In March 1979, the Rex underwent a very minor facelift, the most visible results being new rims and slightly differing bumpers and a small spoiler in front. Then, in response to the very low priced Suzuki Alto, a decontented version of the Van called "Family Rex" was added in October 1979.
In June 1979 the Leone saw its first complete model update. This generation was released with a two-door hardtop coupe, four-door sedan, station wagon and a three-door hatchback. Export sales began in the fall with the 1980 model year. New for this generation was a dual-range four-speed 4WD transmission with both hi/lo range gearing and manual ride height adjustment on the 4WD models.