Chase the Sun in a 1980 Celica for $3,750!

Some people like their eggs sunny side up, and some like them over easy. Today, Nice Price or Crack Pipe has a second-generation Celica that let's you have it both ways.

Yowzer, yesterday's Festiva suffered a festering 67% crack pipe loss, mostly due to its douche doors and implicit impracticability of purpose. Most of your agreed that driving the two-tone custom fringe Ford would publicize less that you have a big schlong, and more that you are one.

Today let's both turn down the douche, and turn back the clock with another custom car, albeit one with the factory's blessing. Back in '79 the Iranians were dicking around the U.S., gas prices were shooting up like a Hollywood junkie, and a company named Griffith was cutting the roofs off of Toyota Celicas, letting the sun shine in. In other words it was just like today, only today Toyota has other problems and doesn't make Celicas to behead.

Chase the Sun in a 1980 Celica for $3,750!

In all, Griffith converted about 2000 Sunchasers for Toyota between 1979 and 1981, and the cars were sold through the Oh What a Feeling brand's dealers with full factory warranties. The current seller of this 1980 model doesn't provide the sequence number, but it should be on a plaque which is mounted on inside of the glovebox, although you probably wouldn't give a rat's ass as the cars are all pretty much exactly the same. The cars started out as coupes, and were then unceremoniously beheaded and fitted with a padded targa-style roll-over hoop, soft rear roof section, and fiberglass hard roof spanning the space above the front seats. Unlike many coupe to convertible conversions, the Sunchaser loses little rear seat or trunk space to the folding roof due to its compact dimensions. The targa however does take up some room in the trunk when it's not keeping the birds from using you as target practice. And yes, these tops do tend to leak.

Chase the Sun in a 1980 Celica for $3,750!

The conversion - which added about $3,000 in 1980 dollars to the bottom line of Toyota's sporty coupe - didn't add much in the way of weight, and in fact the Sunchaser doesn't tip the scales much more than the stock coupe. That's a good thing as the Celica's 90-bhp, 2,189-cc 20R engine - even when backed by the W50 five speed - was only good for zero to sixty sprints of around 11 seconds, and quarter mile times that could require require bathroom breaks.

Chase the Sun in a 1980 Celica for $3,750!

But this 59,000-mile Sunchaser isn't about the numbers, it's about letting the sun in and eliminating that damn trucker's tan. Pop off the roof, fold down the back, and reveal to all the malaise-era interior that has seen some updates including a wood-rimmed wheel and a shift knob that you may also do double duty as a beer tap, and will likely get female passengers all hot and bothered. Trivial issues to be sure, and the recently refreshed convertible top and legendary Toyota durability more than make up for those minor transgressions. Other than that, the car doesn't seem to have any obvious issues, and the price is at least based in reality at $3,750. As spring is getting ready to have sprung, this might be a good candidate for warm weather motoring and a few gallons of SPF100.

And how about that price? Does $3,750 sound like a deal for one of only about 2,000 Sunchasers chasing after your hard earned dough? Or, does that price eclipse your desire to buy it?

You decide!


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