsubishi's new three-cylinder engine, but the Porter Cab had to soldier on with the old two-cylinder. In June 1989, after twenty years of continuous production with nothing more than facelifts, the Porter Cab was finally retired. It was replaced by the Autozam Scrum, a mere badge-engineered Suzuki Carry.
- Seekins, Donald M. (2015). "Japan's Development Ambitions for Myanmar: The Problem of "Economics before Politics"" (PDF). Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs. 34 (2): 122.
- "Minister inspects No 2 Automobile Industry (Htonbo)". The New Light of Myanmar. 1999-03-19.
- Gasnier, Matt (2013-06-18). "Myanmar: The old Chevrolet and Mazda trucks from Burma". Best Selling Cars Blog.
- 自動車ガイドブック [Japanese Motor Vehicles Guide Book] (in Japanese). Japan: Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association. 25: 208. 1978-10-10. 0053-780025-3400. Missing or empty
- 360cc: Nippon 軽自動車 Memorial 1950-1975: p97, 2007. ISBN 978-4-86144-083-0
- Kazuo Ozeki, Memories of Japanese K-cars: 1951 ~ 1975: pp34–35, 85, 94-96. 2007: Mikipress. ISBN 978-4-89522-501-4