The Figaro is a city car made by Nissan. And, while it looks like something you’d see on the streets of Milan, Cologne, Bristol, Dublin or Brussels in the 1950’s or 60’s, it is actually a Japanese car manufactured in 1991.
Designed to resemble the Datsun Fairlady, manufactured between 1959 and 1970, the Figaro has become a cult classic due to its retro design and scarcity. Only 20,000 vehicles were ever made.
Made by a special projects group from within Nissan, the Figaro was introduced at the 1989 Tokyo Motor Show. Only 8,000 were originally planned, but 12,000 more were added to production based on demand. In fact, based on the popularity and scarcity, prospective owners had to enter a lottery to be selected to buy a Figaro.
The two-door mini comes with a retractable hardtop room and was only manufactured in four colors—each symbolizing the four seasons: Topaz Mist, Emerald Green, Pale Aqua and Lapis Grey.
We’re not sure why the Figaro did not continue production, or why it was designed only for it’s home market of Japan. But with the popularity of the retro Mini Cooper, and Fiat 500, it seems that the Figaro would be a welcome sight at Nissan dealerships in the U.S.
Hat-tip to our friend Philip Allega for bringing the Figaro to our attention.