The starter motor was already klaptus when I bought the car, and eventually died not long after purchase. Not to worry, I bolted a piece of cardboard over the hole where it went, and started the car using the crank handle supplied! There was a hole in the bumper that lead through to a widget on the front of the crank for this purpose, and the numberplate was hinged. Came in very handy. A new starter was eventually sourced and fitted.
Other than that, the car NEVER EVER broke down, despite poor maintenance.
The thermostat housing was badly corroded and towards the end of it's life, it leaked water hugely, but even when the temperature reached soaring heights, the head never warped or died, and the little thing just kept plugging along.
Gears were graunchy due to a worn column shift mechanism.
Brake lights stopped working and never worked again.
The Isuzu Bellett is an amazing little car.
The 1964 model looks the best, and mine came with a 4-speed column shift and a bench seat. It was also a pre-seat belt model, so the trick is to hold on through tight corners.
The Bellett handles like it's stuck to the road, even with 13" 75 series tyres, the IRS rear end held tenaciously to the bends, but only on full throttle. The weak who lift off through the corners caused their own demise.
I saw my friend (and Bellett co-owner) hung a corner so hard, that the inside rear wheel lifted some 5 inches off the ground, and yet he took the corner with no drift whatsoever, such is the cornering power of these little sedans.
While the column-shift wasn't the smoothest of actions, it was really, really cool - especially in summer with the windows down. The coolness factor was huge.
The bench seat in the front allowed the car to carry six passengers. Of course, it would help if we were all 1960's 4' tall Japanese people and not 1990's 6' tall Aussies, but you get that.