Why Buy A Civic When You Can Get This Museum Quality Toyota Cressida?

Illustration for article titled Why Buy A Civic When You Can Get This Museum Quality Toyota Cressida?

Would you ever put a cast on a perfectly good leg? Of course you wouldn't, because there is never a need to fix something that isn't broken. The automotive representation of this useful saying is this damn near perfect 1986 Toyota Cressida that has everything you need and nothing you don't. Yours for less than the price of a used Honda Civic.

Illustration for article titled Why Buy A Civic When You Can Get This Museum Quality Toyota Cressida?

This 1986 Toyota Cressida, when new, wasn't exactly the pinnacle of luxury, but it was the only thing Japan had that came close to a competitor for the mid-size luxury segment. Consider this a pre-Lexus Lexus. Its 2.8 liter 5M-GE naturally aspirated inline-6 cylinder engine was quite the capable performer, as it took to modifications quite well. In stock form, it was good for a rush from 0-60 miles per hour in around 8 seconds, which wasn't exactly slow at the time. It can still keep up with modern traffic without too much of a fuss.

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Illustration for article titled Why Buy A Civic When You Can Get This Museum Quality Toyota Cressida?

From its cushy-looking velour seats to its overhead self-retracting seatbelt, this thing is all '80s nostalgia, with just enough modern thrown in to make it a great place to be. It has also been driven less than any other example on the market, and is truly deserving of the title "museum quality". There are a few very slight blemishes, but on a 30 year old car with less than 30,000 miles, those aren't expected, they're welcomed as a sign of character.

Illustration for article titled Why Buy A Civic When You Can Get This Museum Quality Toyota Cressida?

Not only can this be a good candidate as a future appreciating classic, it will likely never die because of Toyota's stellar build quality at the time. At this price, it's right in the sweet spot for people with not much cash to start their classic car collection. It's the rarest version of a pretty notable car, and it's worth a second look at the very least, if only to relive the decade when Duran Duran wasn't just an obscure reference for kids to Google.

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For more great eBay finds, check these out:

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Tavarish is the founder of APiDA Online and writes about buying and selling cool cars on the internet. He owns the world's cheapest Mercedes S-Class, a graffiti-bombed Lexus, and he's the only Jalopnik author that has never driven a Miata. He also has a real name that he didn't feel was journalist-y enough so he used a pen name and this was the best he could do.

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DISCUSSION

When I worked at a Toyota dealer we had a lady that kept bringing in one of these. I think it was a 90 and it was that 80's Toyota burgundy. I wanted that car bad. She kept bringing it in for things like brake lines. Things that are dirt cheap for a DIY'er to do but quite expensive to do at the dealer. She spent thousands on it over a few months. Way more than what the car was worth and on things that could be done by me in my driveway for a couple hundred bucks. It had the inline six from the supra. It had a manual transmission. It was rear wheel drive with independent rear suspension - four CV joints. It had four-wheel discs. It had all the fun stuff and a dirt cheap insurance rate because it wasn't supposed to be a fun car. I even liked the angular look of it. I offered to buy it every time she came in. I even showed her how far into a Corolla LE she could get with the money she was putting into an old car that would just need more and more work. No dice. I'm still sad five years later. She's probably still driving it.

Please, someone buy this car. Or perhaps buy a less nice Cresida and strip it. I'd very much love for someone to make a Cresida rally car. Strip the interior of all the heavy luxury stuff, put in a role cage, and drive the daylights out of it. Oh, and video tape it and send it to me. You will be my hero and I will live vicariously through you.