Rolling across Bring a Trailer’s virtual auction floor right now is one of the coolest cars ever made. I don’t have to tell you that owning one of 109 left-hand drive 1968 Toyota 2000GT is going to be outrageously expensive, but I want you to feast your eyeballs on it, anyway.
To truly appreciate this Toyota 2000GT you have to wind the clock back to the 1960s. The Japanese auto industry wasn’t taken all that seriously and the country’s cars were seen as cheap and disposable. Japan was more known for its motorbikes like the Honda Super Cub that to this day gives millions of people affordable mobility.
Winds of change came in 1965 when Toyota rolled out the 2000GT’s concept at the Tokyo Motor Show. The fastback sports car displayed that Japan could indeed build cars just as heart-achingly beautiful as Europe or anywhere else.
Look no further than Road & Track’s review of the machine, which summed it up as “one of the most exciting and enjoyable cars we’ve driven” and a worthy Porsche 911 fighter.
Its design is largely credited to designer Albrecht Goertz, responsible for such greats as the BMW 507 and a shelved Datsun sports car that was developed with Yamaha. Nissan says the Datsun 240Z’s design was inspired by Goertz’s work. Production was a joint effort between Toyota and Yamaha, with the car being produced at Yamaha’s Iwata plant.
Calling this rare is an understatement. Just 351 examples were created. Of that, 109 of them were built as left-hand drive for export. Of those, just 54 originally made it to America. You probably have a greater chance at getting struck by lightning or winning the lottery (or both at the same time) than ever seeing a 2000GT on the road.
The buyer for this 1968 MF10L 2000GT gets a literal museum piece. Chassis 101 is said to have spent time in a Japanese museum before getting shipped off to the States in 2013. The car’s current owner picked it up then and has added only a handful of miles to the odometer since. That odometer reads about 12,000 miles, barely broken in.
You might be surprised to read that it’s not actually all original, either. It rolled out of the factory painted in Solar Red and at some point it was repainted in white. White or red this car looks fantastic.
The occupants sit in vinyl seats with knitted inserts in front of a dashboard with an array of gauges and just the right amount of wood.
The driver commands the vehicle with a large steering wheel and a wooden shift knob sprouting out of the center console.
Power comes from an engine that itself is an art piece. Pop open the hood and bask in the 1,988cc 3M inline-six co-developed with Yamaha.
It drinks fuel through triple Mikuni-Solex 40 PHH carburetors and produces about 148 horsepower and 129 lb⋅ft torque.
Those ponies are delivered through a manual transmission to the rear tires, which aren’t as big as you might expect. The car’s wheels are magnesium, with 195/60R15 tires up front and 205/60R15 in back. My Smart Fortwo has bigger tires.
The buyer gets a sweet tool kit as well as invoices for services done years ago. They also get a Montana title, because of course they do. If you can afford something of this caliber I hope you give it a good, well-deserved drive. It’s at $513,000 with four days to go. Bring a Trailer notes that this car was featured on the platform before, in 2013, and back then these were easily million-dollar cars. I expect similar from this one when the dust settles.
Correction: A previous version of this story said that Albrecht Goertz designed the Datsun 240Z. That appears to be a myth, as the vehicle he designed was actually shelved. But Nissan recognizes that the 240Z’s designers were inspired by Goertz.