2003 Toyota Celica 1.8 VVT-i


• Just 2 owners from new
• Previous owner since 2005
• Lovely condition
• Serviced and ready to be enjoyed

The Background

The Celica that launched in 1999 was the seventh and, as it turns out, final version of the long running name plate for Toyota. (At the time of writing, at least. Given recent market trends, it wouldn’t be surprising to see it slapped onto a new electric SUV). 

The three door coupe marked a change of direction for the styling and sought to improve on the driver appeal of its predecessor with reduced weight and livelier handling. By all accounts it was a success, earning it widespread praise at the time.

The Celica utilised engines from the ZZ family of engines, with the 1ZZ seen here the more economical option. Driving the front wheels through a six speed gearbox, they are generally renowned for their reliability. They say that absence makes the heart grow fonder and certainly it seems that there is an increasing level of affection for the last Celicas.

The History

This car has had 2 owners from new, with the second owning it since 2005. Supplied by Westlands Toyota in Stourbridge on 8 Mar 2003, it has been serviced every year despite covering limited mileages in recent years. 

The MOT history is completely clean, save for a fail relating to an incorrectly fitted tyre back in 2014 (whoops). It has just had a fresh clutch and has been serviced.

The Paperwork

The car is accompanied by the usual owner’s manuals and the service book containing the stamps for each year. The V5 is present and the current MOT expires on 20 October 2022.

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The Interior

If one needed any proof of Toyota’s ability to build hard-wearing and long-lasting cars, then look no further than the cabin of this car. After a full valet, there’s very little wear to show for its age and mileage. 

To be fair, not all the credit should go to Toyota as it’s clearly been very well cared for too but all the buttons, switches and dials behave as they should, the dash doesn’t bear any battles scars and the seats and carpets all present very well.

In the boot, it’s also all very clean and tidy and beneath the boot floor is a full sized spare wheel and the original toolkit. The headlining is clean and taut with no signs of sag and there’s little wear on all the contact points. In all, it’s as good as you could hope for it to be.

Toyota Celica replacment pics-4.jpg 1.65 MB

The Exterior 

Many of these Celicas have been modified with varying degrees of tastefulness but this one remains completely standard and, to our eyes, the better for it. This car is finished in the popular Royal Sapphire metallic blue colour which can be prone to stone chipping. 

Here, however, although there are a few small chips which have been touched in, the paintwork remains in great condition and it polishes up very nicely. 

The wheels have just been refurbished and so are in excellent condition and wear tyres with plenty of tread remaining. Underneath all looks clean and solid and so, much like the interior, it’s a really great, unmodified example.

The Mechanics 

If you were worried that this car would have an Achilles heel then fear not, as popping the bonnet reveals a pristine engine bay that looks as well cared for as the rest of the car. 

It fires up first time and drives just as it should with a raspy soundtrack and no noises that shouldn’t be there, be that from the drivetrain or suspension. It pulls well, stops in a straight line and is smooth up and down the gears. 

The clutch was replaced as a precautionary measure as the biting point was a little high and the parts were very cheap and now this car feels like it has much more life in it yet.

The Appeal

It’s been over fifteen years since the demise of the Celica name and with no replacement on the cards it’s easy to forget how much fun a well-engineered front wheel drive coupe can be. If you’ve never owned one of these, then now is the time before decent examples disappear completely.

And you’ll struggle to find a much better example than this one. With a full service history and seemingly having lived a low-stress life, this car is in great condition, inside and out, and will looks to ready to serve up many more years of enjoyment.

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 2003
  • Make Toyota
  • Model Celica
  • Colour Blue
  • Odometer 67,737 Miles
  • Engine size 1794
  • Location Hampshire
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
8 bids from 5 bidders
  • Terence•••• £5,200 28/11/21
  • john-as•••• £5,100 27/11/21
  • gavin-w•••• £4,600 26/11/21
  • john-as•••• £4,251 26/11/21
  • gavin-w•••• £4,000 23/11/21
  • Edenhou•••• £3,500 22/11/21
  • henry-l•••• £2,000 22/11/21
  • john-as•••• £1,200 22/11/21

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