Recommended Posts

HI !, I'M A 1ST YEAR AACA NEWBEE  W THE FT LAUDERDALE REGION.

 

As our Daily Driver/Racecar turned 30 years old this year, I celebrated life by joining the AACA thru the "Military Sponsorship" program from National AACA. I have been "cruisin" to the FLAACA monthly open cruises for more than a year and was told that at 30 years of age my car is considered an antique by the club. The Ft Lauderdale Region is real pleasure to be associated with. They encourage any car of any age to join the monthly cruises. The Event Coordinator is keen to provide lots of car oriented club activities for those who cannot drive,  which is cool for the older club members.

 

My 435,000 mile Mid-engined Runabout 2 seater (MR2) w T-tops is perfect for our South Florida climes. It's still fast as spit, yet delivers 32 mpg. This road rocket is Toyota's only car imported to America with a supercharger that I am aware of. I bought our MR2 at age 40 as racing replacement for our Pontiac Fiero GT V6 DD/Racecar. My wife and I raced with SCCA for 2+ decades in what is basically known to most of you as a Sprint Car classification. A perfect venue for a Texas minister's daughter with a lead heavy right foot. :)

 

I look forward to talking imports with other like minded drivers of older cars.

 

Best regards,

 

Mister2 Tim

US Army, Veteran

Cheerleaders.jpg

Sunvisor w TRD logo.jpg

89 sc Engine.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1985 Mr2 Import Car of the Year

 

Yep, just happened to run across this award while doing some research at the Motor Trend website. Back then the Mr2, being an import, was not allowed to compete with the American cars for the standard award. That’s sad because it was revolutionary for it’s time.

 

So revolutionary that on the first issue of Automobile the 1985 Mr2 was compared to the Ferrari 308. That’s right our Mark1 Mr2 $14,000 against a $58,000 Ferarri. Not that the AW11-chassis MR2 was brand-new in April of 1986. It had already been on the market for more than a year, but that made it a spring chicken compared with the Ferrari 308 parked next to it, which was in its twelfth year. In that first issue, we did the unthinkable, pitting a $14,778 Toyota against a $54,300 Ferrari. Then, we lost our minds and declared the cheap Japanese car the winner.

 

Still, the MR2 was very much a Toyota. Whereas the cabins of other mid-engine cars were crammed with more compromises than cubic feet, the MR2's cockpit was a model of ergonomic perfection, if somewhat less than aesthetically perfect. The dashboard's multiple pods and appendages appear, in retrospect, to be an attempt to torture interior designers, but all of the important controls are placed within easy reach. To describe the cabin as minuscule would be an understatement, but with a greenhouse interrupted only by the thinnest of pillars, the view out is better than that from a modern convertible with its top down.

 

Despite the MR2's microscopic dimensions, the cabin feels quite spacious. Highly adjustable seats are so supremely comfortable that you've no choice but to forgive the oh-so-1980s scrunchie-accordion-rubber doohickeys on the headrest uprights. The pedals are placed properly in front of the driver (rather than pushed toward the right because of wheel-well intrusion, as in many mid-engine cars). The two-spoke steering wheel was not pretty back then, and time hasn't helped its cause, but it's attached to something we seldom see in cars today: a manual steering rack. With fewer than 1100 pounds on the front axle, the steering isn't unduly heavy, even at parking-lot speeds, but flick the wheel on a back road and the MR2 reacts with notable aplomb. That is no surprise, since Toyota recruited Dan Gurney to help with the final chassis tuning.

 

"God help the Italians if the Japanese ever decide to build supercars," wrote David E. Davis, Jr. the then owner of the new Automobile magazine. In time, the Acura NSX, and the Lexus LFA would prove that divine assistance is not yet required for Ferrari, but it's still true that the MR2 was a very special car. Special because of its looks, performance, mid-engine layout, and, above all, because it was so unexpected, coming from a conservative company like Toyota.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now