Daihatsu Charade

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Daihatsu Charade
1991 Daihatsu Charade SG Sedan cropped.JPG
1991–1993 Daihatsu Charade (G102) sedan
Body and chassis
LayoutFront-engine, front-wheel-drive
PredecessorDaihatsu Consorte
SuccessorDaihatsu Storia

The Daihatsu Charade is a supermini car produced by the Japanese manufacturer Daihatsu from 1977 to 2000. It is considered by Daihatsu as a "large compact" car, to differentiate it from the smaller kei car compacts in its line-up, such as the Daihatsu Mira. In Japan, it offers buyers more interior space and a larger engine that is more appreciated with regards to Japanese driving conditions and speed limits in Japan realistically not exceeding 40 km/h (24.9 mph) in urban areas. It replaced the Daihatsu Consorte, although the Charmant took over from the bigger-engined Consortes.

In China, the Daihatsu Charade is called Xiali and is produced by FAW Tianjin, under the registered mark of "China FAW". From September 1986 to 2009, it sold over 1.5 million units in that country.

First generation (G10, G20; 1977–1983)[edit]

First generation (G10/G20)
Daihatsu Charade buying brandy improved.jpg
Body and chassis
Body style3/5-door hatchback
Engine843 cc CD I3 (petrol)
993 cc CB I3 (petrol)
Transmission4-speed manual
5-speed manual
2-speed automatic
Wheelbase2,300 mm (90.6 in)
Length3,460–3,530 mm (136.2–139.0 in)
Width1,520 mm (59.8 in)
Height1,360 mm (53.5 in)

The first generation (G10) appeared in October 1977. It was a front-engined front-wheel drive car, originally available only as a five-door hatchback, powered by a 993 cc three-cylinder, all-aluminum engine (CB20) with 50 PS (37 kW). Japanese market cars claimed 55 PS (40 kW) JIS at 5,500 rpm.[2] The three-door hatchback version ("Runabout"), introduced in the fall of 1978, received two little round opera windows in the C-pillars.[3] The Charade was a surprise best-seller in Japan, where ever tighter emissions standards had made many observers consider the one-litre car dead in the marketplace. The Charade became an overnight success and also became the Japanese "Car of the Year" for 1979.[4]

Daihatsu Charade Runabout (G10)
Facelift Daihatsu Charade (G20)

The early G10 (Series 1) had round headlights and the later G10 (Series 2) had square headlights. The Series 2 was introduced for 1981. Between the introduction in 1977, and December 1982, Daihatsu built 89,792 G10/G20 type Charades.[5]

The Daihatsu Charade was very popular in Chile and some other Latin American countries during the 1970s and 1980s. Originally the same as in the rest of the world, later Chilean Charades (called G20s) came equipped with a downsleeved 843 cc version (CD) of Daihatsu's three-cylinder engine. This engine produced 41 PS (30 kW) at 5,500 rpm and has also appeared in export versions of the Daihatsu Hijet.[6] The G20 appeared in 1980 and was developed as a result of a Chilean decision to lower import tariffs on cars with engines of less than 850 cc in May 1979.[7][8] The G20 was also able to run on low-octane fuel or even ethanol.[7] The first G20 version (1978–1981) had round headlights, while the second generation G20 (sold from 1981 to 1984) received the same facelift as did the G10, meaning square headlights and slightly different rear lights. The three-door "Runabout" retained the larger 1,000 cc CB20 engine, and also received a five-speed manual transmission and a tachometer.


The Greek Automeccanica company, founded in 1979, developed an off-road style torpedo design version of the Charade à la the Citroën Méhari. With a metal body, the "Zebra" used Daihatsu mechanicals, grille and headlights, and many other Daihatsu parts. Production began in 1981 and continued until 1985, by which point changing Greek tax laws meant that this "fun car" could no longer be registered as a commercial vehicle and the market evaporated.[9] The very first cars used the Series 1 round headlights; these were changed to the square Series 2 units before the first year of production had ended. Automeccanica also assembled regular Charades.[9]


Viera brothers' Daihatsu Charade G10 at the 13° Rally 19 Capitals Historic of Uruguay finish line

Uruguayan pilot Guillermo Viera driving his Daihatsu Charade G10, and his brother Agustín Viera as copilot, had competed several times in the 19 Capitals Historic Rally of Uruguay. In 2011 they finished 41 in the rank,[10] in 2012 they finished 18 in the rank,[11] in 2014 they finished 9 in the rank,[12] and in 2016 they finished second[13] with a tight final difference with the winners of only two hundredths of a second after nearly 50 hours of competition.[14]

They were ranked 7th overall and first in its class at the 500 miles rally of Entre Ríos in 2011.[15]

They also had an outstanding performance in the Uruguayan Championship of Historical Tourism 2013, where they won first place in category A.[16]

Second generation (G11; 1983–1987)[edit]

Second generation (G11)
Daihatsu Charade CX G11.jpg
1983–1985 Daihatsu Charade CS 5-door (Australia; with honeycomb grille)
Also calledDaihatsu Charade Duet (van, Australia)
Daihatsu Skywing (notchback, Taiwan)
1986–1988 (China - CKD)
Body and chassis
Body style3/5-door hatchback
5-door notchback (Skywing)
Transmission4-speed manual
5-speed manual
2-speed Daimatic automatic
Wheelbase2,320 mm (91.3 in)
Length3,550 mm (139.8 in)
3,785 mm (149.0 in) (Skywing)
Width1,550 mm (61.0 in)
Daihatsu Charade model codes
Code Engine Note
G11 CB, 993 cc passenger car petrol
G11V commercial
G21[a] CD, 843 cc passenger car
G26 CE, 926 cc 926 Turbo/926R
G30 CL, 993 cc passenger car diesel
G30V commercial
a Latin America only
1983–1985 Daihatsu Charade CS 5-door (Europe; with slat grille)
1985–1987 Daihatsu Charade CX 5-door (Australia)
Daihatsu Skywing CDS‧Ⅱ 5-door (Taiwan; notchback)

The second generation (G11) was released in March 1983, again as a three- or a five-door hatchback.[18] It featured several variations of the three-cylinder 1.0-litre engine, including a turbocharged version with 68 PS (50 kW) JIS and diesel and turbo-diesel versions. The turbo diesel first appeared in the fall of 1984.[19] The base Charades received the naturally aspirated, three cylinder, 993 cc CB23 engine with 50–55 PS (37–40 kW). 0–60 mph takes around 12–13 seconds. Japanese market models had twin carburettors as standard, while most export versions received a single unit which made marginally less power.[18]

The Charade Turbo and Charade DeTomaso models had the upgraded CB23 engine, called the CB60. The CB60 was also a 993 cc engine, but was fitted with a very small IHI turbocharger, which increased its power to 80 PS (59 kW) in Japanese market cars, 68 PS (50 kW) in export models. The tiny turbocharger meant that an intercooler was not necessary. The suspension was lightly upgraded, with thicker anti-roll bars and slightly stiffer suspension, and the car also received alloy wheels rather than the standard steel items.[20] The turbo version was available in both bodystyles. This was the first turbo sedan to go on sale in Indonesia, in July 1986, where it was only available as a five-door model.[21]

There were also high roofed versions available in some markets, either with the three- or five-door bodywork. This was called the "Dolphin Roof" in Japan. The Japanese market "van" version also received the higher roof. To escape quotas and some of the ADR strictures, the high-roof van version was sold in Australia as the Daihatsu Charade Duet in parallel with the passenger models.[22] In Chile (and some other Latin American countries) this generation was called the G21 (although the labels on the trunk read "G20"), and like the G20 before it, it was equipped with the smaller CD-series 41 PS (30 kW) 843 cc three-cylinder engine.[23] The G21 was sold between 1985 and 1990 approximately.

The G11 was produced with two frontends, with square headlights (Series 1) and rectangular "cat's eye" shaped headlights (Series 2). The facelift was first presented in the summer of 1985.[19] In Europe, the G11 underbody and various engines and transmissions also formed the basis for the Innocenti Minitre after Innocenti's contract with British Leyland expired. The G11 underpinnings continued to be used by the Italian automaker until 1992. Aside from four- and five-speed manuals a two-speed automatic option called the "Daimatic" was also available.

In Australia the range began with the high roofed two-seater, three-door CC model, while the rest of the range (CS, CX, CX-A, and turbo CX-T) had five-door bodywork.[24] Taiwanese assembly began in 1983 or 1984. In 1987 they also presented a locally developed longer notchback version of the five-door, similar to the Subaru Tutto and Nissan March Cubic, sold as the Daihatsu Skywing. Developing a model locally also gained the assembler a three percent tax subsidy.[25] In New Zealand, the naturally aspirated petrol model was assembled locally. The Turbo was also sold there, imported fully built-up.[17]

In 1985, at the Tokyo show, Daihatsu introduced the 926R, a prototype of a mid engine Charade, developed together with DeTomaso and designed to take part in the World Rally Championship for cars under 1,300 cc. With a 1.4 equivalence factor for forced induction engines, this meant that the downsized engine was classified as being of 1296.4 cc. The 926R had a mid-mounted 926 cc twelve valve, twin-cam, turbocharged three-cylinder engine ("CE") – moving the rear wheels through a five-speed manual transmission and delivering 120 PS (88 kW). The 926R weighed 800 kg and had wider fenders to cover the 205/225 15" wheels. However, following significant crashes in the 1985 championship, Group B was banned and the 926R project was called off. There was also a limited homologation series of 200 Charade 926 Turbos built, with the same 926 cc engine producing 73 PS (54 kW).

Nonetheless, the second generation Daihatsu Charade did see some rally usage. Charades (both Turbos and normally aspirated cars) were entered in the 1984 through 1988 Safari Rallys. They were runners-up in their class in 1984 and won both A5 and B9 categories in 1985.[26] The Charades were the only cars entered in those classes, but a 13th overall finish was still impressive for the little car.[27] The Swiss Daihatsu importer campaigned a Charade Turbo in their national Group A rally championship in 1985, with Florence L'Huillier as a driver.[28]

South Africa

In South Africa, Alfa Romeo's local subsidiary assembled Daihatsu Charades beginning in March 1983. The only model available was the naturally aspirated petrol 1.0, with five doors and the high roof. Power is 60 PS (44 kW), and either a four- or five-speed manual transmission was available.[29] These Charades were also exported to Italy to circumvent Italian laws hindering the import of Japanese cars.[30] South African assembly ended in 1985.

Third generation (G100; 1987–1993)[edit]

Third generation (G100-G112)
1988-1991 Daihatsu Charade (G100) TS 3-door hatchback (2011-05-25) 01.jpg
1988–1991 Daihatsu Charade (G100) TS 3-door (Australia)
Also called
1988–2012 (China)
Body and chassis
Body style
Transmission5-speed manual
4-speed manual
3-speed automatic
Wheelbase2,339.3 mm (92.1 in)
Xiali sedan (extended wheelbase): 2,418.1 mm (95.2 in)
3,680.5 mm (144.9 in)
Xiali N3 hatchback: 3,744.0 mm (147.4 in)
Xiali A+ hatchback: 3,677.9 mm (144.8 in)
4,053.8 mm (159.6 in)
Xiali sedan (standard):3,992.9 mm (157.2 in)
Xiali sedan (extended wheelbase):4,074.2 mm (160.4 in)
Xiali N3 sedan: 4,069.1 mm (160.2 in)/3,754.1 mm (147.8 in) (2012 model year)
Xiali A+ sedan: 3,992.9 mm (157.2 in)
Width1,615.4 mm (63.6 in)
Height1,384.3 mm (54.5 in)
Curb weight740–760 kg (1,630–1,680 lb)
1988–1991 Daihatsu Charade (G100) TS 3-door (Australia)
1991–1993 Daihatsu Charade (G102) CS 5-door (Australia)
1991–1993 Daihatsu Charade (G102) SG Getaway Pack sedan (Australia)
1991–1993 Daihatsu Charade (G102) SG sedan (Australia)
1999–2004 Xiali TJ7101 (China)
2001–2006 Xiali TJ7101U (China)
2005–2011 Tianjin Xiali A+ hatch (Facelifted Daihatsu Charade hatchback) (China)
2005–2011 Tianjin Xiali A+ sedan (Facelifted Daihatsu Charade sedan) (China)
2004–2012 Tianjin Xiali N3 sedan (2nd facelifted Daihatsu Charade sedan) (China)

The third generation of the Daihatsu Charade (G100) debuted in 1987. With styling by Daihatsu chief stylist Hiroshi Aoki and colleague Hideyuki Ueda,[31] it originally shipped with a carburetted 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine (CB23), also available as a diesel and turbodiesel, or with a 1.3-litre four-cylinder with single carburetor (HC-C). The four-cylinder was built with lightness in mind, featuring a hollow crankshaft and camshaft, and the weight of a four-cylinder car was no higher than a similarly equipped three-cylinder model.[32] Featuring fully independent suspension front and rear, either three-door or five-door hatchback body styles were originally offered. A four-door sedan later expanded the range, sold as the Charade Social in Japan. There was also a version with permanent four-wheel drive and the fuel injected 1.3 liter engine, called the TXF/CXF (3-door/5-door).[32] In New Zealand, this generation was available with a 32 kW (44 PS; 43 hp) 846 cc ED-series three-cylinder engine.[33]

A 1.0-litre twin-cam fuel injected intercooled turbo (CB70/CB80), named GTti and delivering 105 PS (77 kW) JIS was later added, only available as a three-door hatch. Fuel injected versions of the 1.3-litre four-cylinder (HC-E) and three-cylinder (CB90) were later added. A four-door sedan was released with the 1.3-litre EFI engine in 1988. There were two different sport models available (both with G100S-FMVZ model codes), the GTti and the GTxx. Both versions are mechanically identical, but the GTxx features many added luxury items. These include full bodykit, lightweight 14-inch speedline alloys, air-conditioning, power steering, one-touch electric window down, and electric sunroof. Some of these options were also available to buy as optional extras on the GTti. Side-skirts were also fitted to many GTtis, but in some countries they were only sold as a dealer optional extra. The Charade GTti was the first production car to produce 100 brake horsepower (75 kW) per liter and the fastest 1.0-liter car produced.[34]

The GTxx is much rarer than the GTti, mainly being sold in Japan, although some were exported and sold in other countries in small numbers. All GTxxs have engine code CB70, whereas GTtis can have CB70 or CB80, depending on the country and region sold. There are no known differences with the actual engine internals, all CB70s feature catalyst emissions control systems. Even some CB80s for Europe featured the catalyst, although UK cars did not. There are more than likely slight differences between the CB70 and CB80 ECU mapping, with CB70 cars quoted as producing 105 PS (77 kW) compared to the CB80's 101 PS (74 kW). This is probably down to the CB70 having the ignition timing mapped more advanced to suit the higher octane fuel used in Japan.

Unconfirmed, But the GTti may well have been dropped in Japan around 1988/89 and renamed as the GTxx. And this name change is the only difference.

A slight facelift in 1991 gave the cars smoother style rear lights and reflector panel, a slightly longer tailgate top spoiler, and a revised interior trim with fabric also on the door trim panels. There was also a four-wheel drive version of the fuel injected 1.3-litre (90 PS or 66 kW HC-E engine, G112 chassis code) sold at home and also exported to a few countries, for example in Scandinavia and Switzerland.

The third-generation car was sold in the United States for just five years, from 1988 through 1992. The car sold poorly, despite construction "as tight as a frozen head bolt"[31] and attractive styling for the market segment,[31] perhaps because of its high price, few dealerships, rough-running three-cylinder, low performance (0-60 mph or 97 km/h in 15 seconds),[31] Toyota, which had recently procured a controlling interest in Daihatsu, withdrew all Daihatsu-badged cars from the US market. Sales for 1989 were 15,118. Only the three-door hatchbacks and four-door sedans were available. The North American Charade appeared in three different trim levels until 1989; the CES (base model), CLS, and CLX. The CES came with a 53 bhp (40 kW), 1.0-litre three-cylinder, fuel injected engine called the CB90. The other two variants were available with the standard CB90 or the more powerful 1.3-litre four-cylinder SOHC 16-valve fuel injected, all-aluminum HC-E engine. In 1990, the trim levels were reduced to just two, the SE (base) and more luxurious SX. Four-cylinder models were available with a five-speed manual gearbox or a three-speed automatic transmission, while three-cylinder models were offered with the manual transmission only.

Daihatsu Charade in Ventura, California
Third Gen. Daihatsu Charade (US variant)

In the Australian market, the GTti was unavailable and the turbocharged petrol Charade used the lower powered carbureted engine (CB60/61) from the previous generation.[20] However, quite a few GTtis and GTxxs have been imported from Japan and so do have a good following. In Australia, the third generation was assessed in the Used Car Safety Ratings as providing "worse than average" protection for its occupants in the event of a crash and the second generation was assessed as "significantly worse than average".[35]

Taiwanese assembly of the G100 began in 1989, although the Skywing liftback version of the G11 continued to be sold into 1990. It continued until local assembler Yu Tian went bankrupt in 1996 in the midst of a financial scandal.[36] The G100 Charade was built by FAW Tianjin as the Tianjin Xiali with the hatchback commencing production in 1988 and the sedan in October 1990 for the model year 1991. Both variants were produced up to 1997 and 1999 respectively where facelifted versions with more modern Toyota engines were put into production. Most of the facelifted Xialis ended production in 2011. The Xiali N3 was discontinued in 2012, although it is still displayed on the Tianjin FAW website as of 2018.[37].

The Xiali was also used a taxicab in Beijing until 2005 where the Hyundai Elantra replaced it due to fuel costs. It was also available in its home city, Tianjin.


In the UK, the GTti had a fairly successful rally career competing in the RAC Lombard Rally in 1989 and 1990 and was highly competitive in the Safari Rally. The GTti won class honours many times and was able to mix it with some of the 2.0-litre cars and on occasion troubling some of the considerably more powerful 4WD cars. With the "turbo factor" increased to 1.7, the one-litre Charade was forced into the same category as the 2.0-litre cars. The best result was in the 1993 Safari Rally, where Charade GTxx models finished fifth, sixth, and seventh overall.[38]

In popular culture[edit]

In 2009, a 1992 G100 Charade was used in a fuel test on the television programme Top Gear, powered by gravy! Of the cars used, it was the only one to run on such a fuel.

Fourth generation (G200; 1993–2000)[edit]

Fourth generation (G200)
Daihatsu Charade 4-door notchback sedan registered November 1995 1499cc.JPG
1994–1996 Daihatsu Charade GLXi sedan (UK)
Also calledDaihatsu Valéra (Sedan only, The Netherlands)
Body and chassis
Body style3/5-door hatchback
4-door sedan
LayoutFront-engine, front-wheel-drive / four-wheel drive
Engine993 cc CB24 I3 (G202: Australia, Brazil)
1.3 L I4 (G200)
1.5 L I4 (G203/213)
1.6 L I4 (G201)
Transmission5-speed manual
3-speed automatic
4-speed automatic
Wheelbase2,335 mm (91.9 in)
LengthHatchback: 3,680.5 mm (144.9 in)
Sedan: 4,053.8 mm (159.6 in)
Width1,615.4 mm (63.6 in)
Height1,384.3 mm (54.5 in)
1993–1996 Daihatsu Charade TX 3-door (Germany)
1993–1996 Daihatsu Charade CS 5-door (Australia)
1994–1996 Daihatsu Charade GLXi sedan (UK)
1996–2000 Daihatsu Charade Social sedan (Japan)

The fourth generation was introduced in January 1993, again with hatchback and (later) sedan bodies. The design was more conservative than that of the third generation model.[39] Being somewhat larger than the predecessor, in spite of a marginally shorter wheelbase, the 1.0-litre engines were no longer offered in most markets. The 1.0 did remain available in Australia and also in Brazil (where a lower tax rate for vehicles equipped with engines displacing less than 1.0 litres was in effect at the time) in the G202 Charade. The G202 came equipped with the CB24 1.0-litre engine; the heads and emission hose layout are completely different from those of the earlier CB23. The SOHC 1.3-litre became the base motor instead for most markets. The sedan, introduced in 1994, featured a 1.5-litre engine with optional 4WD. The bigger engines were also available with hatchback bodywork. The four-wheel drive models received the G213 chassis code, while front-wheel-drive models had codes in the G200 range. The diesel models were dropped in all markets where they had previously been available. In Australia, the fourth generation was assessed in the Used Car Safety Ratings as providing "worse than average" protection for its occupants in the event of a crash and the second generation was assessed as "significantly worse than average".[35]

The turbocharged GTti version was replaced by a more conventional GTi with an SOHC 16-valve 1.6-litre engine. In the Japanese domestic market this version was named in honour of Italian ex-racing driver Alessandro deTomaso (the previous owner of Innocenti, who had worked closely with Daihatsu), including a racing-derived camshaft, and was capable of 124 PS (91 kW) JIS in the Japanese market. The export version, simply called "GTi", was detuned to 105 PS (77 kW) DIN. De Tomaso also added their own bodykit, Recaro seats, a Nardi Torino steering wheel, and Pirelli sports tires. A total of 120,000 Charade GTis were produced following this joint effort.

The Charade was restyled in 1996, only two years after release. It now had a "smiley face" grille and changed headlights, looking more like its Toyota sibling, the Starlet. It was produced until 2000, when it was replaced by the Sirion and Storia.

Nameplate use with other vehicles[edit]

In Australia, the name had previously been used for the L500 series of the Daihatsu Mira, which was sold there as the Daihatsu Charade Centro between March 1995 and 1998.

In 2003, the Charade name was resurrected in Europe, Australia, and South Africa, on a rebadged version of the Daihatsu Mira (L250). It was positioned one market segment below its previous generations and was available as a three- or five-door hatchback with a 1.0-litre inline-four engine. It has since been discontinued in Australia in 2006, due to Toyota retiring the Daihatsu nameplate there. The L250 series of the Daihatsu Mira was produced for other markets until 2007.

From 2007, Daihatsu in South Africa offered the Daihatsu Mira (L275) as the Charade in that market.[40] Production ended in c. 2011.

Between 2011 and 2013, Daihatsu Europe brought the Thai-built Toyota Yaris (XP90) on the market as the Daihatsu Charade.[41] This was the last Charade model introduced under the Daihatsu nameplate in Europe.


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External links[edit]

Media related to Daihatsu Charade at Wikimedia Commons