Welcome to Down On The Street, where we admire old vehicles found parked on the streets of the Island That Rust Forgot: Alameda, California. Here's a car that should be recognizable to anyone venturing to Alameda's main downtown strip during business hours: an '86 Cressida that lives in a yellow loading zone in between pizza-delivery runs. And, having put in my time as a pizza deliverator myself (hat tip to Neal Stephenson for hardwiring that term into everyone's brains), I have nothing but respect for this fine machine.
We've seen one DOTS Cressida before this one, and since then I've realized that the big Toyotas are actually quite commonplace in Alameda; I'd been mentally registering them as early Camrys until I started paying closer attention. That means a Cressida must be special in some way to make this series, and a Pizza Deliverator version with a hood mural painted in rust certainly qualifies.
The six-cylinder Cressida was Toyota's pre-Lexus North American flagship, selling for about twice the price of a Corolla (but, crucially, much less than the price of a new BMW 5 Series).
As Park Street continues to gentrify- swapping Navy-town
meth-related stabbings grit for upscale shops, it's good to see a reminder of the days when members of Y&T hung out at the AM/PM parking lot on the corner. Sure, this Cressida would have been driven by a well-off solid citizen back in those days, but now it's channeling the spirit of the beat-to-crap Chevelles and Satellites that delivered islanders their pizza during Reagan's first term.