The fastest Charade held the laudable honour of the world's most powerful production 1.0-litre car for a very long time. Three cylinders, 993cc, dual overhead camshafts and a turbo made 100hp, an incredible achievement for 1987. And it's only now in a world of Ecoboost engines where that sort of output is being matched from such a small capacity. In the PH office we've managed to suggest the Brabus Smarts too and, er, that's it. All other suggestions for sub-1,000cc rockets welcome!
With a kerbweight of around 800kg, performance was sprightly to say the least. Top speed was 115mph according to Daihatsu; depending on where you read, 60mph arrived anywhere between 7.7 and 8.5 seconds. Certainly fast enough then, and of course accompanied by a really distinctive three-cylinder soundtrack. Daihatsu even rallied them, just to prove how tough the little Charades were.
Like a few old cars now though, the Charade proves what new cars should be aiming for. Just recently we discussed how the pocket rocket has disappeared and this is just the thing that should be emulated: low weight and small displacement makes it really efficient as well as fun. Keeping the exterior fairly modest is probably a wise idea too.
This particular GTti is for sale at the same place as the EK9 Civic Type R featured recently, and is well worth a look for fans of Japanese fast cars. Predictably given that price, it's immaculate, with only 24,000 dry miles, a pristine body and faultless interior. It's left-hand drive because it's a Belgian car once. And owned by an Andalucian rally team...
Whatever, it's a very cool and very rare hot hatch. Could it be used on the road again in such condition? Fingers crossed someone will. It would guarantee a Sunday Service hero's welcome for a start...
DAIHATSU CHARADE GTTI
Engine: 993cc 3-cyl turbo
Transmission: 5-speed manual, front-wheel drive
Power (hp): 100@6,500rpm
Torque (lb ft): 93@3,500rpm
First registered: 1989
Recorded mileage: 24,000
Price new: N/A
Yours for: £8,995
See the original advert here.