1991 Nissan Figaro Series 1 – Today’s Tempter

By: Alex Affat, Unique Cars magazine

Nissan figaro today s tempter Nissan figaro today s tempter

Oh so retro – unique styling with bulletproof mechanicals

Before the new Beetle in 1998 and BMW’s rebooted Mini Cooper in 2000, the new-retro craze was in full tilt almost a decade prior thanks to Nissan in Japan.

In 1989 at the Tokyo Motor Show, Nissan unveiled a line of concept cars playfully titled "Back to the future".

The Nissan Pao and BE-1 harked back to micro-hatches of the past, and the S-Cargo was a homage to 2CV-esque breadvan utilities.

The fourth car was the Nissan Figaro, with a stylistic head-nod to the classic 1960s Datsun Fairlady.

When the Figaro went on sale in 1991, demand was ultimately so great that dealerships had to hold a lottery in order to allocate cars to customers.

With a luxury-laden interior, including leather seats, air-conditioning, CD player, and fixed-profile canvas convertible roof – the Figaro had exclusive retro-chic looks with the mechanical reliability of its K10 Micra underpinnings.

The Figaro remains one of the most well-recognised Japanese Kei cars outside of its home country.

Powered by a 987cc turbo inline-four and mated to a 3-speed automatic, the car boasts a modest 57kW output, but won’t bog down at all with a kerb weight of only 810kgs.

To put the size in comparison, it’s ten kilos more than a Mk1 Golf. The Figaro’s wheelbase is actually 100mm less than the Mk1, and is 25mm longer, 20mm wider and the roof sits 30mm shorter.

According to the listing this particular Lapis Grey Figaro has been owned by one lady since 2003. It has 139,036kms listed and is listed at $20,500.

For those looking for the retro classic ownership experience, this car is a unique and quirky example with plenty of style. More so, its Micra mechanicals should prove it to be a reliable little thing if properly maintained.

It’s small and fun to drive, and even more fun to look at.

The car is registered in South Australia, and you can check out the full listing here!

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