Matt Robinson profile picture Matt Robinson 5 years ago

Of Course A Hayabusa-Engined Toyota Starlet Is Awesome

This KP61-generation Starlet has been given a huge power boost thanks to the fitting of a 1.3-litre bike engine

Remind me later

It’s a tried and tested formula: you take an old, light car, throw away whatever puny little engine it had fitted at the factory, and dump in a motorbike engine. To demonstrate why it’s such a popular idea, today we’re taking a look at this KP61-generation Starlet.

As a small, lithe rear-wheel drive hatchback it’s the ideal car for a bike engine swap, and this particular example has been given the classic 1.3-litre Suzuki Hayabusa transplant. Power is now around 200bhp, and that inline-four has just 780kg of car to propel. So yes, it’s rather brisk.

It’s seen in action via this footage shot mostly at the Leadfoot Festival hillclimb in New Zealand, and it’s a joy to hear that Hayabusa engine spinning up beyond 11,000rpm.

Video via Jalopnik