The rise of JNC prices continues, with this 1974 Toyota Corolla SR5 having recently sold for a truly impressive sum. While we have seen Datsuns and rotaries sell for around $20,000, it’s not that common to see Toyotas in the sporty RWD coupe class pull similar amounts. Why is this car special?
In a word, rarity. Mostly-stock second-gen Corollas are almost impossible to find these days, especially those in the sporty coupe body style commonly known as the mango. The SR5 was the top-of-the-line grade in the US, which came from the factory with steel fender flares. Most of the best examples here have been either turned into race cars or converted to JDM Levin or Trueno clones. Throw in a rare color of 522 Yellow, and you’ve got yourself a 43-year old Corolla that’s worth $17,750.
In Japan, a TE27 would have come with a Yamaha-engineered twin-cam 2T-G motor. Stateside, we had no such luck, making do with the OHV 2T-C. Though they can be tuned and turbocharged to put out strong numbers, factory output came in at a middling 102 horsepower.
Perhaps what’s most amazing about the Bring a Trailer sale is that the car isn’t in stellar condition. It’s been repainted. There are a few spots of rust at the bottoms of the fenders and rocker panels, a common problem area that trap leaves and dirt (and thus moisture). The original wheels have been replaced, though with period American Racing Libres. Overall, it’s not as clean as others we’ve seen. However, as one of the last few stock Us-spec ones remaining, it commanded a price that’s probably only going to rise.