2003 Daihatsu Charade Review

2003 Daihatsu Charade 1.0L 3 cylinder petrol from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 1.0L 3 cylinder petrol Manual
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired24 kilometres
Most recent distance3500 kilometres
Previous carNissan Skyline

Summary:

It's amazing how cheap good quality cars are these days!

Faults:

Nothing yet!

General Comments:

Absolute value for money. For $12 000 drive away it's unbeatable for runabout work. In my job I travel at least 600km per week around the city which wreaked havoc on my 3L turbo Skyline. It was costing me $75/week in petrol just to get to work and back! The Charade is beyond economical, $20 for a full tank that goes 600km.

It accelerates well for a 3cyl, but isn't exactly a record breaker. This is not a performance car obviously, but keeping up with the traffic is a lot easier than most larger more powerful cars due to a puny 720kg to lug around.

Inside it's deceptively large - 4 adults can sit in it comfortably. Forget about having much in the boot though, it's enough for a suitcase at best. The seats fold down for more possibilities - I can get as much in the tiny 2 door Charade as I could fit in the 4 door big Skyline.

Interior is spectacular for a cheap car - everything is well thought out and nicely built. Door handles worry me and a tachometer would be nice though. It's a pity Australia didn't get the VVT or 4WD versions. A turbo engine would be stunning - 75kW in that tiny shell could be a devastating hot hatch.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th October, 2003

20th Jan 2004, 13:44

I've just bought a 1994 Charade TE (1.0L manual).

Consistently getting about 6.7L/100km if I'm driving a bit hard. but as low as 6.3/6.4 if I'm granny driving.

And that's city driving.. not inner city, just the suburbs, but still a lot of lights.

15th Sep 2004, 21:26

Regarding the 2003 Daihatsu Charade review. I am very interested in this car particularly the fuel consumption around the city. Your statement that it cost $20 to fill the tank and then travel 600Kms needs further clarification. I live in Australia where the cost of fuel is different to NZ. Would it not be possible for you to calculate the Litres/100Kms. This would be a far more universally acceptable fuel economy figure. Thanks for all your other positive comments.

15th Jan 2007, 02:49

I just had a massive car accident whilst driving my daihatsu charade (03) and was t-barred at 80kms by a larger car. The car rolled 1 & 1/2 times and me and my 4 yr old climbed out pretty much unharmed, although the car is now a write off is is amazing how safe this car is. I never had any other problems with that car at all it was cheap to run and very reliable. It will be sadly missed :- (

5th Dec 2007, 10:47

I cannot speak highly enough about my lovely little car. It's the pink model, so it has to be a 'she' I cruise the motorways at 80mph sometimes more! This car has no problems with higher speeds, only pushing 4,000rpm at 90mph. They say the top speed is 99mph, but I've had over 100mph out of mine, albeit a very few times, and not for long! I can pack loads in the boot with one or both of the seats down, and can easily accommodate two passengers in the back seats, even three without too much of a squash. Acceleration is quite fast, beating a lot of cars away from traffic lights. In short, a wonderful car and I would buy the same again. Servicing not too expensive either.

Average review marks: 8.4 / 10, based on 1 review