Saturday, April 5, 2014

10k: Affordable Performance: 1989 Toyota Supra Mk III Turbo

 The Mk III Toyota Supra was a game changing car when it hit the showrooms in 1986.  It offered a staggering level of technology in an affordable sports coupe package.  The Supra featured a turbocharged twin-cam, 4-valve, distributor-less engine that was miles ahead of its competition and only had a minor problem of consistently blowing up head gaskets at 75k mile intervals.  Find this 1989 Toyota Supra Mk III turbo 5-spd, currently bidding on ebay for $9,106 reserve-not-met with less than 2 days to go, located in Chandler, AZ.

The Toyota Supra was a part of the Celica platform up until the Mk III launch when the Celica went to front-drive platform and the Supra moved more up-market.  Today the Mk III isn't insanely overpriced like the Mk IV Supra (thanks Fast and Furious) but the good, low mile, examples are starting to see some appreciation.

Under the hood is the 7M-GTE, a 3.0 liter inline-6 that was turobcharged to produce 232 horsepower and 240 ft-lbs of torque.  The infamous headgasket failure issue was related to an low torque setting on the head bolts and could be fixed by simply increasing the torque spec when installing the head bolts.  The Supra engine bay was really packed with technology for 1989, for instance those funny looking shock tower caps hide part of the TEMS (Toyota Electronic Modulated Suspension) system that could vary shock stiffness based on vehicle speed and attitude. 

Inside the Supra offers all of the conveniences you would expect from a typical Japanese commuter, and only the 5-speed gearbox warned your passengers that something special could happen at anytime.

See a better turbocharged 80s classic?


  1. Ugh -- all that careful maintenance work and never bothered to replace the original radiator. Guessing by the discoloration in the plastic endtank I'd say it's well overdue.

  2. Someone likes that new badge ;)

  3. Also, the seller thinks it has a V6.

  4. Great looking car, and hopefully we're not too far away from the reserve price. This will be a lot of fun for the buyer.

  5. The Guido car of the 90's.. After they traded in the IROC-Z.


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