Car Video:  Oversteer

Video | Check Out This Super Rare Daihatsu Charade I Saw in Breckenridge

RELATED INVENTORY
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1992 Honda Civic Type R
Used 1992 Honda Civic
$14,990
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1992 Nissan Maxima GXE
Used 1992 Nissan Maxima
$1,995
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1992 Land Rover Defender 110
Used 1992 Land Rover Defender
$55,995
RELATED READING
See all Daihatsu Charade articles
RESEARCH BY MAKE
Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs BMW cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs Daihatsu cars, trucks and SUVs
Acura cars, trucks and SUVs Alfa Romeo cars, trucks and SUVs AMC cars, trucks and SUVs Aston Martin cars, trucks and SUVs Audi cars, trucks and SUVs Bentley cars, trucks and SUVs BMW cars, trucks and SUVs Bugatti cars, trucks and SUVs Buick cars, trucks and SUVs Cadillac cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Chrysler cars, trucks and SUVs Daewoo cars, trucks and SUVs Datsun cars, trucks and SUVs DeLorean cars, trucks and SUVs Dodge cars, trucks and SUVs Eagle cars, trucks and SUVs Ferrari cars, trucks and SUVs FIAT cars, trucks and SUVs Fisker cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Freightliner cars, trucks and SUVs Genesis cars, trucks and SUVs Geo cars, trucks and SUVs GMC cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs HUMMER cars, trucks and SUVs Hyundai cars, trucks and SUVs INFINITI cars, trucks and SUVs Isuzu cars, trucks and SUVs Jaguar cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Kia cars, trucks and SUVs Lamborghini cars, trucks and SUVs Land Rover cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Lincoln cars, trucks and SUVs Lotus cars, trucks and SUVs Maserati cars, trucks and SUVs Maybach cars, trucks and SUVs MAZDA cars, trucks and SUVs McLaren cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs Mercury cars, trucks and SUVs MINI cars, trucks and SUVs Mitsubishi cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Oldsmobile cars, trucks and SUVs Plymouth cars, trucks and SUVs Pontiac cars, trucks and SUVs Porsche cars, trucks and SUVs RAM cars, trucks and SUVs Rolls-Royce cars, trucks and SUVs Saab cars, trucks and SUVs Saturn cars, trucks and SUVs Scion cars, trucks and SUVs smart cars, trucks and SUVs SRT cars, trucks and SUVs Subaru cars, trucks and SUVs Suzuki cars, trucks and SUVs Tesla cars, trucks and SUVs Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Volvo cars, trucks and SUVs Yugo cars, trucks and SUVs
RESEARCH BY STYLE
AWD/4WD
Commercial
Convertible
Coupe
Hatchback
Hybrid/Electric
Luxury
Sedan
SUV/Crossover
Truck
Van/Minivan
Wagon
ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Chris O'Neill October 2018

In terms of the unique cars I see out in the wild and post to my Instagram account (@MountainWestCarSpotter, follow me!), I can break things down into a few different tiers, which should help to explain why I was so excited when I saw this Daihatsu Charade.

First, you've got more common cool cars that I can find something interesting to talk about, like old Ford Broncos and Toyota Land Cruisers, maybe a Volkswagen Eurovan here and there or a high-performance Audi model like the RS4.

Next come the oddballs, like a grey market Mitsubishi Delica or some other JDM oddity, or a Volkswagen Vanagon Syncro, or maybe a North American-spec Land Rover Defender -- these vehicles are around and you see them fairly consistently, but they're still pretty rare and pretty cool.

From there, you get into the really weird stuff, like a Subaru BRAT, a Toyota Van, a Merkur or maybe a YJ Jeep Wrangler Renegade. These are cars that are super rare, but still have a small following given the reasonably positive attributes they hold, and hence, you'll see them on occasion.

Then are the unicorns, cars that statistically speaking, you should almost never see because they are extremely rare, very difficult to maintain, offer few positives or have some business school case-study-worthy reason as to why they failed miserably in this market. Almost nobody cares about these vehicles. Things like the Nissan Axxess, the Hyundai Scoupe or a U.S.-market Mitsubishi Van or anything sold in the U.S. by Renault or Peugeot or Sterling … or Daihatsu.

That's where the Charade falls. Daihatsu tried to enter the U.S. market in 1988, but it only lasted until 1992, as the cards were stacked against it from the start. Over the course of these five model years, Daihatsu offered either two or three vehicles, depending on how you look at it. There was the Rocky, a compact, convertible 4x4 in the same vein as the Suzuki Samurai and the Charade, which was sold in two body styles -- a 4-door sedan and a 3-door hatch, which is pictured here.

The Charade that I saw was a 1991 SE model, and based on its automatic transmission we can tell that it employs a 78-horsepower 1.3-liter 4-cylinder engine -- the more powerful of the two engines offered, believe it or not. The Charade's closest competitor was the Geo Metro, but the Charade's problem was that it gave you less car for more money than the Metro, which, as demonstrated by Korean automakers over the last two decades, is the exact opposite of what any automaker should do when looking for success in a new market. Still, by most accounts, the Charade had excellent build quality, and other things, such as pricing mistakes and the uphill battle of establishing a brand in a new market, likely played a large part in Daihatsu's failure in the United States.

I spotted this Charade on my way out of Breckenridge on a recent trip to Denver, Colorado. As I tend to do, I opted to take a side street on my way out of town, rather than the main road, with the hopes that I might unearth some hidden gem like this. As I rounded a bend, the Charade immediately caught my eye, thanks to the panel between its taillights and its unique, oh-so-1990s teal color. "It's probably just a Ford Festiva," I told myself. Alas, it was not a Festiva, but a piece of 1990s automotive history. Check out the video for a little exterior tour of the Charade.

Chris O'Neill grew up in the Rust Belt and now lives in Salt Lake City, Utah. He worked in the auto industry for awhile, helping Germans design cars for Americans. On Instagram, he is the @MountainWestCarSpotter.

MORE FROM OVERSTEER:
Video | Here's Why I've Already Spent $28,000 on My 2005 Ford GT
This Chrysler PT Cruiser Looks Like a London Taxi
Autotrader Find: Never-Titled 1997 Plymouth Prowler With Matching Prowler Trailer

RELATED INVENTORY
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1992 Honda Civic Type R
Used 1992 Honda Civic
$14,990
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1992 Nissan Maxima GXE
Used 1992 Nissan Maxima
$1,995
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 1992 Land Rover Defender 110
Used 1992 Land Rover Defender
$55,995
This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Video | Check Out This Super Rare Daihatsu Charade I Saw in Breckenridge - Autotrader