Underrated Overachiever: A Corona GT Coupe Constructed To Drift

If you consider Eighties-eras Toyotas, the outdated favourites at all times spring to thoughts: AE86 Corolla, Celica Supra, MR-2 and Starlet. The Corona GT coupe normally gained’t, however maybe solely as a result of it was one in all Toyota’s most underrated vehicles of the time.

John’s kaido-racer-impressed and drift-built 1983 Toyota Corona GT two-door hardtop must be among the finest survivors on the market.


There a only a few vehicles that strike up a dialog like this one, even right here in Japan. Many individuals make some extent of stopping to ask concerning the Corona, normally prefaced with the query: ‘What’s it?’. John solutions this finest when he says “think about an AE86, barely stretched, with an impartial rear finish”.


With a 4A-GE powering the rear wheels, John’s GT does certainly really feel like a feature-filled Hachiroku. It shares an similar drive prepare, with a T50 5-speed gearbox and brief 4.556 remaining drive.

The Corona was an enormous a part of Toyota’s car line-up from 1957 to 2001, spawning quite a few variants, fashions and generations. The ‘83 mannequin, one of many early ‘T14’ vehicles, was out there in Japan in sedan, wagon and coupe type, with diesel and petrol engine choices. John’s Corona GT may very well be thought-about one of many extra premium releases.


After parking the automobile up in downtown Yokohama, we have been approached by passersby a variety of occasions. A couple of individuals mentioned that they had seen the AT141 Corona on YouTube, whereas others have been simply curious. A aged gentleman even stopped to reminisce on its straight-edge ’80s styling.


Regardless of common outings at grassroots drift occasions – together with Sportsland Yamanashi’s SLY Summit – John spares little expense protecting the automobile in immaculate situation.


After a couple of years of possession, he took the Corona to a highly-regarded native physique store the place rust was eliminated and a couple of choose aftermarket physique components have been fitted, particularly a Restored JP fibreglass bonnet with hidden pins, and a pair of TOM’s aero aspect mirrors. Lastly, the automobile was painted in red-over-grey, changing the unique blue.


The SSR MKIII wheels – sized 14×10-inch in any respect 4 corners (B-type entrance and A-type rear) and fitted with stretched 185/55 tyres – brings the look collectively properly.


As with many purpose-built drift vehicles, there’s way more than meets the attention. John has had all the underside of the Corona modified, together with elevating the entrance crossmember, transmission member and rear differential mount by 25mm. The body rails have been sliced and raised by an inch too. These minor changes guarantee loads of clearance, even on essentially the most difficult roads.


One in all my favorite features of the construct is the lengths John went to with the inside. Like many people, all through 2020 John discovered himself with a whole lot of free time, which led him down the slippery slope of totally refinishing most of the Corona’s inside surfaces in a wine-red Chinchilla-type cloth.


As well as, a digital sprint cluster from a Canadian-delivered Celica Supra has been fitted right into a Celica XX dashboard and centre console combo. The TRD bucket seat, Omori gauges, Pioneer cassette deck and TS-X60 parcel shelf field audio system are good period-correct touches.


For me, John’s Corona GT is the right instance of a superbly executed kaido-racer-type drift automobile. This era of Toyota noticed a few of the most enjoyable driver’s vehicles, and it’s at all times nice to see examples like this one nonetheless being loved in the present day.

Alex Pender
Instagram: noplansco

1983 Toyota Corona GT Hardtop Coupe

Engine: Manufacturing unit-fitted 4A-GE 1.6L  DOHC 16-valve, A’PEXi Energy Consumption, Martelius R1 exhaust manifold, Jast.On customized stainless exhaust, ANSA muffler, Koyorad AE86 radiator, Koyorad oil cooler

Driveline: Manufacturing unit T50 5-speed gearbox, TechnoToyTuning AE86 brief shifter, TRD restricted slip differential with 4.556 remaining drive

Suspension: Izanami entrance coilovers with camber plates, Izanami SP01 dual-rate rear springs, Izanami brief rear bump stops, 30mm prolonged decrease arms & customized knuckles by Make Hirota, polyurethane bushings, Whiteline adjustable rear sway bar, Cusco pillow ball stress rods, Cusco entrance tower bar, entrance crossmember & transmission member raised 25mm, & body rails sliced & raised 25mm by Jast.On, Rudeboy customized raised differential mount

Wheels/Tyres: SSR MKIII wheels, 14×10-inch B-type entrance, 14×10-inch A-type rear, 185/55R14 Yokohama S.Drive tyres entrance/rear

Exterior: Bodywork and customized paint by 岡田自動車鈑金 (Okada Jidōsha Bankin), RestoredJP fibreglass bonnet with customized hidden bonnet pins, TOM’S door mirrors, Acura MDX Purple Rock/Porsche Cayenne Quartzite Grey paint

Inside: Celica XX dashboard, centre console & passenger seat, Canada-spec Celica Supra digital sprint cluster, wine pink chinchilla cloth inside, classic TRD bucket seat, Omori Meter single DIN gauges, Pioneer KPX-777 cassette deck head unit with retrofitted Bluetooth, Pioneer TS-X60 field audio system, Pioneer RD-160 energy degree indicator


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