Part 02 of our 2012 All-Toyotafest coverage starts off with a pair of our favorite neoclassic Celicas. Moises Rivera (white) and Jesse Ortiz‘s (blue 1JZ-swapped) wedge-shaped A60s are the very definition of 1980s knife’s edge styling, and the US-spec GT-S flares allow for uber-deep barrels.
While A60 Celicas have been growing in popularity in recent years, the first-gen A20 has been a staple of old school Toyotaku. Anthony Vergara’s 18R-G swapped daruma is absolutely stunning in its simplicity. No loud colors or crazy stance necessary, although we do wish in our heart of hearts that he’d rock a Japanese wheel. But we’re just picking nits here, the car is simply gorgeous.
Toysport‘s been acquiring a lot of Celicas like this clean ’73. This one’s obviously been garaged because it came with a now-removed vinyl roof, and yet, no rust and clean paint underneath!
The Celica love seems to skip over the A40s for the most part, so we were glad to see Isaias Barrios‘s liftback and Adam Hernandez‘s coupe. We can’t wait to see these second-gens works in progress become works of art.
Santos Renovales‘ E70 gives us fevered visions of creating the ultimate sleeper, an unassuming 80s econobox that can take down an Audi R8 in the quarter mile. Santos’ tubbed rear and roll cage are a dead giveaway and clocks a 9.42 seconds @ 142mph elapsed time, but for our nefarious purposes we’d only need to best the R8’s 12.19 @ 121.2 mph.
The secret to Santos’ success: a built 2.4 liter Tacoma engine with a turbo the size of a soccer ball.
Now for some street rides straight from the Bubble Economy! RaceToy‘s Trueno-converted kouki 86 has that Eighties vibe in spades, thanks largely to a clean set of Dori meshies.
You could almost imagine hachiroku above cruising side-by-side through Black Rain-era Ginza with its mid-engined brother from another mother. This AW11 MR2 with rare SSR Takechi Project Super Mesh wheels was one of our favorites from last year and returns with a bruised chin, a sad reminder that LA’s roads are not as smooth as Japan’s.
We’d never thought we’d see the day when an E100 Corolla wagon makes us all hazy-eyed with nostalgia. Easily overlooked when new, these 90s front-drivers are a striking reminder of how you can’t really buy a small Japanese wagon any more.
This year A70 Supras came out strong. There were many, but this blood red example stood out as a period-looking Wangan stormer.
The style of Jeffrey Sin‘s MA71 comes a bit later chronologically, but we’re suckers for SA3Rs.
Props to this Supra owner for rocking an original gimp mask bra! Surely this must be a very difficult to find accessory, and with cutouts for flip-up headlights and a multitude of vents, probably one of the most complex bras in ever woven.
Nathan Benson‘s Corona is another fine example of how less is more. The T130 is not a particularly beloved platform, but it seats five in comfort, looks great with a slight drop, and is way cooler than the Camry that replaced it.
Though Nathan’s Corona has a stock 20R underhood, he’s upgraded it with 45mm side-draft carbs and 4-2-1 headers.
And now for something completely different: a Corona Mark II that’s been completely zokusha‘ed out. Not your typical bosozoku sled.
Its grandson, an X30 Cressida on awesome, massively deep 15 x 11 -25 SSRs and rockin’ a VVT-i 2JZ. It is none other than Sparkle Garage.
We first saw the Scalawags Crew Cressida at the AE86 Nights 5th Anniversary shindig. It makes us smile just knowing shakotan cars like these are driving around SoCal, keeping alive a culture that originated an ocean away.
The zokusha style is so infectious that it even Scion fans have adopted it. Every Toyotafest there’s at least one slammed xB flush with kaido trademarks.
Before we go let’s give truck fans something to drool about: Jon Montepiedra‘s mostly original 1971 Hilux and an “Iron Pig” FJ55 Land Cruiser towering behind it.
In contrast, Scott Kanemura‘s insane 2JZ-GTE powered Hilux could very well be that sleeper Audi R8 slayer we’ve been dreaming of. We wait with baited breath for its completion.
And last but not least, Paul Williamsen’s 1973 FJ40V was recently purchased somewhere in the American midwest. The odometer reads 22,000 miles, but for all we know you might have to add 100,000 to that. It is, however, mostly original except for a dual battery conversion. Oddly enough, the gorgeous baby blue hue is not part of the 1973 Toyota color chart, but it is the original paint. But that’s part of the charm of these old cars, right? There’s always something more to discover!
There’s more Toyotafest coming up, but in case you missed it, here’s Part 01.
Photos by Martin Kim.
Couple of things. Number one…….I MISS MY MR2!!!!
Number two, there was a time when the wedge shaped Celica notchback received mad hatred! I had a friend who had one and was constantly being made fun of for driving the coupe instead of the hatch, partly cause it was so ugly, partly cause performance wise, I guess Toyota didn’t give it as much love as the hatchbacks.
Number three, I was surprised to see that Toyota did not offer the Baby Blue color originally. I have seen Quite a few Landcruisers with that color and original paint. Maybe it was a special edition?
Oh, it was an original color, just not for 1973 “officially”. But who knows… record keeping sucked back then.
This is my idea of heaven. How I wish I could be there with my RA64. I live in a place obsessed with big-block Chevys and Mustangs. All American metal. When I enter a show, I’m often the only Japanese car owner there!!! And I can’t help but love that Corolla wagon, we always make fun of the few that are driven by old ladies around here, who knew they could look so good lol
Thanks for the coverage and the kind words about my build.
Some Japanese wheels are on the list. I have been researching Watanabe’s maybe by the next event I will have a set on the car.
Thanks again for including my celica here.
What kind of wheels are those?
Man that Red A70..damn sexy…Freeway Speedway anyone?????
I believe there’s some confusion in regards to the yellow Celica pic. True, the one on the pic is indeed a ’73, but you describe it as having a vinyl roof, and mine was the only yellow Celica at the event that had a vinyl roof. Unfortunately, the one in the picture is not my car. So, in other words, there were 2 yellow Celicas there.
Sorry, I changed the sentence to clarify but this one had a vinyl roof that the owner removed.
Thanks for the shots, Ben. I wasn’t able to escape my booth on the field all day, and this is a great look at everything I missed! One of these years I want to come back just as a spectator…
“The odometer reads 22,000 miles, but for all we know you might have to add 100,000 to that.”
LOL, in 50,000 more Midwest miles that thing would have turned to dust. I’m amazed it looks that great with 22K.
Damn! I want to go! Even without my ride!
The wheels are 13×7 0 offset Panasports with Sumitomo HTR 205/60/13’s
I had a great time there viewing all of the awesome Toyotas. I am a First Gen Celica nut. I however must admit there were so many nice cars and trucks there. It was almost like an adult Disneyland.
I enjoyed seeing folks that I had not seen in years. Like Irwin Aquino who sold me teh front bumper on my Snow White Celica a few years back. Great guy and great build he has. TORC Staff were very nice folks and I enjoyed conversing with them as well as the many new friends I made that day.
Maybe we should do this twice a year!
I’m a lover of G-touring wagon E100
It make me very astonished how this car can be
Customize and look so dam good among other
Cars omg it is a dam good all purpose vehicle man.