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Category:  Classifieds > Classic Cars > Other Makes > Other

For Sale: 1981 Other Makes Other

Other 1981

Ad Number: 726448 | Printer Version  
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  Sellers Information
Streetside Classics-Charlotte  (9)
5400 West Wt Harris Blvd
Charlotte, NC 28269 US
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 Vehicle Specifics
Year: 1981 Make / Model: Other Makes Other
Mileage: 89883 Title Status: Clear
Engine: -- Transmission: Automatic Exterior Color: White
Doors: 2 Interior Color: Blue
 Vehicle Description
The vintage car world just decided that Japanese cars are collectable by selling a Toyota 2000GT for more than $1 million. So now that theyre on the list, how about something a little unique like this 1981 Toyota Celica Sunchaser? Not quite a convertible, its still loads of fun thats also reliable and surprisingly economical.

The first neat factoid about this Celica is that its rear-wheel-drive. Yes, that means its actually fun to toss around corners and while everyone acts like the Japanese have just now discovered the fun of oversteer, this Celica proves that theyve known about it all along. The Celica is kind of a junior muscle car, with rudimentary suspension and a chunky, stylish body, and in the Sunchaser iteration (actually built for Toyota by a subcontractor called Griffith), it has a lot of charm. Finding one this clean is some kind of miracle and the low-slung bodywork has aged quite well because it certainly doesnt look like a forgotten relic of the early 80s. The long hood/short deck styling works extremely well, and the targa-like roof means its structurally sound while still offering the alfresco motoring experience. Theres no notable rust on the body and its quite possible thats factory paint, so while its got some patina, I wouldnt change a thing. The rubber bumpers are still in good shape and all the trim and badges are still in place, suggesting a car thats led an easy life.

Bright blue inside is a pleasant surprise and looks great, reinforcing the Celicas sporty demeanor. Bucket seats with original seat covers (does anyone even make repros?) are still comfortable and the back seat looks hardly used. Theres a nice set of analog gauges that cover all the vitals and a cool bulls eye style vent for the HVAC. All the controls are where youd expect them and work properly, with a few handy storage bins throughout the interior. This Celica also sports what I have to believe is rather rare factory air conditioning, and the original 80s vintage radio is now a modern Kenwood AM/FM/CD/iPod unit that will be a great asset when youve got the top off and head out cruising. That unique and wonderful targa roof fits well, the folding rear section has clear windows, and it all seals up very well considering the design and the age. Heck, theres even a good-sized trunk in back!

A 2.4 liter inline-four provides reasonable performance, although it wont be mistaken for a V8. But given the cars light weight, it delivers spirited acceleration and doesnt seem to mind being driven hard. The 22R is legendary for its reliability, which shouldnt surprise you since this is a Toyota, and if you drive normally, it pulls down great gas mileage as well. The engine is unmodified and nicely maintained, with no signs of neglect or even age under the hood, because its extremely clean. Its backed by a 4-speed automatic gearbox that gets the job done, and as I said, with a live axle out back and disc brakes, handling is quite entertaining. The alloy wheels are in great shape and wear newer 185/70/14 blackwall radials that look right.

This Celica is surely a future collectable. In the meantime, you can enjoy the virtues of thrift and reliability. Call today!
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