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Mitsubishi Chariot: Spotted

Swing low and carry me home in this delivery miles blast from the past

By Dafydd Wood / Sunday, January 27, 2019

You may have noticed that rare performance cars are quite pricey these days. Anything you can feasibly attach the words 'cult', 'hero', 'poster' or 'legend' to has seen its value skyrocket. This is especially true if the car in question is also offered with the allure of low mileage. If it's old-to-oldish in age and with fewer than five digits on the odometer, it's like hen's teeth to collectors - look no further than the £100k Supra for recent proof.

This spike in classic car values has even seen the prices of lesser variants dragged up too. Once-unloved models like the 309 GTI, Skyline GTT and 996 911 have found themselves creeping aloft as the more desirable cars with which they share components, heritage or looks climb ever out of reach.

There are logical reasons for all of this, of course, and however much we might wish that our dream cars were more affordable, we understand why they're not in an imperfect world. The trouble comes when someone finds a low mileage, or rare, or old car and assumes that it is therefore worthy of a similar price bump.

That seems to be the case with today's Spotted, a 1987 Mitsubishi Chariot, a car which, despite the existence of a JDM Turbo variant with 135hp, has never been held in especially high regard by anyone anywhere for anything. Nonetheless, by virtue of its age and the remarkable 73 miles it's accumulated in that time, it has been bestowed with a price tag of nearly £13,000. An amount for which you could get into any of these muchbettercars.

But say you're not interested in any of those? What if you've got your heart set on a thoroughly mediocre 1980's minivan? Well, this is peak that. We'll begin with the exterior, which may look silver in the pictures but, make no mistake, is mauve. This perfectly compliments the cranberry interior, alternatively described by one member of the PH team as looking "like the inside of a badger".

The entrail aesthetic permeates every spare centimetre of the cabin, enveloping all seven of the cloth seats, the floor mats and the dash, where even the retro-chic two-spoke steering wheel doesn't escape its wrath. Further forward, the 2.0-litre 90hp engine looks as pristine as you'd expect, a compliment which could be paid to everything on this car right down to the bland hubcaps.

In fact, forget everything I've just said, this Chariot is so perfectly terrible in every way that it has become a thing of beauty. As for being a thing that can justify its price tag though, well, I'm still not so sure about that.


SPECIFICATION - MITSUBISHI CHARIOT

Engine: 1,997cc four-cylinder
Transmission: 3-speed automatic
Power (hp): 105@6,100rpm
Torque (lb ft): 118@3,000rpm
MPG: Who knows...
Top speed: Not much
Price new: £N/A
Yours for: £13,000

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