Used Cars Toyota Celica GT

Published on March 13th, 2024 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez


Toyota Celica GT From 1974 Is Still Very Desirable

The first generation Toyota Celica was displayed at Tokyo Motor show in October 1970

Some of you might not have ever seen this car on our roads and its no surprise as only a handful survive today. When It arrived in the mid 1970’s it was an expensive car to own and also not many car buyers invested in 2 door coupes.

As the years progressed, many moved to junkyards after severe accidents and rust attacked its sexy untreated metal body.

Toyota Celica GT

Yes, early Japanese cars were not rust proof treated and so they never lasted and this is shame.

The 1974 Toyota Celica ST was a two-door hardtop coupe that had a lot of emphasis on style and driving enjoyment.

Toyota’s target market for this Celica was predominately the American and also European market. It was direct rival to the very popular Ford Mustang and Ford Capri.

The first generation Toyota Celica had two very distinctive models.

The first is the original with a slant nose and smiley chrome bumper and it was produced from 1970 to 1975 and came with the carbureted fed 1.6 liter spirited engine.

Toyota Celica GT

The second model Celica (pictured here and our personal favorite) came with a flat nose and slightly longer wheelbase.

In 1976, the Celica line was enlarged with the addition of the liftback model, available only in GT trim. The GT package included the larger engine, offered sportier handling, higher-grade trim and more. The liftback model was marketed as a sport-touring type vehicle, offering greater comfort and luggage capacity than the notch-back models.

The Celica was a slim and light sports car weighing in at about 2,200lbs and its 115hp 2.0L four-cylinder engine was no match for the muscle powered Mustang but had an edge over the Capri.

Toyota Celica GT

However, its success was its lively acceleration and sturdy handling when compared to the Mustang and it was more fun to drive than the Capri. Plus, it was very economical at a time when fuel prices were rising around the globe.

The manual gearshift was slick, the engine was willing, and at least it sounded and felt like it was trying hard and you could toss it around on the back roads and have great fun trying to bring in back in line.

Some time in October 2023, Toyota management hinted on the revival of the Celica and we hope that they find a way to use this original 1974 Celica design, with a modern cabin and drivetrain. Well, dreams are for free!

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