The Charade was Daihatsu’s first foray into the passenger car segment. In essence, it’s a supermini car, but Daihatsu considered it as a large compact car to set it apart from the automaker’s smaller compacts. As a supermini (B-segment in European market), the Daihatsu Charade is larger than a city car but quite smaller than a small family car. Superminis usually come as a hatchback.
1977-1983: First-generation Charade (G10, G20)
The first-generation Charade, called G10, was introduced in October 1977 as a front-wheel-drive car and was initially offered as a five-door hatchback. In the fall of the following year, the three-door hatchback was introduced, featuring two small round opera windows in the C pillars. The first-gen Charades surprisingly took the Japanese market by storm, becoming the Japanese Car of the Year in 1979.
In 1980, the Daihatsu Charade for Chilean market was unveiled. Called G20, this was outfitted with a downsleeved 843 cc version of Daihatsu’s three-cylinder engine. The G20 took pride in being able to operate on low-octane fuel and even on Ethanol.
1983-1987: Second-generation Charade (G11)
The G11 or the second-gen Charade was unveiled in March 1983 as a three- or five-door hatchback, featuring some variations of the 3-cylinder 1.0L engine. A turbocharged version with 68 PS JIS and diesel and turbo-diesel versions were also included. The base Charades were outfitted with the three-cylinder, 993 cc CB23 engine. Charades for the Japanese market have standard twin carburetors while those that are for export only have a single unit.
The Daihatsu Charade Turbo and DeTomaso models received a CB60 engine fitted with small IHI turbocharger, so intercooler was no longer needed. High-roofed Charades were also offered in the market in three- or five-door body styles. The “Van” for the Japanese Market also came with a higher roof.
1987-1993: Third-generation Charade (G100, G102)
It was in 1987 when the third-generation or G100 Charade was launched with a carbureted 1.0L three-cylinder engine (offered as diesel and turbodiesel) or a 1.3L four-cylinder engine with single carburetor. It was offered in either three-door or five-door hatchback body styles and featured a fully independent front and rear suspension. 1n 1988, a four-door sedan was added into the lineup with the 1.3L EFI engine.
Two sports models were also available—the GTti and the GTxx. Their mechanical construction and features were identical, but the GTxx was outfitted with more luxury items such as a/c unit, power steering, electric sunroof, and others.
1993-2000: Fourth-generation Charade (G200)
It was in January 1993 when the fourth-generation (G200) Daihatsu Charade was unveiled in sedan and hatchback bodies, powered by the base engine SOHC 1.3 L. A year after, the sedan version was introduced with a 1.5L engine and 4WD option. In 1996, a restyled Charade appeared with a “smiley face” grille and new headlights, making it look like the Toyota Starlet. This last Charade was manufactured until 2000.