Is it a car? Is it a motorbike? Is it a truck? Is it a bus? Is it a rickshaw? Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it Superman?
Of course, the only real answer is that it is a tuk-tuk, a class of vehicle that is highly useful in many parts of Asia and Africa, but which is largely unknown in the rich countries of Europe and North America. It is interesting how cultural factors differ from country to country even in Asia and Africa, though. Tuk-tuks are ubiquitous in Thailand and Laos (although the design seems to vary depending on where in the country you are, so I am intrigued to know just how home-made these things are) but much less common in Vietnam or Indonesia.
Or are the differences regulatory rather than cultural? I need to do more research.