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Thread: 1985 Toyota Celica Supra P-Type

  1. #1
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    1985 Toyota Celica Supra P-Type

    So, I've finally gotten my first real car! A few weeks ago my dad and uncle went out to the high desert to look at and buy this car. It is virtually rust-free and runs pretty nicely. There are a few shakes and rattles, but it cruises fairly quietly at 75mph with the undersquare 2.8l straight six purring away under the hood.

    Being the intelligent man that I am, I went home over the weekend with the optimistic notion that I would be able to cleanly transfer the title, make sure it mostly worked, and drive cross-country back to school. Unfortunately, the California DMV intervened and made me hop through a number of hoops because the car had previously been registered in a low-population area (the desert) whereas now the address on the title was in LA, a "highly-sensitive" pollution area. Once that was done, it was merely a matter of driving across country in 60 hours.

    I haven't been able to drive it properly hard because I was more interested in straight roads and ending the trip quickly, but it did cruise at 95-100mph with ease and quite a lot of noise. This part of the country was great for that sort of thing though it did reveal a few of the Supra's flaws: rattles, a whining now-limitless LSD, wind noise, and low gearing (4.10 rear end) that put the car at 4,000rpm in fifth at those speeds and resulted in about 22 mpg (10l/100km). My dad accompanied me for the first thousand miles to Boulder, CO (just outside Denver) because he had a business meeting there. I stayed in a hotel there and that was my last real bed for a while. The scenery on the way there (Utah & Colorado) is probably my second favorite part of the country that I've been to, after the Pacific coast, and the pictures below are from there.

    The next leg from Denver to Indianapolis was largely flat, uninteresting, or at night. Though I did see a beautiful sunrise in Kansas City crossing the Kansas and Missouri Rivers. The final thousand-mile leg was also uninteresting except for Pennsylvania, which was pretty and where my credit card got frozen, because apparently traveling far-too quickly across the country set off the klaxons at credit car HQ. For these last two thousand miles, I slept in the car and found that if you are tired, you can in fact sleep in a 1985 Celica Supra, which is helpful buying advice, I'm sure. I also hit a snowstorm in Pennsylvania (prompting a quick washdown when I got back to school) and the car's fully-independent suspension handled it well despite its summer tires. I did have to get off the road eventually because I was tired and felt no need to risk it while tired, in low-visibility, and on summer tires.

    All in all, when not driving over 85mph, the car returned a poor-by-modern-standards, but almost acceptable, 25-28mpg (9.5-8.5 l/100km). Despite this it didn't miss a beat for the whole trip despite not liking the 10-12,000ft elevation in Colorado and having a very tired clutch and synchroes.

    ...oh, and the headlights go up automatically, but not down.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    "Kimi, can you improve on your [race] finish?"
    "No. My Finnish is fine; I am from Finland. Do you have any water?"

  2. #2
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    Is it practical?

    No. My 6'2" dad could not get his legs comfortable, but it fits me fine and legless 3' torsoes can enjoy the support of the rear buckets. The trunk space is limited because of the fullsize spare and rear wheel drive.

    Is it economical?

    For the the time, I'm sure. The car is very-obviously geared to go 55, so higher speeds eat into mileage quite badly, but 22-28mpgz (10-8.5 l/100kmz) isn't Elephant-Hemi-on-a-hot-day territory. The fuel injection is pretty basic and it only has 12 valves, so not as bad as it could be, but still a large amount of money to cross the country.

    Is it fun to drive?

    Yes, the engine pulls very nicely and the car feels quite planted. As said before, more to come on this.

    Will it break down all the time?

    It is a Toyota from the 1980s. That is all.

    Is it easy to park?

    The visibility, once I removed the horrible tint on the rear hatch, is excellent as there is no safety equipment to impair my sightlines. Its four corners are also nicely easy to spot.

    What if I go to a Shopping Centre [sic] and get chased by baddies in a Corvette?

    It handles its mass quite well, but it's no modern car. It would be underpowered and undertired in comparison, but might be more fun.

    Is it green?

    Black as Kitdy's soul.

    Can I afford it?

    I could.

    What If I'm asked to take part in a beach assault with the Royal Marines?

    Toyotas of this vintage don't deal with salt too well, but its stealthy angles would evade radar and because it looks like a Lotus Esprit, it can probably act like one of the Japanese's midget subs at Pearl Harbor.

    Love these wheels!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by f6fhellcat13; 03-18-2013 at 02:31 PM.
    "Kimi, can you improve on your [race] finish?"
    "No. My Finnish is fine; I am from Finland. Do you have any water?"

  3. #3
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    So, no CR-X and no V8, but it was still used mildyl succesfully by Per Ekklund as a works Toyota GB Group A entry in the BRC in the mid 80's.

    Lovely.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  4. #4
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    As they say, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

    Egg Knogg:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    "Kimi, can you improve on your [race] finish?"
    "No. My Finnish is fine; I am from Finland. Do you have any water?"

  5. #5
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    80's graphics on the rear deck lid.

    Ace.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  6. #6
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    Wow, that's a pretty car. I like these old Celicas, this was probably the model right before they went FWD.

    And pop up headlights!

    Swoon...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    So, no CR-X and no V8, but it was still used mildyl succesfully by Per Ekklund as a works Toyota GB Group A entry in the BRC in the mid 80's.

    Lovely.
    Six-in-a-line!

    The CR-X was a very likely choice, but it's incredibly hard to find an unmolested one. The Supra was owned by an 81-year old, so aside from the stupid tint, it was minty fresh and wears its original plates.
    Its mintiness makes me want to preserve it, but I'm sure that there are things in the future could change: weight removal, a six speed, and a 24-valve 7M from the following model all might be fun.
    Seeing as the diff is quite open these days, I might replace it with the 3.93 from the automatic cars to bring the revs down on the freeway a bit. The motor is plenty torquey enough to deal with the gearing up.
    "Kimi, can you improve on your [race] finish?"
    "No. My Finnish is fine; I am from Finland. Do you have any water?"

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    80's graphics on the rear deck lid.

    Ace.
    Yes, and without the tiresome, yet somehow great, louvers on the rear window. The sticker cracked a bit in the desert's vicious sun, so I might try to replace that at some point.

    Quote Originally Posted by NSXType-R View Post
    Wow, that's a pretty car. I like these old Celicas, this was probably the model right before they went FWD.

    And pop up headlights!

    Swoon...
    Yeah, the Supra stayed RWD and became its own model, but the next Celica did go FWD. Interestingly, the Celica Supra was just a Celica with luxury features, a six-inch front end extension, much better styling, a six, and IRS to the Celica's beam axle.

    Also, the driver's seat pumps up for additional bolstering with that bulb to the left of the handbrake. How '80s is that!?
    "Kimi, can you improve on your [race] finish?"
    "No. My Finnish is fine; I am from Finland. Do you have any water?"

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by f6fhellcat13 View Post
    Yes, and without the tiresome, yet somehow great, louvers on the rear window. The sticker cracked a bit in the desert's vicious sun, so I might try to replace that at some point.


    Yeah, the Supra stayed RWD and became its own model, but the next Celica did go FWD. Interestingly, the Celica Supra was just a Celica with luxury features, a six-inch front end extension, much better styling, a six, and IRS to the Celica's beam axle.

    Also, the driver's seat pumps up for additional bolstering with that bulb to the left of the handbrake. How '80s is that!?
    I love these cars. I remember taking the bus and seeing it parked on a side street. On my way home I made sure I got off a stop early just to see it! This one was just a Celica, but it was pretty stunning in red. Too bad it was gone a couple days after I took that shot. I wanted to take photos from other angles but I'd be stepping onto private property.

    You know, it's weird, the Celica is one of Toyota's longest nameplates. It was a pretty competent car when it came out, I can't believe Toyota let it devolve into the piece of crap Scion tC. It's similar to the Mitsubishi Eclipse, which is now a piece of crap FWD bloated cruiser.

    At least they came out with the GT-86, which redeemed them.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by f6fhellcat13 View Post
    Six-in-a-line!
    Ah yes, the best engine configuration of all time.
    Quote Originally Posted by f6fhellcat13 View Post
    The CR-X was a very likely choice, but it's incredibly hard to find an unmolested one. The Supra was owned by an 81-year old, so aside from the stupid tint, it was minty fresh and wears its original plates.
    Its mintiness makes me want to preserve it, but I'm sure that there are things in the future could change: weight removal, a six speed, and a 24-valve 7M from the following model all might be fun.
    Seeing as the diff is quite open these days, I might replace it with the 3.93 from the automatic cars to bring the revs down on the freeway a bit. The motor is plenty torquey enough to deal with the gearing up.
    I would leave it alone, but the modification you describe sound interesting.
    Quote Originally Posted by NSXType-R View Post
    You know, it's weird, the Celica is one of Toyota's longest nameplates. It was a pretty competent car when it came out, I can't believe Toyota let it devolve into the piece of crap Scion tC. It's similar to the Mitsubishi Eclipse, which is now a piece of crap FWD bloated cruiser.

    At least they came out with the GT-86, which redeemed them.
    Well the Celica was always a 2 door Toyota saloon with a sportier body, so it kind of fits...
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    I would leave it alone, but the modification you describe sound interesting.
    Some misfortune would have to befall it for me to modify it. The diff has already gone, so the 3.93s are a distinct possibility, but I would have to blow up the motor or transmission or trash the interior for the other stuff and come into a windfall of cash, all of which I'm going to OCD-lengths not to do (save the money).

    The motor is a little coldblooded so I try to give it ample time to warm up, I use the clutch when I shift (which I didn't do in the Escort and sometimes don't do in the Civic), and I am usually a very messy person but I am trying to keep the interior junk-free. I am also looking into car covers and, at the very least, one of those foil things for the windshield. It is a miracle the dash survived as well as it did in the desert, and I have no desire to let the sun destroy the leather now if it's survived for 28 years.
    "Kimi, can you improve on your [race] finish?"
    "No. My Finnish is fine; I am from Finland. Do you have any water?"

  12. #12
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    I hear ya. I want to swap a 5-speed into my Echo, but not til the slushbox craps out.

    Nice car, btw. Clean!

    However, if it's cold-blooded, I would tend to think there's something wrong with the cold start injector. Maybe run a few tanks of Techron through it. Best way to warm up a car, IMHO is to drive it under a light load rather than to leave it idling.
    Last edited by jcp123; 03-18-2013 at 07:40 PM.
    An it harm none, do as ye will

    Approximately 79% of statistics are made up.

  13. #13
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    Nice work mate, always had a soft spot for these cars. Treat her well!
    Life's too short to drive bad cars.

  14. #14
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    Mad jelly bro will need to read after work.

    I'm mad, bro!

  15. #15
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    This is one bad-ass looking motor, congrats.

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