Carole Nash
Content Writer
Published: 6th November 2018

Unusual Vehicles is a segment that looks into the history of a weird car to see how it was developed. Japanese cars have a reputation for being unique and that translated into the electric vehicle market as well. The Takayanagi Miliura was a small electric car that looked like it took inspiration from the steampunk movement. Introduced in 2011, the car is one of the most bizarre electric vehicles to ever be created.


The Takayanagi’s design was likely influenced by the art deco period of the 1920s. This can be seen from the shape and style of the wheels. The old-fashioned appearance can be linked to steampunk, a movement which incorporates cogs, brass and other Victorian style materials. The interior is made up of a single seat that looks comfortable to sit in. The beauty of the Takayanagi certainly makes it distinctive.

In terms of size, the car is tiny. It measures 7.1 x 4.2 x 3.8 feet. Based on the size, the motor is more of a novelty than a roadworthy vehicle. The car is powered by an electric drivetrain and lead-acid batteries that allow it to reach a top speed of 37 mph. The maximum range is about 22 miles. If the batteries were replaced with lithium-ions then the car would likely have more mileage. A disadvantage is the long charging time of 12 hours.

An ideal display car

The Takayanagi’s limited range didn’t stop it from being expensive. It was offered at a price of 6.3 million yen, working out to be £43,000. The best duties for the car would have covered short distance trips, such as going to buy food at a supermarket.

The appearance of the Takayanagi is the car’s biggest appeal. The combination of art deco and steampunk themes make it a striking vehicle. It’s the kind of car that is better for display.


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