Toyota Corona 1600 GT – Today’s Tempter

By: Alex Affat, Unique Cars magazine

Toyota 1600 GT today s tempter Toyota 1600 GT today s tempter

The little-known Corona might be the next best thing to the million-dollar 2000GT

Japanese classics have largely been overlooked by the world’s elite collectors, except for Toyota’s gorgeous 2000GT which was somewhat of a watershed moment for the global high-dollar collecting community.

On the pristine manicured lawns of Pebble Beach, or in esteemed houses such as RM Sotheby’s or Goodings, whenever a rare 2000GT passes through, buyers clamber to drop upwards of $700,000+ to take them home.

It is lauded as one of the best looking cars in history and for its performance capabilities of the time - so much so in fact - that in 2013, RM Sotheby’s dropped the hammer on a yellow 2000GT to the sum of over AUD$1.5 million. David Kinney, publisher of Hagerty’s Price Guide asserted that it doubled the previous highest price paid for any Asian-manufactured car.

Which brings us to this third-generation Corona 1600 GT – of the same late 60s vintage as its fabled big-brother, it is little-known to mainstream collectors, but possesses many mechanical similarities to the 2000GT.

The 1600 GT was engineered with a sports focus, converse to the rest of the pedestrian Corona range.

Built off the two-door pillar-less coupe Corona, it gained Toyota’s 1.6lt twin-cam 9R engine, based off an earlier 4R motor but with a DOHC head which was essentially a shortened version as that found in the flagship 2000GT. The 1600 GT could also be optioned with the 2000GT 5-speed manual.

This particular 1600 GT is purportedly "100% original", with factory optioned air conditioning, and the 2000GT gearbox. It presents well on period correct Cromodora wheels and is claimed to be free of rust.

The third-generation Corona has long been said to have been styled by Battista Farina, founder of the famed Pininfarina coachbuilding firm.

A rare find in Australia today, this car boasts many of the attributes for a winning collector’s item.

It is listed by Pennant Hills Auto Traders for $32,990 and you can check out the full listing here!

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