KIDNEY, ANYONE? 19k-mile 1974 Toyota Corolla

1974 Toyota Corolla 1600 Deluxe 01

Proof again that California does not have a monopoly on classic J-tin comes in the form of this Philadelphia-based 1974 Toyota Corolla 1600 Deluxe. Said to be a one-owner car with just under 19,000 original miles, it is likely one of the least driven E20 generation Corollas in the country. 

Finished in 829 Dark Blue, it appears to be blemish free with the engine and air cleaner even coated in Cosmoline. The interior is uber-clean as well, with in-tact vinyl that surely would have cracked under harsh sun had it been a SoCal car and plastic sheeting still covering the carpet. Clearly it has not seen the salty side of an east coast winter.

Alas, it is not a mango but a peanut and is saddled with an autotragic transmission. Still, it’s an unmolested, all-original specimen from the days just after the OPEC oil embargo. One wonders why someone would buy a car perfect for weathering long fuel lines and yet barely drive it at all.

In the 24 hours since we’ve known about this, the price has exactly doubled from $4,550 to a current bid of $9,100 at the time of this writing. With four days remaining and at least 19 bidders competing, this will likely go for much more. Best of all, there is no reserve. Find it here on eBay. UPDATE: Sold for $13,100!

Hat tip to Jeff Y.

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11 Responses to KIDNEY, ANYONE? 19k-mile 1974 Toyota Corolla

  1. Dandy said:

    If this beauty gets slammed or boosted, there will be heck to pay! It’s just too perfect; a museum piece or fun Sunday cruiser! Mind you, I wouldn’t want my big butt splitting that gorgeous vinyl seat! Hats off to the lucky winner and here’s hoping that it goes to the right home!

    • Randy said:

      Good news is, if it’s up over 9-grand, it’s not likely some teenager looking to hoon it.

      I’m thinking it was “the wife’s car.” Over the years, she quit driving, but just couldn’t part with it. Maybe she’s now gone, and the “kids” are getting the estate together.

      It’s about the only scenario I can think of for that to be in that shape, with such low mileage.

      Gorgeous.

      • Mike McDonald said:

        Hope it doesn’t go to some idiot on a cable TV show who specializes in screwing up historic and desirable vehicles!

  2. DROOL.

    My dad had one in orange when I was tiny. I’ve always loved these.

  3. Dave said:

    Wow, this is amazing. Another one of these *preservation* cars. Glad to see it’s wearing historic vehicle plates, even more glad to see the bids it’s received! Cars like these are rare and must be saved, but I’ve always suspected that there’s more out there than I realize, as they pop up once in a while. One of these days when the perfect one for me comes along…

  4. chino160 said:

    Although this car appears to be in great shape, it drives me crazy how everybody these days claims original miles under 100,000 miles when there is no space for the 6th digit.

    • Randy said:

      I’ll grant you that, but looking at the detaily bits in the pix, I can believe it’s only 19k… I mean, who saved these when they were new? I’ve never seen any parts advertised online for them, so for the grille and taillight trim, and the pedal pads to look that good, and the wheel covers don’t look to have any scuffs or dents…

      Can you imagine the job to restore one of these? $9,100 would be a screaming bargain.

      It would be nice if Toyota would buy it. They could put it in their lobby, or for their museum. Maybe for their new ;-) museum…

    • Eddie said:

      Thats because its NOT 18K miles… Dont get me wrong, the car is in great shape, and if you consider the age, then it should have more than half a million miles by now.

      There are three major indications that the car has 118K miles.

      1: Take a look at the wear from the seatbelt rubbing on the metal pivot point on the seat. To get the baked black paint to wear to metal, you are looking at a consistent use of the seatbelt for at least 80K miles to develop that type of wear.

      2: Take a close look at how glossy the shift handle is on the gear selector. While it is supposed to look like a piano black style plastic, Toyota put a very light texture finish on most items that you “grab” or “shift”.

      3: Just like the gear selector handle, take a look at the edges of the steering wheel. A slight polish there indicates a bit more wear than your average 18K miles on a single vehicle.

      This isnt of course to exclude the fact that it MIGHT possibly have 18K miles…. for instance, if the car was driven in a 5 mile radius for 18K miles (for instance in a factory or plant) it would have this type of wear due to a high amount of use, but not many miles driven.

      Just my .02 cents.

    • Randy said:

      Okay – I’ll give you that –

      1: I’m guessing you mean on the picture of the folded-forward seat. I only saw that once you pointed it out.

      2: Pleading ignorance on this one! :-)

      3: If you mean around the 7 o’clock position on the wheel, I figured that was just a reflection from the way the light was hitting, but I’ll defer to you. I COULD agree that there’s a touch of “shine” on the outside portion of the horn buttons…

      Now, if it were 18-19,000, that means under 500 miles/year, which actually doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, unless it WAS bought to be held for next-to-forever as an investment, but that’s usually the muscle car/Corvette collectors’ behavior.

      If we say it’s 118,000, that’s still averaging under 3K/yr, which is still utterly ridiculous, but honestly, more believable…

      Sixty-one miles/week… Church and grocery shopping, but not in the winter.

      I don’t think I’ve ever seen an unrestored car with over 100K that was anywhere NEAR that kind of shape, no matter HOW anal the owner. Like Ben said, the interior would have been baked, if it were in the southwest, and the paint would have been faded; in the northeast, it should have rusted away about 20 years ago.

      I just want to know: How did they keep it that nice for four decades!?

  5. Sedanlover said:

    Winning bid:US $13,100.00

    I know the title (kidney anyone?) pretty much tells us that you are now about to look at a rare and *usually* mint example of an old Japanese classic, but its just great to see these kind of examples still in circulation.

    You know with stuff like this (Toyota corolla = basic car, esp. back then) that it will most likely end up in the hands of some dedicated purist who will look after it and enjoy it for what it is. That is why we are on this forum, because we are like that dedicated nut and just love JNC’s.

    Aside from my useless babble, I’m happy that cars like this are still around, but its a shame its in the US (I’m from AUS).

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