Saturday, May 23, 2015

5k: Mint Green Barikan: 1967 Toyota Corona Deluxe

One of the secrets to driving a cool vintage car for low bucks is to pick a car that is an oddball because the selling price of nice examples will be appropriately lower than a popular marque/model.  Don't go so out in left field that the manuals are only available in some long forgotten Scandinavian dialect, but pick a car where a few grand gets you something in great Toyota's original Corona.  Find this  1967 Toyota Corona Deluxe here on eBay currently bidding for $3,500 reserve-not-met with 1 day to go, located in Reading, PA.

The RT40 series Corona came from the factory with a front end that looks strangely similar to an electric razor, hence the car's nickname of barikan (Japanese for electric shaver or clipper).  DT's resident Japanese classic car expert CFlo may or may not have been booted out of a car show for rubbing his face on the grill, but we've all had the urge. 

Under the hood is the original Toyota 2R 1.5 liter inline 4 putting out 55 horsepower and 85 ft-lbs of torque.  Its attached to a column shifted 3-spd manual transmission and will push the 2100 lb sedan around smoothly...but slowly.

The interior looks remarkably well preserved, no hacked up dash, but it could use a hula-girl bobble head (bobble body?) to match the AAA sticker.  

See another low buck classic in great shape? Send it here:


  1. Just oddball enough to be getting kind of cool. There are more out there than you might think:

    Parts should be relatively obtainable, and reliability & labor costs OK. You would loose your shirt (and maybe your house) restoring one to concours level, but a cool item to drive around as you find it.

  2. Love the CB Radio! We took one with us to LA in the early eighty's, and heading home, crossing the Utah border on the Las Vegas to Salt Lake stretch, a nearby trucker's voice crackled in a southern drawl: "Welcome to Utah! Set your watch back 50 years"! Still get a chuckle over that.

  3. Drove one of these most of 1978 in Berkeley where they were as common as could be. My memoriy is that it was nimble and fun to drive. Looking at that dashboard shot brought back a strange sense of deja vu..........if I recal it was a 3 or 4 on the tree.

    Hard to believe it is bidding at 5 K..that must be the new 500 bucks.

  4. The '67 Corona's still had the turn signal incorporated into the horn ring. I don't believe they started using a conventional turn stalk on the left side of the steering wheel until about '69. To use the horizontal bars of the horn ring as the turn stalk, you would rotate it down on the left (or up on the right) with your thumb for a left turn and up on the left and/or down on the right for a right turn. That sounds kind of weird but it kept your hand on the wheel at 3-and-9 and made far more sense than the British way of having a little stub on the center of the steering wheel hub.

    The cool part is that this one is a 3 speed on the column, which with that engine was a pretty decent driving combination for a metropolitan daily driver. The automatics were so taxing to the engine that they were horribly slow, but the manuals were pretty good and were built like tanks.

    When we lived in Pakistan, most of the taxis were motorized vespa based rickshaws. The majority of the auto taxis were Austin Minors and when you got REALLY lucky you could get a ride in a Toyota Corona. It was a limo quality ride compared to either of the others.

    Thus endeth my ofr (old fart reminiscence)

  5. Yeah, I remember these, kinda. They were what you bought after you decided you were tired of valve adjustments on your Beetle. All the ones I can remember from my neighborhood growing up were automatics owned by old folks.

    I hate to think what a 510 in this condition would be worth.

  6. I wonder if many people ended up honking the horn when they tried to use the horn ring mounted turn indicators...


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