The first generation of Chariot was produced from 1983 to 1991 with a choice of SOHC straight-4 powerplants; the 1755cc 4G37B or 1997cc 4G63B petrol engines, or the 1795cc 4D56T turbodiesel, mated to a five-speed manual or three-speed automatic transmission. In Australia it won the 1984 Wheels Car of the Year award in its debut year.
The second generation, from 1992 to 1997, was enlarged in every dimension, offering a longer wheelbase, and greater length, width, and height. It retained the 4G63B engine, but phased out the 4G37B and replaced the old turbodiesel with a with a newer 1997cc 4D68T powerplant, and in 1993 a 2350cc 4G64 was added to the range. A five-speed manual, or four-speed auto could be specified, and in high-end models an INVECS electronically-controlled 4-speed auto with "fuzzy logic" was also available.
The third and final generation was introduced on October 17, 1997, and was larger and heavier again. It was now known in its home market as the Chariot Grandis, after the French grandiose, to emphasise the increase in the car's size and quality as it moved from a ladder frame to monocoque construction, using the company's RISE safety body. Mitsubishi discontinued all other straight-4 engines in favour of a single gasoline direct injection version of the 4G64, while introducing a new 2972cc SOHC 6G72 V6 powerplant, also GDI-equipped. The INVECS-II four-speed semi-auto became the only transmission option.