1998 Celica GT-4 Final Revision Model. Stunning Condition. For Sale
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Created to compete in the World Rally Championship, regulations stated that Toyota had to build road-going versions of their Group A rally car (2500 units). The GT-Four is referred to as a "homologation special". Truly a rally car for the road.
In 1995 Toyota Europe was caught using illegal turbo restrictors at the Rally Catalunya and were given a one-year ban. The FIA president called the illegal turbo restrictor "the most sophisticated device seen in his 30 years of motorsports." Sadly this meant the factory rally team's ultimate demise and Toyota didn't re-invest in rally championships until over a decade later.
This meant the GT-4 didn't go on to be made in as high numbers as other manufacturer's rally fugitive models, but the final result is - the GT-4 is one of the prettiest of the Rally Fugitives of the '90s and now, in the pillars of history stands proudly as one of the rarest.
Celica GT-4's are nowadays very rarely seen, even on Japanese roads and are realistically now very difficult to source in a beautifully-preserved condition such as this example. Not least, the final production models - with a larger rear spoiler, projector headlights and updated interior have always been the rarest and the most sought after specification of all. The condition of this particular example is the best GT-4 we can remember having in stock over the last couple of years, so we had to pay a high price for this rare car when it came up, knowing it could be a very long time till another one as good as this comes again.
With a WRC racing heritage to support its popularity and with Toyota not having invested in any further serious performance Celica 4WD coupe models of this nature since it's no surprise to find that the last generation GT-4 has a faithful following amongst those who can appreciate its attributes. As with other rally fugitives, it's now of collectable status & continuing to rise in value (Just look at what Rally Icons such as Tommi Makkinen prices have done in recent years, or even Lancia Delta Integrale, or UR Quattro models).
Not least, beautiful rust-free genuine quality low-mileage Celica ST205 GT-4's in similar top condition as this are very difficult to find, even in Japan.
This Final Revision model Celica GT-4 carries factory uprated specification which enhances the car well. This includes Super-Strut suspension, unique to the ST205 GT-4, built especially for rally homologation. Brakes were also larger for the GT-4, with 4-pot front and 2-pot callipers & larger brake discs of similar spec. to the legendary Supra.
Equipment includes central locking with remote control, electric mirrors with retract mode, Toyota fitted mat set, climate control air conditioning, PAS, electric windows, factory tint on windows (Incl. rare option (undamaged) titanium tint film on the rear quarter glass), updated red-accent interior trim, Dual SRS airbags, leather-trimmed red-stitched steering wheel & matching shift knob, original option ABS, front & rear strut bars. There's also an original option Toyota 6CD in-dash changer fitted.
This GT-4 is in stunning unmarked condition with no previous accident damage or signs of neglect.
The final revision model carried a high-level rear spoiler, original option factory side skirts, projector headlights with clear glass lenses (of much better performance than earlier headlight design) & updated tail lights.
As pictures will show, the interior is in amazing original condition throughout. None of the often found UV damage to the dashboard, etc.
The only wear found is some minor wear to the driver's floor mat; a testament to the care and attention this car has had throughout its life, to date. Note also: This has been a non-smoker's car, but for the sake of being complete, we have replaced the pollen filter as part of our work in preparing this car.
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
This example has been beautifully looked after since new & remained faithfully standard mechanically.
In keeping with the history of being well cared for, as part of our work preparing it, we have serviced the engine entirely, inclusive of New Spark Plugs, Rotor & Distributor Cap, Oil, Oil Filter, Air Filter. The timing belt was changed at 90,887km. Clutch was also changed not long ago, by the previous owner. Transmission works perfectly, with no synchromesh wear, nor any other signs of wear.
WHEELS, BRAKES & SUSPENSION
As part of our preparation for this car, we've serviced and replaced the 8-link lower suspension joints (although not worn out, these are known to be the weakest part of the Super-Strut suspension on these cars, so they were replaced as a precaution). We also replaced brake pads at each corner. Shock absorbers have also been replaced with good quality pattern replacement; expensive parts that are rare & expensive when found. One more thing we also did was replace a worn bush on the rear differential. As a result, the integrity of the entire chassis feels tight and exhibits no rattles nor wear.
The only non-original modifications fitted on the entire car are rare and very sought after OZ Racing 17" wheels, which we feel serve this car well, given its rally heritage (In the event the new owner would prefer original wheels, given time, we can source & supply the correct type in Japan).
Having been garaged throughout most of its life when not in use, there are no faults to report with the bodywork. The few minor faults the car came to us with have been professionally addressed (front bumper received minor paintwork only) as part of our preparative work.
The exhaust system is still factory original and has no significant corrosion; a testament to the life this car has had in Japan.
There is no rust whatsoever on this example, having only ever been driven on UK roads.
Note we are able to offer rust proofing as part of our completion work if this is of interest to the future owner.
This Celica GT-4 drives perfectly, with a tight, but comfortable and sure-footed ride. Performance is strong throughout the rev range, with power all the way through the rev range, with very little boost lag. Brakes work well too. This car is an absolute pleasure to drive and is ready to be used for anything from weekend fun in good weather, to a tour through Europe.
This must surely be the best Celica GT-4 currently available for a discerning buyer wanting the very best.
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